Young and Hungry

Declaration Opens in Shaw on Saturday With Colonial-Inspired Pizzas


The new Shaw restaurant from the group behind Lincoln and Teddy & The Bully Bar is exactly 1,776 square feet. Within 15 minutes of learning that, owner Alan Popovsky had a name for the place: Declaration. After all, the Declaration of Independence was signed in the year 1776, and all of Popovsky's restaurants are American history-themed. Popovsky swears he didn't fudge the square-footage number as part of any gimmick: "I'll send you the lease," he swears.

Declaration centers around pizzas, but don't mistake this for an Italian restaurant. Rather, chef Demetrio Zavala's 13 "colony pies" are inspired by the first 13 states in America and named after signers of the Declaration of Independence from each state. The Georgia Lyman Hall pizza is topped with oven-roasted Amish chicken, celery, carrot, onions, and mushroom—similar ingredients to chicken and dumplings, a state staple. The North Carolina Joseph Hewes pizza riffs on vinegar barbecue. And a New York Lewis Morris pie nods to the New York bagel with chive crème fraîche, capers, cured salmon, shaved onion, arugula, and tomato confit. Read more Declaration Opens in Shaw on Saturday With Colonial-Inspired Pizzas

Sloppy Mama’s Barbeque Is Taking Over the Kitchen at Solly’s Tavern


Solly's Tavern is trading its bar food menu for barbecue come March 1. The U Street bar is partnering with Sloppy Mama's Barbeque food truck to permanently take over its kitchen.

"The food [at Solly's] was actually pretty good, but nobody expected to eat there," says Sloppy Mama's owner Joe Neuman. "It was a place to go to get PBR and shots of whiskey."

The bar will still have plenty of cheap drinks, but Neuman hopes it will now also become a destination for brisket, smoked chicken, chicken wings, and pulled pork. Neuman plans to eventually bring in a charbroiler for ribs as well. The menu will be fairly traditional with meats and sides plus sandwiches. Read more Sloppy Mama’s Barbeque Is Taking Over the Kitchen at Solly’s Tavern

Are You Gonna Eat That? Buredo’s Juice Pulp-Stuffed Sushi Burrito Rolls


The Dish: Tanaka roll

Where to Get It: Buredo, 825 14th St. NW; (202) 670-6770;

Price: $10.75

What It Is: A supersized sushi roll with apple-broccoli-broccoleaf juice pulp from Jrink Juicery as its star ingredient. The vegan roll is also stuffed with shredded carrot, shredded raw butternut squash, avocado, edamame, wasabi pea crunch, and a sweet and spicy sauce.

What It Tastes Like: The juice pulp looks kind of like salad that’s been chewed up and spit out with a texture that’s simultaneously mushy and gristly. On its own, it has a faint apple taste. Combined with the other (equally mild) ingredients, the sweet and spicy sauce provides the predominant flavor. Read more Are You Gonna Eat That? Buredo’s Juice Pulp-Stuffed Sushi Burrito Rolls

Last Night’s Leftovers: Super Bowl Edition


Where to watch the Super Bowl around D.C. [Washingtonian]

Best bars without TV in D.C. [BYT]

Ventnor Sports Cafe: A pub that does right by its grub (and its drinks) [Post]

Port City Brewing Company, by the numbers [Eater]

How to tell if your bartender is actually hitting on you [Thrillist]

French wine bar La Jambe looking to open in Shaw in May. [PoPville]

Photo via Shutterstock

Check Out The Menus For The Sovereign, Georgetown’s New Belgian Beer Bar


Many of D.C.'s Belgian beer bars are known for their wide selection of brews. But none have quite the same kind of selection as The Sovereign, opening today in Georgetown from Neighborhood Restaurant Group.

Beer Director Greg Engert is eschewing the big name brands—the ones whose names you find emblazoned on glasses and umbrellas—for a dozen smaller Belgian breweries that are producing more traditional beers with dry, funky, sour, and complex flavors. Rather than highlighting a few beers from a lot of breweries, Engert is looking to highlight a lot of beers from relatively few breweries. (Read more about that in Y&H's previous column about The Sovereign.)

The Sovereign will pour 50 drafts beginning tonight at 5:30 p.m. Its selections of more than 250 bottles, most of which are stored in a humidity and temperature controlled cellar, won't be available until tomorrow. In addition to Belgian beers, expect to also find Belgian-style ales from American, Italian, and Canadian brewers.

The bistro menu from chef Peter Smith, formerly of PS7’s, includes Dutch-style mussels with a range of flavors from saffron to pesto. The team visited Belgium in preparation for the restaurant's opening and found the bivalves there to be particularly plump, rich, and creamy. The secret, apparently, is that they're grown according to Dutch methods on the sea floor vs. on ropes or poles. Smith says he was able to find a Dutch-style mussel farmer in Maine to source his mussels from.

Another discovery from that Belgium trip was the bicky burger, a late-night favorite. The deep fried, nutmeg-spiced beef and pork patty is topped with fried onions, pickles, and bicky sauce, which is kind of like a Belgian thousand island sauce, and served between an English muffin. The bicky sauce reappears as a condiment for fries or loaded fries, along with seven other dippings sauces including bearnaise and smoked mayo.

Other highlights include "flame cakes"—the more pronounceable term for a German-style flatbread called flammkuchen. The traditional German tart is topped with crème fraîche, bacon, and caramelized onions, but there are also other variations on the menu.

Braises—many of which are cooked with beer—are another big focus. While the menu features the classic coq au vin, there's also a coq au gueuze cooked in the lambic Belgian beer.

The downstairs bistro will take reservations, but the bar areas downstairs and upstairs are available for walk-ins.

Check out the full food and draft beer menus below:

Sovereign Opening Menu 2.4.16

Sovereign Draft List 2.4.2016

The Sovereign, 1206 Wisconsin Ave. NW; (202) 774-5875;

Photo by Joy Asico

Brew In Town: Schlafly The Eleventh Labor

Eleventh Labor Glass

Schlafly The Eleventh Labor

Where in Town: D’Vines, 3103 14th St. NW

Price: $23.99/750 mL

Not Your Father(land)’s Beer

Last March, St. Louis-based Schlafly Beer released a French saison called Lazy Ballerina, the first in the “Ibex” series of more experimental, typically taproom-only beers. The second installment, The Eleventh Labor, arrived in D.C. this winter. The name is a broad reference to Hercules’ quest to steal golden apples from Zeus. Although the style, a Berliner Weisse, is traditionally served with a sweet syrup meant to balance out the beer’s tart flavor, Schlafly’s version relies on a purée of fresh apricots to achieve the same result. This alteration would surely be regarded as a sacrilege in Berlin’s tradition-obsessed beer halls, but it goes down mighty well stateside. Read more Brew In Town: Schlafly The Eleventh Labor

Dinner Engagement: Behind the Scenes of D.C. Restaurant Marriage Proposals


Some people really do want the ring in the food.

Equinox co-owner Ellen Kassoff Gray has witnessed at least a few hundred proposals in her restaurant over the last 16 years. She doesn’t recommend it, but people still ask the staff to present the engagement ring in a dessert or glass of Champagne. The restaurant won’t bake jewelry into a chocolate cake, but they will place it atop a slice.

“We do it so that they see it, because we really don’t want anybody swallowing that,” she says. A server or manager is usually standing close by “to make sure that there’s a timely reaction to the foreign object in their food.”

With Valentine’s Day around the corner, restaurants will no doubt be filled with more “will you marry me?” cliches, even though Christmastime and spring are more often regarded as proposal season in the restaurant industry. What’s a once-in-a-lifetime moment for most is a relatively routine part of some establishments’ operations. Still, dealing with a proposal from the restaurant’s end can sometimes require much more than Champagne. Read more Dinner Engagement: Behind the Scenes of D.C. Restaurant Marriage Proposals

Last Night’s Leftovers: Mardi Gras Edition


Seven ways to celebrate Mardi Gras in D.C. [Zagat]

Park Lane Tavern now open in Clarendon. [ARLnow]

New gay bar opens below Salty Dog Tavern in Dupont Circle. [Borderstan]

Five very, very boozy brunches [Express]

Black Iron Pizza has closed in Metro Center. [Eater]

The problems with food media that nobody wants to talk about [First We Feast]

Coffee pod machines on the decline [Post]

Photo via Shutterstock

The BBQ Joint’s New D.C. Spot Aims to Serve Ribs That Frank Underwood Would Approve Of

DSC_4728-7Freddy's BBQ Joint in House of Cards may be fictional, but chef Andrew Evans of Maryland's The BBQ Joint wants to channel a bit of the Frank Underwood favorite at his new D.C. location. Granted, Evans has never actually watched the hit Netflix series, but his brother has been hammering to "do this House of Cards thing" in the capital city.

"I don't think anybody owns the rib market in D.C. quite frankly," says Evans, who operates a barbecue counter in Union Market in addition to restaurants in Easton and Pasadena, Md. And so, he's looking to "take ribs up a notch" at his new location of The BBQ Joint, which will be located in the former Den of Thieves space at 14th and U streets NW. Restaurateur Eric Hilton is partnering in the venture. Read more The BBQ Joint’s New D.C. Spot Aims to Serve Ribs That Frank Underwood Would Approve Of

Hank’s Pasta Bar Opens in Alexandria Today


Hank's Oyster Bar chef and owner Jamie Leeds is foregoing oysters at her newest venture, Hank's Pasta Bar, which opens in Alexandria today at 4 p.m.

The menu features 15 types of pasta—from fettuccine bolognese to parsnip gnocchi with crab, cherry tomatoes, and spinach. All of the pastas are handmade, expect for the gluten-free fusilli. Can't decide? Choose a sampler of any three to five pastas (except for the stuffed ones) plus an antipasti board for $29 to $35 per person.

Leeds has been interested in opening an Italian restaurant for nearly a decade. In fact, she'd considered turning her now-closed Columbia Heights restaurant Commonwealth Gastropub into an Italian spot. Read more Hank’s Pasta Bar Opens in Alexandria Today