Da Luft Applies to Change Its Liquor License, Only Months After Fight and License Suspension

7 Jul

Approximately three months after a reportedly large fight and liquor license suspension, Da Luft (1242 H Street, NE) has applied to change its liquor license from a Class C Restaurant License to a Class C Tavern License.  Without getting into the fairly complex details of DC liquor laws, a tavern licensee does not have a requirement to make a certain percentage of its revenue from food sales whereas a restaurant must have 45% or more of its gross annual receipts come from food sales (here’s a helpful breakdown from our friends at Frozen Tropics from a few years ago).  In other words, a restaurant has to actually serve a lot of food and a tavern does not.  In many neighborhoods, ANC alcohol committees will protest and try to block tavern licenses as frequently tavern licenses are used for clubs or establishments that focus solely on alcohol sales.  Da Luft initially applied for a liquor license as a seafood restaurant several years ago.

This new application comes only a few months after a reported fight at Da Luft that caused the Chief of DC Police to shut down the restaurant for days.  According to a Alcoholic Beverage Control Board (ABRA) hearing from April 23, 2015:

“On April 11, 2015, a serious altercation occurred in the establishment (Da Luft) involving approximately 40 patrons.  One patron was slashed on her leg with an unknown object inside the establishment.  The fighting patrons spilled out of the establishment onto the street.  It took approximately 20 officers to break up the fight.  One patron was arrested for assault on a police officer.  There are concerns regarding the establishment’s cooperation, or lack of cooperation with ABRA investigators and MPD, and interference with a crime scene, and an investigation”

Later in the hearing, a representative for the DC Attorney General’s Office stated that, at the time, Da Luft’s “continued operation presents an imminent danger to the health and the safety of the public.”  In order to reopen, Da Luft agreed to a new security plan.  All of this occurred in mid/late April and now Da Luft is attempting to change its license.

Da Luft did not respond to multiple attempts for comment.

We reached out to Christopher Seagle and Jay Williams, the co-chairs of ANC 6A’s Alcohol Beverage Licensing Committee, to get their thoughts on Da Luft’s attempt to change its license.  They told us that “given the recent events at Da Luft, where the city stepped in to require additional security, the ANC is concerned about this request.  We look forward to hearing from the owners as to why they are requesting a change so soon after Chief Lanier closed the establishment in April.”  ANC 6A01 Commissioner Omar Mahmud, who has Da Luft in his district, said that he shared these concerns and looks forward to hearing from Da Luft representatives.

Da Luft’s hearing date in front of ABRA will be on August 24th.

6th and H Bar and Grill Plans Soft Opening for Wednesday

6 Jul

6th and H Bar and Grill (523 H Street, NE) is tentatively planning its soft opening for lunchtime on Wednesday (July 8th).  You can see our preview of the restaurant here.  Initially, they will be serving breakfast and lunch during the week and brunch on the weekends.  Dinner service will be added later.

Initial hours: 7 am-5 pm on Monday-Friday for breakfast and lunch; 10 am-3 pm for brunch on the weekends.

More details to come as we get them.

Masseria Close to Opening Near Union Market

1 Jul
Sign Posted Outside of Masseria Near Union Market

Sign Posted Outside of Masseria Near Union Market

Masseria (1340 4th Street, NE) is nearing completion and could open in the coming weeks (see our preview here).  We stopped by the Masseria drink pop-up that was held last week right outside of Union Market (there is another one tonight!) and learned that construction is almost complete.  There are a few finishing touches that must be applied and some final permits that they need from the DC Government prior to opening.  Once all of that is complete, they will train their staff and open up.  We peaked at the construction a few days ago and noticed some beautiful tile work in the patio area of the restaurant.  We were also quite excited to learn that the patio will have both heaters and cooling equipment to help make the patio usable almost the entire year.

Nando’s Quietly Progressing on H Street

26 Jun

There hasn’t been much news on it lately, but construction at the future Nando’s site on H Street (411-413 H Street, NE) has been progressing nicely over the past several weeks.  They knocked the entire building down except for the front wall on H Street.  They replaced the windows on the front wall, but not much else has been visible from H Street.  However, a walk behind the building in the alley revealed that the exterior of the building has been almost completely rebuilt.  Pictures below…

Construction Progress at Future Nando's on H Street (Taken From Alley Behind Building)

Construction Progress at Future Nando’s on H Street (Taken From Alley Behind Building)

nandos 2

Ocopa’s New Patio Looks Amazing!

25 Jun

Ocopa’s (1324 H Street, NE) new patio is finally complete and looks like it was definitely worth the wait!  It has 30 dining seats and 10 seats available at the bar.  The restaurant will be having a patio opening celebration this Saturday night.  We can’t wait to check it out!

ocopa patio2

 

ocopa patio 1

 

Photos courtesy of Ocopa.

DC Harvest Rolling Out Delivery and Cook at Home Bacon

19 Jun
Pepperoni Parmesan Doughnuts at DC Harvest

Pepperoni Parmesan Doughnuts at DC Harvest

Fans of DC Harvest (517 H Street, NE) will soon be able to enjoy the restaurant’s food on nights when they may not have time for a sit down dinner out.  In the coming week, DC Harvest will debut delivery by partnering with the service DoorDash.  Users can either log on to the DoorDash site or open up the App to get DC Harvest delivered right to their door.  Most of the items on DC Harvest’s menu will be available; however, certain items that don’t transport well (oysters) will only be offered in the restaurant.

Pan Roasted Catfish with Grilled Asparagus at DC Harvest

Pan Roasted Catfish with Grilled Asparagus at DC Harvest

Additionally, DC Harvest is working on offering its delicious housemade cherrywood smoked bacon in a packaged form that will allow customers to take it home and cook in their kitchens.  They are still ironing out the details, but their bacon will likely be sold by the pound.

Menu and Pictures from IMM Thai’s Soft Opening on H Street

17 Jun
Lettuce Wrap with Chicken at IMM Thai

Lettuce Wrap with Chicken at IMM Thai

As mentioned last week, IMM Thai (1360 H Street, NE) will be holding a soft opening on H Street for the next several weeks prior to their grand opening.  During this soft opening, they will have a limited menu (which turns out isn’t actually that limited, see below).  We stopped by last night to check it out.

Spicy Eggplant with Chicken at IMM Thai

Spicy Eggplant with Chicken at IMM Thai

Overall, we were very impressed.  We argued several years ago that H Street desperately needed a Thai restaurant, and thus far, IMM fills that void and goes beyond.  You can see the menu and pictures from our dinner down below.  Our favorites were the lettuce wrap with chicken (a traditional larb chicken dish that also had a slight sweet tang to it) and the eggplant fried rice with chicken.  The prices are reasonable and you get a significant amount of food.  Our one hope is that they do a little more work to improve the interior of the restaurant–there has not been much change since the fairly short lived Pho Bar and Grill previously occupied the space.

Panang Curry at IMM Thai

Panang Curry at IMM Thai

Duck Roll Appetizer at IMM Thai

Duck Roll Appetizer at IMM Thai

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