We had heard several months ago that a new cajun restaurant focusing on po boys (special cajun style sandwiches) was planning on opening at 709 H Street but had not heard anything else until they put up an opening soon sign during H Street Festival earlier this month. We recently reached out to the owners to learn more. While the details of the restaurant are still being worked out, we were able to get an early preview of the restaurant that they hope will open by late November or early December.
Po Boy Jim Coming this Winter to H Street
Po Boy Jim will serve po boys as well as other cajun and creole dishes. However, unlike Tru Orleans down the street which serves a fairly wide variety of cajun foods, Po Boy Jim will primarily focus on its po boys. The owners have Carribean and Louisiana backgrounds, so their cooking is reflective of both culinary influences. They hope that their restaurant will create an “experience that we feel is unique to our restaurant and representative of the diversity of this city.” As such, Po Boy Jim will serve classic po boys from New Orleans like shrimp and roast beef as well as other po boys that have a more “international or ethnic twist.” Continue reading
Not long ago the 1100 block of H Street housed Taylor Gourmet, Little Miss Whiskey’s, and not much else. The combination of vacant buildings and a somewhat sketchy liquor store made the block one of the less appealing parts of H Street. However, this summer the block sprung to life with first the exciting addition of H&pizza and now Cusbah (1128 H Street), a Southeast Asian restaurant with a wonderful outdoor bar and patio. Even in its first few weeks, Cusbah has already helped transform a largely abandoned block into one of the most exciting (and tasty) blocks on H Street.
Cusbah on H Street
The owners of Cusbah completely remodeled what had previously been Naby’s Island Restaurant into a beautiful new space that has both indoor and outdoor patio seating. Cusbah is located in a corner townhouse unit on the eastern end of the block. As you enter, the indoor seating is intimate with dimly lit lights that reveal jars of spices above the tables that line the left side of the restaurant. The seats on the right hand side are high top stools located at the bar. The owners knocked out part of the exterior wall on the right side to create a large window behind the bar to form a two sided bar (with the bar tenders in the middle by where the exterior wall should be), so that diners can sit inside at the bar or outside on the patio at the bar. To get outside to the patio, diners are escorted through the restaurant and through the interior door by the bar to the patio that is located on the corner of H and 12th streets (it is separated from the sidewalk by a waist-high fence and several planters). Apart from the bar seating (four seats) outside, there are a variety of regular tables and high top tables. When it is nice weather outside, you would be pressed to find a more pleasant environment to dine. As it gets colder outside, we are told that the owners plan to put up a temporary roof over the patio and will presumable heat it somewhat, so that diners can enjoy the patio even during the winter. Continue reading
We stopped by Newsom (1110 H Street, NE) during H Street Festival on Saturday and got a chance to talk with the owner of the restaurant which hopes to open within the next three weeks. The restaurant will open up in the newly renovated Hubert Newsom building (which apparently has its origins in the 1890s), will serve a menu featuring “global cuisine,” and will be open for dinner and then brunch on the weekend.
Second Floor of Newsom (the window in the back left is the enclosed karaoke booth)
The owner told us that the food will draw inspiration from a variety of cuisines. The preview menu during H Street Festival included jerk skewered quail (we didn’t personally try it but heard that it was quite tasty), steak and cheese spring rolls (we tried and enjoyed), pickled shrimp, edamame hummus, and crispy shishito peppers.
First Floor of Newsom
Newsom will have a variety of different cocktails and will also have sangria on tap according to the owner. The drinks debuted during H Street Festival included Icy Ting (vodka, grapefruit, lavender bitters, lemon, and aloe), New Kid on the Block (bourbon, roselle syrup, condensed milk, and fruit), and the H Street Gold (bourbon, white wine, and fruit).
Window on Second Floor of Newsom Overlooking H Street