Graffiato: On Thursday, Mike Isabella opened his Chinatown venue at 707 6th St. The Zaytinya executive chef and Top Chef centers his newest concept on Italian fare with a two-story restaurant with downstairs bar. Forget the manicotti, Isabella will serve seasonal, artisanal pizzas and small plates "inspired by the food he grew up eating in New Jersey."
Paul Bakery: Pleasing the senses along Pennsylvania Avenue is Paul Bakery, which opened this month at 801 Penn. The baker brings "an authentic taste of Paris" to DC, along with gourmet coffees and teas.
Al Forno will open at 3201 New Mexico in the Foxhall shopping center.
Having saved up its retail victories at The Yards, Forest City announced today its future tenants at the Capitol Riverfront, opening at various times throughout next year:
Kruba Thai and Sushi: A new restaurant from the operators of Teak Wood Thai & Sushi Bar and Regent Thai in DC and Galae Thai & Sushi Bar in Alexandria, VA. Opening in the Foundry Lofts Apartments in the first quarter 2012.
Potbelly: The latest location of the popular neighborhood sandwich joint serving toasty warm sandwiches and hand dipped shakes. Opening in the Foundry Lofts Apartments in the first quarter 2012.
Buzz Bakery: The bakery, coffee shop and dessert lounge will open its third location, featuring fresh, made from scratch creations from award-winning Pastry Chef Tiffany MacIsaac. Buzz is the creation of the Neighborhood Restaurant Group, which has such successes as The Evening Star Café, Vermilion, Rustico, Tallula, EatBar, Columbia Firehouse, Birch & Barley, ChurchKey, Planet Wine, and Red Apron Butchery.
Neighborhood Restaurant Group will also open a new and to-be-named craft brewery within the historic waterfront pavilion. Both NRG restaurants are scheduled to open late 2012.
Thompson Hospitality also has plans for two restaurant concepts for The Yards:
Austin Grill Express: a quirky Tex-Mex restaurant drawing on the experience of Austin Grill to deliver a unique menu and environment, and
brb - be right burger, a new restaurant concept featuring healthy (as possible) chemical-free burgers. Both are scheduled to open Fall 2012.
Huey's 24/7 Diner: A classic diner experience accented by traditional New Orleans dishes served in an Art Deco environment. Opening Fall 2012.
Harris Teeter will also open at 401 M St., SE, though the supermarket's arrival has been a much less carefully guarded secret. The grocer will open sometime in 2013.