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The 14th Street NW corridor is beginning to look like Little Italy: There’s Posto, which has been in the neighborhood since 2008. Pizza-centric Matchbox just opened at 14th and T, and a small-plates restaurant focusing on the Campania region called Lupo Verde will open across the street this spring. An Italian bistro called M Cafe & Bar is coming to 14th and R, and an Italian gastropub called Ghibellina from the owners of Acqua al 2 will open less than a block away. Chef Mike Isabella has plans for a sister restaurant to Graffiato called G at 14th and W, which will serve traditional Italian sandwiches by day and a four-course tasting menu at night. Across the street is Piola, an international chain known for pizza and pasta. There’s also an unnamed Italian restaurant planned nearby from the owners of Standard. That’s eight Italian or pizza spots within eight blocks.
There is one place no longer on that list: A pizzeria from Local 16 owner Aman Ayoubi and acclaimed pizzaiolo Edan MacQuaid failed to find enough funding to open. One reason: Investors worried about all the similar businesses nearby. Competition killed the pizzeria before it even opened. As for the remaining eight, will it come down to survival of the fittest?