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D.C.’s first establishment built specifically for culinary pop-ups, EatsPlace, opens for dinner tonight. The Park View “pop-uppery,” commercial kitchen, and market from lawyer-turned-kimchi-maker Katy Chang kicks off with a Southern-inspired menu from DC Born & Raised at 5 p.m. Mason Dixie Biscuit Company will begin serving biscuit sandwiches and platters tomorrow at 7 a.m. for breakfast at lunch. New chefs and restaurateurs will rotate through every quarter.
DC Born & Raised gets its name from the fact that its founders, Dwayne Moore and Larry Allen, are just that. The first-time restaurateurs grew up next door to each other on the 5100 block of H Street SE and have been lifelong friends. “You have your birth brothers and sisters, and then as life moves on, you choose people that you treat like a brother or a sister. And Larry’s like that brother I chose, and he chose me,” says Moore. The two used to brainstorm what they might do, and one day, Allen suggested they open a restaurant. “It was always the theme of our conversations when we would meet up,” Moore says. They began writing notes and, eventually, a business plan. Neither had professional cooking experience, so they brought in chef Charles Lyons, who’s worked at Georgia Brown’s and Hill Country Barbecue. The menu will include dishes like shrimp and grits, duck confit with sage and wild rice stuffing, and a homemade sausage plate. DC Born & Raised will also serve brunch on weekends.
You may have sampled Mason Dixie Biscuit Company’s biscuits at its one-off pop-ups at Dolcezza‘s factory or Roofers Union. But EatsPlace will allow founders Ayeshah Abuelhiga, Mo Cherry, and chef Jason Gehring to offer a more extensive menu. Sandwiches will come with stuffings like fried chicken or adobo lamb, jalapeno, egg. There will also be platters with biscuits and various gravy options, including a “chicken pot pie” gravy. Biscuits in flavors like cheddar Chesapeake and sweet potato can also be paired with jams, jellies, and butters (including pork rind and maple varieties). Qualia, just up the street from EatsPlace, will supply coffee to go with the food.
Meanwhile, Chang will oversee the bar for the pop-ups. She’ll be infusing spirits and making bitters and sodas for cocktails and supplying the taps with local brews from 3 Stars, DC Brau, Atlas Brew Works, and Chocolate City. A few cans and bottles will also be available along with limited wine offerings and a homemade rice wine. Housemade sodas and mocktails will be available for non-drinkers.
Check out sample menus below.
EatsPlace, 3607 Georgia Ave. NW; (202) 656-7506; eatsplace.com
Photo of Katy Chang by Darrow Montgomery