Ambar partners Ivan Iricanin and celebrity chef and restaurateur Richard Sandoval, who partnered together on Masa 14 and El Centro D.F., are now in the process of opening a restaurant in Iricanin’s home country of Serbia.
The “Latin gastropub” called Toro will be a more casual spin-off of Sandoval’s Dubai pan-Latin restaurant Toro Toro, which is also opening in a location in D.C. at 1300 I St. NW this year.
Iricanin says that he and Sandoval spent a long time in Serbia researching the cuisine for the Balkan-inspired Ambar in Capitol Hill, and then a Serbian friend who owns some restaurants in Belgrade came to D.C. and ate across town. They decided Belgrade was missing the kind of small plates restaurants found here. “One of the hottest locations in the city fell in our laps and we couldn’t say no,” Iricanin says. They’re shooting for a June opening.
“It’s going to be the first small plates restaurant in Serbia,” Iricanin says. “We’ll see how they react.”
In other news, Eater reports Iricanin and Sandoval are also opening a second El Centro D.F. in Georgetown.
Photo by Jessica Sidman