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Chef Mike Isabella is shopping around for space to open a new pizza joint. The owner of the popular three-month-old Italian-inspired Chinatown eatery Graffiato, home of the fried calamari-topped “Jersey Shore” pie (pictured), has a slightly different concept in mind for his next venture and mentioned Northeast D.C.’s bustling H Street corridor as a possible location.
Isabella dished up his future pie-making plans after a press conference on Wednesday morning at Founding Farmers. The former Top Chef contestant was asked whether he intended to open additional Graffiato locations in the future. Isabella said no but added that he hoped to create a more casual restaurant concept focused on pizza, with “a few salads, and maybe some olives and anchovies,” rounding out the menu. Graffiato, of course, serves an array of dishes beyond artisanal pies, including pastas and local hams.
Isabella spoke at an American Farmland Trust briefing announcing the organization’s second annual Dine Out for Farms. Restaurants participating in this nation-wide event will donate money to the organization and educate diners about the importance of preserving the nation’s farmlands. Graffiato and other D.C.-area restaurants will participate the week of Oct. 16.
UPDATE: Isabella clarifies via Twitter that the new pizzeria concept is “just a pie in the sky dream right now. No space no lease.” Realtors, this is your cue.
Photo by Darrow Montgomery