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Preview: New Columbia Heights

New Columbia Heights

A blog about what's new and what's going on in and around the Columbia Heights neighborhood in Washington, DC : new bars, restaurants and retail spots, plus events, music, arts, news, history and more

Updated: 2017-12-13T07:39:58.778-05:00


New ice cream shop opening at 847 Upshur on Saturday: Lulabelle's Sweet Shop


Whoa! This is cool, a new ice cream shop is opening on Upshur Street this Saturday.
We are excited to announce the Grand Opening of Lulabelle’s Sweet Shop Saturday, December 9, 2017. Thanks to Petworth’s patience and its avid support of our pop-up events, we are now ready to open our doors! This Saturday, during the Upshur Street Art & Craft Fair, sweeten up your day and stop by the shop. Front of house, you’ll find a variety of candy, unique housewares, and gifts for people of all ages. In the back, we have Taharka Brothers ice cream by-the-scoop in flavors such as Grapefruit Campari Sorbet, Milk Chocolate, and Gravel Road, as well as coffee, hot chocolate, and a special peppermint drink for the opening weekend.

Our temporary hours as we adjust to being open will be 10-6 Fridays, Saturdays, & Sundays. We can’t wait to start serving up delicious treats for you all!

Lulabelle’s Sweet Shop
847 Upshur Street NW
Washington, DC 20011
@sweetlulabelle - Facebook, Instagram, Twitter

Bar Roubaix, cycling theme bar from Hilton Bros., opens Friday; soft opening today!


Bar Roubaix, the bar in the old Acre 121 space from the folks behind Marvin, the Gibson, American Ice Company and many more, is opening this Friday, Dec. 8, with a soft opening for neighborhood folks today, Dec. 7.A few friends got a preview last week and said they've extended the bar, and the spot is focused on a big pool table. There are also some cycling games where you ride a stationary bike against another person. They have a pan-European food menu and lots of Belgian beers.Here's more from the Bar Roubaix folks, plus some photos and their menu:Ian and Eric Hilton are set to open their latest production, Bar Roubaix, a cycling - centric neighborhood bar and restaurant on December 8 in Columbia Heights. Located on 1400 Irving Street, N.W. Bar Roubaix will feature an eclectic menu of craft beers, European street food and pastries. The concept of Bar Roubaix is inspired by the growing and vibrant cycling culture in the DMV. Named after the iconic city of Roubaix, terminus to one of the world's oldest and most iconic races of professional road cycling. The menu focuses on the cuisine you would encounter on the streets while cycling across Europe. It’s helmed by chef Rafael Nunez formerly of Busboy and Poets, and Eatonville. “When you’re riding through the European cities these are the food you’ll eat. From arancini of Italy, zapiekanki in Poland, to doner kabobs you see all across the continent, we want to give our guests a culinary tour of the delicious street eats of Europe.” says Arturo Zaloga, one of the designers and operator of Bar Roubaix. “ The beer program will be an eclectic rotation of cyclist favorites, like Natty Bo for the bike messengers and a fine selection of Belgians for the more discerning customer. There will be something for everyone.”  The interior design and atheistic is inspir ed by Czech Art Nouveau painter and decorative artist, Alphone Mucha, with a mural designed and painted by local artists Justin Poppe and Joseph Orzal. It also features a pool table and a one - of - its - kind cycling arcade simulation game powered by OpenSprints software, where guests can race each other. BAR “We want to create a space where cycling enthusiasts can come relax over good beers and enjoy authentic street foods that will transport them to the streets that host the Tour, the Giro, or the Vue lta,” adds Zaloga. Bar Roubaix will have plenty of parking racks and will feature a fixing station where cyclists can perform maintenance or adjustments on their ride. A beer garden style patio will be open to guests throughout the year. The bar will ope n daily at 5 p.m. with the kitchen closing at 12 a.m., Monday through Sunday. The bar will remain open until 1 a.m. on Thursday and through 2 a.m. on Friday and Saturday. For more information, please follow the team on social media (Facebook, Instagram, Twitter @RoubaixDC [...]

New cider bar, Capitol Cider House, coming to Georgia and Shepherd; food from Union Kitchen


This is neat: there's a new cider spot coming to Georgia and Shepherd, in the vacant storefront in the Fahrenheit building (that black and red residential building.) It's called Capitol Cider House and they're aiming to open sometime in 2018.

There's an interview with the owner here at the Cider Culture blog. The spot looks very modern, and they'll have food from Union Kitchen, a food incubator, and ciders from around the region.

Here's more from ANC commissioner Zach Teutsch
The Capitol Cider House is a new, locally-owned business that will be located in the current vacant storefront of the Fahrenheit Apartment building. The new bar and restaurant will offer 12 taps showcasing ciders produced specifically within 200 miles of the Capitol Building as well as locally-sourced food. Some of the ciders available at Capitol Cider House will be produced on site by the owner, Jared Fackrell, and his team.

Settlement agreements, once executed, serve as contracts between an Alcohol and Beverage Control (ABC) licensee and the ANC. The agreement becomes a part of the business’ ABC license, and, therefore, contains additional enforceable requirements above and beyond what is typically covered under an ABC license when granted by the District’s Alcohol and Beverage Regulation Administration (ABRA). The ANC recently established a policy that it would enter into a Settlement Agreement with any new business seeking an ABC license in the neighborhood.
The settlement agreement includes verbiage about when the spot will be open:
2. Nature of the Business. The Applicant will manage and operate a CT license at the listed address. The license shall have indoor seating of not more than 46, with a Total Occupancy Load of 78 and a sidewalk cafe with 13 seats.

3. Hours of Operation and Sales. The Applicant's hours of operation shall be as follows: Sunday through Thursday 7 a.m. - 2 a.m., Friday and Saturday 7 a.m.-3 a.m.

Alcohol sales shall be limited to:
Sunday through Thursday 8 a.m. - 2 a.m., Friday and Saturday 8 a.m.-3 a.m.

Entertainment hours will be limited to:
Sunday through Thursday, 12 p.m to 10 p.m. and Friday and Saturday, 9 a.m. – 12 a.m.
They're on Instagram here.

Rendering from Cider Culture, storefront image from Google Street View

Georgia Avenue Main Streets program announced: run by District Bridges and Georgia Ave Thrive


UPDATE: They are opening to the public on Friday, December 8, not this Friday as I originally wrote.Whoa, this was fast! A few months ago I wrote that Acre 121 would be replaced by a cycling-themed bar from the Hilton Brothers, who perform as Thievery Corporation and have opened a bunch of bars and restaurants in the city: 18th Street Lounge, the Gibson, American Ice Company, Ten Tigers, the Brixton, Satellite Room and more.And now Barred in DC reports they're opening Friday, Dec. 8 as Bar Roubaix! I thought something was up, as Twitter user MrTinDC said that the Washington Area Bicycle Association was having a party there on the 13th. He also spotted a variety of bike frames out front, maybe they're building something out of town (pictured above.)Bar Roubaix also tagged me in a tweet, saying "great beers, European street food, cycling culture." Sign me up.Thanks to some internet sleuthing, Barred in DC found that the food may include döner kebab, spanakopita (phyllo stuffed with feta and spinach), German potato pancakes and zapiekanki, which is a French baguette with mushrooms and cheese.They found that the chef is Rafael Nunez, formerly of Eatonville at 14th and Florida, and the GM is Arturo Zaloga, who managed the bar at Mezcalero at 14th and Spring and also worked at Marvin, El Rey and the Brixton, all Hilton-owned places.A few months ago I talked to someone affiliated with the owners of the building, who said they plan to rejigger the interior to make it a bit more bar-friendly, as it was sort of an awkward space. They also plan to make the patio more open and patio-like, it was under a big tent before. As you can see above, they've removed that tent.This all sounds awesome to me. Acre 121, if you recall, was southern coastal cuisine with a pretty good brunch, and before that the space was CommonWealth, a pretty tasty British gastropub from Jamie Leeds of Hank's Oyster Bar.Roubaix is a town in northern France that's the end of the Paris-Roubaix bike race.Here's their Facebook and Twitter.Coming soon. Great beers, European street food, cycling culture. #ColumbiaHeights— Bar Roubaix (@roubaixdc) November 29, 2017 And from the mayor's office:On Monday, October 16, at 3 pm, Mayor Muriel Bowser will launch the neighborhood revitalization program in Lower Georgia Avenue, designating the area as the newest Main Street in the DC Main Streets program, an initiative that promotes the revitalization of traditional business districts that has generated more than 2,000 jobs in the last two years. DC Main Streets are organized and led by local volunteers and community development professionals – who lead sustainable, community-driven efforts – to promote economic development, strengthen neighborhoods, and improve the quality of life for all residents.Mayor Bowser will also be joined by Administration officials to participate in a community walk in Ward 1. During the walk, the Mayor will address neighborhood concerns and hear from DC residents and business owners in the Parkview neighborhood. Starting location of the walk will begin at Wall of Books, 3325 Georgia Avenue, NW.[...]

Pretty funny: PBR doing Totino's frozen pizza contest at area bars: Midlands, Wonderland, Lyman's, LGL, Good Silver


This is amusing. Pabst Blue Ribbon is doing what they're calling a "pizza crush," which is a competition by local bars to dress up a Totino's frozen pizza.

The bars will dress up the pizzas with toppings of their choice, and if you buy a PBR, you get a slice. I assume there will also be freebies and such.

They're doing the event around the city, with a number of the participants in our area: Midlands on Friday, followed by, Wonderland, Lyman's, Looking Glass Lounge, and the Good Silver (the spot that was formerly Kangaroo Boxing Club.) Other spots around the city include Dew Drop Inn, Solly's, Ivy & Coney, Smoke & Barrel and the Pug.

There's more on the local PBR Instagram.

(H/T to Randy for spotting this)

City expands recyclable items: pizza boxes, to-go containers, plastic plates, deli containers and more


This is cool: the city is expanding their list of recyclable items to include a lot more: pizza boxes; paper and plastic plates, cups, lids and to-go containers; and plastic produce, deli/bakery containers and trays. You still need to clean the food out, though.

The idea is to help more trash avoid landfills and to increase the city's 28% recycling rate, well below Prince George's and Montgomery Counties, which are around 60%

The new items will be recyclable starting Jan. 1, so don't start putting your Domino's boxes in the recycling just yet.

They also made a handy chart with all the items that can be recycled, above. (Click it for the full version.) Print it out and put it above your home's bin!

Ward 1 council race heats up: three candidates oppose incumbent Nadeau


The Ward 1 Council race is getting interesting: there are three candidates who have filed to run against incumbent councilmember Brianne K. Nadeau: current ANC1A chair Kent Boese (who also writes the Park View DC blog), former DC judge Lori E. Parker, and newcomer Sheika Reid, a 26 year-old architectural drafter.

Nadeau, as you may recall, upset longtime Ward 1 council member Jim Graham in 2014. Graham recently passed away.

Nadeau and her challengers are registered for the Democratic primary scheduled for June 18, 2018, but in a city as heavily Democratic as ours, the primary winner will most likely take the general election too.

I've already started getting mailers from Nadeau, which are technically updates about her work in council but which a few folks on twitter have said look like campaign flyers.

Should be an interesting race! I'll be doing interviews with the candidates in the coming months.

Taste of Columbia Heights restaurant fest fundraiser for CentroNia on Oct. 18


This sounds pretty neat: CentroNia, a local early childhood nonprofit, is hosting Buen Provecho: A Taste of Columbia Heights where you buy a ticket and get two tastes at each participating restaurant. It's a cool way to try a bunch of restaurants in the area and also help out a local nonprofit. There are 11 spots currently participating, with more to come. Here's more info!CentroNía is excited to present Buen Provecho: A Taste of Columbia Heights in partnership with District Bridges. Buen Provecho, our first annual celebration of the amazing food and culture of Columbia Heights, will take place on Wednesday, October 18, 2017 from 6:00-9:00pm at individual restaurants along 14th Street, Irving Street, Park Road, and the 11th Street corridor in Columbia Heights.¡Buen Provecho! will bring together CentroNía friends, foodies, and young professionals to neighborhood restaurants, showcasing each restaurant’s unique cuisine and celebrating the community. Guests will pre-purchase tickets allocating two tastes at each restaurant. All funds raised from ticket sales and sponsorships will support the more than 2,400 children and families who benefit from CentroNía’s programs and services each year.How It Works:Purchase your ticket and you're off to explore the cuisine of Columbia Heights! Tickets are valid for 2 tastes at each participating restaurant.Start exploring once you pick up your ¡Buen Provecho! Map & Tasting Guide and swag bag at Tynan Coffee & Tea.Want something extra special? Purchase a VIP ticket! Good for 2 tastes at all participating restaurants, 5 EXTRA taste tickets, and entry to the after party.¡Buen Provecho! Map & Tasting Guides with a map of all participating restaurants and the dishes offered will be handed out at check-in to guide you on your trip around Columbia Heights. From there, explore, taste, and enjoy at your own leisure!If you're interested in learning about sponsorships, advertising opportunities, or other ways to get involved, please contact Alice Sadler at asadler@centronia.orgParticipating Restaurants & Businesses include (...and more to come!):&pizzaThe CoupeEl Tio Tex-Mex GrillThe Good SilverLetena Ethiopian RestaurantLos Hermanos Dominican RestaurantLou’s City BarNíaCentralOdd ProvisionsRedRocksTynan Coffee and TeaWillow Clothing + GiftThe Wonderland Ballroom[...]

First Friday on Georgia Avenue is tomorrow! Lots of deals, freebies, arts, kids' games and more


First Friday, the celebration of local businesses on Georgia Avenue organized by Georgia Avenue Thrive, is back again! This month's has a lot going on, with deals, discount, freebies, events, arts, music and more. If you haven't been it's a lot of fun: a way to explore small businesses, meet your neighbors and get some good deals.This month's seems to have the most going on, so read on! My favorite is the free glass of wine at Walls of Books, but there are lots of other great ones.Celebrate another great First Friday with the neighborhood small businesses on Georgia Ave NW in Park View & Petworth. Drink, food and retail specials, live music, art and more. Or as others would say, this will be epic... And as always we are partnering with our friends from Petworth Arts Collaborative. We will have bubbles, chalk and for kids at the Old Murry's Parking Lot at Morton & Georgia Avenue (across the street from Midlands). SPECIAL EVENTS:- Live music by Judge Smith on The Old Murray's Parking Lot (corner of Morton & Georgia Ave)- Scavenger Hunt with Teaching for Change (starts at Old Murray's Parking Lot) - Prizes for first three - Reading by local author Scott Jackson at: Walls of Books - Washington, DC - Drop off for Halloween Costume Drive for Park Morton Kids - map of all the businesses for easy reference: businesses:♣ Bravo Bar : BoGo & First Friday cocktail♣ Colony Club: Happy Hour (5-7), Three Man Soul Machine from 8-10pm♣ Heat Da Spot Coffee Lounge: Smoothies and Milk Cult ice-cream (at the parking lot)♣ District Dogs:- Dog kissing booth (yes!!!)- 20% dog bandanas & bow ties- Dog water bowls at Georgia Avenue businesses- Drop off spot for Halloween Costume Drive for the kids of Park Morton:♣ Union Drinkery & SmallFry DC: $6 Allspice Old Fashioned♣ Ana's restaurante: $1 chicken taco, $8 chicken soup♣ Walls of Books - Washington, DC:- A complimentary glass of wine- Local author Scott Jackson will do a book reading & signing at 6:30 pm: BoGo for up to 5 books - 20% off all Melissa & Doug toys- Drop off spot for Halloween Costume Drive for the kids of Park Morton:♣ Story District: FREE Story Telling Crash Course @ 7pm Register for FREE:♣ The Midlands: TBD♣ Esencias Panameñas Restaurant & Catering: Carimañolas (yuca balls) stuffed with either ground beef, ground turkey, ground soy (veggie) served with a tamarind dipping sauce.♣ Yoga Heights: Rooftop Yoga @ The Swift (3828 Georgia Ave) @6:15pm. (Sign up via App or on website)♣ Mom N' Pop Antiques: 20% off & live piano music♣ The Looking Glass Lounge: $2 off each drink♣ DC Reynolds: BoGo♣ Walters Sports Bar: 50% off all drinks♣ Reliable Tavern: $6 Punch♣ Ten Tigers Parlour: $5 Old Fashioned♣ The Hilltop Bar & Restaurant(Sherman Ave): $5 Chacho Mojito[...]