In a few weeks, the team behind Clarendon’s Liberty Tavern will open two new eateries in the same neighborhood: first they’ll debut Northside Social, a coffeehouse and wine bar, and later, Lyon Hall, a European-style brasserie. While Liberty Tavern executive chef Liam LaCivita will oversee both projects, owner Stephen Fedorchak tells us that he’s tapped Andy Bennett as chef de cuisine of Lyon Hall. Bennett worked with Manhattan-based chef Daniel Boulud for five years at the famed chef’s eponymous restaurant and as executive chef at the Inn at LW12. He also has experience at a two-Michelin-star restaurant, Le Manoir Aux Quat’ Saisons, in his native England.
Fedorchak and his partners have also named a pastry chef for Liberty Tavern and the two new projects. Robert Valencia got his start at the well-liked San Francisco restaurant Boulevard before moving to New York to work as executive pastry chef at Blue Fin. Most recently, he held the same title for the Citigroup Executive Dining Room.
Bennett and Valencia’s migration from Manhattan marks a trend for Washington restaurants. Their hiring comes on the heels of other recently relocated New York chefs: Adam Longworth came to 701 from Gotham Bar and Grill, and Kyle Bailey and Tiffany MacIsaac left Allen & Delancey to take over at Birch & Barley/ChurchKey. There has also been a slew of New York-based restaurants setting up outposts here: Kellari Taverna, which opened in downtown DC this fall; the brand new Bond 45 in National Harbor; and family-style Italian spot Carmine’s and barbecue joint Hill Country, both set to open in Penn Quarter.
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