Cathal Armstrong Debuts Garden Café Americana at the National Gallery Next Week

He follows other famous DC chefs who’ve created exhibit-themed menus for the café.

By: Anna Spiegel

Cathal Armstrong, here with wife Meshelle. Photograph by Ralph Alswang.

The Garden Café at the National Gallery of Art just announced the latest big-name chef to design a menu: Cathal Armstrong, who’ll create dishes for the pop-up Garden Café Americana in conjunction with the “Masterpieces of American Furniture from the Kaufman Collection, 1700-1830.” Armstrong joins a long list of toques who’ve created rotating exhibit-themed menus for the gallery cafe in the past, including José Andrés, Michel Richard, Fabio Trabocchi.

You’ll have to cross the Potomac to sample fare from Armstrong’s seven other ventures (including Restaurant Eve, Virtue Feed & Grain, and the Majestic), but DC dwellers can head down to the Mall starting at 11:30 AM on October 2 to get a taste of Armstrong’s dishes, executed with the help of chef David Rogers of the National Gallery. The American farmland theme matching the exhibit doesn’t stray too far from Armstrong’s ingredient-driven style. On the buffet ($20.75 per person) you’ll find homey dishes such as glazed root vegetable salad with toasted garlic vinaigrette, turkey pot pie with buttermilk biscuits, braised beef pot roast, and pecan pie; certain items are also available à la carte. To truly feel like a tourist on vacation, match your lunch with American wines or cocktails such as bourbon milk punch or a gin rickey.