• Orlando Hiltzig, formerly chef and co-owner of shuttered Dupont Circle restaurant Mark & Orlando’s, has a new gig. He’s manning the kitchen at Columbia Firehouse, the new Neighborhood Restaurant Group spot in a historic Old Town, Alexandria fire station. He’ll be cooking steaks and chops for the upstairs dining room, and grilled cheeses and crab dip for the more casual downstairs. We hope he throws the tomato lager soup we miss from M&O into the mix, too.
• DailyCandy editor Erin Hartigan twittered a Michelle Obama sighting last night. She caught the first lady exiting Penn Quarter Mex spot Oyamel, where she reportedly had squash blossoms. At least it wasn’t another burger joint.
• Restaurateur Ashok Bajaj has appointed former Maestro/Mio chef Nicholas Stefanelli as to head his forthcoming New York Avenue restaurant Bibiana Osteria-Enoteca. According to Tom Sietsema, the place will serve everything from pizza to a tasting menu. Meanwhile, Bajaj’s Penn Quarter dining room 701 is about to close for a renovation. Expect a sleeker look and a new menu—Adam Longworth, an alum of New York’s Gotham Bar & Grill, is taking over that kitchen.
• The K Street outpost of Todd English chain Olives has closed, ostensibly for renovations. But Missy Frederick reports that Scott Conant, another big-name Italy-loving chef, is already scouting the space.
• The 14th Street foodie takeover continues with news that gourmet/wine shop Cork & Fork is planning to install a third store at 14th and Church streets., Northwest. Also slated to open within a few blocks: a market from Cork wine bar’s owners and a seafood-focused restaurant and market from chef Barton Seaver and restaurateur Eli Hengst.
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