• Chef Antonio Burrell has cooked Southern style at Vidalia, done Modern American at Viridian and Eleventh Street, and channeled the Brit pub scene at CommonWealth. His next move? Asian/Latin small plates, naturally. He’s just been tapped to take charge of the kitchen at Masa 14, the Richard Sandoval/Kaz Okochi collaboration slated to open on 14th Street, Northwest, in September.
• Another 14th Street arrival is Mid City Caffe, scheduled to open tomorrow. Metrocurean has some early photos of the place and reports that it’ll serve Counter Culture coffee and offer sidewalk seating and free wi-fi.
• We thought we had it good with Carla Hall. But for the next season of Top Chef, we’ll be able to root for three chefs with local ties—Zaytinya’s Mike Isabella, Volt’s Bryan Voltaggio and his brother, former Greenbrier chef Michael Voltaggio. This installment of the kitchen reality hit is set in Vegas, and the first episode premieres on Bravo this Wednesday at 9.
• The subterranean Dupont Circle restaurant/lounge Urbana, known for its pizza happy hour, is adding to its post-work appeal with a raw bar, which launches next week. Expect oyster specials ($1 each from 5 to 7 daily and 10 to 11 Monday through Thursday), peel-and-eat shrimp, and lobster on the shell for $18. To celebrate, a short list of sparkling wines will be on offer for $5 throughout the week.
• More debuts this week: Chef Morou Ouattara has taken over the former Bebo Trattoria space and launched Kora, an red-sauce-heavy Italian restaurant he’ll run with brother Amadou Ouattara. And Room 11, a tiny wine bar with small plates, panini, and desserts, just opened its doors in Columbia Heights.
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