In his Wednesday chat, Washington Post critic Tom Sietsema dropped the news that there's more to come from the culinary team that created Restaurant Eve, PX, Eamonn's, and the Majestic. The three business partners—chef Cathal Armstrong, his wife, Meshelle, and cocktail whiz Todd Thrasher—will open Virtue Feed & Grain in Old Town next year. Sietsema reports that in its former life, their historic space was a feed lot; the restaurant will hold 300 seats, have a pub-like menu with touches of Cathal's Irish background, and a window to order fried chicken.
Sietsema also had the background information behind the dark storefront at downtown DC's Spezie, where Cesare Lanfranconi was rolling fresh pasta until the end of April. The chef couldn't make ends meet with the sagging economy and then had to close for more than a week when Snowpocalypse hit in February.
We got news that the owners of the white-tablecloth restaurant 2941 in Falls Church will open the doors to Pizzeria Orso next month at 400 South Maple Street, about two miles from its older sibling. Edan MacQuaid, who tossed dough at 2 Amys, Pizzeria Paradiso, and RedRocks, will take charge of the brick oven, which crisps pies at 800 degrees. The menu also includes such antipasti as eggplant Parmesan and arancini. MacQuaid's wife, Thea, is overseeing the wine-and-beer program.
From the looks of its Twitter account (@sweetbitestruck), the Sweet Bites food truck has been doling out pastries since May 6, but we hadn't heard of it until Tim Carman gave us his initial impressions this week (is there even a way to keep track of all the new trucks?). The story behind it is like the Washington version of the American dream: government worker gives up his or her job and starts baking. In this case it was Sandra Panetta, a former environmental scientist, who bakes brownies, lemon bars, muffins, and—wait for it—cupcakes. See the full menu here.
At long last, Pupatella, the godfather of the tweeting food trucks, is opening its bricks-and-mortar location at 5104 Wilson Boulevard in Arlington. The pair behind the operation announced on Twitter (naturally) that the doors open tomorrow. You can see photos of the interior on their blog.
The local Pitango chain continues to expand: Its fourth outpost starts selling the Italian-style creamy gelato tomorrow in DC's Penn Quarter. Other locations are in DC's Logan Circle, Baltimore's Fells Point, and Reston Town Center.
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