The Wrap-Up: The Week in Food

Every week we fill you in on what’s been going on in the food and restaurant world.

• As if pleading guilty to a felony embezzlement charge wasn’t bad enough, Washington City Paper’s Tim Carman reports that Italian chef Roberto Donna, of the late Galileo and Bebo Trattoria, may owe hundreds of thousands of dollars for what a judge ruled as “minimum wage, overtime, and equal pay violations.” Thursday, Donna will face a hearing to figure out what he owes the 11 employees—bussers, servers, and even his personal assistant—who are bringing the complaint. What will the chef’s latest set of problems do to his forthcoming resurrection of Galileo? Carman notes that the day of ruling, Donna posted an ad on looking for a mixologist for a bar to open in August.

• The latest Zagat ratings are out, and Marcel’s in DC’s West End gets the highest grade. Rounding out the top five are the Inn at Little Washington, Komi, CityZen, and Rasika. Makoto—the tiny Japanese restaurant in DC’s Palisades that has been an odd perennial in the top tier—gets sixth place.

Washington Business Journal’s Missy Frederick has updates on a few openings. The Penn Quarter outpost of Cuba Libre is now set for September 17. A branch of megagrocery Wegmans will open in Lanham on October 24. And Flip Burger, the Atlanta-based creation of Top Chef’s Richard Blaise, is still looking to bring its foie-gras-topped patties and Krispy Kreme milkshakes to DC—it’s hoping to figure out a location in the next few months.

• Michael Batterberry, who cofounded Food Arts with his wife, Ariane, has died at age 78. Batterberry also started Food & Wine in 1978. Wine Spectator notes that before that, he worked as a cabaret singer in Rome and a sketch artist for the Paris Review. In May, he and Ariane received a James Beard lifetime-achievement award.

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Ann Limpert
Executive Food Editor/Critic

Ann Limpert joined Washingtonian in late 2003. She was previously an editorial assistant at Entertainment Weekly and a cook in New York restaurant kitchens, and she is a graduate of the Institute of Culinary Education. She lives in Petworth.