• Top Chef DC may have just wrapped up, but the show isn’t turning its back on the area. For its next season, the Bravo kitchen competition will give 18 former cheftestants another chance for the title. The Top Chef: All Stars cast includes locals Spike Mendelsohn (Good Stuff Eatery; We, the Pizza)—whom Eater.com caught shopping among cameras at a New York Whole Foods—Mike Isabella (forthcoming Penn Quarter restaurant Graffiato), and fan favorite Carla Hall (Alchemy Catering). Also in the running: Top Chef DC’s Tiffany Derry and Angelo Sosa. It will premiere on December 1.
• Adams Morgan’s 4 AM grub stop Amsterdam Falafelshop wants to follow in the footsteps of Five Guys and grow into a national franchise. Franchise developer Joe Spinelli, who is working on the project with Amsterdam’s owners, tells Washington City Paper’s Tim Carman that the company is looking at opening more than 100 locations over the next seven years.
• Salad-and-fro-yo chainlet Sweetgreen often parks its roving Sweetflow truck near George Washington University. So it makes sense that the company would choose to set up a permanent shop in Foggy Bottom, right across from GW Hospital. The eco-conscious cafe will be part of a new residential/commercial development called Square 54 (2200 Pennsylvania Ave., NW), which is also slated to hold a Whole Foods. Sweetgreen’s Reston location opens today, and a Ballston outpost is planned for November.
• Not many details, but Citysearch DC just tweeted that downtown burger spot Rogue States has just signed a lease at 14th and U streets, NW.
• Opening soon: On Monday, Penn Quarter’s Co Co. Sala will open a tiny chocolate boutique inside the swank restaurant/lounge. Customers can buy boxes of unusually flavored chocolates (banana-ginger, mango lassi, chipotle) along with the restaurant’s chocolate-coated bacon. Also coming to Penn Quarter is the DC branch of Philly mojito-and-ceviche destination Cuba Libre, which will open on October 1. The first week the restaurant is open, diners will get a 50-percent discount on their dinner tab; from October 8 through 13, there will be a 25-percent discount.
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