Italian Restaurant Rialto Takes Over the Guards Space in Georgetown

A new small-plates spot from the chef/owners of Thunder Burger aims to evoke Venice.

Rialto, a small-plates spot, takes over the Guards space on M Street in Georgetown. Photograph via Flickr user Wendy Cutler.

The space at 2915 M Street, Northwest—vacated by the Guards, a neighborhood landmark, in August 2012—is home to new Italian restaurant Rialto.

Here are some things we know about it.

The executive chef is Ryan Fichter, who helms the kitchen at nearby Thunder Burger. The new restaurant is owned by the trio behind the M Street patty spot: Ben Kirane and Moe and Joe Idrissi.

A rep describes the food as a “blend of old-world Italian cuisine with a contemporary twist.” The small plates—piattini—on offer will be prepared in open kitchens and paired with selections from an “extensive” wine list.

Decor is meant to evoke Venice—Rialto is the name of a famous bridge and district there. The renovated space will feature dark hardwood floors and an atrium and is designed to combine modern elements with some of the more traditional features, including the space’s famous fireplace.

Rialto is aiming for a mid-September opening. We will offer updates, including menu details, as soon as we have them.