Johnny Spero has cooked in avant-garde kitchens across the world, including DC’s Minibar. At his own place, which opened in Georgetown in the fall, the chef takes center stage in a kitchen plunked in the middle of the room. The menu lacks cohesion—what’s a burger doing next to tweezer-plated scallop crudo?—but the hits outnumber the misses. The Big Mac riff is elevated with smoked-egg “special sauce” and miso-cured pickles, while a whole sliced duck is paired with beet-licorice juice. Spero also brings plenty of modernist tricks: What looks like pound cake is actually aerated white chocolate that dissolves on your tongue. Expensive.