Last year Maketto restaurateur Erik Bruner-Yang jumped into the hotel world, opening two concepts (Brothers and Sisters, Spoken English) in Adams Morgan’s Line DC. Next up: a 3,000 square-foot all-day cafe and cocktail spot in the Novel South Capitol residences. The luxe apartment building in Navy Yard (or “South Capitol” if you’re Novel or Whole Foods) opens this week, and the yet-to-be-named restaurant will follow in August.
Many details are still in the works, though Bruner-Yang says the lobby restaurant will be designed to cater to the needs of tenants in the 581-unit building and residents of the surrounding neighborhood. To that end, expect coffee and breakfast menus, all-day dining, and cocktails/snacks in the evening. The team is also toying with offering some version of room service and (permits pending) a wine shop so residents can grab bottles to sip by the rooftop pool. In the same way that Washington apartment buildings have aimed to lure residents with amenities like an in-house sommelier, rooftop dog park, or private Equinox gym, the Novel is banking on a big-name chef to be the draw.
“I think that market has become very competitive,” Bruner-Yang says. “At the same time, there’s a huge demand for this type of housing. Obviously, they want to pull out a product that makes them stick out.”
Meanwhile Maketto retail partner Will Sharp is planning to open Somewhere, a mixed fashion and Vigilante coffee shop, nearby. The two projects are unaffiliated.
Novel South Capitol. 2 Eye St., SE.