PHOTOS: Grand Opening Celebration of CUT by Wolfgang Puck

PHOTOS: Grand Opening Celebration of CUT by Wolfgang Puck
Politico Publisher Robert Allbritton, CNN anchor Wolf Blitzer, and Dr. Elena Allbritton enjoy a tour of CUT's kitchen with Chef Wolfgang Puck.
Dan About Town

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Party photographer Dan Swartz’s diary of bashes, benefits, and galas.

Leave it to Wolfgang Puck to bring to the table (literally) a crowd of Washington’s most notable residents, including ambassadors, journalists, philanthropists, business leaders, and administration officials, for yesterday’s opening celebration of the world famous chef’s latest restaurant.

CUT’s expansive, locally sourced raw bar.
Entrepreneur and TV host Paul Wharton, ‘Empire’ star Vivica Fox, and urban jazz harmonicist Frédéric Yonnet.
Wolfgang Puck and UAE Ambassador Yousef Al Otaiba share a laugh. The two are longtime friends, with Wolfgang serving as a celebrity chef during the 2014 Children’s Ball, which was co-chaired by the Ambassador and his wife Abeer.

CUT by Wolfgang Puck, located inside the newly renovated Rosewood Washington D.C. hotel in Georgetown, formally fêted its launch Tuesday evening with a spirited reception that stretched well past its official end time.

Passed caviar bites.
Diversified Search General Counsel and Managing Director Denielle Pemberton-Heard, DC Volunteer Lawyers Project’s Kathleen Biden, Dr. Dallas Lea, and Viacom Executive Vice President, Government Affairs Dede Lea.
Adeft Capital CEO & Founder Carol Melton and Wolfgang Puck Senior Operations Partner Alex Resnik.

That should come as no surprise given the sumptuous spread of the restaurant’s menu offerings made available to guests, including passed caviar bites, mini beef heart skewers, warm biscuits and Edwards country ham, and a raw bar that kept churning out spoon and platefuls of locally sourced rockfish and tuna tartare. And that was all before you got to the kitchen-side meat-carving stations featuring whole bone-in New York strip steak and Peking duck.

Chef Russell Smith oversees the party’s Peking duck carving station.
Bruce and Sharon Bradley. Castleton Hotel Partners, led by Bradley, originally developed the Capella hotel in Georgetown which was subsequently purchased and renamed by Rosewood Hotels & Resorts.
Spoonfuls of rockfish.

While the CUT concept–a “refined steak restaurant”–isn’t new (outposts already exist in New York, Las Vegas, and Beverly Hills) to foodies, executive chef Andrew Skala was still intent on differentiating the DC location from its peers by specifically highlighting the culinary diversity of the Mid-Atlantic region. Signature steaks can therefore be found on the menu alongside dishes that source ingredients from local ranchers, farmers, and fisherman, including Virginia Black Bass with baby artichokes and Fire-Roasted Eggplant with green curry, crispy garlic and dill.

Kristin Cecchi, 2019 American Portrait Gala co-chair, and IDI Residential and Cecchi Homes Managing Director John Cecchi.
Guests enjoyed expertly prepared craft cocktails.
2019 Blue Hope Bash co-chairs Amanda Polk and Nina Snow.

Puck was even quick to personally jump behind the stove last night and whip-up some Sweet Corn Tortelloni with Kewsick Creamy ricotta and marjoram for Politico Publisher Robert Allbritton and his wife, Dr. Elena Allbritton, and CNN anchor Wolf Blitzer!

Jarrod Patten and Tara Patten, Stephanie Lemer, Emma Davis, and Keith Lemer.
CityCenterDC General Manager Timothy Lowery and SIIA Communications Manager Michael Zingali.
Black forest cherry cake was but one of the many dessert options.

Yet food is only half of the equation at CUT, which also boasts an extensive beverage program. The cocktail and wine list features offerings from several local vineyards and distilleries, such as a private label rye whiskey from Catoctin Creek Distillery. A dedicated Negroni section with five different concoctions, as well as a roving beverage cart serving Old Fashioneds made-to-order, round out the menu.

Stephanie Watson, NBC4 anchor Jummy Olabanji, and FOX5 anchor Steve Chenevey.
The evening filled both the space’s restaurant and lounge areas.
Christopher Reiter and Ridgely|Walsh Founder & CEO Juleanna Glover.

The vibe at Tuesday’s celebration was more neighborhood housewarming than blowout bash, with nearby Georgetown residents forming a significant portion of the crowd. Indeed, Wolfgang is no stranger to Washington having made frequent trips to the city over the past decade and was quick to pickup conversations with old friends where they last left them during his most recent visit. All over a brimming plate of food and a freshly topped-off glass, of course…

Locally sourced tuna tartare.
Fernando Machado and Ballston Quarter Marketing Director Cristian Becker.
Mini ice cream scoops in waffle cones proved a popular bookend to the extensive reception menu.
Rosewood Managing Director Gabor Vida, Wolfgang Puck, and Ambassador Yousef Al Otaiba.
Wolfgang Puck greets Michael and Susan Pillsbury.
The kitchen team at CUT by Wolfgang Puck after a job well done.
Wolfgang pulls some freshly grilled meat from CUT’s range for guests.