We were bummed when Shaw’s lovely Gaslight Tavern shuttered this fall, but owners Ian and Eric Hilton (Brixton, Player’s Club et al) are almost ready to debut their new concept in the space: Echo Park, a fire-lit bar that will serve New York-style pies thanks to a collaboration with Andy’s Pizza owner Andy Brown. A January 2 opening is on the books.
Eric Hilton says they decided to get away from Gaslight’s old-school saloon concept in favor of something more approachable.
“I started calling it Gaslight the Crypt,” says Hilton of the moody decor, which has been lightened up with cream colors and spacious booths (don’t worry, the two wood-burning fireplaces and rear atrium overlooking a garden patio haven’t gone anywhere). “It’s like Gaslight’s happy cousin. It’s a relative, but a much better version.”
Adding to the happiness: New York-style pizza by the pie or slice. Brown, who operates an Andy’s Pizza counter in Tysons’s Urbanspace food hall, is teaming up with the Hiltons for a fast-casual shop neighboring Echo Park. The full pizza menu will be served in the bar (and the pizzeria also plans to stay open until 4 AM to catch the 9:30 Club concert crowds). Hilton says the menu will likely include more than Andy’s current offerings of gourmet pies, wings, and salads. As for drinks, a selection of beers, wines, and cocktails will be joined by draft limoncello.
The name Echo Park is a nod not to the Los Angeles neighborhood but to the Hilton family’s long history with Glen Echo Park. In the 1920s and ’30s, a relative operated a cruise boat which ran from the C&O Canal in Georgetown to the Montgomery County amusement park, and Hilton says it was a popular date destination for his grandparents.
This isn’t the only restaurant collaboration for the Hiltons. The brothers just opened ABC Pony, an Asian-Italian pasta shop in Navy Yard with chef Erik Bruner-Yang.
Echo Park. 2012 – 2014 Ninth St., NW. Opening January 2.