Food

José Andrés Opens “Community Kitchens” Around DC Today

The chef and World Central Kitchen help feed families during the coronavirus crisis.

Jose Andres launches "community kitchens" around DC with World Central Kitchen. Photograph by Evy Mages
Coronavirus 2020

About Coronavirus 2020

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José Andrés was among the first to close all of his local restaurants in response to coronavirus. Today, he’ll reopen six of them as “community kitchens” in conjunction with his disaster relief organization, World Central Kitchen. The locations will be open from 12 to 5 PM daily and serve meals out of side doors and patios at reduced prices. Free meals will be available for those who can’t pay, and customers have the option to donate meals as well. 

“[This is] not for enjoyment…but a service for people in need of a plate of food during this emergency,” Andrés said over Twitter.

People can pick up meals from side doors at Penn Quarter restaurants Zaytinya and Oyamel as well as at all Jaleo locations (Penn Quarter, Bethesda Crystal City). They’ll also be available from the front door at America Eats Tavern in Georgetown. The locations have employed options for no-contact ordering and pay using Paypal and GoTab; the latter allows customers to view menus, order, and pay by scanning a QR code with their phones (no app download required).

A sample daily menu at Zaytinya. Photograph by Evy Mages

Andrés and WCK have been on the front line for weeks providing hot meals and relief packages for those impacted by the Covid-19 crisis. The nonprofit made food for those quarantined on cruise ships in Japan and California, and it is working with other nonprofits to deliver food to school kids and families in need.

Speaking to a group of reporters outside Zaytinya, Andrés provided assurance that WCK will be on the ground in DC for the foreseeable future. 

“My city will be fed. Our people will be fed. If I’m overreacting, fine. But if something doesn’t go as we think it’s going and goes worse, you’ll see us.”

Food pickup at Oyamel. Photograph by Evy Mages

For the time being, Minibar/Barmini and the Pepe food truck are closed. Fast-casual, vegetable-forward Beefsteak locations in Dupont and Foggy Bottom are delivery only.

*This story has been updated with new information

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Food Editor

Anna Spiegel covers the dining and drinking scene in her native DC. Prior to joining Washingtonian in 2010, she attended the French Culinary Institute and Columbia University’s MFA program in New York, and held various cooking and writing positions in NYC and in St. John, US Virgin Islands.