Celebrity Chef Michael Mina Is Opening a Swanky Italian Restaurant and Pool Club in DC

The Bourbon Steak restaurateur brings two concepts to the City Ridge development near Tenleytown.

Celebrity chef Michael Mina is opening two new dining concepts at City Ridge near Tenletown (pictured: members-only pool bar the Ridge Club). Rendering courtesy of City Ridge

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A bunch of big-name restaurateurs are planning ambitious DC ventures—from Stephen Starr and Nancy Silverton’s Italian emporium in Georgetown to an offshoot of Keith McNally’s Minetta Tavern near Union Market. But there’s only one splashy project that comes with a pool, and it belongs to Bourbon Steak restaurateur Michael Mina and DC developer Roadside. The celebrity chef is headed to the new City Ridge development near Tenleytown (formerly the Fannie Mae complex) with two venues: a “fattoria-to-table” Italian restaurant (still unnamed), and a rooftop bar and cafe at the members-only Ridge Club. Both are slated for 2023. 

The future site of Michael Mina’s Italian restaurant. Photograph by Evy Mages

“At MINA Group, we’ve been really focused on developing new dining concepts that are fresh and interesting and finding the right partners and markets for them,” says Mina, who operates over 40 finer dining restaurants from his base in San Francisco. The forthcoming DC projects will be his first in the area since Bourbon Steak opened at the Four Seasons Georgetown in 2009. “City Ridge is one of the most exciting new developments to come to the DC-area in recent years and we are thrilled to be able to introduce a new restaurant to the neighborhood.”

Members-only rooftop pool and Ridge Club. Photograph by Evy Mages

Plans for Mina’s seasonal Italian restaurant at the heart of the 10 acre complex are still cooking. The huge 7,815 square-foot dining room boasts 16-foot ceilings, private event spaces, and will have a wraparound sidewalk patio lined by locust trees. The Mina Group has dabbled in Italian cuisine, including at Cal Mare in Beverly Hills, which was helmed by former Bourbon Steak DC chef Adam Sobel—now a corporate chef with the group—until it closed. This forthcoming project promises to be an entirely new concept for Mina. It will join a growing roster of dining options in the development, including Tatte, King Street Oyster Bar, Taco Bamba, and DC’s only Wegman’s. 

A projector screen hovers above the pool for movie nights. Photograph by Evy Mages

The members-only pool and social club is a new level of dining—literally. It’s five floors above the restaurant and overlooks the National Cathedral. Mina’s team will run a walk-up bar and offer beachy poolside plates to sunbathers and patrons. A lofty terrace is outfitted with dining tables and lounge areas ringed by greenery and fire pits. Inspired by the chic One Hotel in Miami, the rooftop pool sports soaking chairs, rentable cabanas, spa-like locker rooms, and a massive projector screen for movie nights.

Sunbathers can grab pool-side plates from Mina’s cafe. Photograph by Evy Mages

So how do you snag one of those pool-side cocktails? Ridge Club members must live in one of City Ridge’s 690 apartments or work there—or, you can get busy making an Upper Northwest best friend before next year. 

“We’re going for a ‘permanent resort’ feel,” says Roadside partner Jeff Edelstein. “We want people to live like they’re on vacation.”

Mina at City Ridge. 14 Ridge Square, NW.

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.