Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Two New Restaurants/Lounges Coming to 14th Street

Big news this week for the 1800 block of 14th Street: it seem that two new establishments are headed to the block, and they both sound pretty exciting.

The first is Blu Restaurant and Lounge, which is set to fill the space between and Pulp and Home Rule formerly occupied by the Latino grocery store. According to the ABRA application posted to the window, Blu is planning to host live bands and a DJ, serve "light food" and will have something called a "summer garden," although we're not entirely certain what that is.

I haven't been able to obtain independent confirmation of this, but it seems that there is a Blu Lounge already in operation in Bethesda. You can check out their website here for a taste of what is (likely) coming to 14th Street.

One potential hang-up for them: they are looking for operating hours extending until 2 AM Sun - Thurs and until 3 AM on Fri-Sat. Now, the 14thandYous don't happen to have a problem with those hours--14th street is a commercial corridor, and in our opinions there could stand to be a bit more late night activity in the area that isn't occurring behind the Mr. Wash--but we know of plenty in the neighborhood who are likely to raise a fuss and voice all manner of concerns over the heathen debauchery that would no doubt take place should Blu be allowed to remain open until that ungodly hour on a school night.

Our prediction: they'll get until midnight Sun-Thurs, and until 2 AM Fri-Sat. Stay tuned...

A few paces down the block, Masa 14 is about to rear its head. Unlike Blu, Masa is shaping up to be more of a full-service restaurant, with cuisine that is--if their ABRA application is to be believed--is severely geographically challenged.

Masa's sign indicates that they will be serving "Mediterranean fusion, with a focus on Latin and Asian tapas". Now, I'm no geography major (help me out here IMGoph) but it seems that any restaurant focusing on Latin and Asian tapas would have a difficult time qualifying their food as remotely "Mediterranean," but perhaps there is an angle to this that I am missing.

Perhaps most importantly, the application takes great pains to note that there will be no nude dancing at this establishment. So, all of you expecting to get "Camelot on 14th," well...I'm sorry. You'll just have to wait.

Masa also seems to afflicted by the same operating hours delusion as Blu, so perhaps they can band together on this one?

Interestingly, assuming both places move forward with their plans, it will mean that every storefront on the east side of the 1800 block is filled. So, cheers to that.

29 comments:

Anonymous said...

People need to get over the "late" closing hours. YOU are totally correct--its a commercial corridor. There are other ways to prevent "another Adams Morgan" then blindly prohibiting everything. Now, with the "no nude dancing" application; do you think they are stressing this b/c there will be topless or nearly nude dancing? Or maybe just nude lounging, but no *dancing*.

Bezzy said...

I was in Go Mama Go recently and asked what was going in nearby. I'm not sure exactly which empty space they are referring to, but the owner said that Cork was opening something new on the block?

Anonymous said...

There's still an empty spot on that block, where Georgetown Refinishing used to be.

ustreetgirl said...

I mean - on that block there is Bar Pilar, Saint Ex, and Black Cat - all open at least past 1:30 am on weeknights, so I don't see how this place being open until 2 am is really going to make any difference with the feel of this block.

Mr. 14th & You said...

I don't either, ustreetgirl. My word of caution was only due to my experience attending enough public meeting on these types of issues to know that they undoubtedly get raised. So long as the establishment and its patrons are respectful of the neighbors who live nearby, I don't see any problem with the proposed operating hours. But mark my words: someone will.

Mr. 14th & You said...

Anon 1:33- Where is the G-town refinishing store? I walked the block last night and thought I took every storefront into account, but maybe I missed one.

Jay'O said...

The "Mediterranean" syle makes perfect sense! If you draw a line bewteen Mexico city and Tokyo the midway point is mediterranean!

On a serious note, I think it's great to have these resturants on the block. During the day the shoppings nice, but at night having some action farther down the street will be nice. The hours sound fine by me if they are respectful.

Alex said...

Isn't that side of 14th in a different ANC? Maybe they'll throw less of a hissy fit than the Duponters.

Anonymous said...

what, no 'tip of the hat' for the masa story?

Noah said...

Georgetown Refinishers was the storefront next to the Black Cat on the north side.

Chris L said...

They said Latin, not Latin American. Latin Southern Europe = Mediterranean.

Anonymous said...

Blu is not happening. Latest contender is wine store.

Anonymous said...

Good, a wine store would be much better imho. Blu sounds kind of like a cheesefest. There is already a Salon Blu, Indebleu, etc..

Anonymous said...

"Mediterranean fusion, with a focus on Latin and Asian tapas".

like Zengo?,

abra description usually just a formality!

IMGoph said...

jay'o: i'm not sure what map you're looking at, but halfway between mexico and tokyo is somewhere in the north pacific. remember, the earth is a globe, not a flat piece of paper where russia and alaska are on oppostie sides of the whole deal.

mr. 14th & you: like chris l. said, if they said 'latin' on the placard (i saw it last night, but i forget exactly what it said), then i can see where that could easily be equated to mediterranean. and remember, the eastern end of the mediterranean laps up against asia (turkey, lebanon, syria, israel), so it's not a stretch.

probably could come up with a better description, though!

there's your geography lesson for the day!

Mr. 14th & You said...

"Blu is not happening. Latest contender is wine store."

Source?

monkeyrotica said...

WTF is "Latin and Asian tapas?" Is it like "Scandinavian and New Zealand sushi?" I thought tapas was Spanish.

And when's Camelot opening on 14th? They've got the best all-you-can-eat tuna taco bar this side of Barstow.

Tom Lewis said...

I live at 14th and T Street and totally welcome these new establishments. If they ask for hours until 2:00AM give it to them. Its just a relief to see those spaces filled. I understand how neighbors may be concerned, but we just need to get over it or get better windows. My unit faces faces the black cat and all those buildings. Sure if I leave my windows open at night I hear noise but if I close them it is much better. I have accepted that I live in a city and hope that these two new restaurants will bring even more people to our great neighborhood. With that being said....I just hope that it doesn't increase vandalism, trash et cetera. But I am sure there are ways to take care of that.

Neal - Som Records said...

Not sure if this was mentioned in the thread but Masa 14 (at least according to their liquor app) is going to have quite a bit of outdoor seating as well. As a business owner on that block (Som Records) and a local resident I think its great. I hope they pull of their "fusion" menu, design the space well and keep their food affordable.

Anonymous said...

@IMGoph - The earth being the globe that it is, you might be able to travel the other way around and find that halfway between Tokyo and Mexico is somewhere at least vaguely near the Med. ;)

IMGoph said...

to the most recent anonymous poster (can't everyone at least use a pseudonym?): of course, i could find a route between mexico and tokyo that would pass over any third point on the globe if i tried hard enough. i was just trying to point out the shortest route. point taken, though!

Anonymous said...

Guess what folks, this is still a democracy. This blog clearly is favored by those who are convinced that they have personal access to universal truth (and people with limited writing skills); however, if people want to protest they have a right to do so without moronic slurs thrown at them. Most of the people supporting controlled growth are the same people responsible for starting and shepherding the redevelopment of 14th. If not for them it would be a strip of bars and most of you and your condos wouldn't even be in the neighborhood. Just because you moved here and want particular things doesn't mean other people need to roll over and accept your version of the neighborhood. How many of you have ever showed up, never mind exerted some effort, for improving the neighborhood - a cleanup, a planting, an anything. The evidence at any such function clearly is almost none of you.

IMGoph said...

most recent anon (pretty please, a name or a psuedonym): i'm not sure who you're angry at here, but a lot of us do what we can to clean up the neighborhood and foster a better place. have you been to any of the shaw neighborhood clean-ups organized by shaw main streets and treebox vodka?

i don't think you should assume that everyone, or most of the people here, have or have not done anything, as you don't really know what we do day in and day out, do you?

okienoodler said...

"Bar Pilar, Saint Ex, and Black Cat - all open at least past 1:30 am on weeknights, so I don't see how this place being open until 2 am is really going to make any difference with the feel of this block." But once we give these new businesses longer hours, then the entire strip will want longer hours. Then we are a step closer to Adams Morgan with Georgetown prepsters puking-up Manny & Olgas onto the sidewalk in front of my place. "It will be a disaster of biblical proportions...human sacrifice, dogs and cats living together, mass hysteria." In all seriousness though, the argument cuts both ways, why can't Blu just accept the 1:30 closing time? Will the extra 30 minutes significantly affect their bottom line? It seems to me that all of the older businesses, who have helped build the corridor, are playing by the same rules. So, the new ones should too. I really don't want to see new businesses get a leg up on the old ones. And I don't want puke on the sidewalk. Is there anyway to have both?

Phil Spalding said...

Both of these applications are in ANC1B (Commissioner Peter Raia), and I believe Blu Lounge was protested at most recent meeting, while Masa 14 will be reviewed at April meeting. CSNA will review Blu Lounge this Thursday, and Masa 14 at the April meeting. Blu Lounge may feature a roof deck (only reasonable explanation for summer garden), but it's been hard to get information from the owners or their attorney. To the best of my knowledge Cafe St. Ex, Bar Pilar and Black Cat all have full ABC allowed hours (2AM weekdays and 3AM weekends) though they may close earlier for business reasons.

Mr. 14th & You said...

Phil - Are you by chance attending the CSNA meeting this evening? I'd be very curious how this turns out.

Anonymous said...

Any news?

Does anyone know the status of the very much overdue Cafe Salsa next to the Verizon building?

And I see there is something called PolicyDC opening near 14 and T opposite the Post Office From their web site it looks more up market

http://www.policydc.com/

Looks good, but that name!

Joel Lawson said...

I'm also curious about Cafe Salsa. The name makes me hungry. As for Policy: stunning design, chef's good, so let's see what happens. They've clearly plowed forward with optimism and high-end design. Pretty close to opening.

okienoodler said...

There is a Cafe Salsa in Alexandria. I believe the future restaurant on 14th and the one in Old Town are owned by the same people. http://www.cafesalsarestaurant.com/main.html