The restaurant group that runs the Salt Line, the New England-style restaurant that slings sustainable seafood in Navy Yard, is teaming up with a James Beard Award-winning cocktail expert from New Orleans to open a Gulf Coast-themed restaurant downtown later this year.
Washingtonian reports that the new venue, called Dauphine’s, is expected to open this fall in the Midtown Center development at the site of the old Washington Post building. Salt Line chef Kyle Bailey will create a menu that cribs from Louisiana classics, and Long Shot Hospitality co-owner tells Washingtonian that Dauphine’s will have “creative leeway” with the cuisine.
Neal Bodenheimer, who owns Cure in New Orleans, will oversee the cocktails at Dauphine’s. Cure was honored by the James Beard Foundation in 2018 for Outstanding Bar Program. Bodenheimer, a longtime friend of Long Shot partner Gavin Coleman, told the New Orleans Times-Picayune that he wants to bring the “polish and refinement” of the Crescent City to D.C.
“We don’t want it to turn into a ‘gumbo town’ caricature of New Orleans,” Bodenheimer told the newspaper. “We want it to be the way New Orleans thinks of New Orleans.”
From the looks of a protest hearing notice posted by Washington’s liquor authority, Dauphine’s is going to be a huge venue. A liquor license application posted by Midtown Center Restaurant, LLC describes a “New Orleans themed restaurant” that can accommodate 159 people inside and 171 people across two spaces outside.
The addition of Dauphine’s joins what’s quickly becoming a loaded cast of restaurant operators inside the complex on 15th and L Streets NW.
Michelin-starred chef Nicholas Stefanelli (Masseria, Officina) has plans to put his first Greek restaurant in the building. Arjun Waney, a London-based co-founder of luxury sushi and izakaya chain Zuma, has put together a team to run a two-part Japanese restaurant and lounge. Oakland-based Blue Bottle Coffee has a location planned inside as well.
On top of Dauphine’s, Long Shot Hospitality is also opening a second Salt Line location, which is expected to land next year in Ballston.
Dauphine’s has the potential to fill a void left by Acadiana, the Louisiana fish house that ended a 13-year run on New Year’s Eve when its lease expired.