The full press release follows after the break.
Smith Commons Dining Room & Public House Opens on H St. NE on December 21
Chef Frederik De Pue Offers Causal, International Fare and Craft Beers in New Neighborhood BistroWashington, DC – December 9, 2010 Smith Commons officially opens its doors to the H St. corridor dining scene on Tuesday, December 21. The three-level vintage building underwent a complete renovation, transformed from a carpet warehouse to a contemporary neighborhood bistro. The dining room and public house, a culinary destination in the Atlas Arts District, will open at 5:00 pm daily, Tuesday through Sunday to offer a worldly menu and extensive list of craft beers, wines and artisanal cocktails.Executive Chef, Frederik De Pue, developed the internationally-inspired menu with comforting dishes like free-range roasted chicken and penne carbonara, as well as gourmet treats like confit of duck leg and Maine lobster. Well-paired bar food compliments the vast array of libations, beer and wine selections. Smith Commons is a different kind of dining destination in Washington, DC serving artfully crafted dishes prepared by chefs with multi-continental flare, without the white tablecloths or the pretense. From charcuterie to wood-grilled entrées and classics like fish & chips, this neighborhood restaurant offers enticing comfort food for every palate.Born and culinary trained in Belgium, Chef Frederik arrived in Washington, DC in 2001 to become Executive Chef of the European Commission Delegation Ambassador. After six years on Embassy Row, Chef Frederik opened 42º Catering in 2007. Smith Commons is his first restaurant in the District.“The H St. NE corridor of Washington, DC is a rapidly growing community of artists, craftsman and Hill staffers hungry for new dining experiences and a welcoming neighborhood destination,” said Chef Frederik De Pue. “Smith Commons combines a warm, inviting lounge atmosphere with unique international cuisine designed to be enjoyed with craft beers, wines and cocktails carefully paired by our expert team.”Alexander Odent, also from Belgium, will serve as Chef de Cuisine. Chef Alexander trained at the Hotel School Ter Duinen, where he first met Chef Frederik. He has a wide range of culinary experience with restaurants, brasseries and high-profile events across Europe. He recently moved to Washington, DC to join the Smith Commons team.Daily dinner and bar service Tuesday through Sunday begins at 5:00 pm. The Smith Commons rendition of ‘happy hour’ – the Smith Hour – features a curated selection of beer, wine, cocktails and small plates – for $5 each, served at the bars on all three levels from 5:00 pm to 7:00 pm, Tuesday through Friday. Beer guru and Smith Commons Managing Partner, Miles Gray has assembled a diverse selection to make Smith Commons the District’s newest destination for craft beers from all over the world. Nearly 40 permanent and seasonal selections are served on tap and in bottles from breweries across the United States, Canada, Belgium, Germany, Scotland and Italy.Similarly, the wine list offers 60 carefully selected choices, which the wine director can pair with any of Chef Frederik’s dishes. General Manager, Sheldon Robinson, tapped Sommelier Andrew Stover to consult on the wine list of small production, boutique wines. Drawing from his experience with unusual domestic wine regions, Stover has amassed a selection of more than 10 domestic wines by the glass, hailing from California, Idaho, New York, Oregon, Virginia and Washington plus a bottle list from both domestic and iconic international regions. Handcrafted cocktails will add another layer of distinct flavor to this neighborhood destination.Bailey Holdings LLC owns and developed the restaurant, led by longtime Washington, DC resident and businessman Jerome Bailey. Concept Developer Miles Gray, and General Manager Sheldon Robinson, oversee Smith Commons day-to-day, and all three have worked together at restaurants and lounges around the city.Architect James Phillips and interior designer Tynesia Hand-Smith of Design 36ixty, transformed what used to be a carpet warehouse, into a dining room and public house that mixes the charm of the original historic construction with contemporary design elements. Fabrics and finishes are juxtaposed for dramatic effect – ebony-stained oak wall panels and original brickwork stand across from fabric-upholstered walls. Larger-than-life sepia stained wallpaper graphics reflecting turn-of-the century Washington, DC adds a hint of whimsy to the warm, inviting space.Industrial meets comfortable with high-back tufted sofas, tailored burlap curtain walls and custom adjustable crank tables for an optional dining or lounging experience. Low lighting, soft lounge furniture and an eclectic music mix create an inviting atmosphere for guests nightly.