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6 Blog Posts Since 2003

Because I wouldn't want anyone to go without Korean fried chicken for a second longer than necessary, I will pass along for those who haven't been keeping up that DC's first Bonchon restaurant and bar is indeed opening today, March 30, at 11:30 am, on the southwest corner of Half and K streets, SE, two blocks north of the Navy Yard-Ballpark station's west entrance and three blocks north of Nats Park.
It will be open every day at 11:30 am, staying open until 9:30 pm Sunday-Wednesday and 11 pm Thursday-Saturday, except on Nats game days, when 11 pm will be closing time Sundays through Wednesdays. with midnight the post-Nats closing time Thursdays through Saturdays.
The menu is here, and note the $9 lunch special from 11:30 am to 2 pm Monday through Friday, with a choice of wings, drums, strips, or a combo, plus one side.
If you go, feel free to post your review in the comments.
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More posts: 1015 Half, bonchon, Restaurants/Nightlife
 

* BONCHON GETTING CLOSER (MARCH 30!): There's been a whole lot of non-construction people inside Bonchon (as I saw during my most recent nose-pressing), and HillNow quotes the owner as saying the restaurant "is aiming to open near the start of Major League Baseball season," with job postings saying that the restaurant will open next week. Also: "The kitchen of the 140-seat restaurant will stay open late on game days, until 11 p.m. Monday through Thursday and later on weekends. A happy hour 4 to 7 p.m. Monday through Friday is in the works."
UPDATE: Washingtonian has a sneak peek, with pictures, and says March 30 is the opening date. And Eater has its post up now too, and there's confirmation of that date on the Bonchon Navy Yard Facebook page. So, prep your taste buds!
* OPENING DAY GETTING CLOSER: The Capitol Riverfront BID has put together an initial list of Opening Day Specials and Events, which I imagine I will mention again with more fanfare when April 6 is upon us. If you liked 106.7 The Fan hanging out in Canal Park for the Winter Classic, they are doing it again for Opening Day. And Bluejacket is having a big Opening Day Fest.
* PARK CHELSEA GETTING CLOSER: With a July 1 target date to start leasing, the huge residential building at New Jersey and I is rolling along, and they've posted some interior construction photos on their web site. (But what I really want is their update on getting I Street opened....!)
And now I can't get Paul McCartney out of my mind.

 

Just some things that didn't make it to the blog during the outage:
* MORE GROUND BROKEN: I had posted a photo last week of the new fence at not-Ballpark Square but wasn't quite ready to say that construction had started. However, the pile driver has arrived, and steel beams are already sticking out of the ground, so I think it's now safe to add the residential/hotel portion of the project to the ludicrous lineup of developments currently underway. (The office component at 99 M is expected to get started before long as well.) It's also the fourth to break ground just within the past month or so, joining residential projects 909 Half and 82 I and the Homewood Suites hotel at 50 M. And I think that's probably it for major projects getting started until the end of this year or early next year.
* BONCHON GETTING CLOSER: The paper is off the windows, so I was able to see where things stand at Bonchon--and it's looking well along. (Not pictured are the five or so boxes containing large flat-panel TVs.)
* DEMO PERMIT APPS: Applications have been submitted to demolish two buildings on the DC Water site--a 50,000-square-foot brick building and a 1,980-square-foot wood shed. Whether these are on the footprint of the planned movie theater/accompanying residential, I cannot tell you.
* SPRING! SPRING! There's now quite the inventory of outdoor tables at Willie's Brew & Que, and work is underway for a patio at the Big Stick (photo by Mr. JDLand):
* MORE ABOUT FOOD: I mentioned it in passing before, but there's been enough tweets sent my way to mention again that work has now started at the Scarlet Oak space at 909 New Jersey. And there's purty window ads now, to both get their name out there and to THWART my PEEKING. And closer to the river, at the Lumber Shed, both Due South and the Navy Yard Oyster Company have gotten their building permits.
With all that cleared out of the hopper, I now may be a bit scarce for the rest of the week. Hopefully the site will behave, though.
 

The second week in March started off pretty notably in Near Southeast:
First, the one that's probably of most interest, the arrival of Bonchon's signage, now hung outside of its space on the southwest corner of Half and K, inside 1015 Half Street.
I peeked in the door, and it appears to still be a few good weeks from opening, which would seem to jibe with the "early April" target date that the restaurant posted on its Facebook page back in February. So everyone will just have to look at these signs and dream for a little while longer.
One block to the south, fences and equipment arrived at the parking lot on the northeast corner of Half and M, and this morning ground was being broken (for real, not ceremonially!) for what will become a 195-room Homewood Suites.
This will be another addition to the neighborhood's burgeoning lineup of hotels, with the long-established Courtyard by Marriott at New Jersey and L about to be joined by the under-construction 168-room Hampton Inn at 1st and N, plus eventually also the as-yet-unnamed brand in the as-yet-unnamed Ballpark Square project.
Speaking of which.... Fences went up Monday afternoon around the sidewalk on the west side of 1st Street south of M, generally along the boundary of the residential and hotel portion of the Grosvenor/McCaffery project currently referred to as Ballpark Square. No heavy equipment has arrived, and as I mentioned recently there's plans for a ceremonial groundbreaking in coming weeks, but fencing off the public sidewalk would seem to be a bit of a "tell."
This project will have a 285-unit apartment building alongside the 180-room hotel, and 45,000 square feet of retail that will stretch across these two buildings, the Skanska 99 M office building at the corner of 1st and M that is also expected to get started Any Minute Now, and a separate two-story retail building at 1st and N.
And, just to emphasize how many new projects have gotten underway in the past few weeks, here's official documentation (finally) of the work underway at residential projects 909 Half (left) and 82 I (right), which together will add another 615ish units to the neighborhood inventory when they open.
Having a hard time keeping all of this straight? Check out my refreshed-for-2015 What's New in the Neighborhood Since Last Season page, with handy maps of the restaurants that have opened or are coming soon, the new lineup of project plans just north of Nats Park, and the 10 (TEN!) residential projects currently under construction or starting momentarily. Be prepared for a lot of blocked sidewalks and a lot of construction vehicles on your way to the ballpark this year....
 

Next up on the Near Southeast Cavalcade of Eateries appears to be Bonchon, the Korean fried chicken outlet that is opening its first DC location on the southwest corner of Half and K streets SE, inside the 1015 Half Street building a couple of blocks north of Nats Park.
I sent my unpaid stringer out in the dismal weather today to grab a photo or two of the work on the 5,300-square-foot space, which sources say has been progressing rapidly, perhaps with an eye toward opening before, well, Opening Day (Monday, April 6).
Eater DC shared some renderings and details about the interior, though reading that the architects are "designing the restaurant to include a sports bar" -- I've never heard of a "sports bar" as an object within a restaurant rather than just an appellation for a restaurant, but maybe I don't move in the right circles. Nevertheless, Eater says that there will be seating for 200, and that the full bar will have "both Asian and American craft beers."
Anyone wishing to thank my stringer for his work can probably arrange a meeting at 100 Montaditos.
(A small update on another restaurant in the pipeline: the planned Scarlet Oak at 909 New Jersey still does not have its necessary building permits, but they are at least in process.)
Comments (14)
More posts: 1015 Half, bonchon, Restaurants/Nightlife
 

Washingtonian is reporting that Korean fried-chicken chain Bonchon is coming to the neighborhood next year, in a 200-seat space that ANC Commissioner David Garber says is going to be in the 1015 Half Street building two blocks north of Nationals Park.
Quoting: "The menu will mostly mirror Arlington’s (here’s a sample), with a focus on spicy and soy-garlic fried chicken, plus Korean specialties like pork buns and bulgogi. ... [Y]ou'll find a spacious bar for pre-and-post game gatherings. A list of 16 craft beers, both domestic and Asian, are in the works, plus a specialty cocktail menu. Takeout, delivery, and catering services are also planned, as well as reservations for large parties."
Washingtonian says that the space is being designed by GrizForm, which also worked on Bluejacket and Agua301. There are also plans are an outdoor patio. (UPDATE: The restaurant will apparently occupy ground-floor space on the L Street side of the building.)
The building housing the new venture is the one that stood empty for many moons before the announcements earlier this year that the National Labor Relations Board will be moving there, as will CBS Radio. That a restaurant is going into the building at all is a bit of a surprise, since the retail spaces were always a somewhat wishy-washy subject.
Comments (10)
More posts: 1015 Half, bonchon, Restaurants/Nightlife
 




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