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You probably have to be a foodie for the title of this post to not sound like gibberish, but:
* ALL-DAY CAFE COMING TO NOVEL: Highly regarded restaurateur Erik Bruner-Yang (of Maketto and other ventures) will be opening a 3,000-square-foot "day-to-night neighborhood cafe concept" in the ground floor of Novel South Capitol, at the corner of South Capitol and I Streets, SE. The press release says that the space "will be integrated with" Novel's lobby but will be a "unique community gathering and dining experience" for all comers, not just residents. The as-yet-unnamed cafe will have "breakfast-oriented offerings, evening snacks, and craft cocktails," and is shooting for a late summer opening. More on Bruner-Yang's plans via Washingtonian.
* ROY BOYS: It has apparently been a good start for Roy Boys, the fried chicken and oyster restaurant that opened in Shaw a few months ago, because window signage being put up this morning--as well as this Washingtonian piece--confirm that a second location will open later this year in the old Justin's Cafe space on 1st Street SE between K and L. If you want to get a head start on licking your chops, here's the Shaw location's menu.
* SMORGASBURG: Starting on June 15, a pop-up outdoor food market known as "Smorgasburg" will offer food and beverages from 30 local vendors every summer Saturday from 11 am to 6 pm at Tingey Plaza, at New Jersey and Tingey. Eater DC has a list of the confirmed vendors, as of last week.
If you haven't been keeping up, the list of new food and beverage offerings coming to the neighborhood over the next year or so is starting to get kind of long, and as more buildings are completed, the list will probably grow. (West Half alone accounts for about 40 percent of the list, which they are now touting with their fence signage.) You can see my map of food options and then scroll down to the bottom to see the full future lineup.
 

I am, shall we say, a bit distracted these days, and so have been taking full advantage of that whole "I'm only going to post when I feel like it" pledge from a few months back. (And I still need to write a longer post on news of Greystar's plans on the CSX land west of New Jersey, but there's only so much blogging blood that can come out of this stone right now.)
Most of these items will sound familiar to the commentariat, but for those who haven't been following the conversation:
* LULULEMON COMING: Yoga pants and other accoutrements will be coming to the Boilermaker Shops on Tingey Street in the Yards, according to the company's web site. It will move into the space vacated by Steadfast Supply's move to Water Street.
* SOMEWHERE COMING: "Somewhere", an "intergrated retail and cafe concept" from folks on the team that created Maketto on H Street will be coming to F1rst in 2019. The press release says it will combine "a highly curated retail mix of high end clothing, sneakers and other footwear, unique brand products, as well as planning and orchestrating community events. The team will also develop programming for the residents of F1RST, including interactive social media opportunities, style consultations and more."
* RETAIL INDUSTRY COMING, SORT OF: WBJ reports that the Retail Industry Leaders Association has agreed to lease nearly 13,000 square feet at 99 M.
* MODERN NAIL BAR ARRIVES: New signage for "Modern Nail Bar" has appeared above the corner space at the Courtyard Marriott at New Jersey and L. I have not poked my nose in, so I do not know if this is one of those newfangled places where they ply you with alcohol while clipping and coating the tips of your digits. (h/t @202FSUNole)
* HALF STREET WAREHOUSE HALF GOING: Partial demolition is underway on the red brick former GSA warehouse on the southeast corner of Half and L, which was purchased by the Lerner Companies last year. According to the permit, they are taking off the roof and the top part of the walls, down to a height of about four feet. What's the plan? An "open uncovered parking lot," according to the permit.
* JUSTIN'S GONE: After eight years, Justin's Cafe has closed its doors. (h/t reader JES)
Enjoy your fresh thread, commenters!
 

The WBJ Top Shelf blog is reporting that Justin Ross, who took a gamble on the neighborhood when he opened Justin's Cafe in 2010, will be opening a beer-and-sausage restaurant called "The Big Stick" this summer at 20 M Street, within spitting distance of the Navy Yard-Ballpark Metro station's Half Street entrance, one block north of Nationals Park.
Quoting: "The Big Stick -- named for baseball bats as well as a reference to Nationals' running president Teddy Roosevelt -- will feature house-made bratwurst and other sausages. The beer list will vary from Justin's domestic, craft-heavy offering to some European selections and mass market American beers, Ross said."
(I had *just* seen a building permit application for a new tenant layout at 20 M about an hour ago, and wondered what it might be. Presto!)
The new restaurant will be 20 M's second retail tenant since it opened in 2007, joining a Wells Fargo branch. And this will be the first food offering (other than the Fairgrounds and food trucks) on Half Street.
 

I'm going to be a bit scarce this week, so here's few events-related tidbits to keep the home page from having the equivalent of electronic tumbleweeds blowing across it:
* Don't forget that the public meeting about the possible recreational re-use of the old outbound 11th Street Bridge span is on Wednesday, March 28, at 6:30 pm.
* Justin's Cafe has now posted the information on its April 14 block party, both on Facebook and its new JustinsCafeEvents.com web site. It will run from 11 am to 9 pm, offering a line-up of local craft brews (including "beer trucks" from Port City Brewery and DC Brau), and 106.7 The Fan FM will be broadcasting from there. "All ages welcomed, 21 and over to drink." Money is also being raised for free youth baseball and softball programs through the DC Grays and S.M.A.R.T. Camps and Clinics. (The Nats play the Reds at 4:05 pm that day.)
* On April 1 (well, April 2, technically), the Union Station-Navy Yard Circulator bus starts its summer hours, running from 6 am to 9 pm weekdays and 7 am to 9 pm Saturdays, with extended service on Nationals game days.
* The Southwester reports that there's a Neighborhood Night at Nationals Park on Thursday, April 19. "The team will honor the vibrant spirit of the neighborhood by featuring local residents in various pregame activities, including throwing out the first pitch, delivering the lineup card and greeting the players as they take their positions on the field." Near Southeast and Southwest residents can also get discounted tickets to games throughout the season, but I'll make you follow the link to find out about that!
* The Earth Conservations Corps will be leading volunteers in a cleanup of the wetlands at Diamond Teague Park on April 21, from 9 am to noon, as part of the Anacostia Watershed Society's Earth Day events. (They do want volunteers to register/RSVP in order to participate.)
* A bit farther down the pike, the Kennedy Center is presenting "Look Both Ways: Street Arts Across America," a week-long festival showcasing all manner of free performances and events from May 6-12. One of the May 6 kick-off events will be from 11:30 am to 1:30 pm at Nationals Park and the Fairgrounds (old Bullpen) on Half Street, and the closing event on May 12 from noon to 6 pm will be at the Yards Park.
 

The agenda is now posted for Monday's ANC 6D meeting, and it does have a few Near Southeast-related items on it. So it follows logically that I'm not going to be able to be there.
Items include: A report from the housing authority on a request for a zoning time extension for the planned (and long-delayed) community center at Fifth and K streets, SE; an update on the upcoming second phase of Capitol Quarter (which EYA tells me resulted in 11 reservations in the first 15 days); an update on the stadium Traffic Operations and Parking Plan, presumably coming out of the two recent public meetings; and reports/possible votes on Justin's Cafe's proposed sidewalk cafe and the proposed "Harry's" liquor store at New Jersey and I, both of which you can get more detail on from my report on last week's ABC subcommittee meeting.
The meeting is at 7 pm at St. Augustine's church at Sixth and M streets, SW--they're trying to get moved to their space in the new Waterfront buildings, but it still hasn't happened.
I'm going to try to find out more about the community center request, though I imagine there isn't much more to it other than DCHA says it doesn't still have the money to build it yet and so can't meet the deadline that was set in the zoning PUD (planned unit development) for Capper. The time frame for the community center has already been extended once, and in fact DCHA told the Zoning Commission last year that they fully expected that new deadline of filing building permits by Jan. 1, 2011, would be too short and that they'd be back to request another extension. Which appears to be what's transpiring.
 

The report from Wednesday night's ANC6D ABC Committee meeting:
* Justin's Cafe is seeking to add four tables, with umbrellas and four chairs each, on the sidewalk directly in front of the restaurant. They would be available the same hours as the restaurant itself, until 1 am Monday through Thursday, 2 am Friday and Saturday, and 10 pm Sunday. There were concerns from a commissioner or two about whether people might walk away from the outdoor seating area with alcoholic drinks, about the additional noise brought by 16 or so people outside, and about whether cigarette smoke from the tables would waft up and bother the Velocity units directly above. Justin Ross replied that a sign would be posted about alcohol only being consumed on the premises, and that smokeless ashtrays would be available for the tables (and that since people can't smoke inside the restaurant, there's already a lot of smoking going on outside on the sidewalk). Velocity's management had sent along a letter in full support of the plan.
The committee voted 4-0 in favor of recommending that the ANC support the application, and that vote should come at the ANC's June 14 meeting, if Justin's voluntary and community cooperation agreements are revised in time.
* The owners of Capitol Hill Wine and Spirits on Pennsylvania Avenue SE came to talk with the committee about their plans for a new "upscale" liquor store at 909 New Jersey Ave., SE, which they will be calling Harry's SE & SW. (For about nine years they ran the Harry's liquor store at Waterside Mall in SW, which closed about five years ago.)
They have signed a lease agreement to take the two retail spaces on the north side of the building, at the corner of New Jersey and I, and they will be knocking down the wall between them in order to end up with about 2,200 square feet of space. The hours would be 9 am to 9 pm Monday through Saturday (or possibly 10 pm on Fridays and Saturdays), and closed on Sunday. They would sell beer, wine, and liquor, as well as milk, sodas, juice, cheese, and other "quick stop" items, but would not sell sandwiches as had been mentioned on the meeting agenda. They hope to open in September or October.
Much of the discussion centered around whether they will try to get an exemption in order to allow sales of "singles," which is a very hot-button issue. The owners said that they want the exception so that they can sell "high end" Belgian beers, which come in single bottles, and have no intent to sell the cheaper singles that can attract a somewhat less desirable element. However, ANC 6D chairman Ron McBee said that he imagines it would be very difficult to get support from the full ANC for the exception, and that there would also be concerns about any attempts to amend the singles law that might make it look like the law was targeted toward one socioeconomic class and not another.
Also discussed was the possible impact of this new store on the long-held plans for a similar high-end liquor store at Second and L SE on the site of the "Little Red Building." The ABRA rules state that liquor stores can't open within 400 feet of each other, and these two would be more than 500 feet apart as the crow flies. But Mr. Park, the owner of the LRB, is clearly concerned about whether the neighborhood can support two very similar operations. He is moving forward with plans to demolish the LRB and put up a new structure, and is also looking at an October-ish opening date. (He said he'd send me the building plans soon.)
In the end, the committee voted 4-0 in favor of recommending that the ANC support Harry's license application. A voluntary agreement and a community cooperation agreement will now need to be hammered out, and those involved weren't sure if one could be ready by the June 14 ANC meeting, in which case it would probably come up at the July 12 one.
 

Some potential retail news might have just come onto the radar screen: on the agenda for ANC 6D's next ABC Committee meeting is a proposed Class A license at 909 New Jersey Avenue for an entity called "Harry's SW & SE". They are proposing apparently to sell beer, wine, bread, milk, cheese, and sandwiches (and no "singles"), which is in line with a Class A/liquor store license. If anyone who lives at 909 has heard any rumors, or if anyone else has some scoop, drop me a line. I'm trying to find out more, and will update as I can. (Though the last time I started asking questions about a license application when one appeared on the ABC agenda was a few months ago for 55 M, and it disappeared from the lineup almost as soon as I hit "send." So be forewarned.)
Also on the ABC agenda is a change to Justin's Cafe's license, with Justin now seeking to add a sidewalk cafe.
The meeting is on June 2 at 7 pm at King Greenleaf Recreation Center.
UPDATE: There was a Harry's Liquor Store at 401 M St., SW back in the old Waterside Mall--I don't think it's reopened in the new building(?). I imagine this is the same owner.
UPDATE II: It is indeed the same owner as the old Waterside Mall store, and he also owns Capitol Hill Wine and Spirits in the 300 block of Pennsylvania Ave., SE.
 

The word yesterday from the BID is that Justin's Cafe is opening today, and, if so, that means the neighborhood gets its first new restaurant in a long LONG time and what might be considered its first "real" bar. (For a new restaurant, you have to go back to the opening of Five Guys in 2005, if you're not counting the 2007 opening of Starbucks or the arrival of the restaurant and bar at the Courtyard by Marriott in 2007 or the Bullpen.) If you get there for some food or drinks, post your thoughts in the comments.
I'm thinking of maybe next Thursday, April 22, as an unofficial little JDLand Happy Hour? (In other words, I'll go have a drink or two, and see if anyone else comes along. :-) )
Also opening today is the new and improved Safeway at Fourth and M, SW. If you shop there, pass along what you see.
 

It's not online that I can see, but here are some items from the most recent "FRONT Page News" e-mail newsletter from the BID:
* "Capitol Riverfront neighborhood day at Nationals Park will be Wednesday, April 21st with ticket discounts available to residents, employees, and friends of the BID." The on-street supervisor of the BID's Clean and Safe Team will be singing the National Anthem. [I think, though, that Southwest is going to be part of this "neighborhood day" as well, even though it's not in the BID. This was mentioned at an ANC 6D meeting a few weeks ago.]
* There will be a "Fitness in the Front" event at Canal Park on May 1, with free classes offered by local instructors and information tables (and freebies!). See the link for the lineup and additional info.
* Residential update: "The residential population in the Front is estimated to have reached 3,030 as of the first quarter of 2010. Rental properties including the Onyx, Axiom, Jefferson and 909 are 95% leased. For sale units including Capitol Quarter, Capitol Hill Tower and Velocity are 71% sold. The residential population is predicted to reach 3,500 by the end of 2010."
* And Justin's opens on April 16, but you knew that already. :-)
 

I've just received the news from Justin Ross that he got his liquor license today, and that Justin's Cafe is on target for an April 16 opening. (Yes, I know I was skeptical of that date a while back, but now that I've heard it from the guy who's name is on the sign....)
If you haven't been following along, Justin's will be a restaurant with full bar serving pizzas, sandwiches, and salads, open seven days a week with regular "bar hours," just a few blocks up First Street from Nationals Park. Here's an electronic version of the menu.
We'll have to do a JDLand get-together there in late April.
 
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