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The neighborhood dining options take another leap forward today as Osteria Morini officially opens to the public in the southeast corner of the Lumber Shed at 3rd and Water in the Yards Park. There's a web site (though, um, oops), and City Paper has the menu.
Morini now joins Bluejacket, Buzz Bakery, Nando's Peri-Peri, Park Tavern, and Gordon Biersch on the list of new 'hood eateries in 2013. Morini's next-door neighbor, Agua 301, is under construction, but whether it makes it under the wire as the last opening of 2013 or ends up being the first of 2014 is still up in the air. Morini's sibling Nicoletta, which will serve pizza out of one of the retail bays along the Yards Park riverwalk, is expected to open next year.
What say you about the Morini menu?
UPDATE: And I guess I should have thought to include a small memory of what the exterior and interior of the Lumber Shed used to look like:
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Capitol Hill SE says: (11/19/13 11:21 AM)
The menu looks fantastic. I'm shaking my head over the City Paper commenters complaining about the prices (especially the guy who is whining that he can't afford to eat here 3-4 times a week). Where in DC can you get a good Italian entree for less than $17? Those prices are pretty standard. Can't wait to try it!


JES says: (11/19/13 12:29 PM)
It looks delicious. Personally, probably won't eat there more than 3-4 times a year due to it being a few bucks more pricey than most of our other options, but that's just fine.

As for the city paper comments, I don't really get it. Nando's and soon TaKorean and Montaditos will do a nice job filling the "cheap eats" niche (and I wouldn't call Biersch or even Bluejacket's bar menu expensive either). It's perfectly fine for us to have a pricier option too, so I don't really get the complaining. There's room for everyone, guys. Every restaurant doesn't have to cater to a 10-15 dollar entree price point.


conngs0 says: (11/19/13 1:51 PM)
Totally agree with JES. Anyone have any idea on the price-points of Twelve12, the Toll Brothers lot, or 800 New Jersey Avenue? If it's anywhere near what the Foundry Lofts are listed at, there will be plenty of people who can afford to eat at Osteria Morini every once in awhile (not to mention the fact that at some point people might travel down to the neighborhood for reasons other than a Nats game; e.g., for a movie or if the ice skating rink gets repaired!).

All in all, I'm just thrilled to see some more projects get completed. They may not all work out, but that's not entirely the point - these milestones are tremendously encouraging and will hopefully catalyze more projects currently stuck in the mud (read: all those vacant lots or unsightly holes in the ground waiting to be filled!).

As for Osteria Morini in particular, I think that there's a pretty substantial dearth of solid Italian restaurants in this city, so I look forward to seeing if this one can hopefully fill some of the void. Speaking of a paucity of excellent options, I'm super excited for Nicoletta to open up next year (We the Pizza is ok, but I'll gladly trade up).


JD says: (11/19/13 10:18 PM)
Mr. JDLand and I couldn't help ourselves, and went for dinner tonight, and weren't disappointed. But each time I go to one of these openings, I find myself mainly just repeating over and over, "I can't believe that we're sitting here, compared to what it used to be...."


JacquesOfAllTrades says: (11/20/13 9:56 AM)
So in combination with Bluejacket/Arsenal, has the number of restaurant seats in the neighborhood doubled in the last month alone?

Next season's pre-Nationals dining will certainly have a different feel.


JD says: (11/20/13 1:16 PM)
I also look in both places (and at Biersch) and think of all of the jobs added to the neighborhood. Those are all some big operations. I think Morini had pretty much their entire staff working last night, I've never seen so many waiters/busboys/managers roaming a floor.


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