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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.
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JES says: (9/3/14 2:29 PM)
I always envisoned the CBS Radio "street-facing" studio to be on that frontage. Where's that gonna go?


JD says: (9/3/14 2:31 PM)
I don't know where the CBS Radio space is going to be, but I imagine there's room for both along L. It's a big building.


202_cyclist says: (9/3/14 3:49 PM)
What is the status of the Big Stick restaurant? I think I saw a stop work order the other day.


JES says: (9/3/14 4:44 PM)
I dunno about Big Stick, but I did see people working on the interior of Willie's again yesterday. So maybe that's back on track.


ZoolanderANDtheBoYz says: (9/3/14 5:22 PM)
The other day someone tweeted that Willie's will open in 30 days.
I am super excited about Bonchon Korean #drummers # wings fly fly chicken baby.


ZoolanderANDtheBoYz says: (9/3/14 5:35 PM)
@ 202_cyclist the Big Stick restaurant is on hold to plan how they will solve their future competition with Bonchon Korean. Check out "It is always Sunny in Philadelphia: Season 3 episode 6(The Gang solves the North Korea Situation). It is hilarious.


conngs0 says: (9/4/14 11:24 AM)
If Willie's manages to open in thirty days (i.e. after the completion of yet another regular baseball season), that would be pretty consistent with the events that must have led to its umbrella company winding up in Chapter 11 proceedings. What a tremendous opportunity missed. I'll remain skeptical until the moment the doors open. Nevertheless, I'd be thrilled if it got up and running.

As for Bonchon, I'm not sure if I understand the mass appeal, but sure, who doesn't like fried chicken on occasion?


JES says: (9/4/14 12:47 PM)
I remember hoping that Willie's would be open last year by the end of football season. Now I'm hoping that it'll be open THIS year by the end of football season (love spending NFL Sundays at sports bars).


JD says: (9/4/14 3:33 PM)
A bit of clarity on 1015 Half's ground floor plans, from people in the know....:

Bonchon will take just about all of the L Street frontage. (So this is place is a'gonna be big.)

CBS Radio will have the "performance studio" we've heard about on K Street, on the end of the building closer to South Capitol. (Their actual studios and office space will be on the 2nd floor.) They've already got the building permits approved for the performance studio, and it is supposed to be completed before the company moves into the building.

That leaves about 6,000 sq ft of retail space on K still available to lease, for a restaurant or any retailer interested.

(And I took some grief from some CRE quarters via e-mail this morning over my retail/"wishy washy subject" comment at the end of the post. I was remembering back to when Opus East would hem and haw and mumble every time I asked if they were going to do retail. And I hadn't ever seen Retail For Lease signs in any of the windows at 1015 Half. But they sure showed me! :) )



Alan says: (9/8/14 11:17 AM)
Re Big Stick. Full work crew there this AM. I know that they aren't allowed to work on the site during 'normal business hours' as part of their deal with the building because of noise affecting people above the site.

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