Old Mar de Plata Space Becoming St. Arnold’s Belgian Restaurant/Pub on Jefferson Place, NW

I’ve been monitoring this space since Mar de Plata closed here at 1827 Jefferson Place, NW back in August. Looks like they have a healthy appreciation for a proper beer:

Welcome to St. Arnold’s of Jefferson Place! The name St. Arnold refers to the Patron Saint of Brewing, which conjures up visions of great food, world-class beers and an inviting meeting place in the midtown area. During his lifetime, St. Arnold was said to have performed numerous miracles involving the multiplying of beer. He also was a proponent of the consumption of good food and beer, as he felt it was good for the soul and fostered a sense of community. Our inspiration for St. Arnold’s starts here. We strive to offer a menu of Belgian and American classics in a casual setting.

You can see their beer list here.

You can see their menu here.

I peeked my head in and it looks like there is still a few weeks of construction that needs to be completed but I’ll be sure to update when an opening date is selected.

After looking at their beer list and menu – I’m gonna go out on a limb and say this is a big score for Dupont. Any spot dedicated to the ‘Patron Saint of Brewing’ has a very promising future in my eyes…

26 Comment

  • The fact that the have waterzooi on the menu catches my eye, but the presence of penne pasta makes me think twice. Over all, the prices look reasonable for real people (not just Dupont Circle people) and I will probably try it at least once.

    The quality of the frites (double-fried in the Belgian style is a must) will make or break this place for me.

  • This is dirt cheap for Dupont, sadly.

    • I love an Ommengang every now and then, but can’t we all just get over Stella? There’s nothing “dirt cheap” about $6 for 11.2 ounces of the Bud Light of Europe.

  • They had me at rye bread sticks!

  • Shocktop and Bluemoon? Also, a place like that should not have Bud and Stella on tap. That’s 4 wasted taps right there. Also, Ommegang is available on draft (at least in NYC)– let’s get some down here!

  • I’m sorry to say it, but my first reaction was: Isn’t the Belgian thing in DC over already? I mean, didn’t it peak in about 2007 or 2008?

  • $9 for a pint of stella is a bargain?

  • It’s by no means all bad, but that beer list is more or less a showcase of Anheuser-Busch InBev’s current US product line.

    The reason we’ve seen such an influx of Belgian beers over the last few years is because the mega-company who owns all these brands has purchased A-B.

    • Anon 1035 – thanks for making that connection for me…I should have realized it was the merger, and not just the American beer consumer, that was driving that change.

      I just always thought to myself that Belgian beer craze was a reaction of people who want to drink “good beer” but don’t actually like the taste of beer.

      ..and by “taste of beer” I mean a distinctive hop or malt flavor that is common to most American “micro-brews” or anything a Bud Light drinker would call a “dark beer”

      • you must have never had a belgian beer other than Stella. This is a laughably ignorant comment.

        • I sorta knew someone was going to call me on that comment 😉

          I’ve actually had every single beer on their proposed beer list…and I am well aware that there are many darker Belgian beers beyond Stella/Palm.

          I made that *generalization* because it seems to me that the most commonly sold Belgian beers are the lighter/wheat style beers….like Blue Moon or Leffe Blonde.

          Since my favorite beers are IPAs, Amber lagers and Stouts, I have tried darker Belgians several times (Duvel Chimay)but there is something distinctive about those beers that I just don’t like. I’m not well-versed enough in terminology to describe it…but it’s “where the hops should be” and it seems to be a common characteristic across most Belgian beers I have tried, regardless of the brand.

          Eric – Can you identify the feature I am trying to describe?

          • It’s the Belgian yeast strains, they are quite distinctive and different from what you get with American micros (unless they are like Ommegang and use the same strains). Some of them can produce “funky” aromas in the end product that you either like or you don’t.

        • CORRECTION – I’ve tried every one of the **DRAFT** beers…

  • This won’t last. Being in Dupont doesn’t mean you get to charge Brasserie Beck’s prices with that joke of a menu.

  • very disappointing beer list. How are you going to have a belgian restaurant, and only have like the few widely distributed belgian beers that you can find at the supermarket? and $10 for a half liter domestic ommegang double? give me a break.

  • I don’t klnow that I’d call this a “big score for Dupont”. Seems more like one more of an ever-lengthening list of places that think having a couple of quality beers on their menu somehow entitles them to charge higher amounts for substandard fare.

    I realize that I’m making some assumptions as to the quality of their food, but considering the litany of similarly themed places around DC, I do not have much hope that St. Arnold’s here will be anything other than “merely OK”.

  • From the menu: “Air Chilled Roasted Chicken”

    I call shenanigans.

  • It looks like a trip club.

  • just got word that this joint is opening on Friday (12.17)…i am goign to check it out. Fare is supposed to be supported by a legit chef who specializeds in the Belgium fare..keeping my fingers crossed..beer list looks fine, I thikn something for everyone, tugh critis here.

  • Will be interesting if the St. Arnold Brewery will contact them concerning the name!

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