More Info on Maple Italian Restaurant Coming to Columbia Heights and Red Rocks to Open Another Location on H St, NE?

Back in late November I shared the news that Maple Italian restaurant was coming to 3418 11th St, NW next to Columbia Heights coffee. More info has been revealed from a new crowd sourcing website called Popularise:

We plan to name the restaurant after a beautiful piece of tiger maple that Eric will use to build our 20-foot-long bar. The sustainably harvested wood came from a tree that had fallen in a swamp. The growth rings and “tiger-streaks” give the wood a rich texture, and it will create a warm, welcoming atmosphere.

New York’s many panini bars have perfected this concept, but D.C. is missing the yummy trend. We’d offer Italian panini, fresh mozzarella and roasted red peppers, mortadella and goat cheese, but also more American, butcher-style sandwiches. Think short ribs and caramelized onion, or smoked chicken and cheddar. Our recent trip to Cochon Butcher in New Orleans convinced us we should expand the offerings beyond the traditional Italian standbys. Got a favorite combination? Tell us your idea.

Earlier this afternoon a bit more info was released via email:

Maple is the creation of architect Eric Gronning and journalist Lori Robertson. Gronning has been the architect for several successful Washington, D.C., restaurants, including Jack Rose, Marvin, Cork, Pizzeria Paradiso and the Palena expansion. He is also a licensed general contractor, specialty metal fabricator and furniture designer. He will be personally fabricating many components of Maple. Robertson, currently an editor with the website, has been a journalist for 15 years, writing about politics, the media, travel and health issues.

And here’s the word on 1351 H St, NE. Vote appears split between Red Rocks and Durkl.

12 Comment

  • Dorkl boooo

    • sure it’s not for everyone, but I’d rather see H Street take on some local, destination retail than yet other restaurant/bar.

      that said, if it’s gonna be another restaurant/bar on H, Red Rocks would be pretty solid. so I guess H Street wins again.

  • Hey P of P, we created to let residents help build new places in their neighborhood. The Maple team wants to build a cozy restaurant for the neighborhood and wanted the input from locals as they create the menu.
    I posted a Grilled Cheese bar because I love cheese.

  • Cochon Butcher in New Orleans is freaking amazing! If this place is half as good, it will be a huge plus for the neighborhood.

  • A panini is just a fancy grilled cheese sandwich. Please please tell me that Maple will have pizza and pasta and a full menu.

  • I just came back from Italy on vacation and loved the gastronomias!! Pick ur meat, cheese and bread for an awesome fresh sandwich, plus a bottle of red wine.

  • Love that they are making this space beautiful, Eric’s other restaurants are all fantastic spaces and I’m sure one will be as well. Also glad that they are soliciting community input. My only concern is that it sounds like food is at this point a bit of an after-thought … no chef involved with the project, at least based on what is noted above, and they don’t seem to yet have a firm grasp on what the culinary concept will be, which is odd considering opening is imminent. They may need to consult with Larry David ASAP to find a chef …

    (warning NSFW).

    Seriously, excited to try this place out. I’d love if it ended up something akin to Ino in NYC, that would fill a real hole in the area food options:

    But the key as always, no matter how cool the space is, will be how good the food is. I’d vote, as always, for a smallish, casual menu, with a small group of top-notch ingredients, executed really well, at reasonable prices, which would suit the small space.

  • PS … unfortunately I can’t leave feedback directly on the populariseteam site since apparently you need an invite. Here is another place that I love (this one in Boston), I’d love to also see this menu serve as a source of inspiration (albeit at a slightly lower price point):

  • Lori and Eric are former neighbors of ours (hi, guys, from Cassie the dog’s family) and they’re good people. While I’m not blown away by the menu concept, I’m definitely willing to give it a chance. I just wonder how often people will really go out to eat panini. But as NoLongerNew said, if it’s good, quality ingredients at reasonable prices, it may work. Good luck!

  • Maple sounds good – I’ll stay tuned for details about the food.

    If the terrible service at the King Street location is any indication, Red Rocks needs to put its house in order before expanding to another location.

  • so this will be a sandwich joint and not traditional pastas?

  • No need for pizza, red rocks has that covered, but I think panini and pasta would be awesome. soups and salads?? Sometimes I really just want a warm bowl of soup. Italians have lots of great soups, plus fresh bread? I nom.

Comments are closed.