Mari Vanna Russian Restaurant Opening Mid-January. “the interior will be reminiscent of an old-time babushka parlor”


1141 Connecticut Ave, NW

A couple weeks ago we noted the building to be home to Mari Vanna Russian restaurant was looking good. Lots more info and a brief peek inside from a press release:


Mari Vanna DC’s Third Floor Cocktail Lounge and window seating. Photo credit: Travis Vaughn.

According to Slavic legend, Mari Vanna was a fairytale grandmother known to welcome hungry travelers into her house. She would feed her guests a home-cooked meal before sending them back out on their voyage. In mid January, Russian hospitality powerhouse Ginza Project will bring this legend to life with the opening of Mari Vanna’s second US location in the heart of downtown D.C. With an established reputation of excellence in authentic Russian cuisine in New York, London, Moscow and beyond, the capital’s 6,500 square-foot eatery will be Mari Vanna’s largest location in the world. Located at 1141 Connecticut Ave., NW, the hotspot finds its home in one of the district’s most upscale locales. Just five blocks from the White House and steps away from the historic Mayflower Hotel, the new restaurant nestles perfectly between K Street’s bustling business district and D.C.’s trendy Dupont Circle neighborhood.

The three-level restaurant will offer home-style Russian cuisine in a tea party-meets-grandma’s house ambiance. Unlike any other location, the venue will feature an open-air kitchen, bedecked in red and white tiles and old Russian tchotchkes. Additionally, what sets Mari Vanna DC apart from its four world-wide sister locations is its cozy, third level, private cocktail lounge.

Continues after the jump.


Mari Vanna DC’s third floor cocktail lounge. Photo credit: Travis Vaughn.

The restaurant will boast a similar charming facade to that of the New York and London locations as well as the original St. Petersburg Mari Vanna. A collection of plotted plants and flowers outside will resemble the shrubbery surrounding the entrance of an old Eastern European abode. Just like entering a scene set in pre-war Russia from a Leo Tolstoy novel, the interior will be reminiscent of an old-time babushka parlor, complete with dangling chandeliers, stuffed armchairs and antique rugs. Old cupboards heaving with trinkets and a sprawl of vintage photos and Faberge eggs will set the nostalgic scene for an exceptional dining experience.

Although the restaurant has plans to add various DC-centric menu items, a few Russian specialties won’t change from the other Mari Vanna locations. Classic menu offerings range from cold appetizers such as pickled vegetables, salt-cured pork and black caviar to hot appetizers such as pirozhok, blinis and hand-made Russian dumplings. Delectable entree options will include Mari Vanna’s world famous beef stroganoff, chicken kotletki and fishcakes.

And what’s a Russian nightlife haven without its Vodka? Patrons will choose from over 70 varieties of house-infused vodkas and an impressive cocktail lineup. Signature drink offerings will include the Klubnichka, a strawberry spritzer, the Sunny, a seaberry martini and the Pomidorchik, a reinvented bloody mary with a spicy mustard kick.

The walls will showcase layers of peeled wallpaper, reflecting various eras of ancient history and decades past. Guests will find themselves being serenaded by an artistically inclined full-time staffer. The restaurant’s very own accordionist will play alongside dining parties.

With international appeal in dining, Mari Vanna DC will attract celebrity and political notables alike. The restaurant is already confirmed to host a slew of inauguration events, including a pre-inauguration dinner in partnership with The Creative Coalition. Expected celebrities — in town to host The Creative Coalition’s Inaugural Ball — who will be in attendance include Tim Daly, David Arquette, Chelsea Handler, Kirsten Dunst, and Ashley Greene, among others.

Mari Vanna New York has attracted celebrity fans such as Bill Clinton, Chelsea Clinton and husband Marc Mezvinsky, Sarah Jessica Parker, Kate Walsh, Mick Jagger, Mickey Rourke, Maria Sharapova, Karolina Kurkova, Kate Walsh, Lucy Lui, Max Azria, Maksim Chmerkovskiy and Alexander Ovechkin.

HOURS OF OPERATION:
Monday – Friday: Lunch, 11:30am – 3:30pm, Mid afternoon tea: 3:30pm – 5:pm, Happy hour (Siberian Express): 4 – 6pm. Dinner: 5pm – Midnight. Late dinner menu: Midnight – close.

Saturday & Sunday: Dinner, 5pm – Midnight, Late dinner menu: Midnight – close.

Saturday & Sunday Lunch: 11am – 5pm starting February 3rd.

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