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  • Little Cocos (brought to you by the same team as Jackies and El Chucho) was supposed to be open by now, too. What’s with the delays?

    • Yeah, I googled it and it said “mid-July” (as of a Craigslist help wanted ad posted just a couple weeks ago!) so we drove past to see if it was open–it’s still a shell. It’s not even close. No idea why though.

      • Mezcalero (the new El Sol) was supposed to be opened mid-July too. Also doesn’t look close.

        • My bet is that they’re all experiencing permitting delays. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: It’s almost as though DCRA’s goal is to prevent business from opening.

  • I have not, but my understanding is that the owner of the building was going to sell and so kicked El Sol out, but then had second thoughts and allowed the restaurant owner to stay. Last time I spoke with him he was trying to figure out if it was worth continuing to operate a restaurant there (while he builds out his new place a few blocks south) and what kind of place it might be. He mentioned a burger joint, but it seems like he settled on a different concept. In any case, whatever they sell I’m sure it will be delicious and I will enjoy eating and drinking on their patio.

    • So I guess you’re saying that this can’t be a concept from a new owner, since El Sol just vacated a couple weeks ago?
      Gotta say I’m a little disappointed that this is another re-paint the facade, hang a temporary sign, and spend ostensibly little-to-no time or resources into changing the space (I live around the corner and have seen almost no work going on here except the painting of the exterior). Guess I was hoping for something more like Little Cocos or Mezcalero Cocina Mexicana (new El Sol concept soon to be open next to Red Derby), where the owners/restaurateurs put time into the planning phase rather than shotgunning another half-assed space onto this stretch of 14th…

      • You hit the nail on the head. I wish these owners were a little more responsible and actually tried to recruit a quality tenant or contracted out with a business recruiter like StreetSense. Seems to me like a bunch of amateurs who don’t know the gold mine they are sitting on.

        • So… my understanding is that he’s kind of over a barrel here because the property owner has told the restaurateur that he/she intends to sell the property but hasn’t found a buyer yet. Building out any permanent concept wouldn’t make sense given the uncertainty. Hopefully the real estate transaction piece of this can happen swiftly so we can get a more permanent awesome concept in here.

  • Not optimistic. Where is the economic development leadership for upper 14th? Business recruitment? Between this and Golden Paradise, I’ve given up hope for legit restaurants.

    • Yep, huge disappointment. Oh, btw. There is no economic development leadership for upper 14th, that’s the problem.

      • There needs to a plan and DC needs to fork up some money to contract out with a business recruiter like StreetSense to help revitalize the area. Lots of engaged neighbors, but not a lot of results. People are pretty upset with Golden Paradise and certainly will be underwhelmed by “International Cafe.”

    • What’s wrong with Golden Paradise? It seems to attract customers. Those customers just happen to be Latino.

    • Golden Paradise is awful. They recently had a stabbing incident there. What a ruckus.

  • Let me try to help the owner… The neighborhood has been begging for a high-end, quality deli (Italian, Jewish, or Greek). Maybe a legit bakery like Baked & Wired or Bread Furst. Maybe they should try engaging the neighborhood before deciding on a concept.

    • This x a million.

    • YES x1000 to both of those. I’ve been dying for a coffee shop/bakery in the 18 months I’ve lived off of upper 14th. Hopefully Little Coco’s morning offerings will satisfy the coffee need but a deli would be awesome.

      I’d take anything fast casual too – Cava (yes, I know there’s one down at the CH metro) or sweetgreen or taylor. Anything where I could grab a quick dinner.

      • The question is why such a disconnect between owners and the needs of the neighborhood? There are so many people with disposable income and no place to spend their money. New condos on this strip are selling in the $400,000 – $600,000 range. There have been nearly eight now developments in the past year. Houses are selling around $1 million, but all we get are more “lipstick on a pig” restaurants.

        • Prince Of Petworth

          You’re aware that there are people who go to the “lipstick on a pig” restaurants, right?

          • Of course. I get that and some turn out to be very good (i.e. El Sol, Salt & Pepper Grill II), but that seems to be all that is moving into the area aside from Little Coco’s. Buildings where owners or tenants put more money into the concept generally tend to be consistently better in quality and cleanliness.

      • Le Caprice is like four blocks south.

    • And if a “high-end, quality deli” moved in, everyone would flock here to complain about how high the prices are.

    • We need a coffee shop. I heard that’s basically what Little Cocos plans to be during the day?

  • All the comments here, just …. geez. You all are aware that there is a substantial population of low-to-middle income folks in this neighborhood, right? And lots of Latinos too. Calling this new place not “legit” and “half-assed” and comparing it to Golden Paradise (which is also getting the treatment) seems a lot like race-baiting to me. It’s a diverse neighborhood. If you don’t like these places, then don’t eat there. Simple as that. Not everyone wants to spend $22 for an entree.

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