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The Scoop on New Restaurant/Bar Moving into Former Social Space in Columbia Heights

by Prince Of Petworth March 24, 2011 at 10:30 am 53 Comments

A couple of days ago I shared some scuttlebutt that a new restaurant would be moving into the old Social space at 14th and Meridian Pl, NW. At the time I had very little info other than a “full service restaurant” would be coming. There has been a lot of speculation about Social since they abruptly closed back in Nov. ’10. While I think there will always be some mystery as to what happened – I’m happy to say that I had the opportunity to sit down with one of the new owners and we discussed his new plans for the space. I think this is gonna be a very very big win for the neighborhood.

The space is going to completely transformed. On the first floor is going to be a true neighborhood bar with a 70s Paul Newman/Steve McQueen movie theme with a particular emphasis on racing. Think Bullitt. For someone who’s favorite movie is Cool Hand Luke – I found this to be very welcome news.


From famous chase seen in Bullitt

In addition to the cool theme the first floor bar will lose the lounge feel and set up and look like a proper bar. There will be tvs for sports and very good happy hour deals. I’m told the happy hours will be huge and last from 3pm – 9pm with a variety of other specials everyday.

The second floor will be the dining space. It was described to me as an upscale diner. I was told, “think comfort food done very very well”. The chef has already signed on and comes from an established restaurant.

And more good news for those that live in the neighborhood – if you are a big fan of diner food you will be able to get it to go and if you live in Columbia Heights – they will deliver. [I’ll be sharing the menu in the coming weeks when it is finalized.]

I was told the new restaurant and bar will have three main focal points – happy hour, brunch, and an awesome outdoor space. The outdoor space will be completely re-landscaped both at street level and up top. There will be an outdoor bar added to the second floor patio area. In addition to other happy hour deals don’t be surprised to see a daiquiri happy hour for the 2nd floor patio. Additionally, I’m told a cool mural will be on its way as well.

The owner that I spoke with lives in the neighborhood – is excited to make this a welcoming place for all. The space is going to be reconfigured with new landscaping, new paint, new furniture, a new decor/theme, a new menu, new specials and hopes to open around May 1st.

I’ll be updating with more info as we get closer to that point.

Sound good?

  • Pworthy

    YES! Yes it does!

  • Kalorini

    Do we know if any of the previous owners will be involved in the new project (as there were a fair number of people with their hands in the original Social pot)?

    • Prince Of Petworth

      The owners of Social have zero involvement in this new project. It is a completely new team (only 2 partners plus the Chef).

      • Estee

        Do we know the name of the new restaurant/bar

    • Kalorini

      Sorry, I didn’t include how PSYCHED I am for this new space :-)

  • Other K

    Moar brunch & happy hours? Dance a little dance!

  • x

    “think comfort food done very very well”.

    I can only dream that this means Gillian Clark will be bringing the General Store concept down to Columbia Heights…

  • Sounds great. Love the bar theme for downstairs, sounds cool. The comfort food done very, very well sounds good as well — all I ask if for a small menu that isn’t overly ambitious but where every item is high quality. Love that they will deliver as well to Columbia Heights! I will definitely patronize a good comfort food delivery option frequently, if it is reliable. Good luck!

  • Rosie

    YAYYYYYY Sounds awesome!!!

  • Meridian PL

    Six hour happy hour?? Amen.

  • Anonymous

    Oh mE Oh mY!

  • LisaT

    Sounds gooder than good!

  • Hoodrat

    Excellent, excellent news. Let’s hope these folks have a better plan than Social did. Sounds great.

  • shaq

    Can’t wait to go and take my seven kids there!

  • Denizen of Tenallytown

    “While I think there will always be some mystery as to what happened…”

    We may not ever get the blow-by-blow on why Social flopped, but it’s apparent from the reviews of poor food consistency and lousy service that the management failed to properly steer the restaurant after the exciting initial grand opening. They had big plans, but those plans were not executed well.

    This new restaurant sounds like it will serve the neighborhood well, and is more in line with what is sustainable (at this point) within this area.

  • JS

    This sounds like what should have occupied the space from the very beginning. Very stoked.

  • Anonymous

    Sounds exactly like the Clyde’s in Friendship Heights. Which is not necessarily a bad thing.

  • Newish2CH

    I went to the Social a couple times when I originally moved into the neighborhood back in September. To say that it was an underwhelming experience would be an understatement: overprice drinks, slow server, mediocre food. With the correct management, there’s absolutely no reason a restaurant/bar in this space at this location shouldn’t make money hand over fist. I can’t wait to check out the new place!

  • John

    Can we get delivery to Mount Pleasant too…. In general DC needs to see more delivery options outside of Asian/Indian/Pizza. When I lived in NYC it was great to wake up too hungover to go out in public for food and have your hungover breakfast delivered right to your door.

    • rooty tooty

      Where are you getting delivery Indian? I need it!

      • herewegoagain

        Jyoti in Adams Morgan delivers.

        • saf

          Really? Do they come to Petworth? Must go check now.

      • John

        Jyoti and also Himalyen Heritage.

      • GforGood

        Fusion in Petworth (excellent food, too). They use Moroni Brothers delivery guy.

  • Anonymous

    I m happy a new restaurant is coming but comfort food done well sounds like expensive boring American fair. When is Columbia heights going to get Korean, indian, Japanese, middle eastern, or Greek place?

  • J

    When I went to Breadsoda when it first opened, the McQueen/Bullitt angle was played up.. is space going to be run by the same people?

    • SB

      My question exactly.

      • ontarioroader

        That would be cool as hell. BreadSoda’s owners/management are great people.

  • YuppieHell

    Sounds awesome I’m psyched.

  • Jonesie

    I am in love with a concept for a restaurant. I never knew I could feel this way….

  • Andy

    I’m all for it, but is it going to be affordable? These new restaurants in Columbia Heights (former Commonwealth, The Meridian Pint, The Heights) are just too expensive. I’m hoping for beers under $5 and dishes under $10. Is that too much to ask?

    • Oats

      When I think of expensive, I think Citronelle or The Source. The places you mention have moderate price points. There’s plenty of cheap/fast food places in the area.

    • Denizen of Tenallytown

      Maybe during happy hour, you’ll find prices like these for beers and a handful of small dishes. Otherwise, I highly doubt it.

    • arm

      Agreed. There is no moderately priced place here (other than Ihop) that isn’t fast food. I just want dinner and drinks for two for $30 with tax and tip.

      • Tres

        That kind of place doesn’t exist anymore in DC. $40 w/ tax and tip, yes.

      • have you been out anywhere in columbia heights? la moleinda, taqueria distrito federal, wonderland, pho viet, pho 14, and even thai tanic if you order properly can get you all dinner for 2 under 30 bucks

  • Tres

    The perfect place to hold egg eating contests.

  • Soda… bread…

    Breadsoda has the Steve McQueen thing going on in an amazing and tasteful way…

  • Louise

    I’m so happy it’s not ANOTHER chain!!

  • StanleyKubrick

    I hope they serve barbeque and craft beers – we need more of that in this city

    • Anonymous

      how about a frozen yogurt/ bbq/ craft brew bar? also, i’d like to get my prescriptions filled while i’m dining.

  • That actually sounds…pretty awesome. Hope it works.

    Went to Social once, it was a little too much for me. Pretension and mediocrity were really its hallmark. Especially since what the strip needed was a just a regular joint.

  • LG

    68 GT fastback drooool…Too bad brad pitt is doing a remake of bullitt….tragic

    er..eh..bar sounds ok too

  • Anon

    It sounds terrible- horribly uncreative and all over the place. I hope it’s better than it sounds.

    • Jason

      Cool! Another generic diner sports bar, can we replace every bar in columbia heights with a sports bar with tvs so we can all watch the big game? Social had the best happy hour, dollar PBRs?!

  • JSHM

    Social put up the money to spruce up the place and had a laid back downstairs bar with a great mix of clientele. I was sorry to see it go. That said, I’m happy to hear the corner will be reoccupied. Keep the vibe alive!

  • Anonymous

    The Breadsoda people have that same 70’s steve McQueen/bullitt feel. That’s an awesome bar. Hope this is good.

  • PQueen

    has this bar opened yet? does anyone know who is moving in?

    • Prince Of Petworth

      They have not opened yet. They are still shooting for 1st week of May. I’ll be posting an update soon!

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