New Italian Restaurant from Chef at Alba Osteria coming to CityCenter this Spring

Photo by PoPville flickr user clif_burns

From a press release:

“D.C. chef Amy Brandwein announces plans to open Centrolina, a 4,075-square-foot Italian market and restaurant at 974 Palmer Alley in downtown’s expansive CityCenterDC development in Spring 2015. Centrolina, Brandwein’s first solo restaurant outing, will be open daily for lunch and dinner. The kitchen will serve a 52-seat dining room, 12-seat bar and 32-seat patio. The market will offer a selection of imported Italian specialty items along with meat, fish and produce from local farms, a selection of house-made items and a barista-serviced coffee program.

“Centrolina is directly inspired by a specific type of shopping and dining establishment that I have come to love on my travels through Italy,” said chef/owner Amy Brandwein. “From major cities to small country villages, you can find small, combined markets and restaurants, where a huge part of the charm comes from a blurred line between the dining room and the market. I remember enjoying a meal and watching the chef walk from the kitchen to the market to get a scoop of pomodorini for burrata. The magic was in the proximity to both the materials in the market and the craftsmanship of the chef. We’re going to capture that at Centrolina. It’s not going to just be an Italian dining experience or just an Italian shopping experience; it’s going to be a chef-minded Italian food experience.”


Centrolina will feature a concise and frequently-rotating menu of authentic regional Italian with around 15 dishes at any given time, including antipasti, primi and secondi courses. The menu will always showcase a number of regional dishes, whether that’s seafood dishes inspired from Sardinia and Sicily, Focaccia di Recco from Liguria, Pici Al Coniglio from Emilia Romagna and wood roasted meat and game, depending on the season and what is in the market. Market availability will be the guiding principal of the menu, and Brandwein plans to maintain a sense of interconnectedness between her kitchen and Centrolina’s retail wing. Rather than attempting to be a comprehensive Italian emporium, the market will reflect Brandwein’s own experiences with Italian cooking and the products and produce she loves and uses.

The beverage program will feature an all-Italian wine list that combines imported Italian greats with the best of Virginia; a beer selection that skews heavily local; and a short list of classic Italian cocktails given a contemporary twist.


The wine menu’s marriage of the best Italian imports with regional favorites is echoed in the market where imported cheeses and specialty items share counter space with fantastic local produce, meat and seafood. Grocery items will include dried pasta from all over Italy as well as fresh pasta made in the Centrolina kitchen, accompanied by up to a dozen house-made sauces. The lineup of Italian specialty items will include anchovies, olives, capers, vinegar, olive oil and sweets. Wine and craft beer will also be available for sale.

The market will include a barista-serviced coffee counter as well as grab-and go lunch offerings like sandwiches, pasta, meatballs and salads.


Brandwein worked with D.C.-based architecture/design firm CORE to create Centrolina’s fresh, light and relaxed look. The calm and mainly neutral color palette combines white, cream, grey and blond-wood tones with sophisticated punches of turquoise, terracotta and fuchsia. Smooth, white metal finishes join white-painted brick, leather, light wood, and polished concrete to create a light and easy Californian aesthetic. The quick-stop counter and coffee bar piled high with fresh grab-and-go sandwiches will be the first thing customers see when they walk into the market. As they browse the fresh and prepared-food displays, they will find the restaurant and bar space nestled behind. Restaurant guests, with views of fresh market produce, an open kitchen and terracotta-clad pizza oven, will be immersed in the cooking experience as they dine.


Centrolina is Amy Brandwein’s first solo restaurant project. Before setting her sights on her own place, Brandwein served as chef de cuisine at Alba Osteria in Washington, D.C. Prior to joining the team at Alba Osteria, she launched her own hospitality consulting company, Chef AmyB and served as executive chef at Casa Nonna, BLT Restaurant Group’s first Italian concept in the District. Previously Brandwein served as executive chef for Chef Roberto Donna at Galileo, Laboratorio, Osteria del Galileo and the Galileo Grill. Chef Brandwein is a longtime supporter of local charities, including So Others Might Eat, DC Central Kitchen and Martha’s Table. She is a member of Les Dames d’Escoffier and Women Chefs and Restaurateurs.”

Recent Stories

photo by Jeff Vincent You can talk about whatever is on your mind – quality of life issues, a beautiful tree you spotted, scuttlebutt, or any random questions/thoughts you may…

SIX courtesy Broadway at The National From a press release: “Broadway at The National has announced its 2024/2025 season, featuring the highly anticipated D.C. premiere of HARRY POTTER AND THE…

Sweet City Ride

Thanks to a reader for sending this sweet ’62 Cadillac in action. Sweet City Ride is made possible by readers like you!

Beautiful Blooms!

photo by angela n. While we wait for those other peak blooms, get a load of these beauties:

Want to get a head start on your spring cleaning? Use Well-Paid Maids, the DC area’s only certified living-wage home cleaning service. Well-Paid Maids pays all of its staff at least $24 per hour and provides a full benefits package including:

• Health, dental, vision, and life insurance

• 100% employer-paid commuting costs

Read More

Submit your own Announcement here.

Overcome renovation anxiety and boost your confidence at the “Renovators 101” workshop by HardHat Diplomat! Initially inspired to support women homeowners, this gender-inclusive workshop promises practical learning and guidance for all. “Renovators 101” is our answer to the overwhelming demand for resources to simplify the renovation process, welcoming anyone eager to master home improvement and construction project management.

Let this comprehensive class demystify the complexities of remodeling! Taught in a judgment-free zone, information focuses on the financial, logistical, and emotional challenges of renovations, big or small. Led by home improvement coach and founder of HardHat Diplomat Erin Helland, you will gain valuable organizational tools and insights that position you to manage your projects, self-advocate, and make smart home improvement decisions.

Whether you’re a homebuyer or a seasoned homeowner, you’ll leave with not just enhanced skills but also the confidence to effectively manage budgets, choose the right contractors, and avoid being taken advantage of.

Read More

Submit your own Announcement here.

Brick Penguin Sketch Comedy Show

Whether you’re in your Red, 1989, or Reputation Era, this high-energy, live sketch show from decade+ sketch comedy veterans Brick Penguin has something for you. And if you hate Taylor Swift, then, fine, because she won’t be there.

But like

Neuroscience & Art Salon – Brain Awareness Week

Explore the marvels of the mind with a free Neuroscience and Art Salon on March 10, 2024.

To kick off Brain Awareness Week, all are invited to join neuroscientist and artist Jaya Viswanathan and award-winning journalist Kate Woodsome in an


Subscribe to our mailing list