“Restaurateur Hakan Ilhan Is Bringing Modern French Fare to Historic Georgetown with The Mid-October Opening of Brasserie Liberté”

3251 Prospect Street, NW (previously home to Morton’s)

From a press release:

“Restaurateur Hakan Ilhan is pleased to announce the mid-October anticipated opening of his new 250-seat restaurant, Brasserie Liberté, located in the heart of historic Georgetown at 3251 Prospect Street, NW, 20007. This modern 6,000-square-foot brasserie will open serving lunch, dinner, weekend brunch, and late-night services. Swatchroom, a design, art and fabrication firm based in the nation’s capital, is the design firm of record for Brasserie Liberte. Inspired by the unique confidence and influence that French culture has had internationally on design, fashion and art, the space will boast a palette of rich confident colors and globally inspired materials and fixtures.

rendering courtesy Swatchroom

For this endeavor, Ilhan has tapped Jaryd Hearn as the executive chef for Brasserie Liberté and Richard Kaufman, formally of 1789 Restaurant, to serve as general manager. The 25-year-old Hearn relocated to Washington, D.C. from Polo Grill & Bar in Lakewood Ranch, Florida to accept this new appointment. His former experience was cooking at award-winning Alinea, Grant Achatz’s world-renowned Michelin three-star restaurant in Chicago. Here at age 21, he became an integral part of the kitchen team. Within three months, he was moved to a kitchen management position surrounded by 40 of the best cooks in America. Hearn’s innovative mind was put it to good use while serving on Alinea’s research team where he was responsible for developing progressive food concepts. He also served as part of the opening team at Alinea’s Michelin three-star pop-up restaurants in Madrid, Spain and Miami, Florida.

At Brasserie Liberté, the menu will be comprised of classic dishes that incorporate traditional cooking techniques that pay tribute to the true flavors of French cuisine. The dinner menu will feature a collection of appetizers, flatbreads, salads, frites as well as entrées from the land, sea and garden. Appetizers will range from $8.95 to $23.95, and entrées from $13.95 to $34.95. Highlights from the dinner menu include French Onion Soup with gratinée beef mushroom broth and emanthaller cheese; Country Boudin with roasted mushrooms, caramelized onions and mustard cream; Cured Salmon Rillette with crème fraiche and fine herbs; Escargot a la Bourguignon with parsley butter, escargot and mushroom; Tarte Flambees; Tuna Niçoise Salad, herb-crusted sushi grade tuna, egg, haricot verts, tomato, boquerones, potato and olives; Crispy Leg of Duck Confit with seasonal greens, duck-fat smashed potatoes and mustard cream sauce; Chicken Chasseur, braised chicken thigh, bacon lardons, pearl onion, button mushrooms and smashed potatoes; Boeuf Bourguignon, red wine braised short rib with bacon lardons, pearl onions, button mushrooms and fingerling potatoes; Scallop Almandine with brown butter, green beans, fingerling potato and almonds; Vegetable Cassoulet with white beans, mirepoix, and wild mushrooms as well as Steak Frites, marinated hanger steak, served with a petit salad, house frites and a choice of classic Maître d’Hôtel butter or peppercorn sauce.

Wine will be front and center at Brasserie Liberté, vertically displayed as a backdrop in the private dining room. A climate-controlled, glass-enclosed wine wall will showcase an extensive collection of French and American labels. The highly accessible list will feature great value wines from classic varieties and regions, as well as a nod to the ever-evolving dynamic of new winemakers and styles from around the world. An extensive collection of over 150 labels will be available by the bottle and over 20 wines by the glass. Prices range from $28 to $2,000 by the bottle and from $8 to $23 by the glass. The cocktail program at Brasserie Liberté will reflect the overarching narrative of the restaurant – using the best ingredients to offer quality products at a great value. Cocktails range from $11 to $13 each. The offerings will pay respect to the classics – focusing on the world’s favorite and most endearing libations along with similarly styled sippers. While not exclusively French, the cocktail program will offer a French accent spotlighting ingredients and traditional drinks from Paris to Dejon and the New Orleans’ French Quarter.

Swatchroom was tapped to create the design scheme for Brasserie Liberté, which will be warm and welcoming. Guests will enter through French-style folding doors and pass under a series of curved archways where they will be greeted by a bright white bar sporting a hunter-green accent. The 48-seat bar will be reminiscent of a French farmhouse with an ambience that is energetic, bold and comfortable.

The 64-seat main dining will offer a warm palette of pumpkin, crimson and rich navy. The space is anchored by a creamy white fireplace that evokes the shape of a Moroccan tagine. This room is the heart of the restaurant, with large curved booths upholstered in masculine woven plaids.

The spacious private dining room will be covered with navy walls and light blue floor tiling with a rose gold mirror. Blackout drapes will create more privacy. The space can also be divided into two rooms, which will accommodate seating for 25 and 31 guests respectively. The room will offer a private side entrance and bar, as well as a view of the wine cellar. Two outdoor patios will also be available during the spring and summer months (weather permitting) and can accommodate an additional 70 seated guests.

Brasserie Liberté is located in historic Georgetown at 3251 Prospect Street, NW, 20007. Lunch will be served Monday to Friday, from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. and dinner will be served nightly, from 4 p.m. to 10 p.m. Brunch will be served Saturday and Sunday, from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. A late-night menu will also be available Sunday through Thursday, from 10 p.m. to 1 a.m. and Friday and Saturday, from 10 p.m. to 2 a.m.”

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