Breaking News: Chef Enzo Fargione announces new restaurant, ELISIR.
Washingtonians have been waiting to hear the next steps of Chef Enzo Fargione, formerly of Teatro Goldoni, ever since it was announced on March 11, 2010 that the restaurant and Fargione parted ways. Most would agree that Fargione took Teatro to a new level, including its well-deserved 2010 Rammy nomination for the coveted Power Spot of the Year.
Today Chef Enzo Fargione announced that his restaurant company Cucina Moderna, LLC has signed a Letter of Intent for a restaurant space that will be located at 427 11th Street. This space occupies that same building as 1001 Pennsylvania Avenue NW in Penn Quarter neighborhood of Washington, D.C where other well-known restaurants such as Central Michel Richard and Passion Food Hospitality Group’s Ten Penh Restaurants currently reside. According to the release, the agreement was reached and signed yesterday, Thursday, August 19th 2010 for the 4000 sqft space presently occupied by La Prima Food Group Via Cucina Cafe. His new restaurant, “ELISIR by Enzo Fargione” will seat approximately 90 patrons in the dining area, 20-25 patrons at a bar, and 20 patrons in a private room. It is slated to open at the end of March 2011 and will feature the distinctive hands-on approach and interpretation of modern Italian cooking.
Fargione’s home town is Torino, Italy had dreams of having his own restaurant ever since he was a young man. He said, ” I was a bomb ready to explode. It was not much of a surprise when I told my parents that I wanted to be a cook. I remember my Father looking at me like I was drunk or I needed brain surgery. My Father said “I don’t think it’s a good idea. Pick something else…. and it was then that my professional career started.”
According to the releases, ELISIR means ELIXIR in english: a mix of flavored liquids containing alcohol and it was used in Medieval times in Italy as welcoming beverage for important guests when visiting court. Elisirs were commonly made from grappa or other in house distilled spirits. Nowadays it could be compared to an elaborated cocktail or a sofisticated martini made with only the best quality ingredients.
Chef Fargione has retained the renowed architectual firm Grupo 7 to design and create a contemporary first class fine dining restaurant with stylish decor and typical European flares. The Restaurant will incorporate a glass fronted wine cellar, fine wood millwork, porcelain tile and carpet floors, pendant lighting and custom metal details. The kitchen will be partially open and enclosed with high circular glass panels, featuring a plating station, which will highlight the work of the chef in the observation deck.
The Restaurant, initially, will be open 5 days a week for ELISIR Bistro Lunch and 6 days a week for formal Dinner service.
For lunch, the bar will accommodate the faster pace customers with a more affordable quality menu with approximately 15 options for $15 set price including a glass of wine or a non alcoholic beverage offering a quicker alternative for those on a time frame.
The dining room lunch menu will offer a great value with selections of fish and meat preparations as well as in house made sausages, cold cuts and fresh pastas. Like Fargione’s previous succesful project The Chef’s Table, ELISIR on a typical night will offer a choice of two prix fix tasting menus and an optional smaller one a la carte which it will change seasonally. The wine list will feature extensive selections from Italy, California, Virginia and a few French pearls and multiple wine pairing programs.
Congratulations, Chef Fargione. I look forward to dining with you, soon!