30 Jan Food Pick!: Industry Takeover Mondays
“You made it a hot line. I made it a great song.” – Takeover, Jay Z
So you’ve just sweat out your new do at Jahsonic’s The Main Ingredient set at Marvin, or you’re headed that way later on in the evening. If it’s the first Monday of the month, and you love food and chef-lebrities then head over to Top Chef Season 6 contestant Mike Isabella’s Graffiato in Gallery Place from 10pm to 1am for “Industry Takeover Nights.”
Besides being the owner of some of the newest and hottest restaurants in D.C., to include Graffiato and Bandolero in Georgetown, Isabella is also the former Executive Chef at Jose Andres’ Zaytinya, and since he left Zaytinya hasn’t been the same. Few other Top Chef non-winners have had the commercial and critical success that Isabella has brought to bear. So far each of his restaurants amounts to far more than one “hot line.”
Each month Isabella will invite a chef to take over his kitchen for gratis late night bites, and he also brings in a mixologist to rustle up $5 cocktails. I checked out the January edition and first up was Bryan Voltaggio. Voltaggio is also a season six Top Chef alum, and lost only to his maverick of a brother Michael in the finale. Voltaggio is originally from Frederick, MD, and his first restaurant Volt, is doing well there. He provided a mix of interesting flavors, and when you’re drinking the beverages of Owen Thomson, head mixologist at Range in Chevy Chase, everything tastes better. Also, the kitchen is completely open and you can watch the chef cook. The crowd does get a little big and rowdy, so keep your crew small when heading over. Trying to keep up with too many peeps in that setting would be an epic fail.
Isabella is hosting the event again on February 4th, but my bet is on March 4th when he brings in Top Chef alum Jennifer Carroll and Season 7 winner Kevin Spraga. Spraga is Top Chef’s first winner of color, and he now owns his own restaurant in Philly.
Industry Takeover Night is open to the 21 and over public. Graffiato is located at 707 6th Street NW.
Will you be popping by Graffiato for free food and well-mixed, but inexpensive drinks? Which celebrity chef are you hoping to spot in the kitchen? Let us know in the comments!
Shonda Goward is our resident culturalist and foodie with an interest in entertaining, and a know-how about all things domestic, aesthetic and tasteful. Got a LSP Pick!? Contact Shonda here or on Twitter at slg_on_kellyst and check out her blog 3154Kelly for more of her adventures.