Shophouse – The First Asian Chipotle – Coming to DC? Yes Siree! It’s Official!
I’m a little behind on this topic, but I found out recently that Chipotle put out an official press release on their new Asian Concept Restaurant called Shophouse! As I noted in DC Food News a few weeks back, the restaurant will be the first of its kind in the U.S. and will be opening up the first shop in Dupont Circle in downtown DC this summer.
According to Steve Ells (the founder of and mastermind behind this project), the restaurant will have Thai, Vietnamese and Malaysian influences, and will serve dishes made from seasonal ingredients including “grilled and braised meats, a variety of fresh vegetables, aromatic herbs, spicy sauces, and an array of garnishes.”
It’s still unknown what specific dishes will be served, but I have a gut feeling they’ll be served in a fashion similar to Chipotle’s production line mechanic.
“I have always believed that the Chipotle model would work well with a variety of different cuisines,” said Ells. “Chipotle’s success is not necessarily about burritos and tacos, but rather about serving great, sustainably raised food that is delicious, affordable, and convenient.”
“Anyone who has traveled throughout Southeast Asia can tell you that food there is served very fast — it’s also full of flavor, nutritious, and affordable.” This cuisine gives us a great opportunity to prove the idea that the Chipotle model can work with other cuisines.”
In my opinion, Ells new restaurant comes at a great time, since DC is lacking in quick, tasty Asian meals — especially Chinese. And to me, this type of concept could be a huge hit in high-trafficked areas with a lunchtime crowd, like malls, who usually serve mediocre unhealthy Asian cuisine, and places with lots of commercial offices like Dupont Circle or any downtown area in major cities around the world.
You can look forward to Shophouse opening this summer at a date TBD. However the address is set, and the doors will open at 1516 Connecticut Ave, NW.