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Blink and you'll miss it -- Patriotic cafe to have short life

Friday - 7/1/2011, 10:00am  ET

PigCafeteria.jpg
This picture of 'The Pig Cafeteria,' to educate farmers, is part of the exhibit at the National Archives, which partnered with the restaurant. (Courtesy of the National Archives)

WASHINGTON -- A new restaurant in the District provides patriotic nourishment to ring in the Fourth of July, but don't hesitate to make a reservation or it might disappear.

The America Eats "pop-up" tavern will only be open for six months, in the space that used to house Cafe Atlantico. From notoriously alternative Spanish chef Jose Andres, it will serve its inaugural dishes on Monday, July 4.

It will feature new takes on some forgotten American classics, like oysters Rockefeller or burgoo -- an Irish-inspired stew or porridge.

"Of course with Jose Andres behind this, you know it's going to be wild and you know it's going to be pretty good," says Mike McCarthy, Washington Flyer Magazine editor-in-chief.

Andres created the eatery, named for the Works Progress Administration writers project in the 1930s, in conjunction with a new exhibit at the National Archives, "What's Cooking, Uncle Sam?"

The exhibit documents government involvement in the food industry, from the 1933 Agricultural Adjustment Act, which paid farmers to keep some products off the market, to the nuances of food investigators, to how Uncle Sam provided "three squares a day" to GIs during wartime.

There is no word yet on when Cafe Atlantico will reopen, but Andres fans need not worry. Minibar on the second floor will remain open.

Check out the Cafe Atlantico website for more details on the pop-up restaurant.

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(Copyright 2011 by WTOP. All Rights Reserved.)