Chef Troy Williams to open two spots on H Street NE

A veteran of some of D.C.’s most well-known kitchens is ready to run his own shop.

Chef Troy Williams, who currently runs food service at Howard University Hospital but has worked at Georgia Brown’s, J. Paul’s and Old Ebbitt, plans to open The Spot Deli at 701 H St. NE later this year and The Spot on H restaurant and bar early next year.

The deli will take the place of Heaven & H — formerly Grace’s Deli — and serve breakfast and lunch daily starting, Williams hopes, in September. It will serve breakfast sandwiches, pastries, a “bacon, egg and cheese burger,” and other sandwiches, as well as Latin fare such as pupusas, tamales and burritos.

As for the other restaurant, The Spot on H, that’ll take a little more time. Williams and his wife, Yvette, along with another business partner, Adolfo Briceno, own the building and are converting it from an existing clothing store into a three-level bar and restaurant including a 40-seat rooftop lounge.

“We bought the building because we knew eventually H Street was going to make its turn,” Williams said. “As soon as we saw the balls shifting in a positive direction, we starting moving forward.” The first floor will be mostly a bar and lounge, the second floor a dining room and the third floor will have a private banquet space as well as the open-air roof deck. Williams hopes the restaurant will open in January 2015.

The Spot on H will have an “American regional” menu, including a wild mushroom shortcake and a fresh catch of the day, to name a few.

“I wanted to do something where the food is fresh and good, with no tricks to it,” Williams said. “A lot of food has a lot of tricks to it now.”

The restaurants are taking their name from three restaurants that Williams’ grandmother owned in Fredericksburg, Virginia, decades ago, all called The Spot. The Williams also hope to use their restaurants as a training ground for underserved youth participating in their nonprofit program, Careers through Culinary Arts (C-CAP).

The Williams and Briceno — a contractor who will do the buildout of the restaurants — are excited to be branching out on their own, Troy Williams said. Ultimately they hope to open a total of five restaurants around the D.C. region.

“It’s been a dream of all of ours for awhile,” he said.


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