by Andrew Ramonas — April 11, 2016 at 9:45 am 30 Comments

The latest proposal from a property developer looking to build on a large Adams Morgan plaza has failed to win over a key community leader who has pushed to keep much of the outdoor space open to the public.

PN Hoffman on Friday released updated renderings of a seven-story mixed-used building it plans to construct on the SunTrust property at 1800 Columbia Road NW. Although the new design leaves more outdoor space than an earlier proposal, Advisory Neighborhood Commission 1C member Billy Simpson wrote in an email to locals that the developer “need[s] to do better.”

“The project is located within the Washington Heights Historic District which raises a number of concerns about the scale of the proposal under the Historic Preservation Guidelines,” said Simpson, whose district includes the SunTrust property. “And while the revised plans preserve a small plaza, that space will be used primarily by PN Hoffman’s own commercial tenant, and does not leave adequate room to host Adams Morgan’s weekly farmers market or the other community uses to which the space is put from time to time.”


by Andrew Ramonas — April 7, 2016 at 4:30 pm 0

Starbucks at 1801 Columbia Road NW (Photo via Google Maps)Beer and wine could arrive at Starbucks locations in Adams Morgan and Shaw as soon as next week, a representative of the coffee chain told Borderstan.

The Seattle-based coffee purveyor is targeting the week of April 11 to roll out its “Starbucks Evenings” service with alcohol and small plates at its 1801 Columbia Road and 815 O St. NW stores.

In addition to the shareable snacks, the program will feature “craft beer,” along with red, white and sparkling wines by the bottle and glass, according to a sample menu.


by Andrew Ramonas — April 7, 2016 at 12:25 pm 1 Comment

Future home of the Line hotel in Adams Morgan

A labor union that has peppered Adams Morgan mailboxes with postcards critical of a forthcoming neighborhood hotel has received a tongue-lashing from a community leader, who called its campaign “highly inaccurate and highly disparaging” last night.

Billy Simpson, a member of Advisory Neighborhood Commission 1C, told locals at a community meeting he was “quite angered” by the mailings from Unite Here Local 25, which represents hotel workers in the D.C. area. The union is battling the owner of the future Line hotel at 1780 Columbia Road NW, Sydell Group, which won’t let workers unionize there.

The union’s most recent postcards stated that the hotel “seeks to bypass [the] full community process for [a] liquor license” and encouraged locals to attend yesterday’s meeting to “stand up and tell developers they need to #respectadamsmorgan.”


by Tim Regan — April 6, 2016 at 3:55 pm 0

Screenshot from BizBuySell.comWe often write about local businesses opening or closing. What we don’t usually cover are the transactions in between — like when a business is sold to a new owner — even though business sales are quite common.

Our sister publication ARLnow.com took a look through the Arlington listings of a major business broker marketplace and found some interesting — and mysterious — listings. And it inspired us to do some digging this afternoon.

Though the businesses often go unnamed in these listings, there are details that provide clues as to which business it may be. (Full disclosure: we can’t be 100 percent sure that all listings are up to date.)

Anyway, we thumbed through the D.C. listings earlier today and highlighted some of what we found. Here are just some of the interesting local businesses that are currently listed on the site:


by Andrew Ramonas — March 28, 2016 at 10:30 am 0

Sweet Science Coffee (Photo via Facebook/Sweet Science Coffee)

A pop-up coffee bar in Adams Morgan has closed after nearly a year in business.

Sweet Science Coffee served its last cup of java at 1800 Wyoming Ave. NW Saturday, according to a post on its Facebook page. German native Sandra Wolter opened the shop in April 2015.

“We leave with a big heart cookie, a lady’s kiss cookie by Andelka – and a huge amount of fantastic feedback, love and support from people all over the city and beyond,” the post says.


by Andrew Ramonas — March 24, 2016 at 12:05 pm 0

Want to take home the dancing skeleton at Millie & Al’s? Interested in owning some some vintage signs and artwork from the Adams Morgan dive bar?

The 53-year-old drinking institution at 2440 18th St. NW is littered with price tags that adorn items throughout the bar. The watering hole is selling its prized decorations and preparing for an auction on Sunday, April 3, at 6 p.m. to help clear out the space before it closes, a bartender there told Borderstan last night.

Washington Business Journal reported this morning Millie & Al’s is set to shut down Thursday, April 7. A business registered with the District on March 7 to Taylor Gourmet co-founder David Mazza has bought the building that houses the bar, according to the newspaper.


by Andrew Ramonas — March 18, 2016 at 12:05 pm 0


Adams Morgan’s Japanese rice bowl eatery is set to hit the road within a few days.

Donburi at 2438 18th St. NW is scheduled to debut its food truck Monday at a yet-to-be-determined D.C. location, owner James Jang told Borderstan today. He plans to run it from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. on weekdays in the District, he noted.

“We’re trying to expand,” Jang said.

The food truck will have a slightly limited and slightly cheaper menu than the brick-and-mortar Donburi, with most dishes costing less than $10, Jang said.


by Andrew Ramonas — March 18, 2016 at 8:40 am 0

Crooked Beat Records (Photo via Facebook/Crooked Beat Records)

The owner of an Adams Morgan record store might move his shop due to the condition of its building, which he said last night is affecting his health.

Bill Daly, who owns Crooked Beat Records at 2116 18th St. NW, wrote in a post on his store’s Facebook page that he decided not to sign a long-term extension of his lease “out of concern for my health.”

He didn’t specify how the building was affecting his well-being and declined to identify the building’s problems. But he noted that the structure’s issues have “progressively gotten worse.”


by Andrew Ramonas — March 17, 2016 at 1:20 pm 0

Cookies (Photo via Instagram/Insomnia Cookies)

(Updated at 3:05 p.m.) Adams Morgan is set to get a late-night purveyor of cookies and ice cream.

Insomnia Cookies, a bakery chain founded in Philadelphia in 2003, is slated to open its first location in the District this summer at 2318 18th St. NW in the former Sweet Themez building.

“Opening a store in D.C. has always been a goal of ours,” Insomnia Cookies CEO Seth Berkowitz said in a statement released today. “We are thrilled to have found the perfect location in Adams Morgan and are looking forward to opening more locations across the city!”


by Tim Regan — March 17, 2016 at 12:30 pm 0

Madam's Organ, photo via flickr/Adam Fagen(Updated at 1:12 p.m.) An Adams Morgan bar is suing D.C.’s Alcoholic Beverage Regulation Administration over what it calls “false” reports by agency investigators, it announced today.

Madam’s Organ at 2461 18th St. NW claims the ABRA officials made the inaccurate reports during an investigation last September. The bar “seeks to recover damages for defamatory statements” made by those investigators, according to a complaint filed in D.C. Superior Court earlier this month.


by Andrew Ramonas — March 16, 2016 at 1:45 pm 1 Comment

Members of the Adams Morgan community are paying tribute to a homeless man who died last week, leaving handwritten notes, flowers and other mementos at a memorial in his honor.

Lamont Thompson, who was believed to be 50 years old, was found dead in the neighborhood Friday, police said. He died of natural causes.

Since his death, mourners have created a memorial with bouquets of flowers, messages of love and other items in a nook outside the Safeway grocery store at 1747 Columbia Road NW.


by Andrew Ramonas — March 15, 2016 at 2:45 pm 1 Comment

Crews work on El Tamarindo in Adams Morgan

A Mexican eatery in Adams Morgan has closed to complete “renovations” after a D.C. food safety and hygiene official reported seeing cockroaches in its kitchen.

El Tamarindo at 1785 Florida Ave. NW suspended operations yesterday to create a “fresh new look” for April, according to a post on its Facebook page.

The restaurant temporarily shut down last week after a D.C. Department of Health inspection revealed that the eatery had “alive and dead cockroaches . . . in the kitchen at several places, mainly at the utility room,” according to a DOH report. El Tamarindo passed a follow-up inspection Thursday, allowing it to reopen.


by Andrew Ramonas — March 14, 2016 at 8:50 am 0

Police carAn 18-year-old man has been apprehended in connection with a daytime Adams Morgan stabbing that left another young man injured, police announced over the weekend.

Ever Lopez of Northeast D.C. was arrested Thursday and charged with assault with intent to kill in the attack last month.

Heather Shaner, Lopez’s lawyer, declined to comment.


by Andrew Ramonas — March 11, 2016 at 8:30 am 0

El Tamarindo (Photo via Google Maps)A Mexican restaurant in Adams Morgan has reopened following a D.C. food safety and hygiene inspection that uncovered a pest problem at the eatery and led to its temporary closure, according to the D.C. Department of Health.

El Tamarindo at 1785 Florida Ave. NW passed a DOH follow-up inspection yesterday after an agency inspector closed it Tuesday, allowing it to open again.

The inspector on Tuesday determined the restaurant was “failing to minimize the presence of insects, rodents and other pests” on its premises, according to the D.C. health agency. A DOH food establishment closure notice posted on the El Tamarindo’s door that day said the eatery couldn’t serve customers “until further notice” for presenting “an imminent health hazard(s) to the public.”



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