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Ugh, I don’t want to go to the suburbs.

The highlights from the most recent New Kitchens on the Block were the soon-to-open Chop Shop Taco from Ed McIntosh (Tortilladora) and soon-to-open Agni Restaurant and Bar from Srividhya Ganesan. Chop Shop Taco is opening in Alexandria. Agni is opening in Sterling. The suburbs deserve good food too but I don’t want to go to the suburbs.

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Chop Shop Taco’s Brisket Torta Con Jugo

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Agni’s Panju Dosai

The fourth iteration of New Kitchens on the Block was another reminder that the food and beverage scene in D.C. (and suburbs) is thriving. Nevin Martell and Al Goldberg do an excellent job curating the soon-to-open restaurants and bars at each NKOTB. Spanning from the fancy Shilling Canning Company from Reid Shilling, a veteran of the Dabney to the fast casual Bandoola Bowl from the team behind Mandalay, attendees were able to taste what they’ll be reading about over the next few months.

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In addition to our suburban picks, the no-shocker drink favorite came from The Imperial, from the team behind Jack Rose Dining Saloon. The 18th and Florida location has been under construction for years. Years. More than 12 months. Actually, more than 12 months more than 12 months. Multiple years. It’s one of our most anticipated openings of 2018. The cocktails we sampled helped maintain the allure.

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But back to the suburbs. The reason New Kitchens on the Block exists is to shine a light on places that have yet to open. The previous edition stand outs were RASA and Lucky Buns. Both are in the city and both are now open. From our experiences, they’re both doing well. If the trend continues, and we hope it does, Chop Shop Taco and Agni will also do well. Now I just need to get to the suburbs.

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