A password will be e-mailed to you.

Covid-19 has posed many challenges for all of us. For those in the food industry, the challenges are especially daunting. Maintaining a restaurant is hard enough, but opening a new one? The thought was so intimidating to us at BYT that we decided we would reach out to the teams of three new D.C. restaurants, Mercy Me, Yellow, and Bammy’s, to find out exactly what opening a restaurant during a pandemic looks like.

Mercy Me

What’s the new endeavor?

A South American-esq café serving a variety of bites including bagels, pizza, breakfast tacos and coffee. Menu stand-outs: a bagel sandwich with jalapeno-cilantro with red cabbage; pickled carrots and onions on a za’atar bagel; pineapple empanadas; and pizza with cheese, peppers, and habanero honey.

DSC_0217-22

What have been the challenges opening up a new spot during COVID? 

Things just move slower, the days of having the whole staff in the space at the same time are over.  Now we have to be much more thoughtful on when and how we train, and when and how we get everything done.  That being said, that same energy that is electric when opening a restaurant is still there.  It’s just a little slower moving!

Any surprises, good or bad? Unexpected support? What has the local response been like? 

The response has been great!  The neighborhood is super excited to have a new option to get goodies!  Big surprise is again, just how long everything takes since you have to do shifts with small amounts of staff.  It makes you be more thoughtful and better at planning, probably things that are great for long term success!

Would you do it again? Or wait until things are back to normal? 

Heck yeah!  The neighborhood has been so excited to have us!  We love just giving a little bit of joy in this time of covid.  Also, who knows when things will be back to normal, so we had to spring into action mode or else we would be waiting forever.  Once things are back to “normal” we can’t wait to show everyone the whole space and the whole service experience.  Until then, we are enjoying the edited version and getting to know the neighborhood!

The Mercy Me cafe is open Wednesday to Sunday 8am to 4pm featuring Sorta South American pastries from Pastry Chef Camila Arango, Call Your Mother bagels, breakfast tacos, grilled pizza, and Ceremony Coffee. Order online or stop by the cafe. 

Yellow

What’s the new endeavor?

A new Levant café from the Albi team. Yellow serves mezze and pita sandwiches, along with pastries and hand crafted coffee beverages. Menu highlights: super creamy hummus; fluffy homemade pita; cream cheese stuffed croissants; fresh parsley tabbouleh.

DSC_0228

What have been the challenges opening up a new spot during COVID? 

Openings require a huge amount of movement and progression on their own. We constantly evolve every day to learn and grow. The circumstances surrounding the pandemic amplified that even further.

Any surprises, good or bad? Unexpected support? What has the local response been like? 

Our team responded incredibly well to the challenge. Everyone from the sous chef to managers to the dish team came together to make the opening successful. We sold out on our very first day and momentum hasn’t slowed down.

DSC_0184

Would you do it again? Or wait until things are back to normal?

Absolutely we’d do it again. Despite the challenges, it’s really been a gift to watch the team rise to the occasion and bring the neighborhood something new.

9AM-2PM
Wednesday-Sunday

BAKED GOODS + COFFEE
ORDER IN-PERSON ONLY

LUNCH AVAILABLE ONLINE

DSC_0225

Bammy’s

What’s the new endeavor?

Bammy’s is a new Caribbean-inspired restaurant in Navy Yard. Don’t miss menu items: cornmeal fry bread; macaroni pie; vegetable curry.

What have been the challenges opening up a new spot during COVID? 

It has been very interesting to say the least. Some of the biggest challenges have been:

Trying to figure out how to make sure we are able to protect our staff and customers while in operation. Fortunately, a lot of our peers who were open before us have been very helpful as phone-a-friends to help us navigate the process.

Keeping a small amount of staff on site for safety reasons coupled with unexpected demand has been a curve ball of its own.

Online ordering has been a definite change for us. We have never worked anywhere that does online ordering so figuring all of that out and how best to prepare our food in that capacity has been tough but a welcomed challenge.

Any surprises, good or bad? Unexpected support? What has the local response been like? 

We have received an overwhelming amount of support from friends, family, industry peers, and the local community. We are reminded everyday how great this city is.

Would you do it again? Or wait until things are back to normal? 

We would 100% do it again. Having said that, we really hope this does not happen again.

To-go menu

Monday – Closed
Tuesday – Closed
Wednesday – 5pm-9pm
Thursday – 5pm-9pm
Friday – 5pm-9pm
Saturday – 12pm-9pm
Sunday – 12pm-9pm

++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

 

X
X