Coming up: Flight Wine Bar in Penn Quarter

November 22, 2013

There’s something fresh to toast in Penn Quarter: Flight Wine Bar, a 60-seat retreat poised to take off in mid-December at 777 Sixth St. NW. Owners Kabir Amir and Swati Bose are first-time operators who left banking and legal careers, respectively, in New York to pursue the couple’s dream of a European-style wine bar in the District, where Bose previously lived.

(Savor PR)
(Savor PR)

Bose says she hopes Flight Wine Bar becomes “a daily thing” for customers. Thirty wines will be offered by the glass for between $8 and $15. “No wine bible” promises Bose, the former clerk for a federal judge. “We want to make it easy to order in a few minutes.” Flight’s list will be arranged according to body, light to heavy, and play-up lesser-known regions (say, the Balkans) or gently priced alternatives to typically costly wines (stay tuned for an $11 cabernet sauvignon from Down Under).

The husband and wife have enlisted chef Bradley Curtis to flatter their wines with his food; the Maine native’s list of local credits include Graffiato, DGS Delicatessen, Bandolero and Zaytinya.

Curtis, 27, says his debut menu of 20 or so dishes is “a blend of what is in my home and heart and where I’ve been in my career.” The chef plans to serve a fry basket of spicy whole anchovies, long-neck clams and “chips” using potatoes fermented like cabbage in a brine; grilled lamb chops with a “foresty flavor” coaxed in part from mastic, or pine resin; and warm pumpkin dolmades (stuffed grape leaves) accented with rum-soaked raisins and yogurt with preserved orange.

Bose might be a novice professional host, but she’s no stranger to her field. In 2009, she left her industry to study management at the French Culinary Institute, after which she worked as assistant cellar master at the popular Balthazar in Manhattan and helped roll out the Brooklyn Winery.

Flight Wine Bar, 777 Sixth St. NW. Opening mid-December.

Weaned on a beige buffet a la “Fargo” in Minnesota, Tom Sietsema is the food critic for The Washington Post. This is his second tour of duty at the Post. Sietsema got his first taste in the ‘80s, when he was hired by his predecessor to answer phones, write some, and test the bulk of the Food section’s recipes. That’s how he learned to clean squid, bake colonial cakes and distinguish between nutmeg and mace.
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