Reprinted from yesteray's late editions.
"We need hams, turnip greens and fried porgles fish," the black woman yelled, market-cellar style, as she started into the kitchen of W.H. Bone and Company, a Southern cuisine restaurant that opened here Wednesday night.
If Italian filmmaker Federico Fellini ever wanted to do a fantasy on a soul food restaurant opening, he should have been at the Waterside Mall in Southwest Washington Wednesday night. In a room that vividly recalled the salon gradeur of New Orleans, a standing-room crowd of Washingtonians, dressed in chiffon and black-tie sampled barbecued pig tails, braised quail and hopin' john (blackeyed peas and rice).
Long before the Carters brought Southern accents to the White House, Darryl A. Hill, a one-season wide receiver with professional football's New York Jets and a businessman with the Greater Washington Business Center, dreamed of putting the South on Washington tables.
"I always felt Washington was a gateway from the South, and a market for Southern-style food existed," said Hill, 33, who started gathering his backers a year ago. Then he lured Joe Hill, a well-known chef, with 35 years experience, away from the Stone Moutain Inn in Georgia. Hill, the cook who is no relation to Bone's owner, brought his wife, Mary, reputedly the best baker of pecan pie in the world.
The manager is Eddie Cleveland 34, a graduate of Howard who has an MBA from Harvard.
The full menu, except for the softshell crabs, was eagerly consumed by Marion Barry, Nadine Winter and William SPalding of the D.C. City Council; Rep. Barbara Jordan (D-Texas); actor Robert Hooks; former ambassador Chester Carter, the president of Capital City Liquors; Redskins Larry Brown and Calvin Hill.
One hour after Bone opened, the doors had to be locked because of the crowd. The "W" stands for Washington, the "H" for ham, and "Company" for the investors who include Rodney Coleman, the executive assistant to D.C. City Council Chairman Sterling Tucker: Thurston Ferrebee, a dentist and Roy Littlejohn, a consultant.
As Dick Morgan played the piano, Tom Lalley, the assistant manager, poked his head into the bustling kitchen and cried, "Where are the trotters?" For the uninitiated, that's pigs feet.
And Fellini would have loved it as they came out creamy white, puffy and steaming.