This post has been updated.
Hill Center at the Old Naval Hospital -- a historic building near Eastern Market that has been given new life as a civic center -- is adding some Southern flavor to its menu of concerts, readings and classes. Chef David Guas will open Bayou Bakery, Coffee Bar & Eatery at the center's carriage house at 921 Pennsylvania Ave. SE. The Louisiana-themed restaurant is expected to open in late 2014.
This will be the second Bayou Bakery for Guas; the Arlington original is known for its muffuletta sandwich (or Muff-a-Lotta, as the menu calls it) and its sweets, thanks to Guas' 12 years as a pastry chef. The D.C. restaurant will serve breakfast, lunch and dinner, as well as weekend brunches of biscuits and gravy and beignets. And Guas will finally be able to offer fried dishes, which aren't currently on the Arlington menu because of venting restrictions and lack of fryer space. The expanded menu will highlight seafood dishes like baked oysters, fried catfish with coleslaw, and an oyster and shrimp po' boy sandwich.
• 2014 Spring Dining Guide: Bayou Bakery
The carriage house served as a stable when the Old Naval Hospital, commissioned by President Lincoln in 1864, relied upon horse-drawn ambulances to care for Civil War wounded. The building's renovation will preserve many of the original 19th-century features, such as the hay and grain chutes.
Preparing to open the new restaurant adds to an already busy summer for Guas, who is making his debut as the host of the Travel Channel's "American Grilled." An air date has not yet been announced. Guas also appears in cooking segments on "The Today Show."