That means there's been plenty of time to revise their plans: The couple had intended to replicate V Street, their vegan street food bar, in Washington, but decided the name might be confusing with the city's actual V Street and didn't want the spot to be seen as a chain.
Instead, the new concept, Fancy Radish, will be closer to an outpost of Vedge, their more elegant, original restaurant that seeks to highlight vegetables in creative, unexpected ways. Fancy Radish is eyeing a late February opening in the Apollo development at 600 H St. NE.
The vegan restaurant will boost Washington's plant-based dining scene, which has added a few more casual spots in recent years but remains relatively small and lacking in the more refined approach of Vedge. Since opening in 2011, Vedge has evolved into one of the most well-known vegan restaurants in the country, and chef Landau and pastry chef Jacoby have each received multiple nods from the James Beard Foundation as a nominee and semifinalist, respectively.
The name Fancy Radish is an homage to one of Vedge's signature dishes, Jacoby said. “You say 'radish,' and you think thin slices on the salad bar,” or ones carved into roses, she said. But with the dish, Landau can showcase several types of radishes and several types of preparations, whether that means roasted, pickled or poached.
“We can show you that there’s this whole bigger world out there,” Jacoby said. “I’ve always kind of gone to it as a way to introduce people to our approach to cooking.”
The Fancy Radish menu will be divided into three sections, based on how dishes are prepared and how heavy they are. Possibilities include soft pretzels with rutabaga fondue or braised tempeh with kimchi slaw. There will be whole roasted carrots with pumpernickel and sauerkraut puree (also on the menu at Vedge) and dan dan noodles with slivered zucchini and oyster mushrooms (a holdover from the street food concept). Dessert will feature white chocolate custard with poha (flattened rice flakes) and preserved kumquat.
The restaurant will seat about 60, serving dinner nightly and eventually weekend brunch.