Monday, August 25, 2008

Washington Times: A Belgian Delight

The Times praises Dr. Granville's.


monkeyrotica said...

Since when do long waits, small portions, and greasy fries constitute "praise?" Did we read the same review? The compliments seemed pretty left-handed to me.

inked said...

True, they didn't say all nice things, but they did say the food was worth the wait. They called Dr. G's quirky and unpretentious with an impressive beer selection. The fries were too greasy, being at the end of the batch, but the mussels were divine. I'd call that praise with a few caveats.

charles said...

I thought the article was well-written, accurate and generally quite favorable.

Anonymous said...

I went with a friend last Tuesday. We did get a table but it was near capacity. I think that says it all. People would not be packing the place on a Tuesday if the food wasn't really good.
My friend liked his mussels and I had the chicken sandwich, which was delicious. Our frites were just right.

Anonymous said...


If you read through that entire review and all you took away from it was "long waits, small portions and greasy fries," you definitely missed out.

I don't always rely on article titles to give me the tone of the story, but "A Belgian delight" definitely sums up the author's opinion as stated in the text.

She compliments the flavors of the food, the service, the decor, the beer list, and the atmosphere, and she compares the restaurant favorably to Belga Cafe and Brasserie Beck, both of which have cultivated a distinctly more upscale vibe.

I'd say it was a pretty well-written review that was more positive than negative. Even her criticism of the fries indicates that she recognized they got the last portion of a batch, making them less impressive than usual.

Guess I'm going to have to avoid Granville Moore's again for a while. Between this press and the re-run of the Throwdown episode last night they're likely to be packed for the next week or two, even with folks out of town for the conventions.

Anonymous said...

Speaking of GM's, I just saw this listing for the vacant property right next door:

$1,500,000?? Wowsers!! I hope the owner of this property is from the Joe Englert group because they are the only ones that should be cashing in like this on the success of the 1200 block.

Anonymous said...

h is for happy: Some advice -- wrap your link in a link tag, and it'll be a hell of a lot easier for people to read it.

Anonymous said...

Joe Englert said:

This price is one nobody who isn't insane will pay.

Some things to keep in mind. The building in question is about 2700 square feet.

The most rent someone can charge right now on H is $22 a foot. That means you would pay about $59,000 a year in rent.

$5000 a month in rent for some lucky tenant.

Now, the bank likes to assume any place has a 10 year lease. All yearly rents for valuation sake are timed by 10----So, what this building will appraise for is $600,000. If the appraiser is drunk, add $100,000 just for hype's sake. The most the building could sell for is $700,000.

If a person buys the building, they would then have to put $300-$350,000 to get a certificate of occupancy.

Wow, that street car better be carrying lots of people to their front door!

Anonymous said...

Random H St. plug: I stopped into Sweets & Treats today. In case you're like my wife and me and wondering what their hours are, they're open until 9pm on weekdays, perfect for dessert. Later on weekends (I forget the exact hour...duh) and 7pm on Sunday.

I had bread pudding...yum. They have ice cream, cakes, cupcakes, and more.

DCJaded said...

Wow, I was hoping that Granville Moores would buy the place next door to expand, but that insane price sort of kills that.

inked said...

It would be nice if G. Moore's could expand. That price is crazy. I know the owner/renovator, but still. I also know that he's been dealing with a vacant property for years. My understanding is that it is set up for retail. It might not be that hard to convert if you could get the right price.

Anonymous said...

Thanks for the analysis, Joe. That's interesting to know. I didn't get this part though:

"If a person buys the building, they would then have to put $300-$350,000 to get a certificate of occupancy."

Are you saying you have to pay the city 50% of the purchase price to get a CofO?

Tom A. said...

Speaking of H Street, can someone please contact the developer of Downtown Silver Spring, and ask him to buy Heckinger Mall and do the same sort of thing on a smaller, more locally-owned scale?

Thank you very much!

Anonymous said...

Joe Englert said:

$350,000 to get it into restaurant shape:

$30-40,000 Heating and Air conditioning.

$25,000 electrical

$10,000 to Pepco for a heavy up
$20,000 plumbing

$10,000 water service from street

$20,000 sprinkler system

$5,000 concrete slab back patio

$15,000 architect

$50,000 rent while waiting for plans to be approved

$10,000 lawyers fees after neighborhood protest

$20,000 business and construction insurance

$20,000 hood and venting system

$20,000 floors

$10,000 new beams and joists

$150,000--kitchen equipment, furniture, bar, register system

$325,000 before having any cushion in the account to run for training, payroll, slush fund, etc.

8th and El said...

"$10,000 lawyers fees after neighborhood protest"

Ha! i spit up my milk with that one!

Anonymous said...

Never ceases to amaze me the number of jackoffs in this neighborhood (on H, Trinidad, and Cap Hill) who just sit on their properties, do nothing to improve them (to the detriment of everybody around them) and then try and cash in on other people's hard labor in renovating the dilapedated buildings that surround their crap property.

I hope DC taxes the $1.5 million guy back to the stone age.

Keep up the good work Joe. There is a silent majority that is very, very appreciative of your investment in this 'hood.

Hillman said...

Joe's comments are spot on.

It's VERY expensive to prepare a property for business use in DC. And it's VERY risky. And, yes, quite often neighborhood opposition by people that have never run a business is enough to sink even viable, decent businesses.

I'd add to that the unbelievable uncertainty created by having to deal with DC government agencies. You may have smooth sailing, or you may, for inexplicable reasons, have a two year delay.

There's a reason most investors just take the easy route and open something bland and safe(er) in the burbs.

Anonymous said...

I hope DC taxes the $1.5 million guy back to the stone age.

According to the Tax & Revenue database, this property is receiving the homestead exemption (occupied by owner). Taxes are a measly $1400/year.

If the property is really vacant, someone should drop a dime on it via the tax fraud hotline.

Anonymous said...

That's probably why it's listed for sale at the fanciful price in the first avoid being taxed at the higher rate.

Anonymous said...

Thanks for the tip, Eck.

If the place really is vacant then I suggest everybody drop a dime at the tax fraud hotline. I know I will. I'm sick of these losers.