Sprightly Newcomer Duck & the Peach Does Day & Night

A pair of bartenders at the Duck and the Peach, across from Eastern Market, display potent potables.

Last month, The Duck & the Peach opened at 300 Seventh St. SE, across from Eastern Market. The sprightly newcomer is operated by Hollis Wells Silverman and her hospitality group, Eastern Point Collective with partner Anthony Lanier, CEO and President of EastBanc. The name comes from Hollis’ dog (nicknamed “Duck,” and her daughter “Peach.”)Described as “California-inspired with a touch of New England,” The Duck & The Peach offers breakfast and lunch items to consume on the spacious patio or for carryout. Evenings bring pick-up dinners serving two to four persons. The house rotisserie showcases nightly specials, along with breakfast, lunch and pick-up family-style dinners five days a week.

Among daytime options are house-baked pumpkin muffins, cranberry scones, yogurt parfait, egg sandwiches, BLTs. We’ve sampled the lemony chicken salad and the BLT sandwiches. Ingredients are snuggled in freshly baked bread. Delicious, if messy to eat.

The kitchen’s rotisserie turns out whole roasted chickens with charred lemon ($75), which feed four people. Another savory item is braised lamb with apricot-chili reduction ($85); red wine braised short ribs on polenta ($85); roasted cauliflower with yogurt and mint ($40). These dishes include a trio of creative seasonal sides. (Dinner items are also available ala carte.) “We’re keeping it pretty simple for now,” said Silverman, who lives on Capitol Hill.  “We’re focusing on carryout. We want families to order from us and enjoy our food safely at home.”

Complementing these repasts are wines and cocktails such as Manhattans, Cosmos, Tequila pear sours and spicy Mezcal Margaritas. The drinks serve four. For now, customers order on-line or in person. To support packaging, PPE and employee wages, a 22 percent service fee is added. The Duck and the Peach is closed Monday and Tuesday. For more information or to place orders, visit www.duckandpeachdc.com.

Hollis Wells Silverman pauses while overseeing The Duck and the Peach, a recent arrival near Eastern Market.

More Good News
And….arriving soon next door at 731 C St. SE is sister restaurant La Collina, “a modern take on the classic Italian osteria.” A walk-up antipasti and panini window will dispense lunch items. Ample seating is available on the patio. Come evenings, La Collina (Italian for “the Hill”) will serve homemade pastas (including pasta kits), antipasti, salumi, cocktails and wine. Heading the menu will be warm shell beans with tomato and sheep’s milk ricotta, cheesy garlic bread, meatball panini, cacio e limone lumache with preserved lemon and pecorino, steak Florentine (serving two to four), and Nutella sundaes. Silverman and her group also plan to introduce a gin bar, The Wells, adjacent to their two restaurants.

New at the Roost
Yet another restaurant has flocked to the Roost, 1401 Pennsylvania Ave. SE: Chef Erik Brunner-Yang’s Yoka and Kota. The celeb chef’s latest creation is devoted to dumplings, noodles, and Chinese-style barbecue. For his new enterprise, Bruner-Yang joins Roost operator Neighborhood Restaurant Group. (Brunner-Yang’s sibling restaurants are Maketto, ABC Pony, and Cafe Spoken). The name comes from Bruner-Yang’s childhood stint at the Yokota Air Base in Japan.

Heading Yoka’s menu are pork wontons, crystal shrimp dumplings, and Peking duck. The signature barbecue is draped over rice or dan dan broccoli salad. The make-your-own noodle option involves choice of protein (including five spice braised beef and ginger braised chicken). Sauces? Try peanut and citrus chili oil, tomato sesame, or coconut black bean sauce.

Customers may order ahead online. Hours are 4 to 9 p.m. Tuesday to Thursday; 4 to 10 p.m. Friday; 10:30 to 10 p.m. Saturday; and 10:30 a.m. to 8 p.m. Sunday. For updates visit www.theroostdc.com.

The signature rectangular pies at the recently rescued Ledo Pizza chain are as delicious as ever.

Ledo Lives
More good news: Ledo Restaurant, the pizza parlor known for rectangular pies beloved by penny-pinching University of Maryland students (including me), is not closing after all. Based in College Park, the regional chain has an outpost at 814 H St. NE.

Tommy Marcos Sr. and Robert L. Beall founded the original Ledo Restaurant in Adelphi, Maryland in 1955. Ledo moved to nearby College Park in 2010. Years earlier, in 1989, Marcos Jr. and James Beall launched a franchise to create a regional Ledo chain.

In November of last year, proprietor Tommy Marcos Jr. announced he was closing Ledo “permanently.” But Chesapeake Hospitality came to the rescue. The Greenbelt-based firm that operates hotels throughout the Mid-Atlantic, Mid-West and the South, signed a contract to purchase the pizza chain. (The College Park Ledo will remain shuttered for about six months “for renovations,” we’re told.)

Meanwhile, long-time fans hope Ledo pizzas will taste as good as ever. In fact, they do. The other night we ordered a 14-inch “meat lovers classic” ($14.74 before tax and tip). The pie exceeded our expectations. The feather-light crust was similar to a pastry, and the crumbly sausage and pepperoni toppings were flavorful and generous. It even tasted good reheated in our microwave. Open since July, 2018, the Atlas District Ledo is open daily for carryout only. For updates and/or to place an order, call 202-849-6897 or visit www.ledopizza.com.

Speaking of pizza, We the Pizza, 305 Pennsylvania Ave. SE, delivered hundreds of pizzas to National Guard troops guarding the U.S. Capitol in January.

Sandwiches at The Duck and the Peach—including chicken salad and BLTs, are hefty enough to feed two.

Hefty Balkan Sandwiches
On Barracks Row, Balkan restaurant Ambar has unveiled a Balkan street food menu at both area locations.  Created by Executive chef Ivan Zivkovic, the listing focuses on large, sharable sandwiches, made with slow-cooked ingredients and nestled into brick oven-baked bread. Sandwiches are accompanied by hand-cut fries and a kale Caesar. Priced between $12.99 and $16.99, choices include beef kebabs with marinated onions, Wells Family Farm meatballs with tomato sauce and parmesan cheese; grilled chicken breast with cucumber yogurt and cabbage; roasted lamb with garlic yogurt. You can also order the Ambar burger, veal soup, Brussels sprouts, and desserts like baklava and Balkan tres leches. For now, it’s takeout only. There’s also cocktails, beer and wine to-go. Ambar is located at 523 Eighth St. SE. For additional information, call 202-813-3039 and/or visit https://new.ambarrestaurant.com/.

Winter Restaurant Week, sponsored by the Restaurant Association Metropolitan Washington, was postponed for one week and now goes through February 7. For this promotion, more than 200 local restaurants will serve multi-course repasts for $35 or $55. (Lunch/brunch is $22.) Many will also offer specially-priced carryout meals. For more information and an up-to-date list of participating restaurants, visit www.rwdmv.com

Bye for Now
As we do every February, we’re headed for the warm and sunny (we hope) climes of Florida. Therefore, we won’t be writing a March column. See you in April!