So that headline is a total sham, I don't have an opening date for Slim's. But it's soon! According to Paul Ruppert, they're waiting on final inspections from the city in order to complete their work and get ready to open. But in typical DC fashion, those inspections keep getting postponed or forgotten by city inspectors, causing no end of frustration. It's down to the last few items.
Paul threw a small party on Tuesday night to give an update for people who invested in the Diner to meet the new chef Chris Beasley (formerly of the Mandarin), souz chef Jeremy Riley, and the excellent baker Liza Moran. (Paul had put out a call for interested neighbors to invest in the Diner last year.)
Liza will be making all the cakes, pies, brownies and other desserts onsite at Slim's. We got a taste of three of the pies, and they were really delicious. I tried the raspberry and the peanut butter pies, and can give them a solid recommendation.
The raspberry was tart but not overly sweet, and the peanut butter pie was very light and airy, drizzled with chocolate and peanuts. Buying desserts won't be a problem at Slim's... picking just one will be. (You can follow Liza on Instagram where she posts pictures of her creations.)
Paul explained some of the delays the diner has experienced, talked about the menu a little bit, discussed signage and where the jukebox and custom pie cabinet will go (juke on the wall, cabinet at the corner of the counter).
Instead of giving customers menus, the placemats will be the actual menus (very diner-esque). The daily specials will hang from signs above the counter, near the grill. All day breakfast and shakes with alcohol will probably be neighborhood favorites.
The diner will seat 40 people inside (8 booths and counter seats), which means with the amount of excitement there seems to be in the neighborhood for this place, the diner is going to be crowded. Paul has said that they plan on bringing another 40 seats outdoors onto 9th Street which should help (but again, they have to wait for the permits).
At this point, the opening is probably a few weeks away as Paul finalizes the inspections necessary to get his permits and licenses. Once that's done I wouldn't be surprised if he does a preview week to get the kinks out, and then opens up for everyone for the full hours (7am to midnight weeknights, 2am closing on weekends, 7 days a week).
If you want to get a Slim's Diner t-shirt before anyone else, you can! Just support the Celebrate Petworth Festival with a donation on their Indiegogo campaign, and select the Slim's t-shirt perk (before they're all gone!).
- The opposite of a Slim chance: an interview with Paul Ruppert (Sept 13, 2015)