The 2018 F&W Best New Chef announces Emilie’s, which will open in Capitol Hill next year. 

By Maria Yagoda
September 17, 2018
Landon Nordeman

One of D.C.'s brightest culinary talents is growing his footprint in the city. Chef Kevin Tien, named a Food & Wine Best New Chef this year, will open Emilie's in spring 2019. The 3,313 square-foot restaurant will be located at Penn Eleven, the redevelopment of the former Frager's Hardware store, in the heart of Capitol Hill.

Tien worked for four years at José Andrés' Mexican restaurant, Oyamel, before opening his first solo project, Himitsu, in 2016, earning the chef national acclaim for his eclectic, highly personal style of cooking inspired by the intersections between Latin-American and Asian flavors. Emilie's, which is already destined to be one of the biggest openings of next year, will feature a daily-changing menu with large plates and a small à la carte menu. Small plates will also circulate the dining room on carts, dim sum-style. Open for lunch and dinner, the restaurant will seat roughly 100 people and will open at 1101 Pennsylvania Avenue, SE.

“Two years ago, we opened Himitsu,” said Tien, who is partnering with Sam Shoja and Arris Noble, in a press release. “Taking my passion for Japanese cuisine, but pushing the envelope and getting our guests out of their comfort zones was exciting. I’m looking forward to writing the next chapter and sharing my passion with the community on a larger scale and a different service style.” His goal is to promote and support "the local community of producers, farmers, and ranchers."

This has been a massive year for Tien, who was named a finalist for Rising Star Chef of the Year by the James Beard Foundation, and for the city's restaurant scene, which just received its first three-star Michelin rating. (The Inn at Little Washington, helmed by chef Patrick O'Connell, was just awarded its third star last week.)

Advertisement