The award-winning chef teams up with a new D.C.-area resort.

By Danica Lo
Updated June 06, 2017
© Marcus Samuelsson Group

Club sandwiches, French fries, Caesar salads—room service menus, at even the poshest hotels, can leave a lot to be desired. But next week, when the MGM National Harbor bows just outside of Washington, D.C., room service will get a spectacular makeover at the hands of James Beard Award-winning chef Marcus Samuelsson, who is set to debut his first-ever in-room dining program at the luxury resort.

Yup, that's right. Guests who want to experience the Marcus Samuelsson magic won't have to trek to New York City, Sweden, Chicago, or Bermuda to taste his signature cuisine. Alongside restaurant concepts by Jose Andres and Bryan and Michael Voltaggio, Samuelsson will debut Marcus, his first D.C.-area restaurant, on property. The Marcus menu will feature Samuelsson takes on American classics, including chicken waffles with sweet pickle daikon, K-Town splash and barrel-aged maple; blackened catfish with brussels and apples and honey mustard sauce; and pot pie with doro wat, chopped liver, egg, and piccalilli yogurt.

"Comfort is king when you're dining in your room," Samuelsson told Food & Wine. "When I'm traveling, I always appreciate a quick, delicious meal that comes right to your door after a long day. You're going to find the same level of quality that you'd find in the restaurant and our take on a lot of classic dishes when you're on the road—like a really killer burger."

That "killer burger" he's talking about? It's no ordinary hotel burger. It's the "Lenox Burger," which the kitchen team will lace with Benton's bacon and Samuelsson Comeback sauce—a cross between thousand island dressing and remoulade—and garnished with a side of house-made B&B pickles.

"We wanted travelers to feel right at home with foods that make you feel warm and cozy, like toasted corn bread with honey butter or a crispy bird sandwich," Samuelsson says. "I always think of room service like a treat to yourself, just a moment to center yourself, take a moment to replenish."

In-room breakfasts á la Samuelsson will feature classics such as Virginia baked eggs serviced with spicy tomato, grits, chorizo, and Thai basil, or "Bird and the Egg," an open-faced fried chicken biscuit sandwich topped with red-eye gravy (which gets its name from one of its key ingredients: coffee). All-day dining options echo some of the most popular dishes from Samuelsson's repertoire (and signature items from the Marcus restaurant menu), including the aforementioned fried chicken and waffles, Marcus' steak frites with charred broccoli and chilichurri, and Uncle T's grilled salmon with Aleppo honey, cauliflower puree, and bacon-celery gremolata.

Is your mouth watering yet? The MGM National Harbor hosts its grand opening December 8th. Get your appetites ready!