Espita Mezcaleria Is Set to Open Next Month in Shaw

Mole Poblano Action ShotMaster Mezcalier Josh Phillips is looking forward to opening Espita Mezcaleria next month in Shaw.  The 122-seat Southern Mexican-inspired restaurant will specialize in authentic flavors of Southern Mexico, with a focus on Oaxaca’s seven styles of mole and a selection of tacos.  Hand-pressed tortillas and fresh ground masa will accompany a collection of sopes, ensaladas, fundidos, tlayudas, and ceviches.

Executive Chef Alexis Samayoa‘s opening menu will feature starters such as Guacamole Clasico with avocado, jalapeño, onion and cilantro, along with six salsas that incorporate fresh chilies sourced locally, and dried chilies imported from Mexico.  Standouts include Pistachio with roasted tomatillo, Serrano, sherry and mint, Roja with guajillo, roasted tomato and chipotle, Verde Asado with roasted Serrano, Mole Negrotomatillo and cilantro, Macha with peanut, roasted tomato, ancho and arbol, Chipotle Tomatillo with moritas and roasted tomatillo, as well as Borracha with mezcal, roasted tomatillo and moritas.

An array of satisfying small plates and tempting tacos just highlight Espita’s star of the show: seven styles of mole served with fresh tortillas.  They range in size from enough for one to enough to share.  Highlights include the Pipian with country pork ribs, pepitas, roasted tomatillo and Serrano; Poblano with carrots, parsnips, chile mulato, raisin, walnut and chocolate; Coloradito with ancho, guajillo, plantain and roasted tomato; Negro with lamb neck, hoja santa, piloncillo, Mexican oregano and chile ash; Espita Tacos 2Manchamanteles with a half chicken, roasted tomato, chile pasilla, apples, bananas and canela; Amarillo with buchion mussels, epazote, chile manzano, tomato, tomatillo and masa, and the Chichlo with beef short rib, avocado leaf, tomatillo, guajillo and beef stock. 

And if you’re thirsty, you won’t want to miss sampling from the restaurant’s extensive mezcal collection at the 16-seat bar (or at one of the 10 additional bar stools) with a view of the ever-evolving 9th Street, or out on the patio when warmer weather arrives.

Espita Mezcaleria is located at 1250 9th Street, NW, Washington, DC, 20001.

*Photos courtesy Espita