Kirby Club debuts today with Eastern Mediterranean feasts and group-friendly drinks.
Written by Anna Spiegel | Published on
Kirby Club, a kebab-centric Eastern Mediterranean restaurant from the team behind Maydan, opens in Mosaic District. Photography courtesy of Kirby Club
The team behind popular DC restaurants Compass Rose and Maydan will open the first of two kebab-centric Eastern Mediterranean spots in Northern Virginia on Tuesday. Kirby Club debuts in Fairfax’s Mosaic District at 4 PM; a second, larger location will follow in Clarendon next year.
Kirby Club nods to the name of a Lebanese-American social group in the Ohio town where co-owner Rose Previte’s mother grew up. The club would host gatherings with potluck spreads filled with Middle Eastern salads, flatbreads, and of course, kebabs. For the 80-seat restaurant, chef Omar Hegazi homes in on a variety of skewered meats, seafood, and veggies ranging from dukka-spiced shrimp to chicken shish taouk and oyster mushrooms with chermoula sauce. All can be ordered with a combination of turmeric rice, salad, pickles, and homemade flatbreads. And being a Maydan production, there are of course a variety of sauces—garlicky toum, earthy ezme, harissa, and more.
In the spirit of the OG Kirby Club, group feasts include the “Kebab Shindig” with a plethora of skewers and dips like havuc (carrot dip with garlic and lemon) or bessara, a creamy fava spread with tahina and cilantro. Diners can also order picnic-style platters with centerpieces like a whole roasted chicken or cumin and allspice-rubbed beef rib served alongside pickles, harissa spread, and more. Hegazi will also offer homey items from his native Egypt like fava-and-herb falafel fried with sesame seeds, or a grilled-and-pickled eggplant salad he likens to kimchi.
Similar to Maydan, kitchen ingredients make their way to the bar. Cocktails include a tequila drink with orange blossom, mango, lime, and sumac-Aleppo salt. In addition to the family-style feasts, groups can also order large-format cocktails like one with gin, apricot tea, Campari, and vermouth.
Kirby Club. 2911 District Ave., Fairfax. Open Tuesday through Saturday, 4 to 10 PM.
Anna Spiegel covers the dining and drinking scene in her native DC. Prior to joining Washingtonian in 2010, she attended the French Culinary Institute and Columbia University’s MFA program in New York, and held various cooking and writing positions in NYC and in St. John, US Virgin Islands.