Refined, Vegetable-Obsessed Restaurant Gravitas is Finally Opening in Ivy City
Chef Matt Baker wants to be the reason you visit Ivy City and he wants to lure you there with vegetables. The first-time restaurateur says his long-awaited restaurant Gravitas is now accepting reservations for July 1, but it could open as early as June 22.
Customers dining under a nest of millennial-endorsed hanging terrariums and moss-covered exposed brick will be able to build their own tasting menu of dishes, half which will be vegetarian. Dinner starts at $78 for four courses and climbs to $110 for seven courses. "The flavor profile is much broader when it comes to vegetables" Baker says. "If you were to pick out a pristine carrot versus a generic carrot from the grocery store, it's incomparable. You don't quite the same variance when it comes to meat."
Sample plates include poached morel mushrooms with crispy polenta, parmesan emulsion, garlic aioli, and lavender; truffle-crusted diver scallop with roasted carrot and fennel, snow peas, herb oil, and sherry jus; and a spring onion custard with smoked onion and toasted brioche that can be crowned with caviar for a surcharge.
Instead of Russia, the caviar is coming from North Carolina. Baker is laser-focused on showcasing products from local farmers and watermen whenever possible. He's working with Tuscarora Farms in Maryland and Little Wild Things urban farm, which just moved into a new factory space in Ivy City.
Before setting his sights on Gravitas, Baker worked in kitchens in Florida and Singapore. In D.C., he's worked at minibar by José Andrés, Brasserie Beck, Occidental Grill & Seafood, and Bethesda's City Perch Kitchen + Bar.
The ambitious chef hopes to change about half of the menu every week. "I want a restaurant that's exciting, constantly evolving, pushing boundaries, and trying new things," he says. View the opening menu below.
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