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Roof: A 'Proper Scratch Kitchen' with a View

Alan Pohoryles designed Roof as an upscale bar and restaurant "without the price attachment."

Restaurant Roof, which opened last month for dinner, opens for brunch this weekend. Photo credit: Laura L. Thornton.
Restaurant Roof, which opened last month for dinner, opens for brunch this weekend. Photo credit: Laura L. Thornton.
One month out from its Dec. 28 opening, new Bethesda restaurant Roof is nearly booked on the weekends, and it's gearing up for weekend brunch, starting on Jan. 25 and 26.

Hot on the heels of brunch is lunch, which starts on Thursday, Jan. 30. After that, the restaurant will be open for dinner Tuesday through Sunday, for lunch Wednesday through Friday and for brunch on Saturday and Sunday.

Roof occupies the top two (of three) levels of the new building at 7940 Norfolk Ave., Bethesda. There's a white-table-cloth dining room, patio and private dining room on the restaurant's main floor; and a bar and roof-top dining deck above it. Owner Alan Pohoryles hopes to have a sushi bar at the roof level, too. 

On the ground floor of the building, there's a Smashburger and a soon-to-be Dunkin' Donuts.

Roof's cuisine is modern American with Italian and French influences—"French technique refined to make it more recognizable," head chef Jed Fox said. Once spring starts, he'll start incorporating produce from local farms into the restaurant's dishes.

"We're really waiting for the spring," Fox and Pohoryles—who also owns Bethesda restaurant Tommy Joe's—said.

Fox's favorite dishes on the menu include the shrimp and grits. Pohoryles favors the pork chops and beet salad, and "the Brussels sprouts have gone over well," Fox and Pohoryles—who both are from the Maryland-DC area—added.

The kitchen makes its own pasta, pastries, ice creams and sorbets. And, the cocktails are made with fresh ingredients, including freshly-squeezed juices. "We're a proper scratch kitchen," Pohoryles and Fox said.

Pohoryles aims to keep the quality of the food high, without inflating prices—making Roof an upscale bar and restaurant "without the price attachment," he added.
Gail Kaufmann January 25, 2014 at 07:36 AM
The best restaurant in Bethesda. A winner in every way: ambiance, service and most of all food!

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