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Posted at 3:47 PM ET, 01/12/2011

Hook catches a new chef; Tackle Box gains a bar

By Tom Sietsema

New at Tackle Box: Happy hour at Crackle Bar. (Dave Phillipich)

Hook recently snared a new chef, its third since 2007. He's Alex Bollinger, last seen cooking Mediterranean food at Urbana in Dupont Circle and before that, Charlie Palmer Steak on the Hill.

"It's hard to find someone who wants to do 200, 300 covers and execute that in such a small space," says Jonathan Umbel, owner of the stylish seafood restaurant in Georgetown. Bollinger's fresh menu (look for more small plates) is expected to debut after Restaurant Week, which ends Jan. 23.

In (truly) related news, Hook's neighbor and cozier sibling, Tackle Box, has expanded to the second floor. What used to be Hook's private dining room is now a place to sip $1.50 Buds and knock back $1 oysters during happy hour, weeknights from 5 to 7 p.m.

Umbel says the 30-seat Crackle Bar features "the best people-watching in Georgetown," thanks to near floor-to-ceiling windows upstairs. The name of the watering hole, he explains, plays off "tackle" and "the shucking of shells."

The restaurateur, who has returned to patrolling the dining room at Hook, recently started work on a second Tackle Box in Cleveland Park. "We're trying for early April," Umbel forecasts.

By Tom Sietsema  | January 12, 2011; 3:47 PM ET
Categories:  Restaurants  | Tags:  Tom Sietsema  
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Tom- I think Hook's bar has the $1 oysters while Crackle Box has a calamari/bud light special.

Posted by: bhg2 | January 12, 2011 5:19 PM | Report abuse

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