Chef Kyle Bailey's The Salt Line to Open June 1
Long Shot Hospitality announced the opening of The Salt Line (79 Potomac Avenue SE) on June 1. The oyster and ale house will bring New England-inspired dishes to the Capitol Riverfront neighborhood under the direction of Executive Chef Kyle Bailey, who has built a diverse menu that reflects an impressive career focused around sustainable cooking and whole-animal utilization.
Bailey is the DC region’s founding member of Dock to Dish—a cooperative program like Community Supported Agriculture (CSA), connecting commercial fishermen and sustainability advocates like Bailey through a supply-driven system of sourcing and distributing wild harvest seafood. The program debuts at The Salt Line, where Bailey will feature the day’s catch—often underutilized species of fish—purchased from individual fishermen in the Chesapeake Bay region. Everything offered through Dock to Dish will come from within 100 miles of the restaurant, and the program has the potential to nearly eliminate food waste. Bailey’s Washington D.C. program joins other Dock to Dish programs under the leadership of likeminded, outstanding chefs—Dan Barber, Michael Cimarusti, and Thomas Keller.
“I’ve been looking forward to bringing our style of cooking to seafood for a while now and can’t wait for Capital Riverfront to experience what Mike O’Brien and I bring to the table,” says Bailey.
Located across from Nationals Park, The Salt Line will serve classic New England dishes such as lobster rolls, clam chowder, and Johnny cakes with honey butter and smoked trout roe. Appetizer options include octopus carpaccio, crab and avocado salad, and a seasonal Nashville hot soft shell with bread and butter pickle slaw and watercress salad. The entrée selections are a seafood lover’s dream, which include crispy skin rockfish with peas, morels and ham, almond crusted speckled trout with fried pickled oyster in a lemon butter sauce, uni carbonara, and a waterman’s platter complete with fried fish, clams, oysters, and scallops. On-shore options include barbeque chicken, bone-in ribeye with baked-to-oreder popover, and a roast beef sandwich.
Bailey’s affinity for whole-animal butchery and charcuterie translates onto the seafood focused menu with innovative items such as shrimp linguiça, swordfish mortadella, cold smoked arctic char, and a variety of seafood sausages, smoked and cured fishes, and crudos. Those looking for a raw taste of the sea will rejoice at The Salt Line’s raw bar, which will be stocked with a variety of oysters as well as Jonah crab claw, chilled lobster and urchin roe.
The Sale Line is built around the storied image of a New England ale house, and the bar menu delivers with 24 rotating beers on tap. The beer selection emphasizes New England breweries like Oxbow Brewing Company, Allagash Brewing Company, and Smuttynose Brewing Company, as well as local offerings from Right Proper Brewing Company, Ocelot Brewing Company, 3 Stars Brewing Company, Charm City Meadworks, among others. Beverage Director Donato Alvarez rounds out the beverage program with signature cocktails built from local spirits like Catoctin Creek and KO Distillery, and, in the summer heat, craft slushies available at the expansive waterfront outdoor bar. Cocktails include a classic Allen’s Flip with Allen’s coffee brandy, porter, Amaro Montenegro, and egg; the Cape Codder G&T; and the Saltier Dog with Absolut Elyx vodka, Strega, lemon, Peychaud’s aperitivo and grapefruit. In addition to an extensive wine list of over 50 bottles and 20 available by the glass, a variety of sake will complement flavors coming from the kitchen.
The 3,500 square-foot restaurant can accommodate 110 diners with an additional 125 seats on the covered outdoor patio. The Salt Line’s design blends the textures of a rustic boathouse with urban comforts, creating an environment perfect for date nights, after work snacks, or pre-ballgame brews. The dining room shines with brass accents, custom mid-century light fixtures, and handmade tile work creating a clean and airy atmosphere. The large horseshoe shaped bar is capped with a custom ice bar and oyster display, anchoring the restaurant while creating a social and relaxed space, while the exterior bar alludes to life on the water, covered with a corrugated metal roof, allowing guests to enjoy the waterfront views even during summer showers. Decorated with ornaments recovered from an early 1990’s shipwreck, the private dining room transports to the New England coast. The ceiling is lined with coated cedar shingles and provides a riverfront escape for intimate gatherings and jovial celebrations for up to 60ppl.
The Salt Line will be open Monday to Wednesday from 5pm to midnight, Thursday and Friday from 5pm to 1am, Saturday from 11am to 1am, and Sunday from 11am to midnight. The outdoor bar and patio will open at 3pm on weekdays. The restaurant will open one and a half hours before the start of any Washington Nationals home day game. Happy hour specials will be offered Monday to Friday from 3 p.m. to 6 p.m. except on Nationals home games.