4/19/2012 11:07:00 AM

Chez Billy Sashays Into Petworth

Photo: Sam Vasfi
Chez Billy, a French bistro dramatically ensconced in Petworth’s landmarked Billy Simpson’s building, opened this week. Trendsetters Eric and Ian Hilton, whose recent successes include Marvin, Blackbyrd and American Ice Co., have given more than a nod to history in the building’s handsome restoration.
The Look:  Flickering candles and ornate chandeliers cast a warm glow over the exposed brick, dark wood and intriguingly accented interior. The roomy environs provide mingling areas, while those feeling less social can retreat to private nooks or to the upstairs lounge and balcony, which offers a birds-eye view of the action below. Keeping its integrity as a historically significant spot, the dining room recasts its wood-backed booths, vintage lighting and tiled floor with verve and class.

The Menu: Expect moderately priced bistro classics like mussels, steak frites and skate, as well as desserts like a pineapple tart tatin and a chocolate hazelnut torte.

The Drinks: Look for classic cocktails like the Sazerac, French wines and international beers that pair with the Gallic comfort fare.

The Scene: Rapidly developing Petworth hasn’t had a destination dining spot for many years, but the Hilton brothers have considerable cred and a huge following. Look for the location to cater to a diverse, lively mix.

3815 Georgia Ave. NW; 202-506-2080 

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