Reinvented ‘minibar by José Andrés’ Opens

For immediate release


Reinvented ‘minibar by José Andrés’ Opens


CORE collaborates with Barcelona design firm Capella Garcia

to bring latest ThinkFoodGroup project to Washington, DC


WASHINGTON, D.C. (NOVEMBER 2012)—More DC food enthusiasts will have a chance to savor Chef José Andrés’ minibar menu because the restaurant is now a little less mini. CORE, a prominent Georgetown-based architecture and design firm with an award-winning hospitality design practice, acted as Architect of Record on the minibar by José Andrés build-out. CORE collaborated and executed the restaurant design envisioned by renowned Spanish architect – and Chef José Andrés’ good friend – Juli Capella. The new minibar is located at 855 E Street in northwest Washington, DC.

“We were thrilled when ThinkFoodGroup chose CORE to collaborate with Juli Capella on minibar,” said lead project designer Allison Cooke, IIDA, LEED AP. “Time zone differences and an aggressive project timeline made this a real challenge, but working with Juli and the ThinkFoodGroup team was such a friendly and immensely inspiring experience – much like minibar’s cuisine.” CORE worked with general contractor Forrester (Forrester) Construction Company to complete minibar, Forrester’s fifth ThinkFoodGroup project. 

The minibar layout breaks the 3,140 square foot space into three main areas: the kitchen/food preparation area, dining and lounge areas. The restaurant has a fresh, neutral, and light backdrop that contrasts with bold, whimsical European accents.

“minibar by José Andrés is designed to be an innovative and memorable dining experience in a modern yet playful atmosphere,” said Rob Wilder, CEO of Think Food Group. “CORE, an accomplished DC architecture team, provided Juli with the support needed to bring his concept design to life – keeping our timeline and managing local DC standards.”

As soon as restaurant guests enter minibar by José Andrés, they are welcomed and encouraged to enjoy aperitifs in a glamorous lounge area covered with white-washed woods floors and shimmering metal-bead curtains. In the dining area, warm oak countertops and two gold “domes” are suspended over the counters sheltering the guest throughout the meal – providing a relaxed, intimate and sophisticated atmosphere. The domes are an example of how CORE brought Juli Capella’s vision to reality, by sourcing a local boat-builder, Bandy Boats, who cut the domes from old boat hulls. “It was really the only feasible way to build these given our timeframe,” said CORE’s project architect Christopher Peli.

Other unique décor elements throughout the space include a richly-stained walnut table flanked by a custom-made round infinity mirror; Jaime Hayon couches; Cerruti Baleri furniture such as a “marble” armchair, “apple” poufs, and a “cactus” sofa covered in photo-realistic fabric; white-washed cement wallpaper, and cut-out Ligne Roset wall sconces.

“We are excited to be part of creating this great experience,” adds Cooke, “which will surely soon be known as one of the best dining destinations of the world.”

Recognized as one of the most sought-after reservations in the country, minibar’s menu features a series of roughly 20 inspired and playful avant-garde dishes, which helped garner Andrés the James Beard Foundation’s “Outstanding Chef” in America prize last year.

Minibar re-opened on November 7th and will serve two, 12-person seatings a night, Tuesday through Saturday. Interested patrons can make dinner reservations one month in advance by emailing For more information about minibar, visit


About CORE

With an established portfolio in architecture, commercial interiors, hospitality and retail design, CORE has designed over 55 restaurants in locations across the east coast and in the Caribbean with a large concentration in the DC metro area. An internationally recognized firm, CORE has received more than 100 design awards. The firm’s notable list of projects and clients include:  Brasserie Beck, Founding Farmers, Pearl Dive Oyster Palace, Blackjack, Sweetgreen, the Atlas Performing Arts Center, Dean & Deluca, The JBG Companies, Marriott International, Hilton Worldwide, and Porter Novelli, among numerous others.


About ThinkFoodGroup

ThinkFoodGroup, founded by award-winning chef José Andrés and his partner Rob Wilder, is the creative team responsible for renowned dining concepts in Washington, DC, Las Vegas, Los Angeles and Miami including minibar by josé andrés, Jaleo at the Cosmopolitan of Las Vegas, and The Bazaar by José Andrés at the SLS Hotel Beverly Hills and South Beach. In December 2012, ThinkFoodGroup will present its first dining outside the continental US at the new Dorado Beach, Ritz Carlton Reserve in Puerto Rico. ThinkFoodGroup oversees all of the creative and educational efforts for José Andrés, an internationally recognized culinary innovator, passionate advocate for food and hunger issues, author, educator, and television personality. He was recently named on the “Time 100” list of most influential people in the world by Time Magazine. Often credited with creating the “Spanish food boom” in America, Andrés is Dean of the Spanish Studies program at the International Culinary Center, the first and only program of its kind in the United States.  Andrés can be seen on PBS as host and executive producer of Made in Spain. His cookbooks include Tapas: A Taste of Spain in America. Andrés also teaches “Science and Cooking” at Harvard and soon he will also teach a food course at George Washington University. In late 2010, José Andrés and ThinkFoodGroup launched World Central Kitchen, a nonprofit which aims to feed and empower vulnerable people in humanitarian crises around the world.  For more information, visit

For more information contact:

Allison Cooke at CORE



Thank you for contacting CORE architecture + design, inc.

For media inquiries, please contact: Samantha Edwards, 571-338-4723,

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