A few months ago, we heard that The Hilltop, a new German and American restaurant and beer bar was coming to 2737 Sherman Ave NW, on the corner with Girard. Now PoP reports that they plan to open in January. The place's owners both have connections with The Saloon, the laid back and (mostly) Belgian beer bar on U Street: Sam Jahanbeen is the Saloon owner's son and Kaleabe Getanah is the former manager and long-time waiter.
I've been to the Saloon a million times and am a fan -- it's got good beer and a nice, cozy, relatively quiet and relaxed space to talk with friends. Kaleabe was the only waiter for a long time, then became manager and is a great guy -- if you've been there he's the mid-30s ish guy with dreadlocks, as opposed to the younger guy with dreadlocks who also works there. The Saloon used to be related to the Saloun on M Street in Georgetown, but years ago the owners of the two Saloo/uns, who are related, had a falling out. The U Street one kept up the relaxed, neighborhoody vibe focused on good beer, while the Georgetown one is more of a bland, regular Georgetown bar.
When Kaleabe mentioned to me that he was planning on opening his own place, I was excited about it, and even moreso that it was on Sherman, since there's really no neighborhoody spot near there. PoP reported that they'll focus on German and other imported beers (I hope they have the Kostritzer dark lager, that's my go-to at the Saloon) and American food. Sounds a lot like the Saloon, which is fine with me (though the Saloon's food is average, just burgers and the like, I hope The Hilltop has some better stuff.)
I thought I had heard some opposition from neighbors about commercial buildings coming to Sherman, but in the past there have been businesses on the street, mostly seedy corner stores. There's still some kind of plumbing company across the street from the Hilltop. I don't think this place will cause any more traffic or noise -- the Saloon is a very relaxed, local place, and I imagine this will be the same way.
I'm trying to find out more about their liquor license and details on size, hours, and so on. Stay tuned.