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Rasa Will Bring Its Fast-Casual Indian Bowls to Two New Locations

Eater logo Eater 9/13/2019 Gabe Hiatt
a box filled with different types of food on a table: A bowl from Rasa in Navy Yard © Rey Lopez/Eater D.C. A bowl from Rasa in Navy Yard

In the next six months or so, Rasa will be making three times as many chicken “Tikka Chance on Me” bowls. Washingtonian reports that the well-regarded, fast-casual Indian counter in Navy Yard plans to open a second location this winter in Mt. Vernon Triangle (475 K Street NW) and a third next spring near Amazon’s incoming HQ2 headquarters in Crystal City (2200 Crystal Drive, Suite F, Arlington).

Neil Manimala posing for the camera: Rasa founders Sahil Rahman, right, and Rahul Vinod. © Rey Lopez/Eater DC Rasa founders Sahil Rahman, right, and Rahul Vinod.
Rasa founders Sahil Rahman, right, and Rahul Vinod.

Partners Sahil Rahman and Rahul Vinod opened Rasa in December 2017 with a stated mission to introduce Indian food to an audience that didn’t have a reference point for Goan spiced beef, turmeric ginger shrimp, or lamb kebabs.

Over the next year, the pair would win a two-and-a-half-star review from Washington Post critic Tom Sietsema, who gave them bonus points for their attentive service, their “rousing” pumpkin soup, and their insistence on grinding garam masala on-site. Rahman and Vinod also earned one of 18 coveted spots on Eater’s annual list of Young Guns representing the service industry’s top talent under the age of 30.

To help fund the expansion, Rahman and Vinod have added Vernon Davis as a “significant investor.” The 35-year-old Redskins tight end has made nearly $80 million over the course of his 14-year NFL career. Davis, who starred at Dunbar high in D.C. before the University of Maryland, also owns several Jamba Juice franchises. Rahman and Vinod are Maryland alums, too.

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