When forthcoming Mexican restaurant Mi Vida co-owners Michael Reginbogin and Jason Berry see an opportunity, they capitalize on it. So when The Wharf offered their team at Knead Hospitality the opportunity to open a restaurant it was not a question of should they do it, but what should it be. After working with Chef Roberto Santibañez at Rosa Mexicano for four years, Berry knew it was time to bring a large-scale Mexican restaurant to the District that is “real deal, good Mexican food and not a Mexican-restaurant-in-a-box.” The team wanted an authentic restaurant that speaks to the rich heritage of Mexico, its people, and its food—Mi Vida expects to be just that.

Opening in Jan. 2018, Chef Santibañez’s team will be serving up Mexican fare across the varied-design, three-story restaurant. The goal is to keep a timeless feel for the 10-year lease (and hopefully beyond). The first floor is designed in modern Mexican theme, the second floor will have a traditional hacienda feel, and the top floor pays homage to Old World Mexico. With approximately 340 total seats, the most coveted will likely be the nearly 100 outdoor seats, especially those on the top floor overlooking District Pier.

Focusing heavily on seafood, this will be a Mexican restaurant with a twist. There will, of course, be tacos, guacamole, and margaritas, but more exciting to restaurant-goers will be the brick oven as well as the 100-plus tequilas and mezcals (and yes, happy hour will start right away). The made-in-house churros will likely also be a hit. With two bars, two kitchens, and two private rooms spread across those three themed floors, diners should expect a different experience each time they visit. One constant will be the nearly 20-foot-high, custom-made tree that will fill the opening space and welcome diners into an experience not to be missed.

This first look article will be followed up with a dining review in the coming months.

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