Georgetown gourmet shop Via Umbria hires new chef

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Liam LaCivita will work for Georgetown's Via Umbria. (photo courtesy of Jeremy Goins)
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The Italian gourmet shop Via Umbria in Georgetown has hired Liam LaCivita as its new executive chef. LaCivita closed Bar Civita, his Italian restaurant in Woodley Park, at the end of July to assume the new position.

“Via Umbria’s owners, Suzy and Bill Menard have known LaCivita for years, and are excited to have him overseeing the culinary program and also serve as a culinary host for their visiting guest chefs from Umbria,” spokesperson Elaine Mazanec wrote in a release.

LaCivita’s contributions to the offerings at the 1525 Wisconsin Ave. NW store include fresh doughnuts on the weekends, as well as breads and cheeses made in-house. He and his pastry team have added cannoli, sfogliatelle and other fresh Italian pastries to the store’s cafe, and they have revised the store’s a la carte menus.

New dishes include an Umbrian sausage sandwich with Taleggio, baby greens and fig/onion marmellata; octopus salad cooked in its own juices with Taggiasca olives, black and white ceci beans, orange oil, arugula, red onion and tomatoes; and antipasti salad with house-made giardiniere, hand-sliced meats and cheeses, and a wild Calabrese oregano vinaigrette.

LaCivita, a graduate of the New England Culinary Institute, started in the restaurant business at age 15. In addition to launching Bar Civita, he opened two Arlington eateries: The Liberty Tavern in 2007 and Lyon Hall in 2010.