Richard Sandoval opens dLeña Wood-Fire Mexican Cocina & Mezcaleria in Washington

Mount Vernon Triangle restaurants takes diners on journey to Oaxaca, Mexico

Richard Sandoval Hospitality has brought Mexican concept dLeña Wood-Fire Mexican Cocina & Mezcaleria to Washington, DC on May 10. After a successful soft opening, the new restaurant in the heart of the Mount Vernon Triangle is now open in full form, led by Chef Carlos Camacho, a Richard Sandoval Hospitality veteran.

Camacho has worked at La Puerta Verde, served as Regional Executive Chef for Richard Sandoval Hospitality concepts El Centro D.F and Toro Toro; and also cut his teeth at Great American Restaurants.


The grand eatery, which spans 5,000 square feet of both indoor and outdoor dining space, will take diners on a journey to Oaxaca, Mexico. Camacho will elevate the region’s cuisine for guests through a multi-sensory experience in flavorful dishes, including smoked large plates from the wood-burning grill. These take form in the Wagyu Steak a la Piedra ($48) served with poblano pepper, caramelized onions, homemade salsas, and made-to-order tortillas; Camarónes a la Diabla ($30) smoked chili marinated shrimp with chipotle sauce and grilled spring onion; Coliflor a la Leña ($16) charred cauliflower with a chimichurri and watercress lemon salad.

“I’m thrilled to bring to life dLeña alongside Chef Sandoval this Spring,” said Chef Camacho. “Our goal at dLeña will be to transport our diners to our Mexican home, through curated food and beverage offerings. This is a unique opportunity to showcase the passion within our culture.”

Appetizers include the Guacamole De Bonito ($18) a tuna tartare served on charred tostada and topped with chili árbol salsa macha, and jicama salad; Ostiones a la Leña ($22) grilled oysters with chipotle mignonette and smoked bacon relish; Ceviche de Setas ($13) wild mushroom ceviche served with green aguachile broth, red onions and topped with fresh cilantro.

For taco lovers, there’s plenty to look forward to: Short Rib Tacos ($16) with chili árbol peanut sauce, arugula salsa cruda, served with flour tortillas; Lechoncito Tacos ($12) suckling pig with sautéed onion and green tomatillo salsa; Camarón Tacos ($14) crispy shrimp served on jicama tortillas and topped salsa – verde aguacate.


Diners can finish off the meal with Carajillo Crème Brulée ($12) made with liqueur 43 and espresso; Pastel de Elote ($10) a grilled corn cake served with caramel-cajeta ice cream and topped with hibiscus-mezcal sauce.

dLeña will operate Sunday through Thursday, from 5 p.m. to 10 p.m.; Friday through Saturday, 5 p.m to 11 p.m.; and delivery available through Doordash, GrubHub, Uber Eats, and Postmates just a couple of weeks after the grand opening.

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