Thursday, October 4, 2012

Upcoming Events: Oktober Fest

Oktoberfest Reston is produced by the Greater Reston Chamber of Commerce and is Northern Virginia’s largest fall festival at Reston Town Center featuring the best in autumn brews with delicious traditional Oktoberfest fare from area restaurants. Enjoy food, wine, beer, live entertainment, a carnival and the Anthem Great Pumpkin 5K, presented by the Greater Washington Sports Alliance.  
Oktoberfest Reston will take place on October 5-7, 2012 at the Reston Town Center at the following times:
Friday, October 5: 3PM – 11PM
Saturday, October 6: 11AM – 11PM
Sunday, October 7: 12PM – 8PM

Columbia Heights Day:  The 6th Annual Columbia Heights Day will take place on Saturday, October 6 from 10 am to 6 pm at Harriet Tubman Elementary Field. More than 12,000 people are expected for this community festival featuring live music, food trucks and more than 60 local businesses and nonprofits. The schedule includes a yoga workshop and cupcake eating contest.  There is also a KidsZone activity area for families with a petting zoo, games, arts and crafts and special performances. The event is rain or shine! Harriet Tubman Elementary Field is located on Kenyon St. NW between 11th and 13th streets near Columbia Heights Metro. For more information, visit or email

Fall Mixology Classes:  Spice up your ‘at-home’ bartending skills by attending Ripple’s Fall Mixology Classes on Saturday, October 13 or Saturday, October 20 from 3:30 – 5:00pm.  Ripple’s, Josh Berner, will instruct guests about the fat-washing process to make three delicious cocktails from Ripple’s menu—Play It Sam, Chile Manteca y Ducle, and Basil Exposition.  These cocktails feature oil-infused gin, bacon-infused mexcal and olive oil-washed vodka.  As part of the class, guests will enjoy these cocktails as they learn, as well as have the opportunity to try Ripple’s grilled cheese bar.  Cost for the class is $45, which includes the cocktails.  For reservations, please call 202.244.7995.  Visit Ripple at for more information. 

October Cruises on the Odyssey and Spirit of Washington. Entertainment Cruises is offering some extra special cruise opportunities in honor of National Breast Cancer Awareness Month and Halloween. Help the Odyssey raise awareness about breast cancer by wearing pink on the Go Pink Brunch Cruise on Saturday, October 13 from 11:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m.  The Cruise will highlight two speakers – a representative from the American Cancer Society and a breast cancer survivor. Tickets are from $69.90 per person, not including taxes or fees. Twelve dollars from each cruise ticket will be donated to Making Strides Against Breast Cancer and, as always, guests can enjoy delicious dining, entertainment and spectacular views of Washington, D.C. from the water. Special Pink Champagne Mimosas will be available, as well. Toward the end of the month, get in the Halloween spirit with the Spirit of Washington’s annual Boo Cruise! on Saturday, October 27 from 9:30 pm to 12:05 a.m. Tickets are from $44.90 per person, not including taxes or fees. Guests 21 and over can come aboard and enjoy passed hors d’oeuvres and a cash bar all night long. Halloween costumes are encouraged and the best costume will win 4 free tickets on the Spirit of Washington during the costume contest by the end of the night! Call 800.250.3897 or visit Odyssey Cruises online to make a reservation for the Go Pink Brunch Cruise. Call 800.250.3897 or visit Spirit of Washington online to make a reservation for the Boo Cruise!

 Executive Chef/Owner Domenico Cornacchia of the authentic Italian neighborhood favorites Assaggi Osteria in McLean and Assaggi Mozzarella Bar in Bethesda as well as the French oasis, Bistro Vivant, are offering a special chestnut menu from Oct 7 thru 29th.  The chestnut has been a food staple and an icon of health in southern Europe since 400 B.C., and the symbolic nut is welcomed every fall with culinary creativity.  Throughout the month of October, villages in the south of France, Switzerland, and northern Italy draw hundreds of thousands of visitors for their chestnuts festivals, where chestnuts are roasted, candied, boiled, ormade into bread or sugar.  Dishes that will be available during the promotion include Chestnut Bisque with crispy ‘jambon de Bayonne’; Grilled Quail with chestnut risotto; Wild Boar Sausage with Chestnut and Porcini Mushroom RaguFresh Chestnut Tagliatelle Pasta with Rabbit Ragu.

Next, James Beard award-winning chef Ann Cashion and celebrity Top Chef finalist and TV personality Carla Hall, currently a host on ABC’s culinary show, The Chew, will jointly host a book signing reception for Charlotte Druckman’s new tell-all book titled Skirt Steak: Women Chefs on Standing the Heat and Staying in the Kitchenon Thursday, October 18, 2012, from 6 PM to 8 PM, at Johnny’s Half Shell.  Priced at $45 per person, tickets include a copy of the much anticipated book along with featured cocktails and wine, as well as a selection of ten different hors d’oeuvres, created by both Cashion and Hall.  Guests are invited to mingle with Druckman, who will be reading an excerpt from her new book, which is expected in stores this November. A portion of the proceeds from this Skirt Steak book signing reception will benefit the Washington Tennis and Education Foundation, an organization designed to help disadvantaged youth through tennis.  Skirt Steak is an in-depth, behind-the-scenes, uncensored look into the lives of women chefs, told through the voices of 73 of the best and brightest women cooking today.  Druckman interviewed both Cashion and Hall for the book. 

Ashok Bajaj’s authentic Penn Quarter Italian gem, Bibiana Osteria-Enoteca, is hosting a “Fall Game Dinner” on Thursday, October 25th. Priced at $135 per person (tax and gratuity not included), Executive Chef Nicholas Stefanelli has crafted a mouthwatering menu featuring four courses of premier game.  Standout dishes from Chef Stefanelli’s game menu includes Smoked Wild Green Winged Teal Breast, SavoyCabbage, Pear ‘Dolce Forte’; Roasted Wild Pheasant, Slow Roasted Polenta Integrale, Wild Mushrooms ‘Triafolati’.

From Oct 22nd through November 2nd, Jose Andres and his team at Oyamel are celebrating their sixth annual Day of the Dead festival.  This years theme is around the ancient foods of Mexico.  The restaurant was inspired by the pre-hispanic foods set out as offerings on traditional Day of the Dead altars.  Mexicans leave staple foods such as beans, corn, chiles, chocolate and mezcal (tequila is a mezcal) on their altars so their loved ones can stay sustained in the afterlife.  The pre hispanic foods of Mexico are a mixture of ancient cultivation techniques (corn, amaranth, chiles and beans), collecting indigenous foods (fruits, chapulines, herbs and cacao) and the art of the hunt (fish, venison, turkey and quail).

Finally, Richard Sandoval’s colorful Latin-Asian inspired neighborhood restaurant, Masa 14, located at 1825 14th Street, NW, 20009, is pleased to introduce its Melting Pot series.  The Melting Pot will offering guests a special menu in addition to the dinner menu, which will showcase the evolution of cuisine across Latin America and Asia, highlighting how foreign cultures have mingled and melded cuisines overtime.  This special menu will be available for one month each quarter.  For the month of November, newly appointed Executive Chef Adam Goldman is preparing, Sao Paulo, which will highlight the Chinese and Japanese influences on Sao Paulo, Brazil’s culinary landscape, dating back to the Colonial Period.  Sao Paulo has the largest Asian-Brazilian population in the country and Goldman’s November Melting Pot menu will be available exclusively for dinner service in Masa 14’s main dining room.

Photo by Emily Clack

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