Friday, May 31, 2013

Thinking of Drinking: Gemini

Quill at The Jefferson, DC has created a Zodiac Zinger in correlation with the changing of each sign of the zodiac. Each month, the bar team gets together to create a cocktail that reflects the characteristics of each sign. The best part is, come in on your birthday and its FREE!

Thursday, May 30, 2013

Upcoming Events: Taste of Georgetown and More!

The 20th Annual Taste of Georgetown returns on Saturday, June 1, 2013 from 11:00 am – 4 pm.  Hosted once again by the Georgetown BID this year’s event benefits the Georgetown Ministry Center’s services supporting the homeless.  Over thirty of Washington, DC’s finest restaurants, culinary personalities and sixty delectable dishes will be onsite and ready to tease your palate; not to mention an expansive Craft Beer and Wine Pavilion and accompanying live entertainment.  One of the featured events will be the Iron Chef-style Competition that will pit Georgetown’s hottest chefs in a culinary challenge to test their skills and will be judged by DC’s top food experts and media.

Wednesday, May 29, 2013

Eating Around Town: 14th Street

I've been so excited for all of the new openings on 14th Street, but some have been a bit disappointing.  I read about Bakehouse in Dining Bisnow so I thought I'd give it a try before yoga.  Unfortunately they ran out of breakfast sandwiches.  Boo!  Their cappuccino was pretty standard.  Don't go there if you want to sit and lounge as there isn't much space.

Guacamole Heaven at El Centro D.F.

El Centro D.F. is hosting its 2nd Annual Guacamole Festival through June 30th.  You'll find a variety of different flavors to pick from... even grasshoppers.

Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Re-cap: Eating Like Animals at Zoofari

On May 16, the Smithsonian National Zoological Park held its Annual Gala. Featuring 100 of the area's finest restaurants serving dishes throughout the National Zoo, this was my type of gala. I much prefer being able to stroll outdoors in casual clothing, picking up plates at my leisure, over dressing up for a seated dinner. Though Open Top Sightseeing offered a shuttle to the event from the Woodley Park Metro Station, I walked up an appetite by walking to the event from the Cleveland Park Metro. From there, the walking never stopped. The tables of restaurants seemed to go on for miles and miles, and just when my friend would say "I think this is it" I would point in the other direction to another set of restaurant tables that seemed to go on for eternity.

Guide to Cape Town Wine Country

After checking out the city life of Cape Town, it was time to get away from it all to explore the South African wine country.

Monday, May 27, 2013

From Texas with Love: Mi Cocina

Tucked between luxury fashion shops is Friendship Height's newest resident, Mi Cocina, hailing from Dallas, Texas. The Chevy Chase location is the upscale Tex-Mex restaurant chain's first location in the Atlantic area. Airy and spacious with bright paintings decorating the walls, the restaurant will be a much welcomed addition to  the Tex-Mex scene in DC. The bar would easily become a locals favorite hangout with strong drinks like the infamous Mambo Taxi (frozen margarita featuring Sauza Blanco tequila with special house-made Sangria) and opens straight to Wisconsin Ave. The location also offers a private dining room and outdoor seating area in a back sheltered from Wisconsin traffic.

Sunday, May 26, 2013

Simms Steakhouse Wine Fest

By:  Katie Faul

Over the past few years my appreciation of wine has grown, but I still am very much an amateur. I know the wines I like at the store and rarely move away from them. So when I received the opportunity to attend the Simms Steakhouse Wine Fest on May 18 in Golden, CO, I immediately jumped at the chance. I saw it as a great opportunity to not only widen my knowledge, but to begin to understand the differences between wines. 

Saturday, May 25, 2013

Chef's Best Raises a Record Breaking $960,000

On Monday, May 13th, more than 1,500 guests gathered at The Washington Hilton to help Food and Friends raise $960,000 at their annual Dinner and Auction.  Before settling down to bid on one of a kind getaways and dining experiences, including a cooking class for 6 with Chef Patrick O'Connell of The Inn at Little Washington (which sold for $15,000),  guests were able to taste dishes from 60 of the region's  most talented chefs. 

Thursday, May 23, 2013

Singapore to San Salvador at Zengo

You don't have to pack your bags to feel like your eating your way from Singapore to San Salvador with Zengo's new menu.  Stop in now-June 30th to taste Chef de Cuisine Graham Bartlett's Test Kitchen: Singapore to San Salvador, which will be offered during dinner service beginning at 5 PM.

Upcoming Events: Alexandria Food and Wine Festival

Alexandria Food and Wine Festival - June 22: Sips, slurps, chomps, and laughter will fill the air in Old Town Alexandria in the Carlyle District (300 John Carlyle Street) as the local community gathers together to enjoy the diverse restaurants of Alexandria and Virginia’s wineries for the 1st Annual Alexandria Food and Wine Festival. Enjoy this new lively festival, complete with live entertainment, a children’s corner, food and wine tasting, a food demonstration showcase area and a VIP networking reception for our sponsors. Attendees will be able to sample food and wine from a variety of local restaurants and Virginia’s wineries. Cost: FREE; however tickets are needed to sample food and beverages. Hours: 12-7 p.m.

Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Eat With Your Eyes: Onion Soup Gratinée

Is your mouth watering?  It should be!  You can find this Onion Soup Gratinée at the new Le Diplomate for $11.50.  This soup is thick, hearty, and topped with a wet crouton smothered in Gruyere cheese.  OMG!  Stop in to taste it for yourself.

Le Diplomate on Urbanspoon

Planning a Spring Feast

We're right on the edge of spring turning to summer. Before we get there, make yourself a delicious spring feast.

Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Re-Cap: Lamb Jam 2013 at Eastern Market

By Claire Goldman

It was a great night for lamb lovers at Eastern Market last night when the Annual Lamb Jam Tour made its way to D.C.  

Perfect Pair: García Family Wine Dinner

By:  Jennifer Duff
Capital Cooking Contributor

As part of Jaleo's 20th anniversary celebration, Jose Andres' invited guests to partake in an exclusive Garcia Family Wine Dinner.  The dinner featured various wines from different regions of Spain presented by Eduardo Garcia (pictured below) (son of the famed winemaker, Mariano Garcia) paired with a tasting menu from Jaleo DC's head chef, Chef Paul Yeck.

Monday, May 20, 2013

Piola is open!

Get 50% off your bill from now-May 26th!  Welcome to the neighborhood Piola!

Spring Flavors: Rhubarb

I love stopping by the Farmers Market on 14th and U. The stands and have some fresh Rhubarb from a Pennsylvania farmers. My first time cooking rhubarb, I tried Everyday Food magazine's recipe for Rhubarb Crumb Bars. I liked it so much, that I though I'd share it.

Guide to Cape Town City

Cape Town is simply one of the coolest cities - if not the coolest - I've ever visited.  It is certainly the prettiest. Imagine yourself enveloped by sharply jutting, cragged mountains spilling into rugged beautiful beaches on one side and colorful Dutch colonial architecture on the other, all within minutes of some of the world's best wineries.  Throw in a rich melange of cultures from around the world, a fascinating history of transformation, struggle, and change reaching back to the 1600s, and an interesting, developing food scene, and you have yourself one of the world's premier travel destinations.

Sunday, May 19, 2013

Allergies Away! Tasty Treats Can Stay!

With a son born with severe food allergies, Ginger Park vowed to find dairy, egg and nut free alternatives to children's favorite foods that tasted better than the real thing. After developing recipes since 1999 that have each been approved by her son Justin himself, Ginger and her sister Frances, co-owners of the chocolate shop Chocolate Chocolate, located in Dupont Circle on 1130 Connecticut Ave. NW, wrote Allergies, Away! (Thomas Dunne Books/May 2013) to share their recipes with anyone else who may be struggling to find allergy friendly foods that do not compromise taste. 

Saturday, May 18, 2013

Cookbook Review -- Recipe Rehab

By:  Tom Natan

A lot of TV food and cooking shows focus on comfort foods these days, with new and not-so-new ways to make your old favorites.  Some of them have an Italian twist, some French, and some Southern.  But when you get down to it, there's plenty of meatloaf, macaroni and cheese, and spaghetti on TV everywhere you turn.  

Friday, May 17, 2013

Bite of DC is tomorrow!

Join us at BITE OF DC for: five elite DC restaurants and culinary personalities, each of whom will prepare a unique dish, which will be paired with a corresponding beer or wine suggestion. This is backstopped by limitless wine and beer, along with live demonstrations and entertainment, on the DC waterfront at Yards Park. 

In Good Company: NoPa Kitchen + Bar

NoPa Kitchen + Bar, the newest restaurant from Ashok Bajaj's franchise (think The Bombay Club, Oval Room, Rasika, and Bibiana to name just a few) is an American brasserie that is focused on comfort and good eats. Centrally located in the heart of downtown, surrounded by landmark neighbors such as Spy Museum, National Portrait Gallery, and Verizon Center, NoPa is all about experience, fun, and a relaxed atmosphere. The restaurant features plenty of plush booth seating, leather seats, private dining rooms, Happy Hour specials, and sprawling wine list.

Thinking of Drinking: Andrea

With days like to day, it is lovely to sip on a Tiki drink. Francesco Amodeo created a perfect one with his Don Ciccio e Figli artisanal liqueur.

Thursday, May 16, 2013

Industree Launches Speaker Series

With experience running her own Personal Chef business and developing the Private Dining Program for the matchboxfoodgroup, Alisia Kleinmann started industree with two primary goals in mind: to bring the hospitality industry together as a community - and to give back to the non-profits within that community. One method by which Alisia hopes to bring the industry together as a community is through its speaker series, a series of events where industry members turn into story tellers, highlighting the 'spirit of entrepreneurship' by sharing both the high points and lower points of running a business in the hospitality industry.

Upcoming Events: Wine Dinner at Jaleo and More!

Family Wine Dinner at Jaleo DC:  Join us in celebrating our 20 year anniversary at Jaleo with an exclusive García Family Wine Dinner on 5/16 Eduardo García, the son of famed Mariano García, will preside over the dinner to showcase releases from a variety of Spain’s finest wine regions. Jaleo DC’s Head Chef Paul Yeck will prepare a chef’s tasting menu, prefect for pairing with the handpicked wines. The tasting menu will include items such as liquid olives/cones, carpacio of presa iberica de bellota with pinenuts, grilled soft shell crab with tomato and watermelon, confit of piquillos with iberico fat, cod cheeks with samfaina, smoke squab with truffles, paella of Iberico pork ribs, and pan con chocolate. Tickets are priced at $95 per person (excluding gratuity and tax) and seats are limited. For reservations, please call (202) 628-7949 or email

Wednesday, May 15, 2013

Happy 2nd Anniversary Last Exit!

It's been two years since Last Exit first opened up in Mount Pleasant. To celebrate their 2nd Anniversary and launch of their Spring Menu, Last Exit shut down its doors for a few hours for a private party attended by friends and media members before immediately opening up again to the public that same night. 

Tuesday, May 14, 2013

Spring's On Tap at Capitol City Brewing Company

By:  Jennifer Duff
Capital Cooking Contributor

Capitol City Brewing Company is celebrating the fresh flavors of spring with new menu items and seasonal beer selections.  We recently visited the brew pub to sample some of their food and beverage creations.

Monday, May 13, 2013

Lucky Lily Day Brings Fragrant Flowers and Delicious Food!

For the seventh year in a row, Cafe du Parc invited Washingtonians to experience the traditions of France by hosting "La Fete du Muguet, or Lucky Lily Day", traditionally held on May 1st in France to mark the arrival of spring. Cafe du Parc's celebration of the French holiday offered guests an open air fete of french wine, food and music, all in the Willard Courtyard.

Sunday, May 12, 2013

Margarita March Recap

In anticipation of Cinco De Mayo, a day where many margaritas will likely be consumed, Beerathon LLC organized the Margarita March, where over a 10 hour period, participants were able to indulge in up to 8 margaritas from 8 different bars throughout the Logan Circle and U Street areas. After picking up my badge at 11 am, my schedule didn't allow me to start the march until 6 pm, so I mapped out those four hours of my day that I'd be able to devote to the march in the most logical way possible, starting with the location that was closest to where I was coming from, and ending with the location that was closest to my house.

Saturday, May 11, 2013

Recap: The Capital Grille's Fourth Annual Artist Series Wine Event

By Melinda Contreras

Last fall, The Capital Grille held a contest for artists to submit original pieces of artwork to become the label of the 2009 Arrowood Cabernet Sauvignon.

Thursday, May 9, 2013

Upcoming Events: Lamb Jam and More!

Lamb Jam:  On Monday, May 20th at the Eastern Market from 6-9 pm, 19 of DC’s top restaurants and chefs will come together to celebrate American Lamb by creating succulent and savory selections for the lamb loving public. It is a friendly chef/dish competition to garner awards and prizes in categories including “Best in Show,” “People’s Choice” and “Best Leg, Breast, Shank and Shoulder” with voting by a panel of key media representatives and event attendees. Tickets include gourmet lamb tastings, local wines and beers, hands-on American lamb butcher demos, lamb swag, sweets, caricature artist & much more! New this year, a VIP Pre-Party from 5-6 pm, includes specialty cocktails with a variety of American Lamb charcuterie and sheep’s milk cheeses. Beat the lines with the VIP Pass, only a limited supply available! To view participating chefs, sponsors and to purchase tickets visit:

Still time to Enter: Win Tix to the Lamb Jam on 5/20!

On Monday, May 20th at the Eastern Market from 6-9 pm, 19 of DC’s top restaurants and chefs will come together to celebrate American Lamb by creating succulent and savory selections for the lamb loving public. It is a friendly chef/dish competition to garner awards and prizes in categories including “Best in Show,” “People’s Choice” and “Best Leg, Breast, Shank and Shoulder” with voting by a panel of key media representatives and event attendees. Tickets include gourmet lamb tastings, local wines and beers, hands-on American lamb butcher demos, lamb swag, sweets, caricature artist and much more!

Wednesday, May 8, 2013

More Added: Mother's Day Dining Round-up

Living far from home makes it tough to celebrate Mother's Day with my mom every year.  Show your mom that you love her by spending some quality time with her and making her feel special.  If you're in the DC area, here's some great dining options:

Tuesday, May 7, 2013

Out to Brunch: Curious Grape

There's no better way to spend a Sunday than heading to brunch with a girlfriend and cruising to Alexandria for some shopping.

Monday, May 6, 2013

First Taste: Ambar

Initial Thoughts:  
  • Design and Decor:  Branimir Lukic of Serbia-based architectural firm Atelje AL designed the restaurant.  Photos of old Balkan will line the walls with lots of natural wood throughout.  

Saturday, May 4, 2013

Cookbook Review: Kids in the Kitchen Cookbook

By: Jennifer Duff
Capital Cooking Contributor

I'm a hard person to please when it comes to cookbooks.  It's because most of the time I find, that in a whole cookbook, I can only find a few recipes that I like.  That, or the cookbook tries to do too much (really, how many recipes of lasagna does one need?) or pays too much homage to sponsors (like it matters what brand of shredded cheese you use..).  But I have to say, I was impressed with Time's Kids in the Kitchen Cookbook.  It had select recipes for different courses, fun tips and tricks in the margins (did you know that roughly 40 million pounds of green bean casserole are consumed in the US each Thanksgiving Day?), and rates each recipe in terms of level of difficulty for children.  As an added bonus, it focuses on simple, healthy recipes that kids can make.  But, you can only tell so much by flipping through a cookbook so I took it on a test drive.

Friday, May 3, 2013

Thinking of Drinking: Ritas

Photo from DC on Heels
It is days like today that I gaze out the window at work and wish to be outside enjoying a margarita.  For those of you that are that lucky, you can start sipping on these right now.  For the others like me, only 4 more hours and we won't just have to be thinking of drinking.

Thursday, May 2, 2013

Recipe: Seared Wild Salmon in Lemongrass Broth with Pad Thai Noodles

Chef Nora Pouillon of Restaurant Nora, the first organic certified restaurant AND REAL Certified Restaurant in the nation, takes us on a culinary adventure and shares this Thai-inspired recipe. Chef Nora is a big believer in healthy and fresh ingredients and sustainable practices and all of her dishes are prepared with the REAL philosophy in mind. Pick up the ingredients from the international aisle of your grocery store and the local farmer's market and let the inner gourmet chef shine. Can't wait to give this a try!

Take Yourself on a Lamb Crawl

Do you love lamb as much as me?  If so, take yourself on a Lamb Crawl around DC.  Here's how:

Upcoming Events: Ball on the Mall and More!

Photo by Kristen Finn
The Willard InterContinental and Café du Parc celebrate La Fête du Muguet -- or Lucky Lily Day™ -- on May 3, from 5:30 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. with a courtyard event of wine, beer and authentic tastes of France from the regions of Brittany, Loire Valley, Burgundy, Bordeaux and Southwest, Provence and Rhone Valley.  A variety of traditional French desserts will also be featured along with live music.  Guests will be greeted with small bouquets of fragrant Lily of the Valley – a token of love and friendship in France – exchanged traditionally on May 1st.  Tickets can be purchased at the event starting at $20, for four items to be redeemed at food and wine stations set up throughout the courtyard. 

Wednesday, May 1, 2013

Opening: Glen's Garden Market

By:  Melinda Contreras

Glen's Garden Market officially opened for business!  In what can most simply  be described as a one stop shop for all your favorite farmer's market finds, Glen's Garden Market offers DC residents the finest in produce, meats, poultry, dairy products and specialty foods all sourced from the Chesapeake Bay Watershed. Not wanting to prevent customers from having access to quality items that are not indigenous to the Chesapeake Bay area, owner Danielle Vogel did create a section of the store aptly titled "Forbidden Fruit of the Non-Indigenous Tree" which features a wide selection of grains and legumes.