Monday, December 23, 2013

A Stop in the White House's Vermeil Room

After entering through the East Wing, we made our way into the ground floor of the residence.  The first stop in the White House Residence was the Vermeil Room.  When we were on the holiday White House Tour, everything was roped off so you could only view from the door.  At the White House Christmas Party, we got to go into the room and sit on the furniture.

Opening: Smashburger Bethesda

Okay, I'll admit it.  The first thing my middle-aged but still juvenile mind thought of when I heard about Smashburger was those old Batman cartoons with the sound effects written out.

Saturday, December 21, 2013

An Unexpected Option for Paleo Dieters

Following the Paleo Diet and struggling when dining out? Then look no further than Elevation Burger, a fast-casual food option founded locally in Falls Church, VA.

Friday, December 20, 2013

Happy Birthday Reilly DeSantis!

Love you cuz!

Thinking of Drinking: Hot Buttered Rum

Bibiana's Beverage Director Michael King has created 25 new seasonally inspired drinks, a countdown to December 25th and the joyful, exciting holiday season. This one is available now.

Thursday, December 19, 2013

Christmas Time at the White House!

The past couple of weeks in DC have been incredible.  Many items have been checked off my bucket list.  I got to visit the President's Residence twice and even met him and the First Lady.  I'm still on Cloud 9.  It was such a cool experience that I wanted to share a bit with you.  To get into the residence, we went through the East Wing.  

Wednesday, December 18, 2013

Christmas Dining in DC

Christmas is a time for gathering with family and friends, and this year Washington area restaurants have you covered.  

Tuesday, December 17, 2013

Uncorked: ENOversity at ENO Wine Room

By: Laurie Wallin
Capital Cooking Contributor

Georgetown’s newest wine bar, ENO, began their ENOversity series on Tuesday, December 10. ENOversity is a monthly, informal educational opportunity for customers to meet and talk with featured wine producers, taste their wines, and learn about their craft in an informal, welcoming environment. ENOversity in Georgetown launched featuring Lovingston Winery, a primarily family-run winery, along with head winemaker Riaan Roussow, located in Monticello, VA.

Saturday, December 14, 2013

Holiday Gift Guide: Lauren's Picks

The holidays are right around the corner so it is time to start thinking about finding the perfect gifts for the ones you love.  I'll continue adding more products as I review them.  If you'd like your product considered, please email me at  Happy Holidays!

Local Picks: 
Cherry Blossom Creative Prints:  20% off entire purchase now through Dec 31st using code CBCHOLIDAY20 at check out online store:

Happy Birthday Jolene Mead!

Love ya!

Dolcezza Gelato Ramps Up Production with a New Factory

There is only so much gelato you can produce in a 300 sq ft basement space in Georgetown, and the owners of Dolcezza Gelato weren't going to let the size of their production space limit the capabilities of their growing business. 

Friday, December 13, 2013

Thinking of Drinking: Merry Berry Vodka

A haven for American whiskey connoisseurs and those looking to unwind and imbibe a well-crafted cocktail, The Rye Bar at Capella is featuring new cocktails this holiday season.  

Thursday, December 12, 2013

Menu ReVamp: Masa 14

Lo Mein
Masa 14 has a new chef and a new menu. Eric McKamey recently was appointed as the chef de cuisine of the restaurant.  Prior to joining Masa 14, McKamey held the position as the executive chef of The Curious Grape in Shirlington.  

Both of my favorite new dishes were made with hanger steak. I loved the lo mein noodles with hanger steak, oyster sauce, rapini, jicama, black mushroom, and chipotle.  
The Korean grilled Hanger steak is one of the most tender hanger steaks I've ever tasted. The dish was served on a bed of bok choy kimchee and topped with black sesame, bean sprouts, and a guajillo red miso.  
The menu still has some of the signature dishes including the crunchy shrimp with chipotle aioli, teriyaki, toasted sesame, and masago.  
Pork Carnitas Flatbread
The menu features an assortment of flatbreads wok dishes, grilled treats, dim sum, veggies, temaki and ceviches.  The menu changes quarterly to incorporate seasonal ingredients from local farmers.  
The Toasted Almond Flan is a yummy sweet ending!  I like the crunch of the almond with the creaminess of the custard.
For after dinner fun, don't forget that Masa 14 has a great roof area upstairs complete with cocktails and music.  Cheers!
Masa 14 on Urbanspoon

Tuesday, December 10, 2013

First Taste: Domku

Domku Bar and Café celebrated its ninth anniversary with a big party for old friends and new ones. This was my first time visiting the restaurant, and I have to say, it was absolutely adorable. 

Monday, December 9, 2013

Best Small Plates in DC

Photo by Kristen Finn
I'm sure you've been wondering where you can find the Best Small Plates in DC. I asked the writers of Capital Cooking to chime in as well. If we missed your favorite, please comment below. Also, you can check out more of our "Best Of" Lists Here

Holiday Recipe: Eggnog Pot Au Creme

This cute dessert from Del Frisco’s Grille is sure to leave your holiday guests smiling.

Merry Christmas from the White House!

Sunday, December 8, 2013

The Huxley's 1 Year Anniversary Soirée

The Huxley recently celebrated its one year anniversary in Washington. DC's elite, from the glitterati to the literati and everyone in between, showed up in fine fashion to help owners Ryan Seelbach and Eric Lund commemorate this milestone.

Saturday, December 7, 2013

A Taste of the Holidays at Copper Canyon Grill

By Lauren Rosalanko

I recently got a taste of the holidays to get me in the spirit for Thanksgiving coming up next week! Copper Canyon Grill offers a holiday menu that is sure to satisfy, with all of the classics and some unique dishes.

Friday, December 6, 2013

Thinking of Drinking: Hazelnut Old Fashion

Bibiana's Beverage Director Michael King has created 25 new seasonally inspired drinks, a countdown to December 25th and the joyful, exciting holiday season. This one is available now.

Thursday, December 5, 2013

Special Holiday Menus at The Grill Room

Story by Matt Ross and Photos by Lauren DeSantis

Jakob Esko, executive chef of The Grill Room, the sleek dining room in the Capella Hotel in Georgetown right on the C and O Canal, has created a prix fixe holiday menu for Christmas and New Year’s regardless of whether you’ve been naughty or nice. We got to taste the opulent New Year’s menu at lunch, and it may be one of the best we’ve ever had.

Holiday Recipe: Mom’s Jewish Coffee Cake

Mom’s Jewish Coffee Cake is simple, tasty, and easy.  My mom makes it at Christmas every year and it is always a treat.  You can find it in the Capital Cooking Cookbook.  

Repeal Day and More!

Thursday, December 5 – Repeal Day at Jack Rose Saloon: Celebrate the anniversary of the repeal of the 21st Amendment at Jack Rose’s free Roaring Twenties party with burlesque dancers, cigar girls and draft flights of historic whiskey. Admission is free, and the party goes from 7 p.m. to 1 a.m. with drink specials all evening such as classic prohibition-era cocktails such as the Clover Club and Astoria for $9, specialty whiskeys for $8, prohibition punches for $7, and bottomless bubbles for $20. If you are feeling festive, join the party in 20’s attire like flapper dresses and swanky suits. It’s the perfect speak-easy setting to celebrate Repeal Day.

Wednesday, December 4, 2013

Tuesday, December 3, 2013

Dinner Tonight: Chicken Quesadillas

I love buying a rotisserie chicken and making these quesadillas. They are a perfect week night treat.  Even if you don't have a rotisserie chicken, grab a pack of breasts and fry them up over the stove.  Serve with some tortilla chips and guacamole.  I'm going to make some of these tonight.  Wash them down with Sangria or Margaritas.

Perfect Pair: Carmelicious Cupcakes

Photo by Emily Clack
There’s no sugar-coating it: D.C. loves it’s sweets.  Everywhere you look there’s a cupcake shop with a long line in tail. (Georgetown cupcake, frosting, catch-that-cupcake, hello cupcake).   But, don’t let the wait sour your craving. On our Sweet Endings episode, learn how to make some sweet treats in your own kitchen.  We made some delicious Carmelicious Cupcakes paired with Cointreau Noir.

Holly and the Ivy or Rosemary and Cranberries?

Ingredients can be so pretty and festive!

Holidays and Family Time

This time of year sometimes feels exhausting...traveling, planning, finding gifts... Holidays bring families together and bring back memories of childhood and provide opportunities to make new memories. Over Thanksgiving, my husband and I traveled to Iowa and were greeted by my in-laws and our favorite kiddos.

Perfect Pair: Steak and Cabernet

By: Laurie Wallin
Capital Cooking Contributor

There are few pairings that are as classic – and delicious – as Cabernet Sauvignon and steak, and Wildfire Restaurant in McLean, VA showcased this fantastic pairing at their Steak and Cabernet Lover’s Wine Dinner. Wildfire hosted a 5-course dinner prepared by Executive Chef Eddie Ishaq, with each course paired with a Cabernet Sauvignon from a different region. In addition, the dinner featured Todd Leiberman from Stock Yards Packing, Wildfire’s exclusive supplier of their premium steaks and chops.

Monday, December 2, 2013

Around the Globe: The Steenberg Hotel

There is a place several thousand miles to the south and east of the United States, across the Atlantic Ocean, that every serious traveler and wine aficionado should visit at least once during their life.  

Sunday, December 1, 2013

Opening: The Waterfront Market in Old Town

By:  Jennifer Duff
Capital Cooking Contributor

Georgetown has a waterfront scene that DC'ers flock to in the spring and summer time for al fresco dining. Maryland created its own waterfront environment complete with numerous dining options, great shopping, hospitality for tourists, and art down at the National Harbor (which may include gambling in the future). Alexandria will soon be joining the scene based on its Waterfront Small Area Plan designed to revitalize Alexandria's waterfront. One of the first visible steps in this direction is the opening of The Waterfront Market.

Saturday, November 23, 2013

A Taste of the Hungarian Mangalica Pig

The Hungarian National Association of Mangalica Breeders recently came to town in their efforts to increase their export business, and they, along with the Embassy of Hungary, invited us to a discussion and tasting of the Hungarian Mangalica pig.

Friday, November 22, 2013

Thinking of Drinking: Winter Cocktails at POV

There are many people that look upon the change of seasons this time of year as daunting or depressing.  Other than the holidays, how can one survive the cold and gray months to come with their spirit and joie de vivre intact?  W Hotels’ POV bar and lounge has the answer.  Evoking the esprit of the Swiss Alps, the W hosted an Après Ski party on its rooftop deck. 

Thursday, November 21, 2013

Upcoming Events Around DC

Thursday, November 21 – Fall Beaujolais Tasting at Cork: Join Rosenthal Wine Specialist Trey Stephenson and Potomac Selections Owner Ryne Hazzard to enjoy five tastes with five bites at Cork’s Market and Tasting Room this Thursday starting at 7:00pm. This special event will explore the wines, Crus and terroir of Beaujolais. We will explore Domaine Pascal Granger and Domaine de la Chapelle des Bois and pair wines from these Domaines with a Special Holiday Menu from Cork Executive Chef Kristin Hutter. The BEAUJOLAIS Tasting is $50 per person (exclusive of tax and gratuity). Space is limited so to RSVP, email

Sneak Peek: Seasonal and Festive Treats from the Sweet Lobby

By:  Jennifer Duff
Capital Cooking Contributor
I can't believe I'm going to say this aloud, but it's true... the holidays are right around the corner.  That means dinner parties, office gifts, and other festive events.  Lucky for us, the Sweet Lobby made our lives a little bit easier this holiday season with their seasonal and festive treats, plus a new addition to the "sweet" line up... a canelé.

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Arcane Soft Launches with the Taste of an Indian Summer

Arcane is DC's newest supper club, providing a "radical and esoteric approach to the art of cuisine." We were  invited to experience Arcane's approach to Native American culture as we gathered for their soft launch event at the Capital Hill Towers. Soft red and orange lighting helped transform the intimate space as we gathered with 20-30 others eager to find out what the preeminent avant-garde supper club had in store. 

Monday, November 18, 2013

On the Road Again: Leesburg, VA

Gorgeous fall views from our bike on the C and O Canal 
By Claire Goldman

Capital Cooking loves to bring you new ideas for getting out of the city on the weekends.  Here's one for the more adventurous sort:  a bike trip to charming Leesburg, VA.  There's no better way to see the changing colors of fall than hopping on a bike and heading about forty miles out to Leesburg.

Sunday, November 17, 2013

First Taste: Max Brenner Chocolate Bar

By: Lauren Rosalanko

Last night I had the best experience for dinner that I have had in a long time. That's right I went to Max Brenner Chocolate Bar in Bethesda, MD and decided to skip dinner to test out the chocolate concoctions the restaurant had to offer (what better way to start the weekend than have dessert for dinner?). Chocolate is one of my favorite sweets and as expected Max Brenner did not disappoint! Walking into the Chocolate Bar I felt like a child walking into Willy Wonka's Chocolate factory, with fabulous chocolate-colored decor, vats of chocolate, and pipes that said 100% pure chocolate. The restaurant is whimsical, yet luxurious. I was already in heaven and I had not even tried the food or drink.

Saturday, November 16, 2013

Reflections upon Reconnecting with an Old Lover

What happens when you meet someone you had strong feelings for after a long absence? It can be a bit jarring, but also a bit exciting. You remember with fondness the qualities that originally attracted you to her and marvel in the ways in which she has changed and grown since your last encounter. 

Thursday, November 14, 2013

Recipe: Spicy Crab Guacamole

Happy National Spicy Guacamole Day!  Enjoy this recipe at Zengo or El Centro.  You can even make your own at home.

Booze for Babes and More!

Photo by Kristen Finn
Thursday, November 14 – 2013 Cider Press at Virtue Feed and Grain: Head over to Virtue Feed and Grain for their inaugural Cider Press sampling event to benefit SCAN (Stop Child Abuse Now) of Northern Virginia this Thursday from 7-10pm. Cider Press 2013 will offer samples of a variety of hard ciders including Bold Rock, Kelly’s, Stella Cidre, Cider Boys, Ace, Woodchuck, Magners, Hornsby's, Angry Orchard, Jack’s. The event will feature live music by Phil Kominski of Lloyd Dobler Effect, delicious appetizers from Virtue Feed and Grain, apple games, great prizes, a raffle and tasting glass. Tickets are available at for just $15 all-inclusive per person.

Wednesday, November 13, 2013

Eat With Your Eyes: Slow Roasted Pork Cazuelas

Is your mouth watering? It should be! El Centro D.F. opened its second location in Georgetown. While the menu maintains some of the signature dishes from its 14th Street sister, it added some new winners.

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Out to Brunch: Daikaya

Daikaya recently launched brunch with tons of fun small plates.  This is a great place to try with friends on a lazy Sunday.  

Monday, November 11, 2013

Bowling at the White House

One of the big perks of my hubby's job is renting the bowling alley at the White House.