The Daily Feed

A Last-Minute LivingSocial NYE Deal

Photo courtesy of LaTur
Two Less……………
courtesy of LaTur

If you didn’t find something for you in Britany’s New Year’s Eve events roundup yesterday then here’s one more option for you: a $50 deal to get into the Hamilton and a glass of champagne at midnight for the toast. In between there’s stuff to nibble on and – the part that called out to me – some blues.

No matter where you go, if you go out please be safe – both in your own behavior and in awareness that others may not be operating at their best, to put it delicately. Be particularly careful walking; that little black dress is adorable but it’s hard to see at night.

All Politics is Local

Last Chance for 2011 Charitable Giving

Photo courtesy of RikkisRefugeOther
courtesy of RikkisRefugeOther

Welcome to the last moments of your life… in 2011.

Did that briefly fill you with fear that you’ve misspent your time on this fair earth? (If so, why? Do you think I have kill-you-through-the-internet powers? Worry not, you’re wayyyyyy down on the list for when I get THAT superpower) Or did you just think “crap, I need to make some more tax deductible donations before the clock ticks over!”

Either way, we got you covered. The We Love DC team spent some time spitballing their favorite locally-focused and/or locally-based charities and came up with a prodigious list. All will allow you some way to donate to them for the 2011 tax year, if you’re fortunate enough for such deductions to matter to you. All will be similarly delighted to take your cash from Jan 1 onwards too.

Keep reading for the list and feel free to suggest your own in the comments. Most of the places below are in the District but some are in surrounding areas; charity doesn’t stop at the boundary stones, after all.

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capitals hockey, The Daily Feed

Capitals Parry Sabres 3-1

Photo courtesy of The 2-Belo
semin scores!
courtesy of The 2-Belo

The Washington Capitals came into tonight’s game having dropped their last two matchups with the Buffalo Sabres, both in decisive fashion. Although the Caps turned in yet another incomplete effort – coasting through the second period – they came up where it mattered and secured an important victory in the last game of 2011.
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Food and Drink, The Features, We Love Drinks

Best Of: Drinks 2011

Photo courtesy of Jenn Larsen
Architectural Ice
courtesy of Jenn Larsen

Another year, another round for the bar. Before launching into the drinks team’s reminisces of 2011, forgive me for doing something I rarely do as a writer – get a little personal. Just imagine you’re a bartender, and I’m pouring out my sob story at last call.

I almost gave up on drinks writing in 2011. After three years, frankly, I was feeling a bit jaded, and then personal set-backs began piling up, cruel jokes galore, making it difficult to stay focused. So I took some trips, detoxed on coconut water, did the “what’s it all about?” cliche. But after my return I was sitting at American Ice Company, as Patrick Owens happily sparked flames off an orange peel and Black Sabbath blared for Metal Night, and it hit me: what the hell am I thinking? I love drinks, I love DC and especially I love these people whose passion it is to create something so ephemeral and magical as a cocktail. Thoughts of sabbatical left my head, and I was back.

Through it all, the fantastic drinks team of We Love DC held it together – Brittany, Fedward, Moses – and now we’re lucky to add Addison to our imbibing crew. Let’s take a look back at our authors’ thoughts on drinks in 2011. And cheers to the bartenders who fill our glasses with craft, care, and a little magic.

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Entertainment, Music, The Features, We Love Music

Top Tunes of 2011 According to The Torches

The Torches

Here at We Love DC we were asked to do a roundup of the year in some way, and so I decided to ask my bandmates in The Torches for some help picking some favorite tunes from 2011. The Torches are Stephen Guidry on vocals/banjo, Joe Barbee on accordion, harmonica and hollering, Jocelyn Frank on oboe/vocals, Tina Plottel on bass, Thomas Orgren on drums/vocals, Claire White on violin, and Alexia Kauffman (me) on cello/lap-steel guitar.

Stephen: JC Brooks and the Uptown Sound “To Love Someone (That Don’t Love You)”: technically came out as a single last year but then was released on their album this year, which I haven’t heard all of yet. Best falsetto of the year for sure.

Slim Cessna’s Auto Club: Unentitled: This is the entire album, as it’s just a bit too hard to pick out just one song from their records that I like in particular. Munly and Slim’s voices together give me similar chills to John Doe and Exene’s.

Brass Bed has an album with Feu Follett, the only indie pop/cajun split EP that I have ever heard, and although I am dear friends with the Brass Bed boys, I have to admit that my favorite track from the album is from Feu Follett, playing Brass Bed’s “Farmer Song,” probably cause it’s got accordion. Continue reading

Sports Fix

Best of: DC Sports 2011

Photo courtesy of Mr. T in DC
Nats Game Seats Below
courtesy of Mr. T in DC

2011 was not a banner year for sports in the District of Columbia, I’m afraid to say. While the Nationals worked hard to move up the NL East ladder, they still had a losing record. The Capitals once again flamed out in the second round of the Stanley Cup Playoffs. The Wizards finished with a .280 winning percentage as the team struggled to gel. Once a bright star in DC’s sports constellation, D.C. United finished out of the post-season again. And of course there was the Redskins’ struggles this year, even as they parted ways with McNabb and Haynesworth.

It wasn’t all bad news, though, and we’ve gathered up some of the top moments in DC Sports for 2011 for you after the cut.

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Sports Fix

Redskins Preview Week Seventeen: The Eagles

Photo courtesy of Homer McFanboy
courtesy of Homer McFanboy

If you have made it to this point in the Redskins season then it might feel like you deserve a prize. It is unfortunate that there is no prize given out to Redskins fans that make it all the way to the end of the season. Perhaps they have bragging rights, but that is like bragging about eating all of Aunt Briana’s rotten green bean salad at Christmas dinner.

The fans aren’t the only people to make it to the end of the season. The Redskins players have as well, or at least some of them. There are quite a few Redskins that won’t be playing in this game; Cooley and Landry and others are hurt, Fred Davis and Trent Williams would have played but then they got high, and Ryan Torian has been cut. The Redskins that are playing will be ready to play and have more to prove than an Eagles team that was picked to run away with the NFC and couldn’t even manage to make the playoffs.

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The Daily Feed

Food Truck Tracker

Photo courtesy of Jenn Larsen
Champagne Flight, Veritas
courtesy of Jenn Larsen

Cheers to the new year, food truck trackers! Here’s to a prosperous year for the trucks rocking and rolling through the streets of DC, feeding all you hungry people lunches that are far more tasty and interesting than whatever frozen thing you’ve got stashed away in the work freezer. Have a happy and safe weekend. We’ll be back with the FTTs on January 3rd. Here’s to 2012!
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Food and Drink, Foodie Roundup, The Features

Best of: Food 2011

Photo courtesy of Chris Rief aka Spodie Odie
courtesy of Chris Rief aka Spodie Odie

If you ask me, 2011 pretty much knocked it out of the park on the food scene. A plethora of new restaurants and bars opened, old restaurants expanded, chefs stirred up controversy and did good deeds, and in the end our fair city took home two James Beard Awards among others we were honored with. DC showed we’ve got the chops when it comes to food and it’s only up from here.

So fellow food writer Tricia and I took a look back at the year in food and rounded up all our favorites from the year. Find our Best of 2011 list after the jump and have a happy new year!
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The 2011 We Love DC NYE Guide

Photo courtesy of InspirationDC
New Years Eve
courtesy of InspirationDC

New Year’s Eve can be a trying holiday. There is so much pressure put on this one night – one moment really – that builds up for weeks prior. You can start to feel so much like you must go out and you absolutely must have fun that you panic and fork over $200 for a ticket to an awful party just to have something to do – and then end up sipping from flimsy plastic cups of regret all night long.

It is our goal here to help you avoid this fate. To that end, I will begin this going-out guide by saying you have my permission and support to not go out. Or, better yet, just go to a small house party at your friend’s place. Maybe go out for brunch the next day or, you know, do something else. Whatever. The point is: no pressure.

If you do decide to go out, here are some suggestions – but before we get started I just want to suggest you consider wearing sensible shoes? Bars are open until 4am by special DC Council authorization and I do not want you breaking an ankle (this actually happened to a friend of mine after a holiday party this month.) Speaking of which, I know you probably do not want to hear this, but think about how you are getting home before you go out. Drunk walking home in cities leads to no-joke fatalities and can make you more vulnerable to crime.

Now, watch this cuteness and we will move along.

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Life in the Capital, News, The Mall

Best of: DC Protests 2011

Photo courtesy of theqspeaks
Occupy DC – In the Capitol’s Shadow 2
courtesy of theqspeaks

It’s been the year of the protestor in DC, and that’s after a 2010 filled with Tea Parties and Rallies for Sanity. We’ve seen protestors on our walks to work, outside and inside our memorials, sitting in the middle of the street and, yes, in our jails. Some protests have gone really well: they’ve raised awareness or made for some badass photo opps, or both.

Others have utterly flopped: did you hear about the Occupy The Art Institute of Washington protest? Yeah neither did anyone else.

So here they are! Relive the all the obnoxious traffic, repetitive catchphrases and handcrafted signage of the most memorable protests of 2011!

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Interviews, Opinion, People, The Features

Best of…DC Perspectives

Photo courtesy of Danilo.Lewis|Fotography
courtesy of Danilo.Lewis|Fotography

I’ll admit, I struggled a bit trying to figure out what to write a “Best of…” article around for this week. Sports? Covered. Food? Taken. I had to look deeper than the usual fare: what was it about DC—and about WeLoveDC in particular—that I really enjoyed over the past year? I realized that one of the perks we have is the slew of interview opportunities we’re given for the site. So why not look at some of the more interesting interviews we’ve done over the course of 2011?

Often, I find that through the glimpse of someone else’s eyes and perspectives, we’re given a mirror to gaze into our own lives and see where we are, what we’re missing, and what we can hope to achieve. We wrote quite a few interviews and features on people who live, work, and/or visit the DC area this year and I wanted to take a moment and point out some of the ones that really stand out. I hope you take a moment to dive into these great features and either revisit some old friends, or find your own inspiration to make a better 2012. Continue reading

Entertainment, The Features, We Love Arts

Best Of: Theater 2011

Photo courtesy of thisisbossi
2011 07 16 – 6398 – Washington DC – Redrum at Fort Fringe
courtesy of thisisbossi

We Love DC authors Don, Patrick, Rachel and I may have different backgrounds in criticism and performance, and varying preferences for theatrical style, but we share a goal – to bring you our thoughtful, honest opinions on the passionate, challenging craft of live theater. Though the actual season calendar isn’t over yet, it’s time for the annual wrap-up of 2011. Here’s at look back at some of the highlights (and a few lowlights) of our theatrical year. Continue reading

The Daily Feed

News Channel 8 Christmas Special

Mike Conneen

Is there a worse assignment for a serious reporter than having to do live hits in a department store at 5am? Possibly, but only outside in the freezing cold, I suspect. Via Poynter’s Twitter account comes the video of News Channel 8′s Mike Conneen on Christmas Eve in the Tysons Macy’s, where he had some fun with the segment, doing some shopping for his studio anchors, including corduroy jeggings and a beautiful sequined bear hat. Watch the video and chuckle a little bit.

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capitals hockey, The Daily Feed

Caps Top Rangers 4-1

Photo courtesy of jennifer.walters
courtesy of jennifer.walters

Following a demoralizing loss to the Buffalo Sabres on Monday, the Washington Capitals came into tonight’s game desperate for a win. Rumors floated during the day that a Caps loss would lead to drastic action (read: trades). In what might be called a “character win,” the Caps put in a (mostly) complete effort against the Rangers and were rewarded with two points, leaving them at 18-15-2 on the season.
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Entertainment, Sports Fix, The Features

Should DC Really “Shut Up” About Andray Blatche?

Photo courtesy of Keith Allison
Nick Young and Andray Blatche
courtesy of Keith Allison

For most of the country the main headline coming out of the Washington Wizards’ first game of the season was the boos directed towards ex-Kardashian Kris Humphries. I feel bad for NBA fans and coaches who probably have no idea why Humphries is the most hated person in the league.

For DC and the rest of Wizards Nation, they saw yet another game slip through Washington’s hands as the Wiz went from a 37-16 lead over the Nets to a 84-90 defeat Monday night. The main Wizards headlines consisted of Andray Blatche being Andray Blatche in the locker room. After kicking off the game by addressing the crowd as the team’s “captain”, he ended the night addressing reporters in the locker room with complaints about the play-calling, telling reporters and Twitter that he needs the ball in the paint.

This isn’t the start the Wizards were looking for. Not only are fans already writing off the team as the one that hasn’t won more than 26 games in the past three years- but they are also growing tired of Blatche, who the team signed to a five-year extension back in September 2010. As for Blatche, he has one thing to say to the fans and media: shut up.

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The Daily Feed

Watch the Military Bowl on ESPN 3 today

Photo courtesy of mosley.brian
RFK Stadium – 05-07-11
courtesy of mosley.brian

Couldn’t get a seat to today’s matchup between Toledo and Air Force at RFK for this year’s Military Bowl presented by Northrup Grumman? That’s cool. ESPN 3 is broadcasting it live this afternoon over the Internet, so tune on in, those of you still stuck at the office.

Anatomy of a Scandal

Worst Of: The 2011 Political Scandals

Photo courtesy of stevelyon
courtesy of stevelyon

If 2011 has left us with any political message at all, it’s that the term annus horribilis has to be recalibrated now and again, just to be relevant to a new generation. 2011 begin with the inauguration of Mayor Vincent Gray, and saw a nearly uninterrupted run of DC political scandals. The sheer quantity, if not quality, of these scandals runs fairly deep into the WTF scale (similar to the Beaufort scale, the WTF scale is measured in the amount of “This Blows” that local citizenry experience.) and have left many disillusioned and remembering the Fenty Administration fondly.

While this list is hardly comprehensive, the sheer volume of scandals this year make it impossible to pare it down to a single article, these are the five worst of the local political scandals to have rocked the DC area in 2011.

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Food and Drink, The Features, We Love Food

We Love Food: Ripple

Pumpkin Soup at Ripple, Courtesy of Elizabeth Parker

I checked out Ripple when they first opened back in 2010, before there had been much buzz about it, before the restaurant expanded and back when it was one of those restaurants that I just had a good feeling about. The restaurant has changed chefs and menus through its almost two-year history, but one thing has remained a constant: the food.

One thing that stands out right away when you go to Ripple is the presentation. There are thoughtful details on each plate, such as the rouge pumpkin soup that’s poured at the table for a little added effect. The thick, bright soup goes with a somewhat unusual combination of eggplant, pine nuts, cippolini and squid, and somehow it all works well together. If you want to go for something a little heavier, try the mushroom risotto with the poached egg nestled on top. The runny egg yolk and tender mushrooms over a bowl of hot risotto make for great comfort food on a chilly day. And whereas other restaurants have little bites or snacks that are tasteless throwaways, the bacon-roasted pecans are addictive and pleasantly salty and smoky. If you go and the pork rillette is back on the menu, don’t pass it up.

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