Music, Night Life, The Features, We Love Music

We Love Music: Chinese Disco Soft Opening–8/7/14

chinesediscoFrom 1977 to 1986, one of the most infamous places in DC to boogey down was in the basement of an unlikely location—a Chinese restaurant called the Day Lily, then located at 2142 Pennsylvania Ave. NW.

Thursday night, the Chinese Disco, as it was known after dark, returned to DC. With the blessing of the founders of the original night, a bar formerly known as the George has dubbed itself Chinese Disco at 3251 Prospect St. NW, and launched weekend dance parties sure to bring a little more indie dance spirit to Georgetown (a neighborhood sorely long lacking in dance spots).

By any measure, the well-orchestrated soft opening party was a success. More than 700 people signed up for the guest list, which was managed electronically at the door. The large crowd was ready to dance, and dance they did to the likes of Iggy Azalea’s “Fancy,” DJ Snake and Lil Jon’s “Turn Down for What,” and even the Spice Girls.

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Georgetown, Life in the Capital, People, WTF?!

Bro Can’t Take The Heat, Jumps Into Georgetown Waterfront Fountain (Video)

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It’s been a hot weekend. As someone whose air conditioning unit is currently on the fritz, I can understand if the heat can drive people to do some rather stupid stuff. My friend Mark witnessed such an act yesterday while enjoying some drinks at Tony & Joe‘s on the Georgetown Waterfront.

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Food and Drink, The Daily Feed

Porc it Out People

Photo courtesy of pablo.raw
PTL! courtesy of pablo.raw

By now, you are probably familiar with my absolute love of all things Pork. I just can’t quit the bacon, man. So when I saw that Bourbon Steak, the upscale Georgetown meat haven, was having a PORC OUT I obviously had to share, so you and I can bond over the piggy together. On Sunday, August 19, 2012 from 12 – 3 PM, Bourbon Steak will host a pig roast on the restaurant’s patio, featuring a range of pig-centric dishes, including slow-roasted pork shoulder tacos, assorted pork sausages from Red Apron and crispy Thai style pork ribs. The side dishes are worth the trip alone: think grilled corn on the cob with lime butter, baked beans, jalapeno-cheddar cornbread, and seasonal salads. In case you don’t go pig (I don’t know you) there is also an entire oyster bar courtesy of the War Shore Oyster Company you can indulge in. No good pig roast goes without some sugar. The restaurant will also be featuring a dessert table that will include housemade soft serve sundaes, cookies and spiked watermelon (ah, for the love of booze).

Tickets to this lardy affair are priced at $50 for food, $60 for food and drink and $40 for children 12 and under, inclusive of tax and gratuity. Get your Pork on here.

Oh, and one more thing. Because you can never have enough pork, or beer, or patios, Bourbon Steak will be again debuting their “Dog Days of Summer” special — an off-menu Red Apron Butchery hot dog and pint of Port City beer for just $9 bucks. This Dog Day offer is available at the bar and lounge Monday-Thursday from 11:30 AM – 11:00 PM and Sunday from 5:30 PM – 11:00 throughout the month of August.

Now, get with the pork-gram.

Food and Drink, The Daily Feed

19th Annual Taste of Georgetown on June 2

Courtesy of ThreeLockharts Public Relations

Thirty restaurants, 60 dishes and five hours to make your way down Wisconsin Avenue at the 19th annual Taste of Georgetown. Restaurants from the neighborhood, such as Baked & Wired, Filomena Ristorante and Thunder Burger, will offer up various savory and sweet dishes. In the end, a panel of judges, including new-kid-on-the-M-street-block, Mike Isabella, will pick winners for five categories: best overall dish, best use of seasonal ingredients, best vegetarian dish, best meat dish and best dessert.

Tickets can be purchased online and are $5 for one tasting or $20 for five tastings, $10 for three drinks or $4 for one drink. Proceeds will go to the Georgetown Ministry Center, an organization and shelter aiming to reduce homelessness in DC. Taste of Georgetown runs from 11 am – 4 pm on Saturday, June 2.

Food and Drink, The Daily Feed

FREE FOOD ALERT: Sprinkles Cupcakes in Georgetown

Sprinkles brings back Mini Cupcakes!
Courtesy of Sprinkles Cupcakes

Go ahead and have your cake and eat it. Sprinkles Cupcakes is giving out one free cupcake per person today from 9 AM to 9 PM to celebrate their one year anniversary. If you happen to be there from 4 to 5 PM, you’ll also get to shake hands with their co-founder and executive pastry chef and Food Network Cupcake Wars judge, Candace Nelson.

We’re guessing that there will be more than one large line for cupcakes in Georgetown tomorrow. Good luck and head over early.

Sprinkles Cupcakes is located at 3015 M Street, NW, Washington, DC, 20007.

Capital Chefs, Food and Drink, Penn Quarter, The Features

Capital Chefs: Mike Isabella of Graffiato (Part 1)

Photo courtesy of bonappetitfoodie
Mike Isabella of Graffiato
courtesy of bonappetitfoodie

Chef Mike Isabella describes himself as intense, focused and driven. And at first you might be intimidated by the tattoos or the serious face when he asks a line cook about a certain dish, not to mention his culinary prowess that landed him on Top Chef and as a runner-up on Top Chef All Stars. But then you mention you’re both from New Jersey or make an astute comment about a dish, and right away the ice is broken, the conversation is off to a start and you wonder how anyone could describe the chef as anything but affable and welcoming.

Like many of the chefs I talk to, Isabella started cooking at a young age just by keeping busy in the kitchen with this grandmother. “I loved the smell of her cooking. Helping her kept me occupied,” he said. From there, becoming a chef was a no-brainer. “This was the only thing I wanted to do. So I knew I couldn’t fail and I worked my ass off.”

The northern Jersey native started out at The Restaurant School in New York, followed by a stint in Philadelphia working with the likes of Stephen Starr, Jose Garces and Marcus Samuelsson. After Philadelphia, Isabella moved to Atlanta to work at a greek restaurant, Kyma, before coming to DC to be the executive chef at Jose Andres’ Zaytinya for three years. Today, you probably know Isabella best from Top Chef and from Graffiato, his Italian restaurant he opened in Chinatown this past summer. “I had grown up in New Jersey, went to New York and then Philly and Atlanta, but I couldn’t find the right fit for me,” Isabella says. In a goldilocks-esque moment, it turned out that DC was just right for the chef. “DC is the perfect size,” he says, adding that the farms in the area are a huge asset. “This city sticks together. We all [in the culinary scene] support one another and make each other better. Chefs here always welcome new people with open arms.” Continue reading

Food and Drink, Foodie Roundup, The Daily Feed


Photo courtesy of cherrylet
courtesy of cherrylet

We love lining up for things: burgers (hello Shake Shack), cupcakes, food trucks, and of course, fro-yo. When the Los Angeles-based Pinkberry opened up its first store in DC back in May, fans lined Connecticut Avenue in Dupont Circle to get a taste of the icy, tart yogurt. The hard decision to make here is which of the 30 possible toppings to go for.

Now, get a cup for free! Pinkberry is opening its second DC proper (and fifth DC area) locale in Georgetown tomorrow, and is swirling away free yogurt today from noon to 4pm.

So, head to 3288 M Street, NW. After all, what else are you supposed to do in the days when work starts winding down and everyone else is heading out of town? If you want to stand in another line after getting your yogurt, just go across the street to Georgetown Cupcake.

Food and Drink, Foodie Roundup, Penn Quarter, The Daily Feed, We Love Food

We Love Food: Quick Update on Restaurant Happenings

Photo courtesy of
‘America Eats Tavern- Washington, DC’
courtesy of ‘Plantains & Kimchi’

For those of you who avidly follow the food scene, this all might be old news. But to those of you who don’t eat, sleep and drink DC food coverage, here’s a little roundup on some of the latest restaurant happenings around DC.

Have no fear about not getting to José Andrés’ America Eats Tavern in time before it closes. The restaurant announced that it will be staying open through July 4, 2012–closing exactly a year after it first opened this past summer. Don’t forget that the “What’s Cooking Uncle Sam?” exhibit, which served as inspiration for the restaurant concept and of which Andrés is the chief culinary advisor to, will close on January 3rd.

In “ancient” news by classic journalistic standards, Mike Isabella is opening a restaurant in the former Hook space in Georgetown. Hook and its sister restaurant, Tackle Box, had been closed since a fire in late June. Eater DC has a full recap of the drama behind how the story of Isabella’s new restaurant broke. All of that aside, Bandolero will be a “modern Mexican small-plates concept,” with dishes such as salsas, ceviches, tacos, and Isabella’s version of fajitas, according to a news release. Bandolero is set to open in early 2012.

Staying in the Georgetown area, PAUL Bakery has launched a second location in DC, which officially opened its doors on November 21st. The french bakery has enough seating for 30 to 40 patrons in Georgetown, or you can just grab a baguette to go seven days a week. PAUL had opened its first DC location in May 2011.

And lastly, unlike the other news about restaurant openings, The Washington Post reported that Ba Bay in Eastern Market closed its doors. As Tim Carman reported, Ba Bay closed “due to circumstances beyond our [the owner's] control.” No word on whether owners and cousins Denise Nguyen and Khoa Nguyen will open another Vietnamese-style restaurant or another Ba Bay elsewhere.

Alexandria, Dupont Circle, Food and Drink, The Daily Feed, We Love Food

Pizzeria Paradiso Celebrates 20 Years

Photo courtesy of
‘Pizzeria Paradiso’
courtesy of ‘afagen’

There’s an old friend in town who’s turning 20 next week: Pizzeria Paradiso.

Back in November 1991, the pizzeria opened its first location in Dupont Circle and over its history has not only revamped the original spot, but expanded to Georgetown and Old Town Alexandria. Not too shabby of an accomplishment for a local small business, right?

“When Pizzeria Paradiso was created, the things motivating it were community, laughter and tasty food,” said chef and owner Ruth Gresser in a news release. “We were all so excited when our first customers entered the restaurant a few minutes after we unlocked the front door. And now, we’re so happy to reach our ’20 Something’ anniversary so we can celebrate by eating and laughing with our family of customers and staff.”

In honor of its 20th birthday, the restaurant is hosting a week of events as part of their “20 Something” Celebration:

  • Monday, November 7th – Get one large and one small pizza for $20 on take-out orders only.
  • Tuesday, November 8th – Receive a 20th anniversary beer glass when you purchase a beer with your meal. The 8th is the restaurant’s official birthday.
  • Wednesday, November 9th – Pay $20 for all you can eat pizza and beer (note: you can eat all the pizza you want, but there’s 2 beer maximum).
  • Thursday, November 10th – Pay $20 for a small special pizza and an anniversary beer.
  • Friday, November 11th – Your first beer is just 20 cents.
  • Saturday, November 12th – Dine in at a location and pay just 20 cents for toppings (note: 3 toppings maximum)
  • Sunday, November 13th – Round out the week with “20 Free Pizzas” Family/Kids Day from 1-4 PM. Kids can be part of a make your own pizza demonstration with owner/chef Ruth Gresser and the first 20 kid’s pizzas are free (note: Old Town location only).

Plus, Pizzeria Paradiso will be hosting a trivia contest on their Facebook pages (GeorgetownOld TownDupont) with $20 gift certificate prizes twice per day. And their lucky 2,000th Twitter follower will receive three $20 gift certificates, one for each location.

Congratulations and happy birthday to Pizzeria Paradiso for serving up tasty slices to DC for 20 years!

Adventures, Entertainment, Essential DC, Food and Drink, Life in the Capital, News, Special Events, The Daily Feed

Ginormous Cupcake Spotted At Georgetown Waterfront

Photo courtesy of
‘The Cupcakes For The Humans ~ Yummy’
courtesy of ‘Dan Dan The Binary Man’

Georgetown Cupcake has unveiled the world’s largest cupcake for the Guinness Book of World Records at the Washington Harbour.  Post record keeping/awarding administration, the 1000 lb cupcake will be sliced up, so head on down there for a taste of the world’s largest cupcake while it lasts.

Business and Money, Fashionable DC, Life in the Capital, News, The Features, Ward 2

Brooks Brothers Opens On Georgetown Strip

This year’s latest addition to the Georgetown shopping scene is New York based Brooks Brothers which takes over the former Pottery Barn and Smith Hawken spaces on the corner of M & 31st Street NW. When I attended their grand opening party last week, I had completely underestimated how large this combined location would be. The new store offers three floors of retail space filled with ready-to wear suits, sports jackets, wool sweaters, shirts, etc.

Unlike other two DC Brooks Brother stores I’ve been to (Chevy Chase and Dupont), which have a prim, proper and country club-esque sterility to them, the Georgetown Brooks Brothers is a complete departure; the shop plays heavily on a hunting lodge or Adirondack cabin vibe with dark wood paneling, heavy uses of flannel and tweed fabrics in the drapery, carpeting and upholstery. On the lower level, you’ll find a pool table and bar lounging area that companion shoppers can relax in while tailoring takes place. Continue reading

Food and Drink, The Daily Feed

Chef News: 1789 Gets New Executive Chef, Anthony Lombardo

Photo courtesy of
‘embossed menu’
courtesy of ‘philliefan99′

As I previously wrote, 1789 lost its long-time executive chef, Dan Giusti. The restaurant announced that Anthony Lombardo is taking the helm as the new executive chef. According to a news release, Lombardo was most recently the executive sous chef at Casa Nonna and like his predecessor, was also a graduate of the Culinary Institute of America. In addition to having worked at the Italian eatery in Dupont Circle, Lombardo was the chef de cuisine at Bacco Ristorante in Southfield, Michigan for four years.

Lombardo has already started in the kitchen, so it should be interesting to see how the menu will change in the coming months.

Special Events

Fashion Goes Out in Georgetown on September 8th

Photo courtesy of
‘Fashion Week’
courtesy of ‘kineyas’

Fashion’s Night Out, the global retail and fashion event now it its third year, is what a “Hands Across America” might be if it were more Blahnik than Birkenstocks. On the same night around the world, shops stay open late and host parties, feature designers, and generally contribute to getting people out on their city’s local high streets to shop in person, particularly supporting local retail and independent design.

In the DC area, there are some FNO events taking place at Tysons Corner and Union Station, but the greatest concentration of activity will be around Georgetown.

Last year, the businesses in Georgetown decided to host the first FNO in DC – and they found that the event was so successful that they are doing even more this year. Georgetown’s FNO has an official website which lists each of the events and participating venues. There are over 90 shops, restaurants, and businesses already signed up to participate with more joining on as the date draws more nigh.
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Business and Money, Essential DC, Fashionable DC, Life in the Capital, The District, The Features

CB2 Fall Line: Space May Be Limited, But It Can Still Be Chic


Continuing on the heels of my Etsy Round Up: Washington DC feature apartment decorating finds, I ventured over the CB2 in Georgetown recently to check out their Fall 2011 collection. The latest and greatest from this Create&Barrel and Land of Nod, “affordable” sister shop centers on providing innovative, space saving options for DC’s small apartment, loft and efficiency occupants.  Although that is not a revolutionary concept (see IKEA, West Elm, etc.) and was not chosen to meet the particular needs of DC urban dwellers, it is well executed. Continue reading

Food and Drink, The Daily Feed

Chef News: Dan Giusti of 1789 Heads to Denmark

Photo courtesy of
‘Barely mixing the dough’
courtesy of ‘CathyLovesDC’

As Tim Carman and The Washington Post reported yesterday, executive chef Dan Giusti of 1789 is packing his bags for Denmark. The 27-year-old chef is heading to work at Noma, a two Michelin star restaurant in Copenhagen. The restaurant has been listed as “the best” restaurant in the world for two years in a row by Restaurant Magazine.

According to The Post, Dan spent two weeks staging at Noma in July when he was told that there might be an opening there for him to come join their team. One thing led to another and now the chef is moving to Denmark. Dan will be staying at 1789 through August 28th.

Dan was the first chef I met in DC when I started writing about food and was still green on the restaurant scene. I always liked chatting with him at events when he would indulge any of my snarky comments about food and I liked to see a fellow New Jerseyan be successful in DC. No doubt Dan’s passion for food is what’s taking him to Noma, though DC will miss him. Best of luck, chef!

Food and Drink, Foodie Roundup, The Features, We Love Food

We Love Food: DC Eats for August

Photo courtesy of
‘Cafe Atlantico’
courtesy of ‘needlessspaces’
Put on your elastic waistband pants, people. There’s plenty to eat and do in the city for the next few weeks. So click on through and you’ll find where you should be wining and dining this month.
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The Daily Feed

Update on Yesterday’s Fire at Hook/Tacklebox

Photo courtesy of
‘Georgetown Fire’
courtesy of ‘brownpau’

As we reported yesterday, a fire broke out at Hook and Tackle Box restaurants in Georgetown in the early afternoon. According to a media release that was circulated last night, the cause of the fire is still undetermined, but it’s believed that the fire started on the loading dock behind Hook.  The owner of the restaurants, Jonatahan Umbel, is waiting for results from the DCFD’s official investigation of the fire.

There is no specific date for when the restaurants might re-open.

Umbel gave a statement in the media release: “The most important thing to me is that our patrons and staff are safe and no one was harmed. We want to thank the DC fire department, which was quick and responsive to prevent any injuries to our staff, neighbors and diners. Unfortunately, both Hook and Tackle Box Georgetown are going to be closed for repairs indefinitely. We will be working feverishly to repair the buildings to have them open for business for our loyal patrons. During this difficult time, Tackle Box’s Cleveland Park location will be open for business and we ask our fans to support our brand so that we may be back on our feet in Georgetown soon.”

On behalf of We Love DC, our thoughts go out to Umbel and his staff at Hook and Tackle Box.

The Daily Feed

Fire Breaks out at Hook in Georgetown

Photo courtesy of
courtesy of ‘brownpau’

A fire broke out at Hook in Georgetown this afternoon. DC firefighters have already extinguished the blaze and reported no injuries. According the DCfireems Twitter account, there is smoke and water damage to Hook’s sister restaurant, Tacklebox and the Saloun.

The Georgetowner tweeted earlier, “According to sources, Fire behind Tackle Box and Hook started from still lit cigarette butt… #georgetown DC.” The source of the fire has not been confirmed.

According to Paulo Ordoveza, a photographer for We Love DC, when he arrived on the scene “DCFD was breaking the upstairs windows at Hook to let smoke out.” He spoke with some of the Hook and Tacklebox staff who said that the fire didn’t start in Hook, rather it started in the structure directly behind the restaurant. Both Tacklebox and Hook were damaged in the fire.

As of 1:40 PM, M street NW remains closed from the Key bridge down Wisconsin Avenue.

The Daily Feed

CB2 Georgetown Opens Tomorrow

The newest location of “affordable modern” furniture and homegoods chain CB2 opens in Georgetown on Saturday, April 30th. This is the ninth location for the Crate & Barrel offshoot and the first in the Washington area.

Catering primarily to a younger demographic with a bright, modern style, CB2 keeps prices considerably lower than its sister chain and makes a point to scale furniture for more compact, apartment-sized living spaces.
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