Food and Drink, The Daily Feed

This Week in Food

Photo courtesy of
‘Ray’s Hell-Burger’
courtesy of ‘KentonNgo’
It’s been quite a busy week in food!

The food truck/cupcake/small business/personal quest (?) wars continue…and get quite strange indeed. Read Sprinklegate turns food truck war in The Washington Examiner.

Are you always arguing with friends about which burger joint in DC is actually the best? Well, Food & Wine picks two DC restaurants for us as part of its “Best Burgers in DC” slideshow. Their picks: Ray’s Hell Burger in Arlington (shocking) and Palena Café.

Agora is adding a new fixed price, three-course lunch menu at $14.99 per person Monday through Friday from 11 AM until 3 PM. You can pick Turkish and Greek inspired dishes like grilled ground lamb and beef kebab with sumac onions & Baklava, along with a choice of non-alcoholic beverage. 

If you really follow chef moves, Top Chef Finalist Carla Hall joins DC Central Kitchen’s Board of Directors. DCCK is also looking to start a Truck Farm. Curious? Find out more here

Executive Chef Brian McBride has tapped Eric Fleischer as the New Chef de Cuisine of the Award-Winning Blue Duck Tavern. Most recently, Fleischer worked as chef de cuisine at Zola in Penn Quarter.

Speaking of PQ, accoring to Penn Quarter Insider, Hill Country BBQ opens on Saturday (or maybe the 17th?). So check it out one of those days or go to U Street’s newest sports bar, Touchdown. TBD reports that Touchdown opened its doors Tuesday in the former space of Momo’s Sports Bar. The bar shows-off old photographs of the Washington Senators from the 1924 World Series.

Happy eating!

Food and Drink, Penn Quarter, The Features, We Love Drinks, We Love Food

A New Menu for Zola

Poire cocktail by the Wilder Brothers at Zola. Photo courtesy Stir Food Group.

It’s hard to imagine but it’s been eight years since Zola first opened back in the former culinary wasteland then being redeveloped around the Verizon Center. I remember being so excited about the wittily gorgeous space and enjoying a few cocktails and dinner before it fell off my radar. Last night I was invited to attend a press dinner to sample the new chef’s tasting table and beverage programs. With the other foodies at WLDC being laid low by colds, and intrigued by the release of the cocktail menu from Wilder Bros Craft, I headed over to see what has changed. I’m happy to report that the revamp is very tasty and I’ll definitely return on my own dime.

The interior space is still the same spy motif as before, a bit refreshed but left mostly untouched – and funnily enough that look seems modern again, probably because of the Mad Men influenced retro revival. Food-wise, chef Bryan Moscatello’s offerings are now split between a modern American bistro menu for the bar and front seating area, and a chef’s tasting room menu for the back. The latter features a choice between either three courses ($55) or five courses ($69), and it was this menu that I sampled last night, paired with wines chosen by the delightful wine and spirits director Malia Milstead. There’s even a new dessert menu created by pastry chef Reggie Abalos.

But of course, since it’s me, we’ll start off with drinks. Ari and Micah Wilder of Wilder Bros Craft have designed a very lovely craft cocktail menu featuring historical flair by using old fashioned techniques such as gomme syrup. You’ll often see gomme syrup mentioned in old cocktail books – Micah kindly explained the process.

It starts with sap. Continue reading

Food and Drink

Time Out: Yoga for Foodies

Yoga for Foodies

David Romanelli leads a yoga pose. Photo credit: Lindley Thornburg

When you go to an event called “Yoga for Foodies,” it’s hard to know just what to expect. Is someone going to pop a chocolate-dipped strawberry in your mouth as you strike a triangle pose? Is it going to be pretentious? And most of all, are you going to have to sit in a fancy restaurant in your yoga clothes, all sweaty after an hour of backbends and other contortions?

Thankfully, at last Friday’s event at Zola with David Romanelli, the answer to all those questions was no. The food followed the class, the atmosphere was relaxing, dinner was served in a private space near the yoga floor, and the class was calm enough to leave us un-mussed. Whew.

What Romanelli delivered was a time-out, a chance to stretch quietly after a busy week, lie on the floor, and really listen to him. His mission, he said, was simple: To help us slow down and savor life.
Continue reading

The Daily Feed, We Green DC

Yum Yum Yoga

Photo courtesy of
‘one (final version) (#117)’
courtesy of ‘j / f / photos’

Tomorrow night, you’ve an option to get very relaxed and happy, when a Yoga for Foodies event comes to Zola.

David Romanelli, who co-founded Yoga + Chocolate, will lead a one-hour flowing yoga class, to stretch your consciousness and your tummy for the three-course dinner that will follow. The menu is chock full of fresh, local, seasonal food, such as an oyster salad, dandelion greens, and strawberry and rhubarb gratin.

His plan is to make you aware of what you’re eating, where it comes from, and how it makes you feel. Which likely will be mmm, mmm good.

Eat Like Me, The Features

Eat Like Me: April’s Best Dishes

Photo courtesy of
‘veggie roll’
courtesy of ‘Ag-Images’

I usually use this intro text in Eat Like Me to pontificate ($10 word! I win!) on what part of dining out in DC I’ve been thinking most about recently. This month I’ve been thinking more about styles of restaurants.

I would be the wrong person to be food editor if I didn’t say that I love every kind of restaurant, and have an affection for most styles of restaurants. I can get behind a chinatown hole in the wall, and love a simple stainless steel tea kettle just as much as I can get behind a Georgetown patio with fire pits and fancy cocktails. I’ve been mostly thinking about what draws me in and makes me love a place more than another.

I think it’s in the details. (For me, most things are in the details.) I think about the places that I love eternally – Againn, Et Voila!, Westend Bistro, and have been trying to figure out what strings them together, aside from the obvious good food. At Againn, aside from the seasonal, thoughtful food, I love the details of the restaurant – the tiles that line the walls are the same tiles used in the London Underground. The fox and hound door knockers on the bathroom are something I make sure to point out to anyone who goes to Againn with me. And the details bring me back to Et Voila!, too. They serve coffee with steamed milk, and wrap fries in newsprint. The skylight adds sunlight and charm. Westend Bistro’s pass lets me take a look into the belly of the operation, and makes me appreciate the work that goes into the food. I’m starting to believe it’s the little things that bring me back to a place time and time again. It’s the little things that make me answer my most hated question of “What is your favorite restaurant” with a different answer each time.

This month the details were where it’s at. Birch and Barley’s pastries, an addition of wasabi to mashed potatoes at Zentan, and the perfect whipped frosting on a Georgetown Cupcake. Lovely, subtle details are available at every type of restaurant, but here are the best of the best of April. Continue reading

Food and Drink, Penn Quarter, The Daily Feed

Mad Hungry? Hooks Books Event at Zola Fills You Up

Photo courtesy of
‘Artomatic 2009 Kerrin’s Appetizers’
courtesy of ‘Mr. T in DC’

Zola Wine & Kitchen is hosting a Cookbook Author Series with this Thursday’s author being Lucinda Scala Quinn, formally the food editor of Martha Stewart Living Television.

On November 12 from 6:00 p.m. – 8:00 p.m., the nationally renowned culinary author will discuss her new book, Mad Hungry: Feeding Men and Boys, and will offer culinary demonstrations.

Tickets are priced at $75 per person and include a copy of her new release, along with appetizers showcasing the published recipes and two glasses of wine per person. Guests for the evening also receive a 10% discount on wine purchases from its wine shop during the event. Continue reading

Food and Drink, Night Life

Happy Hour Food: Health Kick

Photo courtesy of
courtesy of ‘marciadc’

A few weeks ago, I put together a happy hour food guide for particularly yummy fried food in the DC area. This was easy. Almost too easy, if you will, because every bar in the world has fried happy hour food, most of it yummy because it’s fried. Duh.

So I decided to stretch my skillz, and put together a list of healthy happy hour food for those of us doing Operation Hot Summer Bod 2009, or just those of us who like to eat on the lighter, healthier side.  Cause there is still delicious food to be had at happy hour, just without the added saturated fat. Continue reading

Foodie Roundup, The Daily Feed

Foodie Round-Up (April 6-10th)

roasted lamb to go

Zaytinya’s Roast Lamb To-Go for Greek Easter

As everyone is gearing up for big Easter meals, the foodie world has been a bit slow with forthcoming news. But there’s still some good stuff to report on, including one piece of news that makes me green with envy, so click on through for all the news fit to eat in the District this week… Continue reading