Friday, December 21, 2012

The Lady's Leg

This week's Mixology Monday was themed around 'humbug', trying to create an anti-Christmas drink. I didn't have any particularly good ideas, but if by anti-Christmas, you mean an escape-your-relatives-boozy type of drink, this one will do it for you. It's named after the iconic lamp from A Christmas Story. This will be my last post until the new year. Merry Christmas!

Lady's Leg
3 oz Crabapple Schapps
1.5 oz Vanilla Vodka
.5 oz Allspice dram
.5 oz Maraschino Liqueur
dashes, mole bitters

Thursday, December 20, 2012

Small Plates: 12.20.12

Nouvelle Jewish cuisine mecca DGS Delicatessen now serves brunch. [Washingtonian]

Table is supposed to be opening by January 15th. [PoP]

Newton's Noodles, to be coming in May, has some new signage up. [PoP]

The owners of Silver Diner are looking at a new more upscale concept downtown called Silver. [Eater]

Wednesday, December 19, 2012


Cheesequake may be the most misnamed food truck I've been to. They serve Philly Cheesesteak sandwiches; when I went, they had three sorts. The Ali is a traditional cheesesteak, the Frazier is a chicken cheesesteak, and the Tyson is a pizza cheesesteak. They have a few topping options: lettuce, tomato, mayonnaise, grilled onions, grilled mushrooms, and grilled green peppers. It's not a bad cheesesteak, but it's basically inferior to Phillies Phamous DC Food Truck in every way. The bread is worse, there's less cheese, and the beef is not chopped as finely. There are also fewer topping options. I particularly missed the option of having banana peppers or jalapenos on the sandwich. It's a perfectly fine sandwich, but if you have the option, go to Phillies.

Small Plates: 12.19.12

Pravda, New Orleans

 Funky brewer "Right Proper" is also launching a draft only soda line. [Young & Hungry]

Rum/tiki bar Hogo, from Tom Brown, opened yesterday. [We Love DC]

Dupont restaurant Iron Gate is now aiming at an opening in March. [Eater]

This blog will be on vacation starting Saturday the 22nd until the end of the year. Happy Chanukah, Merry Christmas, and Happy New Year!

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Small Plates: 12.18.12

It must be almost New Year's: top ten lists have started emerging. [Washingtonian]

Mike Isabella is bringing pop-ups to Graffiato, starting with Adam Brick. [Young & Hungry]

Absolute Noodle will be opening in 2 or 3 weeks in Chinatown. [PoP]

Friday, December 14, 2012

Mari Vanna to open early next year

From an email:
According to Slavic legend, Mari Vanna was a fairytale grandmother known to welcome hungry travelers into her house. She would feed her guests a home-cooked meal before sending them back out on their voyage. In mid January, Russian hospitality powerhouse Ginza Project will bring this legend to life with the opening of Mari Vanna's second US location in the heart of downtown D.C. With an established reputation of excellence in authentic Russian cuisine in New York, London, Moscow and beyond, the capital's 6,500 square-foot eatery will be Mari Vanna's largest location in the world. Located at 1141 Connecticut Ave., NW, the hotspot finds its home in one of the district's most upscale locales. Just five blocks from the White House and steps away from the historic Mayflower Hotel, the new restaurant nestles perfectly between K Street's bustling business district and D.C.'s trendy Dupont Circle neighborhood. 
Although the restaurant has plans to add various DC-centric menu items, a few Russian specialties won't change from the other Mari Vanna locations. Classic menu offerings range from cold appetizers such as pickled vegetables, salt-cured pork and black caviar to hot appetizers such as pirozhok, blinis and hand-made Russian dumplings. Delectable entree options will include Mari Vanna's world famous beef stroganoff, chicken kotletki and fishcakes.
 Apparently this space used to be leased by Randstad.

Small Plates: 12.14.12

Lupo Verde is the Italian restaurant coming to 14th and T from the people behind Ulah. [Young & Hungry]

Another Italian restaurant is rumored to be coming to 12th and U from the Biergarten Haus folks. [PoP]

Mad Momos opened this week in Columbia Heights, with an eclectic menu. [Young & Hungry]

Bond villain lair turned bar Heist is having an opening bash today in Dupont. [Borderstan]

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Small Plates: 12.11.12

Yet another commercial brewery, Atlas Brew Works, is coming to DC. [DCist]

Don't feel like lobster rolls in December? Luke's Lobster has a winter menu. [PoP]

Tom Brown, c-owner of Passenger, is planning on opening a rum bar called Hogo. [Young & Hungry]

And a summary of the early reports on Hanoi House, Vietnamese food from the Hilton bros. [Eater]

Monday, December 10, 2012

The Howdini

It's apparently winter time here. I noticed because my neck keeps crying out for a scarf when I'm biking to work. And winter means maltier drinks. I was biking home, and my neck was suggesting I really needed some Genever when I got home. For some reason, it occurred to me to try Genever mixed with Averna. My Google search indicated that this wasn't a horrible idea, but the specific suggestions were, well, less than entirely specific. One of the results was a tweet from @howdiniguru that just read "@BolsGenever, Averna amaro, agave, peychaud's bitters, absinthe rinse. ... #cocktailBijou pour embrasser mon #défiWCW avec @BolsGenever ! @frmonti ..." The original tweet, and the context, has been lost to history, but the concept seemed sound.

The maltiness of the Genever provides a really nice, warming base. But the amaro helps give it a bit more definition, and the absinthe gives it depth. The Genever is, I think, important though. I don't think gin would be able to stand up to the Averna, and whiskey would be a bit too much. I used maple syrup instead of the agave, but there's not really enough to give it more than a hint of flavor. I'm curious about how different bitters would affect this cocktail. It seems that it's just the sort of balanced where different bitters could result in different, very good, drinks.

Small Plates: 12.10.12

Absolute Noodle looks close to opening on 5th near Chinatown. [The 42]

Nage hires Miles Vaden, formerly of Fiola and Eventide. Nice heritage! [Young & Hungry]

Capitol Hill restauranteur Xavier Cervera considering selling his nine restaurants. [PoP]

Gordon Biersch is planning on opening a huge new restaurant near Navy Yard. [PoP]

Friday, December 7, 2012

Small Plates: 12.07.12

After months of struggling, Ray's East River is out of business. [DCist]

Mi Cocina Tex Mex is coming to Friendship Heights. They're originally from Dallas. [PoP]

Palena alum Jonathan Copeland was tapped to be the chef at Ghibellina. [Young & Hungry]

Taqueria Nacional is moving to 14th and T, hopefully to open by the end of January. [Borderstan]

Thursday, December 6, 2012

PS7s possibly becoming South American Steakhouse

Rumors have circulated for months about whether PS7s was closing, and if so, what would become of it. It's been pretty clear for at least the last month that it was closing, but until now, there hasn't been much information. Today the Washington Post reported that it would be replaced by "Del Campo," a South American restaurant focusing on the pleasures of the grill. The chef behind it is suggested to be Victor Albisu, former chef at BLT Steak and Taco Bamba. However, there's still no word from PS7's chef-owner Peter Smith. [Washington Post]

New Orleans: Oyster Crawl

Not sure where this is.
On our second to last day in New Orleans, we spent the afternoon on an oyster crawl. We had been to a couple places for oysters, but none that really wowed us, so we thought we'd try a bunch of places and figure out who had the best oysters in the French Quarter. Bourbon House's were surprisingly good, but Royal House won out.

Bourbon House

Royal House

Small Plates: 12.06.12

Check out the menu at Beuchert's Saloon, reincarnation of an 19th century pub. [Young & Hungry]

In case you have families like mine, here's how to make cocktails for a flask. [Serious Eats]

A&D, a restaurant/bar in Shaw, opened last night. It's from the owners of Sundevich. [Young & Hungry]

New Pho 14 outpost in Adams Morgan promises they're opening next week. [PoP]

I promise I'll do an oyster crawl post later today.

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Small Plates: 12.05.12

H & Pizza will be opening a new spot this spring on U St. [Young & Hungry]

Bryan Voltaggio's new restaurant, Range, will open December 18th in Friendship Heights. [PoP]

Sprig & Sprout just opened in Glover Park. They serve Vietnamese food. [Washingtonian]

Yo! Sushi is underway in Chinatown. [The 42]

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Absinthe Beer!

Photo by Eddie Kim, on flickr

Right now, you can get a draft of absinthe beer at Churchkey. Felt I should share.


Small Plates: 12.04.12

Mad Momo's, American food by way of the Himalayas, is opening December 11th. [New Columbia Heights]

Finally, a location for Astro Doughnuts and Fried Chicken: 13th and G NW. [PoP]

Domaine Name offers a place to store your wine, for the space-challenged. [Urban Daddy]

Monday, December 3, 2012

Christmas Ales from a bad elf

One of my favorite things about the now-defunct gastropub Commonwealth was that, every December, they'd have the bad elf series of beers from Ridgeway brewing. There are five: Bad Elf, Very Bad Elf, Seriously Bad Elf, Criminally Bad Elf, and Insanely Bad Elf. I hadn't seen them anywhere else, until this year, when U St Beer & Wine had a four pack that included Bad Elf, and then I saw most of the rest at Cork & Fork. I had to do a vertical tasting.

It was interesting. I don't think any of these are beers you should take too seriously, but the price point reflects that. They vary in style -- Bad Elf is a golden ale, and Very Bad Elf is a more premium version of the same beer. Seriously Bad Elf is, despite the coloration, quite similar to a Belgian Dubbel, and Criminally Bad Elf is similar to a Barleywine. As an amateur beer connoisseur, I'm not going to comment on how authentic any of these beers were, but I'll just say that I don't like barleywines generally, but I like Criminally Bad Elf.

None of these are really exemplars of their style. But I think they're pretty great. They get a lot of points for the amusing packaging, and they're all decent beers. Even if it's not the best thing ever, there's nothing like drinking a criminally bad elf to get you in the holiday spirit.

Small Plates: 12.03.12

It looks like PS7s is probably really, truly closed. It'll be missed. [Young & Hungry]

The long-awaited Solly's expansion opened over the weekend. [PoP]

Local hotspot The Pinch has karaoke on Tuesdays, trivia on Wednesdays. [New Columbia Heights]

Repeal Day 2012 is this Wednesday; celebrate at one of these fine establishments. [Eater]