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Found 822 results

  1. I'm curious to hear peoples' takes on the Corcoran Gallery of Art and its closure. Above all else, I think that last year's dissolution of the Corcoran is the single-biggest loss to hit Washington, DC since ... when? The College of Art and Design, the $200 million Beaux Arts Building, and $50 million in cash went to George Washington University - does anyone have a well-written backstory as to *why* this already-rich college got such an enormous windfall? The 17,000 artworks, valued at $2 billion, were given to the National Gallery of Art. While I think that's wonderful, it also justifies a new building - are there any plans to either buy or construct one? The Corcoran collection could be a huge draw for whatever location they decide to put it in - from Feb 7, 2015 through May 3, 2015, three galleries in the NGA West Building were jam-packed with Corcoran treasures, and while this was certainly a treat for NGA visitors, something must be done in the long term in order to give these works of art their proper due. How much would something like this mean, for example, to Prince George's County? It would certainly lure me and my wallet out that way.
  2. I checked the dining guide and couldn't find a listing, but I wanted to make a mention of Thailand on Royal in Old Town Alexandria. The restaurant has just moved into a larger location on Fairfax Street, just across from Perks, and their expansion in this economy is a testament to their consistently solid performance. The food is very good and the service is attentive, and we think they are the best Thai option in our part of NoVa. I usually get one of two dishes here, the drunkard's noodles or the panang curry. The noodles are searingly hot and beautifully spiced with plenty of basil. The panang curry has a lovely depth and is exceptionally fragrant with kaffir lime leaves (no skimping on the pricey ingredients). They will also make this dish with tofu and/or vegetables, options that I don't think are on the menu, but have been suggested by our server and make for a nice lighter lunch. Mr. lperry loves the chicken kaprow, spiced minced chicken, and they always make it just how he wants it, on the mild side. We eat out a great deal, and this restaurant is the only one in the area where we have never had a bad meal. Not once. And that's with a minimum of one visit a week. The worst thing that has happened was the appearance of anemic tomatoes in the drunkard's noodles during the off season, but this phenomenon is not restricted to this restaurant. We'll keep going.
  3. The fridge, cabinets and freezer are excrutiatingly low on supplies right now, so the other night it was Doctor Delivery to the rescue. I wanted Thai or Mexican so I was scoping out the selections for the best options sans gluten. Decided to give El Ranchero a try since it had been a while and the menu clearly stated what had corn tortillas versus flour and a lot of the options were with corn, yay! We put in an order and when it arrived there was a bag of fresh hot corn chips and salsa, which I guess comes with every order. The chips were awesome and the salsa was really spicy, a little chunky and pretty good. A nice unexpected addition. I had one of the specials with a spinach and chicken enchilada and beef chalupa. I really liked the dressed lettuce on the chalupa, I put some on my enchilada, as well. The chalupa had gotten a bit soggy in the delivery on the bottom, but the flavors were still very good. The rice with the enchilada was well seasoned, Hubby thought his was a little underdone, but I liked mine and thought it was just right. Enchilada was good, the sauce needed a little kick, but most places do as many people in this area don't like spice as much as me. I believe it was a Ranchero sauce. But overall really good and they had good packaging for delivery and had everything we ordered which is a plus. Anyway it was good, probably would have been better if you had it at the restaurant. I always love the decor of this place when I go, it is cheesy in a good way.
  4. I can't complain about another new restaurant opening in Brookland. Keep 'em coming! Little Ricky's is actually doing a two weekend soft opening before the general opening in December. It is on the main stretch of 12th St in Brookland (between Newton and Monroe). You can see a sample menu here. Although for the soft opening they are doing a rotating 4-course prix-fixe menu for $25 (with a couple of choices per course). I really like the restaurant's decor and layout. There are maybe 7 or 8 four-tops, 2 tall two-tops, and then perhaps 12 or so stools at the bar. Large paintings from a Cuban artist cover the walls. And they bring your check in a Cuban guidebook, which I thought was cute. We went last night, and despite a few expected new restaurant hiccups, enjoyed our experience. We had made a 7pm reservation, but they were running way behind by the time we got there. We got a seat at the bar to wait, but we didn't get seated until around 7:40. They were very nice and apologetic, bringing us each a complimentary glass of wine at the table once we were seated, and we were certainly willing to overlook something like this on one of the first nights open. Our choices last night were (What we had doesn't necessarily show up on the proposed official menu, but it sounds like they may be changing some things around): Sunday Nov 11th Pre-Fixe Menu Soup Course "“ Sopa de Marisco (fish and shrimp soup) or Caldo Gallego Soup (white bean soup) Appetizer Course - Garbanzo Refrito con Chorizo, Ham and Cheese Croquettas, or Picadillo Sliders Main Course "“ Tio Pio's Grilled Chicken, Grilled Fish of the day or Masa de Puerco (fried pork with onions) Sides "“ Black beans & rice, plus choice of 1 (Maduros, Yuca con Mojo, Tater Tots, and Grilled veggie medley) Dessert Course - Cuban bread pudding, Mango Ice Cream, or Rice pudding Between the four of us I think we tried most everything available. I really liked the Caldo Gallego Soup, which was a thick white bean soup made smoky with ham. The Garbanzo Refrito was a ridiculously large serving, and although I didn't get that much flavor from the chorizo, it was still tasty. I think the best appetizer we tried though were the Croquettas. Perfectly fried and gooey on the inside. These are on the regular menu and we would certainly get them again. Our server was the owners' brother/brother-in-law, and the namesake of Tio Pio's grilled chicken, so after explaining to us how it is cooked, he actually brought out a gratis portion for us between our soup and appetizer to share. He chargrills it with a closed lid to keep in the juices, and marinates it in Cuban spices. Then makes a sauce out of those same spices to top it. We all liked it a lot. I had the Masa de Puerco, which I thought was delicious. Hard to go wrong with fried pork. The Maduros (fried sweet plantains) were also great. Dessert was the one course that none of us loved. The Cuban bread pudding was too cold and dense. I am not a huge fan of Rice Pudding, but others thought it was ok. The mango ice cream got the best reviews (especially when the leftover fruit from the sangria carafe was poured on top). I can't speak to the authenticity of the Cuban food, but I can say that I liked it and am glad to have it in the neighborhood. The owners and servers were all very nice and friendly, the food was good, the space was lovely, and I'm looking forward to returning.
  5. It took some digging, but I independently confirmed that L'Hommage Bistro will be opening at 450 K Street NW, just east of Mount Vernon Square. The Chef de Cuisine will be Josh Perkins, who was most recently at Ecco in Atlanta - he has 25 years of experience in the industry. The Mâitre d' is named Mustafa Fairtout (I'm not sure about the spelling of Mustafa's last name), who was a Server at Cafe Milano. This will be a classical French bistro with onion soup, páté, steak frites, etc. The restaurant will seat 175 with 50 at the bar and 80 on the patio. Owner is Hakan Ilhan of Al Dente et al. A bakery will be attached to the bistro, selling French breads, sandwiches, coffee, and to-go meals - the bread will be made in-house. --- I was also sent this article: "Alba Osteria Owner Hakan Ilhan to Open French Restaurant in Mount Vernon Triangle" by Rebecca Cooper on bizjournals.com
  6. Pastry chefs Tom Wellings and Camila Arango opened up Bluebird Bakery at the old LivingSocial building by Gallery Place/Chinatown metro. They plan on serving croissants, scones, and tarts in the mornings and pizza bianca for lunch and the afternoon. I was able to try their pain au chocolate croissant and lemon ricotta torte. The chocolate croissant was good. Very similar to the ones in texture and flavor that St. Michel's used to make. The torte was the star of the show. The texture and flavor was amazing, as well as not being too sweet which is what I personally enjoy. The bakery will be open from 8 a.m. until 3 p.m. every day except Sunday. 918 F St. NW
  7. Last night, before I went to see John Sayles read at Atomic Books, I dropped into The Corner on the Avenue in Hampden for dinner. It's the former site of the 36th st Diner, just south of The Wine Source. The chef, Bernard Dehaene used to be a Mannequin Pis in Olney. The menu looked pretty impressive- continental with a Belgian influence- mussels, steak frites, waffles for dessert, escargots. Their specials sounded intriguing as well- kangaroo tenderloin, dover sole. I ordered 2 starters- housemade boudin noir and soft shell crab on top of fiddleheads. The blood sausage was creamy & delicious. The softshell was beautifully pan fried, no batter. For my main course, I had the veal orloff- it was cooked with the bone and topped generously with beschamel and mushrooms. The meat was very well prepared. My only complaints- they are cash only (not that bad), and the corkage fee- I brought in a beer and was charged $4 for it. Also they charge you $1 for a takeaway box. 850 West 36th Street Baltimore, MD 21211 (443)869.5075 UPDATE- pics are here
  8. Went here to Fork & Wrench in February with friends that are getting married in June (we go next week to Pittsburgh to attend it! And, uh, to hit up Morcilla) as they live in Baltimore and we want to continue our dalliance with exploring Baltimore over time. Parking is pretty tricky in the evenings so we took the valet option, which was pretty reasonable. The space is nice with some activity down on the street level main floor, but we were seated upstairs with ample seating (and also where the kitchen is). Had a good round of cocktails, followed by a delicious meal. The beef tartare was goos, as was the octopus and a lamb loin 'roll' was very good. Service was good, though when we were done it took a little time to get the check. All in all a very solid and delicious place to have a nice meal. I will be back.
  9. Saw a "coming soon" sign for over by the TechWorld Bldg, facing 7th Street (btn I and Mass). Nothing on their web site about it yet. Anybody know anything about this UK chain?
  10. The somewhat, erm, "unkempt" Happy Family closed, and the space is now a sparkling clean Silk Road - a somewhat more interesting pillbox of a restaurant. Make sure to look under "Chef's Specialties" if you visit their website. I thought sure I wrote about Happy Family once, but I can't find it anywhere. Silk Road is directly across Route 29 from Ramen Factory 42.
  11. Yes, it's going in the former veterinary clinic near the Belga; it will be called Senart's Oyster House, after an old ghost mural that is painted on the outside wall of the building.
  12. Met up with some friends on Friday night to try Smokehouse Live in Leesburg. No better way I can think of to describe this place than suburban Hill Country - same system, same basic theme, very similar menus. The good - The bar area here is bright and very open with friendly service, a limited bar menu and good happy hour prices. Nice selection of bourbons, some cocktails during happy hour for $5 and a tap selection that goes beyond the Shiner limitations of HC downtown. But then... The rest - Hill Country (normally I would say so many comparisons to HC would be unfair, but they don't seem to even be trying to hide the imitation, so...) somehow manages to pull off sticking a room full of bench tables together and have it not seem totally cold and impersonal. Smokehouse Live can't say the same - plywood walls, disjointed floor plan and an oddly cramped 'market' ordering area made me miss some cheap and tacky kitsch and finished hardwood. But hey, you're here for the barbeque, right? The pulled pork was ok - not awesome, but not bad - wished it had more bbq flavor. I will admit - I order lean brisket - and am used to this being a bit more on the dry side than the 'wet' orders, but this was so dry it was crumbling apart. The beef shoulder (crod) is just a hard cut to work with - even after trimming visible tough areas I still had trouble chewing (not sure this is as much the restaurants fault as just a tough cut). Texas Chainsaw sauce was ok, though could have used more heat for being the 'spicy' version; eastern carolina was a little close to being straight vinegar for me. Please, for the love of God, if you only read one sentence in this write up, read this one: A 16oz portion of collard greens will cost you $14.25. Just to make sure we didn't miss anyone there - A 16oz portion of greens will cost you $14.25. Now to be fair, your little order card does list the price for each side in tiny little numbers inside the bubbles. Generally being a person who is not so concerned with price that I thought a side order of collard greens for two people might break me, I didn't really pay attention - after all, its a side of greens and some turkey that was left over from the day before. I would love to see their food cost for this. Or for the $14.25 portion of macaroni and cheese. Or for the $14.25 portion of lima beans and corn. But moving on... It was our server's first day, or at least appeared to be, so I hold her completely blameless but when you are half way through your meal and still do not have someone take your drink order, AND when you have flagged down three different staff members begging for drinks and then a manager, AND when you give you drink order to all three of these staff members never to see said drinks, it gets old. I'll still never understand why, when the new server finally appeared, she made an Arnold Palmer using Mountain Dew, but at this point I was beyond questioning. Bottom line - would totally go back for happy hour at the bar and listen to some music, but the dinner experience was approaching 'one-and-done' levels of not good. P.s. didn't want to start a new topic for a restaurant so far out that wasn't good, but please feel free to move as needed
  13. We used to go pretty regularly to the Chadwick's in Friendship Heights, and just recently went back for the first time in a couple of years. It's remarkable only in it's consistency in providing decent food at a very fair price. I usually get a burger or a sliced pork sandwich. In addition to the burgers, which are decent, J is fond of their ribs and small sirloin steak. We both like the fried calamari and the draft beer. For us it was a place to go, close to home, when I didn't feel like cooking and didn't want pizza or cheap Chinese, my husband didn't want to get dressed up or spend a lot of money, and our entertainment for the evening was going to be browsing in the book store afterwards. There are other places we've been going to in recent years, newer, trendier--Chadwick's is easy, cheaper. Rarely ever a wait for a table, parking isn't a hassle, etc. And when Veggie-teen was younger, she liked the big sheets of white paper on the tables and the crayons.
  14. Last night they had a valet stand working. Dining room is completely set up. Looks like they smartly added to the bar area
  15. Exciting news on King Street! The folks from A la Lucia (namely Michael Nayeri) have announced that they will be opening a new restaurant in the space at 1106 King Street. The news was announced on the A la Lucia Facebook page, as well as in a recent e-newsletter. It will not be a second A la Lucia location. They're hoping for an opening in early 2015.
  16. Metropolitan Coffee House and Wine Bar is great. Federal Hill, not Inner Harbor, but close by. Casual, coffee shop atmosphere, but nice friendly spot with good breakfast foods. 902 South Charles at Henrietta.
  17. I like the combination wine shop and tasting room/restaurant concept. However, the expectation at a place like this is that they'll have some interesting wine selections that you might not find everywhere else. Unfortunately the shop bottles and the tasting list here (3oz, 6oz) tend toward fairly common wines, such as E. Guigal Cotes du Rhone (a wine that I like, but...). The kitchen was at one time overseen by Jeff Heineman from Grapeseed, but I'm not sure if that's the case anymore. The food was pretty disappointing, though. The entrees we had were bland: monkfish with a wine-tomato sauce and vegetables and a lamb ragu over corkscrew pasta. The bartender at the Idle Hour, where we stopped afterwards, raved about the place and told us we needed to try it again. To me it was a collection of trendy ideas (small pours, industrial interior, truffle oiled this and that, etc) done poorly. Anyone else been?
  18. A new restaurant opened on Hanover St in Federal Hill, the BlueGrass tavern. Since it's a few blocks from my house, I've been twice already. The chef, Patrick comes from Ryleigh's Oyster, and he seems to be subscribing to the local food movement and he's also interested in making some in house charcuterie as well. On my first trip- I just went for a light supper. They have a nice selection of small and medium plates on the menu, I ordered the bacon jam on crostini (reminded me of Kevin from last season's Top Chef). It was really good- sweet, salty, smokey. I then ordered a fresh asparagus salad and the bison carpacchio. Both were very nice. The chef spotted me as a food person (the camera was a giveaway), so he came out, greeted me, and offered for me to try something off the menu. It was slices of corned beef heart with cornichons and aioli. Very nice. pic For desssert, I had the strawberry rhubarb pie with basil ice cream. Went back for dinner with friends another evening. This round, tried his two charcuterie plates- my favorites were his duck speck, the chicken livers, and the duck rilletes. The best item, I had was the foie gras prep for the evening- seared foie gras, in between two pancakes, with egg and bacon, and maple syrup- a foie gras McGriddle. I also tried my friends dishes- the antelope loin with redeye gravy was nice, lean, and the chicken fried quail salad was good too. This time for dessert, we had the banana creme pie which was very good. I would say, this place is very promising for the Federal Hill neighborhood. blog/pics 1500 S. Hanover Street Baltimore, MD (410)244-5101
  19. From the sounds of things, it seems that Little Sesame is a separate entity getting its start in DGS's lower-level, with a common co-owner in Nick Wiseman. Thus, it will also get its own thread. Congratulations to the whole team, Nick, Robin, and everyone else - please stay active here and let us know when you expand beyond lunch, get a beer and wine license, open another location, etc. All these pop-ups and restaurants within restaurant are parallel to recent college graduates living with mom and dad for a couple of years because they can't afford to pay rent (heck, I did it for a year - I think it's a great idea, and it can even bring the family closer together).
  20. In the spirit of the Mattaponi River and its tributaries (I'm curious to see if anyone will figure this one out), the folks from Volt are planning to open Aggio near the Inner Harbor in the Power Plant Development. "Bryan Voltaggio To Open Restaurant In Baltimore" by Richard Gorelick on baltimoresun.com "Bryan Voltaggio: 'Baltimore's Restaurant Scene Is Ripe For Growth While D.C. Is Getting 'Saturated''" by Sarah Meehan on bizjournals.com
  21. Well, this is awkward. I walked by Kitty's Saloon yesterday, only to see it had closed, and just now found out it closed back in September. A friend of mine liked the place to get a burger and watch a game, so while it wasn't my first choice, it certainly wasn't my last choice, either. It was a four year run. They called themselves "contemporary redneck" but I can't for the life of me recall any memorable dishes. Ah, whiskey. It was a clean and comfortable space, a bit rustic. I understand there were some code issues, but they were not apparent to me.
  22. The Rockville Pike Lunch Club had today's meeting at this little Filipino buffet spot located in the late lamented (at least by me) Pho Quyen space. Seeing our looks of befuddlement at the names of the Filipino dishes, the manager kindly went through all dozen or so items with us. Great lunch deal -- a heap of rice and two buffet items for $6.50. I had a pork kebab that was good if a little on the dry side. The glaze was somewhat somewhat sweet with a hint of what must be peanuts. My other was the "restaurant speciality" a braised beef. Done very nicely. The sauce was very thick and a little sweet with nice round spices. A couple of dabs of Sriracha (recommended by the manager) served very well to round out the beef. Serving size was quite reasonable. Enough to fill you up without forcing you to take home two meals worth of food in a doggy bag. All in all quite satisfactory. I look forward to going back soon and trying more items.
  23. I'm surprised Brinkley's in Falls Church wasn't mentioned on here unless I didn't see it?
  24. I'm always on the hunt for good falafel/shawarma in the DC area. Not a huge Amsterdam Falafel fan; prefer Pita Hut in Rockville. I went with a buddy for lunch today to the month old Shawafel in the Atlas District. The address is 1322 H St NE. I had the falafel/shawarma sandwich, which came with lettuce, pickles, tomatoes, pickled turnips, mint, and tahini. Everything is made in house. The sandwich was absolutely incredible and blew all competition out of the water. The space is really well laid out, extremely clean, and Alberto the owner couldn't have been nicer. All meats are spit roasted and the sandwiches are more "laffa" style then in a pita. We also shared an order of labneh, which tasted super fresh, and an order of fries, which are hand cut. Great new addition for DC's fast casual scene!
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