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About LolaDC

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  • Birthday 08/28/1977

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  • Interests
    Food, wine, cooking, traveling
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    Washington, DC

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  1. Went there for lunch last week. I started with the roasted beet salad with fennel, arugula and gorgonzola, and my friend had the wild mushroom baklava, which the waiter was pushing very hard. Both were very good, and the portions were big. For entrees, we both had the crab ravioli with brown butter and sage - also very good, but a bit heavy on the sage. I will definitely go back, and look forward to the wait staff ironing out the kinks in timing. I had barely dug into my salad when the ravioli arrived. Otherwise, the service was good, the atmosphere was nice, although not that much different from Jimmy's. Overall, I am considering this a keeper, and the perfect place to take clients for lunch.
  2. Hi, all. The last post on 15 Ria was quite some time ago, and I'm wondering if anyone has been there recently. Going tonight and, thanks to some of the reviews I've seen elsewhere, starting to get a little nervous. Anyone??? Thanks!
  3. Hi, everyone. Just found out that Fabio Trabocchi will be holding a wine dinner/book signing at the National Press Club on Monday, October 16. I'm guessing tickets will sell out pretty quickly -- if you want more info, go to the Press Club website or shoot me a message.
  4. Just returned from a trip to Scotland, and thought you all might be interested to know the culinary landscape is pretty impressive. While breakfast was the same every day (eggs, sausage, bacon, haggis, potatoes, etc) and lunch was usually a baguette with some sort of meat, lots of cheese and a side of chips (fries), dinner was always an adventure. We started in Stirling (home to the famous battle, castle and the Wallace Monument), at a lovely hotel about 5 minutes walking distance from the town centre. The Parklodge Hotel and restaurant is run by the Marquetty's, an incredibly friendly couple (she's Scottish, he's French). It turned out the husband, Georges Marquetty, is a celebrated chef who was voted one of the best chefs in American when he was working in Cincinnati. The night we were there, we were the only ones in the restaurant so Georges cooked especially for us. I had a fantastic, spicy gazpacho, a luxuriously rich Coquilles St. Jacques and I honestly can't even remember what I had for dessert, but I remember being very happy with it. The service and the food were both unbelievably good, but the atmosphere was kind of funny. The restaurant has a player piano that seemed to be playing in honor of the visiting Americans -- When You're Happy and You Know It, Yankee Doodle Dandy, Old McDonald Had a Farm and others served as the hilarious soundtrack to our otherwise very nice dinner. After Stirling, we spent two days in St. Andrews at the Inn on North Street, which also has a very good restaurant called the Oak Rooms. There, I had a wild mushroom, leek and stilton penne that was out of this world. If you're keen to get drunk and tell stories with caddies from St. Andrews, we discovered a number of them at the bar in the Dunvegan Hotel also on North Street. They have an interesting drink called the Blackbeard - a combo of Morgan's spiced rum, coke and Guinness - which was surprisingly good. It's great fun to people-watch from one of the few outdoor tables. In Inverness, if you're looking for something modern, Rocpool Rendezvous is very good. I had a really wonderful little salad of fresh crab, avocado, tomato and crème fraiche with a sweet ginger and chilli dressing and for an entree, grilled sea bream with curried prawn rissotto. Yum, yum, yum. Now, for the Star of the Show -- the Three Chimneys on the Isle of Skye. I had been obsessing about this place after reading about it several years ago and it turned out to be everything I imagined. The Isle of Skye is the most remote and beautiful place I have ever seen in my life. We literally drove out to the middle of nowhere, then proceeded to drive for another hour and a half to get to the Three Chimneys. The final 5 miles of our trip was on a one-lane road, which we had to share with other cars. And sheep. It was great. I don't have the menu in front of me now (but I do have a signed copy at home!) but I can give you a general overview. The starter was roasted trout, which was fresh and roasted to perfection. The second course was a superb fish soup (not Cullen Skink) with a gorgeous tomato base and a ton of fresh herbs. The entree was turbot and scallops with potatoes and peas. The turbot was just OK, a bit fishy for my taste, but the scallops were delicious. For dessert, I had the restaurant's famous hot marmalade pudding with Drambuie custard which was so yummily comforting. I struggled to choose between that and the sampler of Scottish cheeses, and was happy with my decision the next morning when the same cheeses were served in our breakfast spread, which also included a peat smoked salmon that ruined me for any other smoked salmon in the future (see next paragraph). If you get out to the Three Chimneys, spring for a room at the House Over-By. It's pricey, but worth every penny. And take bug spray. The midges are pesky. After Skye, it was back to Glasgow. We had a great dinner at 78 St. Vincent, a modern French/Scottish restaurant. Had smoked salmon, potato blinis and caper butter to start, roasted monkfish in Parma ham with a chorizo and mixed bean casserole for an entree (not a huge fan of that combo) and a delightful iced cranachan parfait with summer berries and apricot coulis. The other meals in Glasgow were Italian and Chinese because we needed a little variety. The Italian was really good, the Chinese was just like Chinese food anywhere else. I wanted to go to the Ubiquitous Chip, which is a popular restaurant in the west side of the city, but we didn't get to it. That will be something to look forward to next time. Throughout the trip, I took liberal bites of my husband's dinners, which tended to be Scottish beef. Needless to say, they know how to do their beef in Scotland. Sorry for the length of this post -- but hope this information is useful to someone!
  5. For you Maryland Suburbanites out there, there's a place on Route 198 between Ft. Meade and Laurel called Casey's Crabs that makes HUGE crabcakes and boxes of hush puppies to go. I honestly cannot tell you how they measure up to others because I am always so deliriously happy to have a hot box of puppies that they taste like the Best in the World. But if you're in that area, stop in and try them.
  6. Got to the grill today right at noon, and it was very quiet. Chicken sandwich w/ everything was delicious, and I'm happy to report that they've doubled the amount of lettuce in the grilled caesar. Yay!
  7. Had a glorious dinner at Dino on Saturday, made even better by Dean's company. Our party of six started with the classic antipasto plate, chef's selection of cheeses, grilled calamari, fried calamari, saltimbocca and crostini selection. Everything was top-notch, as we have come to expect, but I particularly liked the crostini. The celery root & roasted garlic was perfectly balanced, and the mushroom & prosciutto was wonderfully rich. After the misticana salad, which was again perfectly balanced, I had the wild boar pasta, which everyone rightfully raves about. The boar was so tender and flavorful, the noodles nice and thin. Others at the table ordered the gorgonzola pasta, the lasagnette, the sausage polenta and the potato and pesto pasta. Everyone was thrilled with their choices. I do have to say that while I loved the pasta, I look forward to going back and concentrating more on the small dishes. I love the variation of several smaller plates. Kudos to Chef Amaya and thank you to Dean for a great night!
  8. The salad is good (the Parm is especially tasty) but it's SO SMALL. I just finished one and am still starving. Don't think I'll be doing this again -- my $5 will go much further on one of the sandwiches.
  9. THANK YOU THANK YOU THANK YOU for suggesting this place. I am happily polishing off a chicken tikka wrap with mango sauce (and homemade chips, of course). Everything is absolutely superb. Lola
  10. Happy to report a pleasant experience last night at Kolumbia. Started off with Clos le Vigneau Vouvray, which I was pleased to see was an option on the by-the-glass list. With the wine, our server brought a wonderful little fried ravioli of salt cod with a saffron sauce, followed by a basket of fresh bread with a nicely spiced eggplant spread and butter. For an appetizer, we split an order of clam and cuttlefish fritters. The crunchy fritters were absolutely lovely paired with a tangy diakon slaw and a tart dipping sauce. I could have eaten a whole plate of those things. Wish we had ordered two appetizers, as I really wanted to try the Yukon gold gnocchi. For the main course, I opted for the truffle and parsnip perogies with golden raisin sauce. These little guys were absolutely decadent, and so filling that I had to give two of the five or six perogies to my companion. The dish was definitely on the sweet side and not the best match to the Pierre Lauverjat Cote de Fruite Sancerre I was drinking, but wonderful nonetheless. My friend ordered the "Cod on Cod" (described in the previous post), which would have been wonderful but for the "Black Knight" sauce. The squid ink was overpowering, and just too rich for my palate. We finished with a cheese plate, the specifics of which I can't remember. But it was good, and paired well with the fruit compote served with it. The service was excellent until the latter part of our meal, when the dining room began to fill. We had to wait an unacceptably long time for our check, but I'll take that versus having to wait a long time for food. Definitely recommend Restaurant Kolumbia, and look forward to going back.
  11. So happy to hear the positive reviews! Trying it for the first time tomorrow night, and was frankly worried that the lack of Rockwell discussion meant there was something wrong with it. Yippee!
  12. I agree wholeheartedly! Pachanga is a great stand-by for good local fare. If you're lucky enough to be there on a night they're serving chicken mole enchiladas, get them. They're fantastic. Also in Crofton is the Big Fish Grille, which is the little brother of Yellowfin in Annapolis. Lively bar scene, good seafood, and half-price wine on Tuesdays.
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