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  1. I really wish I'd stumbled into Smoke and Barrel at the beginning of an evening out rather than at the end, when, famished and a little tipsy, I devoured my pulled pork sandwich at approximately the speed of light. I can't, therefore, provide thoughtful details much beyond "yum!" The smoked meat is piled on a respectable bun with a scoop of good cole slaw, with the surprisingly spicy sauce on the side. And I don't think anything has ever tasted better after a night of beers with friends. A side of sweet potato home fries was excellent.
  2. from their e-mail this morning: Dogfish Head Alehouse 800 West Diamond Ave. Gaithersburg, Maryland 20878 301-963-4847 301-963-5231 (F) Exit 10 off of Route 270, turn right at light, across from NIST main gate. We are currently planning for an October grand opening - so stay tuned for all the details!!!!
  3. We were looking for a place to watch today's World Cup game, when I read about a NEW place called Biergarten Haus on H Street, right next door to the Rock N Roll Hotel. Apparently they just opened a couple of weeks ago. Given the 99 degree weather, the outdoor BeerGarden didn't sound quite so appealing at 2pm, so we went elsewhere (Flanagan's Harp & Fiddle in Bethesda), but LATER (around 7pm) we decided to check it out. It's a 21+ only place, so it's not a kid friendly place to dine. Once you walk in, you feel as if you've walked into a nice, dark, cold bar in Germany, with oodles of German beers on tap...giving you a feeling that a good rendition of OKTOBERFEST is about to ensue. As you walk past the bar, you see the entrance to the large open air Biergarten. A very celebratory high tent top loosely covers 2 huge projection screen TV's, numerous wooden tables & benches, tables for 2 on actual beer barrels & an outdoor bar. A walk past that bar puts you passing the small stage where a fun LIVE polka band was playing & leads you to the truly outdoor Biergarten, covered only by HUGE outdoor table umbrellas & a fully blooming Fig tree. With so many German beers on tap & no clue what to order as I'm generally not a beer drinker, my boyfriend correctly suggested the yummy Franziskaner Hefeweizen, a smooth, ever so slightly sweet (but not like a Lambic) beer with clear tones of banana, honey & clove. A DEFINITE choice for non-beer drinkers or those that would like a soft & smooth refreshing beer. With all the right ambiance: outdoor Beergarden, live Polka band & yummy beer, we of course, had to try out the food which looked incredible. We all got the DELICIOUS Knackwurst Platter (veal, pork & fresh garlic) with the YUMMY sauerkraut (cooked with stewed apples, Caraway seeds & bacon) & the potato cake (taste was OK, but it wasn't crisp or memorable like its plate companions), topped with a tasty fresh white bun. After the more than satisfying meal, although quite full, we all decided that when in Rome (or a Biergarten), you gotta try the Homemade Black Forest Cake...and boy are we glad we did!! Rich sweet creme, soft & moist German chocolate layer cake & tart cherries, all topped with generous shavings of German chocolate. Ohhhh...I almost forgot. Don't expect to only hear live polka music & German drinking songs (plenty are played), but we were also treated to a sudden random karaoke rendition of Garth Brooks' "I Got Friend's in Low Places" Silly but fun, because it was only that one song. You could see they are still not fully up & running as we saw 3 empty mounted TV wall brackets in the full outdoor Biergarten. We overheard that they are waiting to have murals painted outside before installing those TVs. My friend who lived in Germany for over 1 year said he was definitely feeling this place, the beer & the food. Definitely a new favorite hang out spot. Curious to hear what others have to say about this place.
  4. Happy to announce that Room 11 Wine and Dessert Bar is now open for business on 11th Street in Columbia Heights. Ben Gilligan is in the kitchen, turning out small plates, paninis, cheese, and charcuterie. Dan Searing is behind the bar and has crafted a selective wine, beer and cocktail list. And Paisley Fig is supplying our desserts. Nick Pimentel was in charge of design and yours truly rounds out the ownership and management team. Drop by to say hello! We can be found on the internets at room11dc.com More coverage Here and Here.
  5. Did you have the onion rings at Quarry? I keep hearing they are excellent. Both the Half-Moon BBQ and La Bamba are also good places to eat. Both are directly below the (ex?) Napoli, and both are IMO better than any of the formula places that have invaded Silver Spring.
  6. Dog Haus opened today. The second local location, the other being in Bethesda. It's a chain from California. It's a small footprint, but a tight concept with a full bar, tons of taps, and hot dogs, sausages, burgers, and plant based choices as well. I will wait until it calms down a bit (free dogs today and before opening there was a line around the block at least 100 deep!).
  7. This storefront beer emporium is your favorite beer tasting room meets your favorite beer store. The front of Top Hops is sort of general store wood decor with a curved bar and maybe 15 beers on tap. A chalkboard behind the bar tells you beer style, ABV, when the keg was tapped, when the beer lines were cleaned etc. The back of the store is all standing cases stocked with more than 600 bottles. If you live, dream and love to talk about beer, this is your kind of place. They seemed to have a good selection of N.E. American beers that you don't see much in these parts. I enjoyed a Boris the Spider Russian Imperial Stout (10% ABV) from Spider Bite Beer Company in Long Island.
  8. Did anyone make it out to Meridian Pint's Grand Opening today? My friend & neighbor is part owner, but I wasn't able to attend, so was wondering how it went. Check out the photos of the table taps, restaurant/bar & visit by Founders of Sam Adams, Dogfish, etc.
  9. My friend Thor Cheston, who is a manager at Paradiso, is going to be heading up this project of theirs. Thor is a beer enthusiast of the first order, and this should be exciting! Drop by and say, "Hello!" and have a great beer on draught and some of this city's best pizza. 3282 M St., NW Washington, DC 202-337-1245 Pizzeria Paradiso Georgetown is proud to introduce Birreria Paradiso, a sixteen tap draft bar featuring 80 bottled selections of microbrews, artisinal and handcrafted beers from around the world. Enjoy pilsners, ales, lagers, and stouts in our newly renovated lower level dining room and bar, where you will be able to feast on our Quattro Formaggi Pizza and a Belgian tripel like Gouden Carolus, or a Bosco Pizza and a Saison Dupont on draft. Then, top off your meal with our vanilla gelato paired with North Coast's Old Rasputin Russian Imperial Stout. We will be offering our complete menu, wine list, and a full bar in addition to the new selection of beers. Most of our longtime favorites are available, including Rogue's Dead Guy Ale, Dogfish Head's 60-minute IPA on tap, and Moretti and Amstel Light in bottles. We will also be serving some standards like Corona,, Miller Lite and Samuel Adams. All of the new beers will also be available in the main dining room upstairs.
  10. We've been ordering from Lost Dog fairly often this week (simultaneous kitchen and bathroom updating will do that to you...). I love their tomato-feta pie (light on the feta) -- it has rosemary and toasted pine nuts. Yum. I also love their Big Dog sandwich -- messy but filling and delicious. Their milkshakes really vary -- if they listen and make them "extra thick," they're not usually evil. "Regular" thickness isn't worth it. We tried their brownies this week -- perfect, with chocolate chips and no nuts -- and I tried a peanut butter pie thing last night that really didn't do it for me. We've eaten in a few times and like their onion rings, but I honestly (even with the ridiculously poor communication skills of almost every single person manning the delivery line) prefer delivery. PLUS, rumor has it that by the end of the summer, they'll be able to deliver some of their fabulous selection of beers again -- woo hoo!
  11. We got delivery from Charlie's on the Avenue, chicken parm sandwich, wings, and Hubby got a po-boy, I forget what. The wings were smoked and were very good. The chicken parm sandwich could have been better if there was just a bit more sauce. But things were good and very affordable and delivery was quick. I would go there some night and chill. Anyway, I didn't see a thread on it, their website is here.
  12. Wanted to announce that we just opened Crane & Turtle on Upshur Street in Petworth. CRANE & TURTLE is a chef-driven, neighborhood restaurant that celebrates the marriage of Chef Makoto Hammamura's great passions"”Japanese and French cooking. Chef worked with Eric Ziebold for 6 years at CityZen and we are excited to be able to showcase his talents. We are open Tuesday - Sundays starting at 5pm. See you all in Petworth! Paul Ruppert Owner, Crane & Turtle www.craneandturtledc.com
  13. Selling in large format at Costco for ~11$, most other retailers for ~$14, Hardywood has pushed a large volume offering of Rum Barrel Pumpkin this fall. I enjoy Hardywood's Farmhouse Pumpkin, their Cuvee Peach, Virginia Blackberry, etc that are sold in larger sizes at Costco. And I will tell you, it is rare that I meet a beer that I simply cannot drink. But I took three drinks of the rum barrel and couldn't do a fourth. The rum flavor was so strong as to drown out any other taste, the result being it tasted like a watered down rum that wanted to be something else but couldn't quite make it. At 12+% ABV, I was hoping for a richer, smoother pumpkin flavor with an aged rum complexity. Nope.
  14. Heavy Seas Alehouse opened up in Rosslyn this week Based on the crowds there for both the soft open and official open, its arrival has been eagerly anticipated by many! The service was fantastic at the soft open -- despite the crowd (almost every seat was taken), our waiter was friendly and attentive and every staff member who passed by made us feel welcome. The beer was excellent as well, but of course that's no surprise. It's a big, well-used space -- lots of seats without feeling too crowded. Great photos and food menus are here.
  15. Big Buns Gourmet Grill, 4401 Wilson Blvd in Ballston (but it's not actually facing Wilson Blvd. It's on the other side of Vapiano in a courtyard between Wilson and Fairfax.) Click for website. I saw this place one day after leaving Vapiano and was curious to try it. It's a fast food burger place. They offer beef, chicken, mahi mahi, or portobello burgers (in a bun or bowl) with your choice of cheeses, toppings and sauces. They also offer regular fries, sweet potato fries, milkshakes, malts, floats, sodas, and beer. Near the soda fountain, they have four Italian soda type syrups that you can mix in your drink, like cherry to make a cherry coke. I had a beef burger which came well-done but was still juicy. (They didn't ask how I wanted it. I don't know if that's an option.) It's not a very thick burger, but it was wide enough that I needed to hold it with both hands. The burger was $5.95, not counting additional charges for special toppings. The fries were each $1.85. I really liked the regular fries, they were thicker than shoestring fries and had a very potato-y flavor though it would be nice if they were just a little crispier. The sweet potato fries were thinner than the regular fries and were ok but nowhere near as good as the ones at Eleventh. Has anyone else tried Big Buns?
  16. I read there is a spot in Port Richmond that serves up a cheesesteak with a twist. I will be heading to said place this weekend to try this polish cheesesteak. This is how I honor the memory of Tony Bourdain by taking every opportunity to try something different, and hopefully connect with the people who make it as well as share their story. I have no idea what I am in for, but there lies the beauty of adventure.
  17. Takoma Trukgarten, Takoma Park’s annual craft beer, wine and food festival, will be held this Saturday, June 1, from noon to 5 p.m.: https://www.sourceofthespring.com/entertainment/takoma-trukgarten-festival-set-for-saturday/
  18. "New Beer Garden Coming to Old Building on Columbia Pike" by ARLnow.com on wtop.com Located on the corner of Columbia Pike and Walter Reed, a new beer garden is in the works.
  19. Didn't see a thread on this place but targeting a February opening. A little research indicates this is from the same people who run St. Arnold's Mussel Bar.
  20. I saw a thread for this place in the dining section, but nothing for the wine shop itself. So far it seems promising in terms of selection and pricing, but I've only been twice so can't say too much just yet. Website In any event, I wanted to share that they're currently trying to get rid of some overstock and are offering all of their dry roses for $1 over cost. I went today and bought nearly a case. Haven't had most of the wines so can't speak to the choices although I am pretty excited about the Alexander Valley and Linden roses. Obviously bottles that are cheaper to start are marked down less, but with some of the wines it was a rather large savings ($14.99 bottles for $9-11 for instance). I'm not sure it's worth a long drive, but for anyone in the area looking to stock up on wine for the summer, it's worth dropping in.
  21. I'm going to guess that he's talking about Jahanbein's not-so-new incarnation of the The Saloon (he used to run the g'town one) at 1207 U St. NW. A lovely curmudgeonly place, with veddy fine beer indeed.
  22. Astro Lab Brewing announced the brewpub will hold its grand opening this Friday, Oct. 19, 2018 from 4 p.m. to midnight at its location at 8216 Georgia Avenue: https://www.sourceofthespring.com/business/astro-lab-brewing-grand-opening-set-friday/
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