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Help Me Plan My NYE Trip to DC!


bettyjoan
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Good morning! My husband and I are visiting DC from 12/30 to 1/4. It's sort of a mini-honeymoon for us, as we met in DC and shared three wonderful years there before moving to Atlanta in 2008.

Here's the plan so far...I would greatly appreciate your help with filling in the blanks!

12/30 - We arrive a little bit before 1 PM, and we'll probably go straight to our hotel (the Washington Plaza in Thomas Circle). Our big plan for that day is to get together with our friends (a group of 10-20), likely at a happy hour sort of time. I was thinking Churchkey. Thoughts? Better options?

12/31 - We are attending an all-inclusive party for NYE, but would love recommendations for a good lunch place. Metro accessible is helpful, but since we are former DC residents, we are not afraid of the buses.

1/1 - I know a lot of places will be closed, and we will likely be hung over, so hotel food may be in the cards. We ARE going to see the Capitol Steps at the Reagan building at 7:30 PM, so are there fun places nearby where we could eat before/after?

1/2 - We have reservations at Proof (swoon, my fave), so I will be fasting all day. ;-)

1/3 and 1/4 are totally open (though we will have to head to the airport late afternoon on the 4th), and while I would love to fit in a trip to Ray's, I'm definitely interested in other suggestions. All price ranges, all cuisines--I just want to try some things that weren't around while I was living in DC.

Thanks so much for your help! My tummy is grumbling just thinking about this trip...

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leleboo, I'll look for you! Happy early birthday! :-)

Ethiopian is not my favorite (I love the food, but I have texture issues with injera), but good call on the ethnic restaurants and bars.

Any suggestions for the 3rd and 4th? What's new and awesome in DC these days?

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leleboo, I'll look for you! Happy early birthday! :-)

Ethiopian is not my favorite (I love the food, but I have texture issues with injera), but good call on the ethnic restaurants and bars.

Any suggestions for the 3rd and 4th? What's new and awesome in DC these days?

I haven't been yet- but the 7 course/cocktail pairings at PS7 for $77 seems like an amazing deal. CapitolSpice wrote it up the other day.

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leleboo, I'll look for you! Happy early birthday! :-)

Ethiopian is not my favorite (I love the food, but I have texture issues with injera), but good call on the ethnic restaurants and bars.

Any suggestions for the 3rd and 4th? What's new and awesome in DC these days?

Sunday and Monday are always two tough days. I haven't been, but have heard excellent things about Birch and Barley, on 14th Street, which is near Cork which may not have been open when you were still here, and is well worth a try. Also in that stretch of 14th and even newer is Masa 14. I haven't done more than slurp a little wine there so far but the place smelled great and the chef is Antonio Burell, who is a FODR and very good at his job. That might be the best option of the three.

The Latin Brunch at Atlantico can be hit or miss, but is well worth a drop-by. I believe Room 11 has "Punch Night" on Sundays, and, while their food is not spectacular, it's a great spot, and you can always wander over to Pete's, Red Rocks or Tacqueria Distrito Federal.

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I'd plan a trip to Ardeo/Bardeo in Cleveland Park for good, solid food from an up and coming chef. I'd also go to Himalayan in Adams Morgan for amazing Nepali and Indian food (yes, I said amazing... it's really that good). I bet Himalayan will be open on the 1st. (I'm going tomorrow night and will check for you.) I would do a lunch at the American Indian Museum because it really is good, and very unique. I'd walk up 14th St. to Mid City Cafe for a relaxing morning of pastries and coffee, and then get a yummy sandwich at the new Cork Market.

Those are things I would do. But I'd also review all the postings on Don Rockwell to see what others think.

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I would do a lunch at the American Indian Museum because it really is good, and very unique.

If you're going to be museum-ing anyway, I'd definitely second the rec for Mitsitam at the American Indian Museum. The vibe is cafeteria but they do a great job putting forth items from different regions, so there's something for everyone. I highly recommend the coconut macaroon (?) from the dessert table, by the way. As far as I can tell, it has little if nothing to do with the regional cuisine (ok, yes, tropical native cultures use coconut, but not in this way) -- it's made with huge chunks of coconut, and is mindbogglingly good -- you'll never eat another coconut cookie the same way again.

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Since I haven't gone there, this is a qualified recommendation, but what about Ris? I don't know how long it will take until I get there, but the early buzz (on the food, at least) has been good. I don't think they're open Sundays.

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Not a food rec, but a rec for the National Geographic Museum exhibit of the Terracotta Warriors. We were in Xi'an this fall and didn't see some of the figures they have at this exhibit. For example, I had no idea that there were musicians and acrobats in addition to warriors buried in the pits. A little history and some very nice pieces. Order your tickets in advance online. Another possibility is to see the ICE exhibit at National Harbor (in the Gaylord). We like cheesy stuff like that and we enjoy eating half ass Mexican food at Rosa Mexicana every once in awhile.

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Wow, thanks for all of the suggestions. This is why I love dr.com and wish there was something comparable in Atlanta. Oh, well.

That pairing dinner sounds awesome, but I don't think they do it on Sundays/Mondays. I imagine we'll find ourselves at PS 7's for cocktails at some point anyway, as a lot of our favorite places are in that Chinatown/Penn Quarter area.

I had totally forgotten about Masa 14. I actually really enjoyed Chef Burrell's food when he was at Eleventh Street Lounge. As for Birch and Barley, how different is the experience/setting from Churchkey? We'll be at Churchkey on Wednesday night, I think, just for beers with friends.

Cleveland Park is a good call, as my hubs and I had our first date at Aroma, so we'll probably want to go grab a cocktail there. Sou'Wester also sounds really interesting. I would LOVE to do omakase at Sushi Taro, but my husband doesn't do sushi (I really don't know how we make our marriage work sometimes).

Hilarious that someone mentioned the terra cotta exhibit--it came through Atlanta, and Jason whined and whined about wanting to go, but it didn't interest me AT ALL so I managed to avoid it. He realized last week that the exhibit is in DC, and now he wants to make it part of our itinerary. Sigh. Guess I can't avoid it anymore.

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As for Birch and Barley, how different is the experience/setting from Churchkey? We'll be at Churchkey on Wednesday night, I think, just for beers with friends.

Cleveland Park is a good call, as my hubs and I had our first date at Aroma, so we'll probably want to go grab a cocktail there. Sou'Wester also sounds really interesting. I would LOVE to do omakase at Sushi Taro, but my husband doesn't do sushi (I really don't know how we make our marriage work sometimes).

Hilarious that someone mentioned the terra cotta exhibit--it came through Atlanta, and Jason whined and whined about wanting to go, but it didn't interest me AT ALL so I managed to avoid it. He realized last week that the exhibit is in DC, and now he wants to make it part of our itinerary. Sigh. Guess I can't avoid it anymore.

Birch and Barley is a "regular restaurant" and a totally different food experience from Churchkey, although both have great beer. Check out the menu online here.

And as for the terra cotta exhibit, maybe that is a time for you to slip out and enjoy some sushi. :angry:

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I would LOVE to do omakase at Sushi Taro, but my husband doesn't do sushi (I really don't know how we make our marriage work sometimes).

Is it that he does not like raw fish, or just not into sushi? The Omakase includes very little sushi, and it comes at the end of a rather large meal. It is mostly kitchen prepared dishes, sashimi, and roasted and/or fried seafood. Granted if he does not like to experiment it would be a poor place to take him - my visit the day before Thanksgiving one course included herring roe and cod stomach, the best I really liked the stomach, but as for the roe... well at now I can say I have had it and do not have to have it again.
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He definitely doesn't eat raw fish, and while he is usually a reasonably adventurous eater, fish is an area where he is a bit pickier. To give you some context, when I drag him to a sushi bar because I'm having a craving, he sticks with either yakitori or tempura.

I like the idea of leaving him to his terra cotta and eating sushi by myself. :angry: Guess that's not very kind, considering this is a honeymoon...

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Okay, the plan is really looking good now...

Wednesday night: Churchkey

Thursday night: NYE party

Friday night: Brasserie Beck

Saturday night: Palena Cafe

Sunday night: Proof

We're also going to try to fit in some lunches (Matchbox and The Source).

Guess I'm going to have to pack the elastic pants...

Thanks to all for the suggestions!

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Well, we've been here since Wednesday, and the original itinerary hasn't totally been followed (best laid plans and what not), but my tummy is sooooooo happy. I am going to have to do an Ironman to make up for the delicious, delicious calories I have consumed in DC. I'll definitely write everything up individually at some point, but I just love and miss this city so much. Best honeymoon/NYE ever! :angry:

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