Friday, November 6, 2009

Dish in the District: Fabulous Foodie Events and Openings

Last Year's Metropolitan Cooking and Entertaining Show

Every so often, I like to immerse myself in finding out about the newest restaurant openings (because let's be honest, restaurants are constantly opening in DC!).  This week's Dish in the District brings us some restaurant openings and coming soons... PLUS some fantastic foodie events taking place in the next week!  I'm really sad that I won't be able to make any of these events this year due to work, but please go go and tell me all about it!


Metropolitan Cooking and Entertaining Show: November 7-8, 2009 at the Convention Center -- I went last year to this delicious food show -- see your favorite Food Network chefs (Giada!  Paula!  Tyler!) and also DC / Maryland Top Chef darlings Bryan Voltaggio of Volt and Mike Isabella of Zaytinya.  We went with the general admission, which buys you into a convention hall full of foodie exhibitors that will make your mouth water.  Last year, we went to go see Giada's cooking demo too.  Def check it out!

Capital Food Fight: November 11, 2009 - When our friends James and Shannon told us about this event, I wanted to sign up immediately.  Unfortunately, it is right in the middle of one of my busiest weeks of work.  60 restaurants, 5 battling chefs... More of DC's favorites will be battling each other -- Barton Seaver, Michael Mina, Bryan Voltaggio, Mike Isabella, and Tracy O'Grady ... 52 of DC's best restaurants serving food... chairman and host, the wonderfully inventive Jose Andres (Jaleo, Zaytinya, Cafe Atlantico, Oyamel) with co-host Anthony Bourdain and co-chair Ted Leonis.  Talk about my dream line-up here!  Judging the competition?  Ted Allen, Eric Ripert, and Carla Hall.  And all going to support DC Central Kitchen.  I'm utterly depressed that I can't go, but if you go, please fill me in!

(Descriptions courtesy of The List Are You On It - check it out, a fabulous site!)

Birch & Barley/ChurchKey:   The beer-centric destinations, both located in the former Dakota Cowgirl space at Logan Circle mark the first foray into the District for NRG, which operates Buzz, EatBar, Evening Star CafĂ©, Planet Wine, Rustico, Star Catering, Tallula and Vermilion, all in Northern Virginia. On the ground floor is Birch & Barley, a beer-forward and wine-friendly restaurant. The husband-and-wife team of Kyle Bailey and Tiffany MacIsaac will run the kitchen. Kyle is the executive chef and MacIsaac is the pastry chef. Both were previously at Allen & Delancey in NYC. Upstairs, a new kind of beer haven awaits at the 3,200 square-foot ChurchKey. Governed by Beer Director Greg Engert, who serves in the same position at Rustico, the bar will serves 555 different beers, including 500 bottles representing 100 styles and 30 countries. Fifty drafts are available and five authentic hand pumped cask-conditioned ales representing rare English and other international styles are here, too. You'll also find domestic beers that are often not seen in DC. (1337 14th Street; 202.518.7549)

J. Chocolatier - In the the Georgetown rowhouse that formerly housed Chez Mama-San, Maitre chocolatier Jane Morris recently opened her first J. Chocolatier retail store, after doing wholesale in the DC area for almost three years. Morris founded J. Chocolatier with the belief that affordable indulgences are what make life the sweetest. After studying with acclaimed chocolatier Fritz Knipschildt, Maitre Chocolatier Morris has returned to Washington, DC to create her own line of chocolates, focusing on elegant flavors with classic hand-crafted techniques and timeless quality. (1039 33rd Street, NW)

Masa 14- In a partnership between Kaz Okochi of KAZ Sushi Bistro, Richard Sandoval of Modern Mexican Group and SULA, LLC, Masa 14 has opened it's doors. With a capacity for 240 guests, Masa 14 features a spacious 100-seat restaurant, plus a private dining room which can accommodate parties of 18, and a handsome 74-seat bar/lounge featuring ample selections of tequila, sake, beer, wine and cocktails. Antonio Burrell is Chef de Cuisine. Prior to joining Masa 14, Burrell served as the chef de cuisine of CommonWealth in Columbia Heights. Burrell's career also includes working for six years in two of Washington's most elite kitchens: Vidalia and Bistro Bis under Chef/Owner Jeffrey Buben. The all-small plates menu will incorporate Asian and Latin flavors, and is priced from $6 to $14. Guests dining at Masa 14 can view the open kitchen complete with a wood-fired brick oven which will be an important centerpiece to Masa 14's menu. (1825 14th Street, NW; 202.328.1414)

The Reserve - Owner Mo Hamdan has opened The Reserve, a modern fusion tapas restaurant located in the former Olly's Trolley space on L Street. Executive chef Frederik De Pue has created an international tapas menu that will change seasonally.  Look for offerings such as beef tartar, crusted black sesame tuna, and guinea hen jalousie. On the wine list, there are 100 wines from all regions of the world, handpicked by The Reserve's in-house sommelier, Olivier Ledoux. Finished brick walls, santos mahogany hardwood floors, marble table tops, brushed spiral metal staircases and custom oak wood finish envelope two floors of rustic, modern, contemporary furnishings.  The Reserve has seating for 140, with both private & semi-private dining space available. (1426 L Street, NW; 202.628.8900)

(Descriptions courtesy of The List Are You On It - check it out, a fabulous site!)

We,The Pizza - Celebrity chef and former Top Chef contestant Spike Mendelsohn is preparing to open another Capitol Hill restaurant – this time a pizza joint. Located right next door to Good Stuff Eatery, We, The Pizza should open in December or January serving NY-style thin crust pizzas both by the pie and the slice. We, The Pizza will also offer homemade gelato and "old school" sodas.  (Check out my review of Good Stuff here!)

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