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News for Restaurants in Washington DC
March 2009 Archive

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RESTAURANT NEWS

Openings

During the last week of March, chef Duane Keller, formerly of Gaylord's Moon Bay Coastal Cuisine, opened a new Irish-style eatery in Arlington. Named McGinty's Public House, the gastropub menu features strongly Irish pub food with such dinner entrées as shepherd's pie and grilled bangers and mash. Keller brings to this menu his diverse culinary background, for sure. McGinty's Public House, 3650 S. Glebe Rd., Arlington, VA 22202, 703-414-3555.
 
Executive chefs and co-owners Jon Mathieson and Jonathan Krinn have opened Inox restaurant. Mathieson and Krinn began working together in September 2005 when they took over as chef de cuisine and executive chef (respectively) of 2941 Restaurant in Falls Church, Virginia. Open for lunch and dinner, the menu at Inox consists of creative, approachable modern American cuisine. In addition to the à la carte menu, Inox features a chef's tasting menu which rotates dishes frequently. The bar and lounge areas feature a "small bites" menu. Well known in the DC area for his handmade breads, chef Krinn's father, Malvin Krinn, is working with Mathieson and Krinn to develop the restaurant's bread program. Heading up the wine and beverage program is John Wabeck, a chef with a long culinary tenure in Washington, DC. Inox, Tysons Galleria, 1800 Tysons Blvd., McLean, VA 22102, 703-790-4669.
 
BRABO by Robert Wiedmaier, the new 105-seat restaurant designed by Vicente Wolf, opened in February. Wiedmaier and newly appointed chef de cuisine Chris Watson present guests with a menu that sources ingredients and products from Virginian and eco-friendly farmers. Open for breakfast daily from 7 a.m.-10 a.m. Lunch is served Monday-Friday from 11:30 a.m.-2:30 p.m. with a menu that showcases a large variety of soups, salads and sandwiches. Dinner is offered from 5 p.m.-11 p.m., Sunday through Wednesday, and 5:30 p.m.-midnight Thursday through Saturday. Next door to BRABO by Robert Wiedmaier is BRABO Tasting Room, which offers lunch and dinner daily from 11:30 a.m.-closing. For reservations at BRABO by Robert Wiedmaier call 703-894-3440 and for BRABO Tasting Room call 703-894-5252. BRABO by Robert Wiedmaier and BRABO Tasting Room, Old Town Alexandria, 1600 King St., Alexandria, Va.
 
With its fresh Italian fare and other metro area locations, Vapiano opens in DC's Penn Quarter near the Chinatown arch. Its novel system, where guests line up at the chef's counters to order their food directly from their own personal chef and watch it being cooked, includes an extensive menu of fire-roasted pizzas, unusual pasta dishes, and hearty salads. The H Street Vapiano, which seats up to 175 guests, offers a chic, Euro ambience. Guests can enjoy a glass of wine during dinner or a signature cocktail. For more information, visit www.vapianointernational.com. Vapiano, 623-625 H St. NW, Washington, DC 20009, 202-621-7636.
 
Star Restaurant Group CEO Dan Mesches plans a March opening for Potenza in the landmark Woodward Building (15th & H Streets NW). CORE, the Washington-based architectural design firm, is creating the Italian restaurant, complete with a bakery. The name "Potenza" is derived from the surname of Mesches's southern Italian grandmother, Columbina Potenza, who was born in Foggia. Potenza will serve a wide range of Italian fare and the menu concept is being developed by Star Restaurant Group's executive chef-partner Bryan Moscatello in the company's new showcase test kitchen, Zola Wine & Kitchen. Moscatello has also been traveling extensively throughout Italy to stage in various restaurants. For more information, visit www.potenzadc.com. Potenza, 1430 H St. NW, Washington, DC 20004, 202-638-4444.
 

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News Bytes

Taberna del Alabardero Celebrates 20
March 27 marked Taberna del Alabardero's 20th anniversary. It kicked off a year-long celebration with an array of unique offers and events that have never been done by the restaurant before. The first one begins in April. Throughout the month, the restaurant will offer more than 100 wines at retail cost, regularly priced at $55 or above, from its wine list. Taberna del Alabardero, 1776 I St. NW, Washington, DC 20006, 202-429-2200.
 
James Beard Foundation Recognizes DC's José Andrés
José Andrés has been recognized by the James Beard Foundation with nominations in two major award categories this year. The Spanish chef is once again up for Outstanding Chef and his Los Angeles restaurant, The Bazaar by José Andrés, for Best New Restaurant. The culinary world's equivalent of the Oscars, the James Beard Foundation Awards will be presented at a ceremony in New York on May 4. The Bazaar by José Andrés, SLS at Beverly Hills, 465 S. La Cienega Blvd., Beverly Hills, CA 90048, 310-246-5555.
 
DC's Leading Lady Chefs
Three cheers for the fair sex! Chef Nongkran Daks and chef Carla Hall, both members of the local chapter of Les Dames d'Escoffier, have met the culinary challenge and come out winners. In the case of Daks, she bested Bobby Flay in a dramatic pad thai throw-down, featured at her Chantilly, Va., restaurant, Thai Basil. It just so happens that pad thai, prepared the traditional way with an amber sauce, is her signature dish. For Hall, she was a finalist in the fifth season of Bravo's "Top Chef," one of three finalists to make it to the finish line. Basil Thai, Chantilly Park, 14511-P Lee Jackson Memorial Hwy., Chantilly, VA 20151, 703-631-8277.
 
Celebrate Tax-Day Drinks
2941 Restaurant is commemorating Tax Day on Wednesday, April 15, with a special selection of creative cocktails priced at $10.40 per drink. Customers can drown their sorrows or toast the taxman with cocktails that match their mood. "The Ides of April" is a concoction made of infused orange cranberry vodka, Cointreau and cranberry juice; the "Auditini" is a decadent mix of vodka, Godiva dark chocolate and Godiva white chocolate. There's also a light and refreshing "Taxation Libation" of Hendrick's Gin, fresh cut cucumber and tonic water served on the rocks. 2941 Restaurant, 2941 Fairview Park Dr., Falls Church, VA 22042, 703-270-1500.
 
Redwood Offers Real Savings
As consumers look for ways to spread their dining dollars, Redwood Restaurant & Bar offers a new fixed-price two-course lunch for $15 and fixed-price three-course dinner menu for $35 (beverages, tax and gratuity not included). Available through March 31, the lunch and dinner menus change daily, and will highlight seasonal, naturally raised and locally sourced ingredients. Wine lovers will want to take advantage of the half-price wines available Sunday through Wednesday evenings from 5 p.m.-9 p.m. Redwood Restaurant & Bar, Bethesda Row, 7121 Bethesda Ln., Bethesda, MD 20814, 301-656-5515.
 
Café MoZU Cheers on the Cherry Blossoms
In conjunction with the National Cherry Blossom Festival's "Cherry Picks," Café MoZU will offer the dessert, the Cherry Chocolate Cone (March 28-April 12). This flavor combination of sweet cherry sorbet and warm cherry kirsch is dressed with a twist of the waffle cone and served in a dark chocolate-painted glass. Guests may also enjoy a Cherry Blossom bento box that features such items as Australian Wagyu beef with Cherry Blossom mashed potatoes, and a Cherry Blossom sushi roll with Cherry Blossom rice, shrimp and avocado. The Cherry Blossom bento box is available for both lunch and dinner, and is priced at $30 per person, exclusive of tax and gratuity. Café MoZU is open daily for breakfast, lunch and dinner. Café MoZU, 1330 Maryland Ave. SW, Washington, DC 20024, 202-554-8588.
 
The Mexican Table
Under the auspices of the Mexican Cultural Institute, Patricia Jinich has arranged a series of food-centric events that highlight the glories of Mexico's cuisine. You'll get to sample everything from street foods to what haciendas in the Yucatan prepare, and there's even a kids' workshop where youngsters learn about the history of corn and its use in the Mexican cookpot. The following calendar of events highlights what you will find. Each session is $70 per person. Kids' Workshop is $15 per child; first come, first served. You can also contact the institute at 202-232-8674. March 20 (6:30 p.m.):
Mexico Chic: Fancy Nightlife Food (Registration deadline March 13). April 30 (6:30 p.m.):
Mexican Streets: Walking Fiesta Fare (Registration deadline April 23). June 20 (11 a.m.-1 a.m.): Kids' Workshop: Crafts and Snacks: History and uses of corn, from quesadillas to cornhusk puppets (ages 6-12) (Registration deadline June 12). September 24 (6:30 p.m.):
Mexican Icons: Independence Day at Frida Kahlo and Diego Rivera's Table
(Registration deadline September 17). October 29 (6:30 p.m.):
Mexico Quintessential Celebration: Day of the Dead in Veracruz (Registration deadline October 22). December 10 (6:30 p.m.):
Mexico Rediscovered: Posadas in Yucatán Haciendas (Registration deadline December 3). Mexican Cultural Institute, 2829 16th St. NW, Washington, DC.
 
Chef Geoff's Dining Deal
Chef Geoff created the Sunset Special early in 2000 to entice guests to the new restaurant. The deal included a three-course meal with a number of options for only $19.95. Nine years later, the price has not gone up. The deal is available daily from 4 p.m.-6:30 p.m. at the original Chef Geoff's restaurant at 3201 New Mexico Ave. NW, Washington DC. Chef Geoff's, 3201 New Mexico Ave. NW, Washington, DC 20016, 202-237-7800.
 

Chef Shuffle
Taking over the helm at the Roof Terrace Restaurant is chef Vatche Benguian, who has been named chef de cuisine. He recently launched his new seasonal menu, which infuses traditional cooking styles with the contemporary. A graduate of The Culinary Institute of America (CIA), he brings more than 25 years of experience to his new position. Benguian hails from such restaurants as Les Halles, Blue Duck Tavern and La Colline. Roof Terrace Restaurant, The John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, 2700 F St. NW, Washington, DC 20566, 202-416-8555.
 

Closings

CLOSED FOR GOOD
Take your taste buds on a walk down memory lane! Check out our exclusive closed restaurant database for Washington D.C. to virtually visit your favorite dining spots from the past. La Colline, R.I.P.

Check back soon for more news.

CULINARY EVENTS
Want to learn to cook? Try new dishes? Meet a foodie friend for fun? Check out our compilation of culinary events in your area.


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