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News for Restaurants in Washington DC
December 2008 Archive

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Zola Wine & Kitchen, a wine shop combined with a chef's test kitchen, is located just steps away from Zola, the restaurant adjacent to the International Spy Museum. Star Restaurant Group executive chef Bryan Moscatello and his culinary team will be testing recipes in this new kitchen lab for Zola's menu and for the company's upcoming new Italian restaurant, opening at the Woodward Building downtown, at 15th and H Streets NW. The wine shop houses approximately 6,000 artfully displayed "great find" wines from around the world with an emphasis on international bottles. A selection of pre-packaged sandwiches and gourmet products are also available at the wine shop so one can easily create a picnic spread to "grab and go." The kitchen is open daily for recipe testing and culinary activities for the Star Restaurant Group's chefs. It can also be booked for private event luncheons during the day, and on designated Wednesdays, "Quick Lunches" cooking classes will be held in the kitchen from 11:30 a.m.-1 p.m. For more information, contact Denielle Vendetti, special events planner, at 202-654-2855 or Zola Wine & Kitchen, 505 9th St. NW, Washington, DC, DC 20004, 202-654-2855.

News Bytes

Inauguration Celebration Plans at Taberna
For two straight weeks, from January 12 through January 24, including weekends, Taberna del Alabardero will open its doors from 11:30 a.m.-10:30 p.m. (Normal business hours are 11:30 a.m.-2:30 p.m. for lunch and 5:30 p.m.-10:30 p.m. for dinner during the week and they are usually only open for Saturday dinner.) During inauguration week, the restaurant will be open all day both Saturday and Sunday. Taberna del Alabardero and executive chef Dani Arana will serve the regular menu during the extended hours, which includes veal tongue carpaccio with mâche, truffles and red radish vinaigrette; soaked brioche with porcini mushrooms, green asparagus, a poached farm egg and shrimp brochette; fried suckling pig with grapefruit marmalade and frisée salad; and marinated swordfish, Spanish-style, with quinoa, mint and lemon soup. Call 202-429-2200 for reservations. Taberna del Alabardero, 1776 I St. NW, Washington, DC 20006, 202-429-2200.
Ceiba’s Pre-Theater Menu
Ceiba's pre-theatre menu is available Monday through Saturday from 5:30 p.m.-6:30 p.m. for $29. The daily "Bocadito," a savory tidbit, sets the stage for the meal to come. The first course includes a Yucatán shrimp "cocktail" ceviche with pico de gallo, avocado and crisp corn tortillas and entrées include any selection from the dinner menu (except that a $9 surcharge applies for sugar-cane skewered shrimp, whole snapper or grilled rib-eye). Ceiba, 701 14th St. NW, Washington, DC 20005, 202-393-3983.
Mrs. K's Offers Budget-Savvy Savings
As budgets shrink and wallets tighten, Mrs. K's Restaurant will offer three-course Fireside Menus priced at $23 per person for lunch and $33 for dinner. Specially crafted by executive chef Maurisee Upshur, the Fireside Menus will be available January 3 through March 2009. Wine lovers will also note that The Wine Press at Mrs. K's Restaurant is presenting an exclusive selection of bottles available at deeply discounted prices. The Fireside Lunch will be offered Tues.-Sat. from 11:30 a.m.-2:30 p.m. Diners will be treated to a three-course menu including dishes such as a garden salad, chilled gazpacho, stuffed grape leaves, chicken BLT, rainbow trout, shrimp and basil pesto pasta and for dessert a favorite, the Tollhouse pie. During dinner service, the Fireside Menu will be offered Tues.-Fri. from 5 p.m.-9 p.m. Mrs. K's Restaurant, 9201 Colesville Rd., Silver Spring, MD 20910, 301-589-3500.
Unwind at Vinifera
After a long day's work, come and relax with a drink at Vinifera Wine Bar & Bistro's upscale "Unwind Hour." Every weekday evening from 5 p.m.-7 p.m., Vinifera invites guests to settle in with a glass or bottle from the restaurant's extensive wine selection and a sampling of executive chef Seth Eldridge's complimentary tapas. Each week, Vinifera will feature three highly rated wines for special "tasting" at bargain prices. Guests can choose from Vinifera's collection of nearly 300 local, domestic and international wines by the bottle, as well as over 25 wines available by the glass or half glass. Specialty cocktails and microbrews are also available. Vinifera Wine Bar & Bistro, The Westin Reston Heights, 11750 Sunrise Valley Dr., Reston, VA 20191, 703-234-3550.
Passion Food Hospitality Offers 75 Extra Clams
When you're making your naughty-and-nice lists this season, bear in mind that Passion Food Hospitality gift cards will make everyone happy, including you: purchase $500 worth of gift cards for use at Acadiana, Ceiba, DC Coast, PassionFish and TenPenh and receive a complimentary gift card worth $75.
Proof Restaurant Proof’s Lunch Crush
Proof Restaurant is offering a midday meal deal fit for busy professionals in search of a quick lunch option in the Penn Quarter. Offered in the bar and lounge only, the Lunch Crush features a choice of six entrées paired with a glass of house red or white wine, soft drink or iced tea for $12. Chef Haidar Karoum's menu will rotate regularly, but always include at least three sandwich options, such as the crispy shrimp burger, served with cucumber, jalapeño, pickled daikon and sriracha aïoli; a pasta option, such as the orecchiette and house-made Italian sausage with rapini, wild mushrooms and Parmesan; and a hearty salad option, such as the grilled hanger steak salad. Wine director Sebastian Zutant will also rotate the house wine pours regularly. Proof Restaurant, 775 G St. NW, Washington, DC 20001, 202-737-7663.
Bombay Club's Facelift
This month, restaurateur Ashok Bajaj's first Washington restaurant, The Bombay Club, is celebrating its 20th anniversary. With this birthday, The Bombay Club is unveiling a new 24-seat private dining room, a new bar and lounge, and a new menu by executive chef Nilesh Singhvi. The new menu of gourmet Indian cuisine highlights the diversity of India's regional dishes. The restaurant will continue to serve the indulgent Sunday brunch buffet, featuring unlimited sparkling wine. The Bombay Club, 815 Connecticut Ave. NW, Washington, DC 20006, 202-659-3727.

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