Roll Call: Latest News on Capitol Hill, Congress, Politics and Elections
May 28, 2015

May 26, 2015

Nobody Puts NoMa in a Corner

NoMa Summer Screen kicks off its schedule Wednesday at its new location, and with its 2015 theme, “Dance, Dance, Dance.”

First on the screen will be “Dirty Dancing,” the 1987 classic about the dance romance of Frances “Baby” Houseman (Jennifer Grey) and Johnny Castle (Patrick Swayze). Food trucks accompanying the flick at NoMa Junction at Storey Park — the 1005 First St. NE location previously known as the Greyhound bus station — will be Popped! Republic, DC Slices, DC Empanadas, Red Hook Lobster Pound, Kaftamania and Captain Cookie & the Milkman.

The series continues on Wednesdays through Aug. 19. Come check out the digs while you can. The old bus station is slated for redevelopment to mixed use commercial and retail space. So the murals and food trucks and all that transitional jazz will only last so long.

Here’s the full dance card for the rest of the summer: Full story

May 22, 2015

‘Idiocracy’ a Fine Film for Friday’s Brand of Fun

Filibusters and FISA got you down, Senate watchers? Look no further than a fine piece of film masterwork for solace as you contemplate yet another busted recess weekend.

Mike Judge’s “Idiocracy” has enough prescient political and congressional satire to make even those who had a beach getaway coming up feel a little better about what’s up in the World’s Greatest Deliberative Body. As President Dwayne Elizondo Mountain Dew Herbert Camacho would say, “I got a solution.”

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By Jason Dick Posted at 11:30 a.m.
Movies

May 21, 2015

Find Your Flavor of Philanthropy

In the mood to put your money where your mouth is? A number of non-profits would love to help you do just that in the coming weeks.

All that’s left to decide is how you’d like to throw down.

Chefs Behind Bars

(Courtesy Kiley Fischer)

(Courtesy Kiley Fischer)

Local toques will, on May 28, once again try their hands at fashioning can’t-miss libations during the latest installment of the ongoing “Chefs Behind Bars” series.

In the year since the role-reversing fundraiser for Share Our Strength’s No Kid Hungry campaign debuted here in the District, dozens of chefs and mixologists have rallied to the cause — facing off in a number of competitions that have borne bragging rights for a growing roster of self-styled cocktail shakers.

Art and Soul vet Douglas Alexander nabbed the People’s Choice Award in July 2014. Beuchert’s Executive Chef Andrew Markert became the People’s Choice winner in September 2014. And restaurateur and “Top Chef “ alumnus Bryan Voltaggio snagged the People’s Choice prize just last month.

Those hoping to partake in the upcoming festivities, which are scheduled to take place at Capitol Hill newcomer Stanton & Greene, can secure tickets (join.nokidhungry.org/ChefsBehindBars) ahead of time for $45. (It’ll be $50 at the door.)

The tasting is scheduled to run from 6 to 8 p.m. and will feature small bites supplied by Stanton & Greene (think: canapés, fritters, sliders and skewered items) as well as specialty drinks created by:

  • Birch & Barley Chef Kyle Bailey (his “Rain When I Die” is expected to include dark rum, smoked cherries and blood orange).
  • Vidalia Chef Hamilton Johnson.
  • Mango Tree Chef Adrian Salazar.
  • Rural Society Chef Louis Goral.
  • Sticky Fingers Eats & Sweets/FareWell Founder Doron Petersan.
  • Jack Rose Dining Saloon Chef Russell Jones.
  • Juniper Chef Mariah Tysz (her “French Twist” should feature St. Germaine, vodka, cucumber water, lime and a lemongrass-ginger reduction).

An event organizer noted that Buttercream Bakeshop Founder Tiffany MacIsaac is also hard at work on a batch of “boozy desserts!”

K Street Farm Dinner

DC Greens Advisory Board Member Maggie Gyllenhaal is bringing along younger brother and fellow film star Jake to the food advocacy group’s inaugural K Street Farm Dinner.

The family-style feast, scheduled to take place June 2 at the non-profit’s urban garden (located on the corner of New Jersey Avenue and K Street Northwest), is expected to feature locally sourced dishes tag-teamed by some of the area’s gustatory heavies.

Participating chefs, include:

  • Ruben Garcia of MiniBar.
  • Sunnyside Restaurant Group Founder and DC Food Policy Council Chairman Spike Mendelsohn.
  • Mike Friedman of The Red Hen.
  • Jeremiah Langhorne of The Dabney.
  • Voltaggio.
  • Restaurateur Mike Isabella.
  • MacIsaac.

Per organizers, celebrating fresh, wholesome ingredients is what it’s all about.

“Some elements will be harvested from The K Street Farm and from school gardens across the District,” an event coordinator told CQ Roll Call. Cocktail guru Owen Thomson has been tasked with providing adult refreshments, while Charlottesville, Va.-based winery Early Mountain Vineyards will supply pours.

Instead of arranging a separate auction, party planners constructed perks — including “Hot Tables” (dinner for four at China Chilcano or Kapnos), “Cool Experiences” (gelato making class at Dolcezza) and “Unforgettable Events” (rooftop dinner for 10 at Rose’s Luxury, VIP passes to the 2016 sweetlife festival) — built-in to varying ticket packages. General admission starts at $250 per person, while a VIP pass (which includes a welcome reception and gift bag assembled by Salt & Sundry) will set you back $600.

Reserve your seat at: dcgreens.org/farmdinner.

Third Annual Dine-N-Dash

(Courtesy ThinkFoodGroup)

(Courtesy ThinkFoodGroup)

Seasoned coalition builder José Andrés aims to again turn the streets of DC into a playground for the epicurious courtesy of his homegrown Dine-N-Dash on June 9 .

Now in its third year, the Penn Quarter-based taste-around boasts unfettered access to a dozen established eateries and participating food trucks, as well as an after party at the neighboring Carnegie Library, all in the name of providing much needed resources to Andrés’ global relief arm, World Central Kitchen.

At press time, general admission tickets ($129) remained available for those content to get underway at Cuba Libre, Del Campo, Jaleo, Oya, Oyamel, The Partisan, Ping Pong Dim Sum, Poste Brasserie, Proof, SEI and Zaytinya. VIP passes ($299) — which entitle guests to complimentary pedicab service between the participating restaurants, exclusive access to specialty drinks/food at the ThinkFoodGroup properties and after-party — were still available for those looking to launch from Jaleo, Oyamel or Zaytinya.

Per organizers, the after party will be larded up with extra special goodies, including:

  • Signature cocktails created by mirth makers at 2 Birds 1 Stone, El Camino (think: “instant” ginger beer spiked with jalapeno, and mezcal-fueled Old Fashions) and Mockingbird Hill.
  • Custom sweets whipped up by Dog Tag Bakery, Buzz Bakery and Pitango Gelato.
  • Craft beer service.
  • Performances by City of the Sun, the indie rockers staff Andrés apparently fell in love with at South by Southwest.

The culinary trek is slated to take place from 6 to 9 p.m. The after party is projected to rage on from 9 to 11 p.m.

Moving forward, Andrés said he’d love to invite the rest of the world to the party.

Score tickets on LivingSocial.

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May 20, 2015

AFI Docs Highlights Old School, New School

AFI Docs released its full slate Wednesday for its June 17-21 run, and among its 81 movies are documentaries from one of the field’s most influential directors, as well as some of its most contemporary trailblazers.

Legendary documentarian Albert Maysles, who died in March at the age of 88, is one of several co-directors of “In Transit.” The movie, which premiered last month at the Tribeca Film Festival, is a chronicle of Amtrak’s Empire Builder train line, which stretches from Seattle to Chicago.

Meanwhile, Alex Gibney, the man who took on Scientology with this year’s “Going Clear: Scientology, Hollywood, & the Prison of His Belief” and has taken a deep look at everyone from Ken Lay (“Enron: The Smartest Guys in the Room”) to Hunter S. Thompson (“Gonzo: The Life and Work of Dr. Hunter S. Thompson”) and Julian Assange (“We Steal Secrets: The Story of WikiLeaks”) takes a look at the man behind Apple with his latest, “Steve Jobs: Man in the Machine.”

Another documentarian pushing boundaries in the field, Joshua Oppenheimer, will have his “The Look of Silence,” a follow-up to his hard-hitting film about the Indonesian genocide, at the festival as well.

The three directors show off an old school/new school dynamic to the festival, with 78 other films in between.

One of the travelers in “In Transit” says, “Maybe I don’t wanna die before having a good look at the world.” That’s a good fit for a thing such as AFI Docs, where such sentiment largely defines the audiences for documentaries.

Related:

AFI Docs to Open With Flick About Epic Gore Vidal-William F. Buckley Brawls

The 114th: CQ Roll Call’s Guide to the New Congress

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By Jason Dick Posted at 4:30 p.m.
Movies

May 19, 2015

DC Film Society Trailer Night Parks It at E Street

The Washington DC Film Society is hosting its “Coming Attractions” program Tuesday night at Landmark’s E Street Cinema, its twice-yearly gathering of those looking to watch and gab about the season’s top movie offerings.

From 7 to 9 p.m., host Tim Gordon will take viewers through the trailers for the summer’s big flicks. The admission ticket includes door prizes that include movie promotional items, posters and DVDs.

It’s five bucks to get in. The bar at E Street can make things even more fun. Just think of Drafthouse Film’s “Trailer Wars” and the old “42nd Street Forever” efforts.

The 114th: CQ Roll Call’s Guide to the New Congress

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By Jason Dick Posted at 4:12 p.m.
Movies

May 18, 2015

GI Film Festival Comes to Canadian Soil

The 2015 GI Film Festival gets underway Monday, and while the bulk of the films and events surrounding the all-things-military fest are at the Angelika Film Center at Mosaic in Fairfax, Va., the international bloc gets the (maple leaf) red carpet treatment on Tuesday at the Canadian Embassy. Full story

By Jason Dick Posted at 4:15 p.m.
Movies

May 16, 2015

D.C. Outdoor Movie Season Kicks Off

The D.C. outdoor movie season kicks off in the middle of the city on May 22, when the Golden Cinema series starts up with its inaugural flick, “Empire Records.”

The 1995 classic of the too-slim slacker genre follows the staff of an independent record store as it tries to fend off a chain moving in on its turf. How things come full circle, no? The chain record behemoths such as Tower Records are now dead and gone, while indie vinyl specialty shops (such as D.C.’s own Crooked Beat, Red Onion, Som and Hill & Dale) are enjoying a revival. Full story

May 14, 2015

‘The Birds’ Descends on Congressional Cemetery

If you have orinthophobia, perhaps the only thing more terrifying than the thought of a bird attack is watching birds attack Tippi Hedren among thousands and thousands of dead people. Congressional Cemetery is happy to oblige. Full story

By Jason Dick Posted at 12:41 p.m.
Movies

May 13, 2015

AFI Docs to Open With Flick About Epic Gore Vidal-William F. Buckley Brawls

People think cable television pundits are rough on each other now. They don’t know for rough.

“Best of Enemies,” a documentary by Robert Gordon and Morgan Neville about the 1968 public debates between Gore Vidal and William F. Buckley will open the AFI Docs film festival on June 17. Vidal, the pugilistic liberal, writer and cultural critic and Buckley, the pugnacious founder of National Review and conservative godfather, staged the intellectual equivalent of the Ali-Frazier fights.

“As far as I’m concerned, the only sort of pro- or crypto-Nazi I can think of is yourself, ” Vidal said to Buckley on air on Aug. 28, 1968, during the Democratic National Convention in Chicago.

“Stop calling me a crypto-Nazi. Stop or I’ll sock you in the goddamned face and you’ll stay plastered,” Buckley replied.

“They were not frenemies. They were just enemies,” Neville told Beyond Cinema at this year’s Sundance Film Festival. Anyone interested in some real intellectual firepower should be in for a good movie.

The 114th: CQ Roll Call’s Guide to the New Congress

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Alex Garland and the ‘Strange’ Fallout From Snowden

Alex Garland’s film “Ex Machina” arrived in U.S. theaters at a time of heightened cultural awareness of artificial intelligence. But a key plot point centers on another current issue of resonance: the bulk collection of telephone records. Full story

By Jason Dick Posted at 12:52 p.m.
Movies

May 11, 2015

There Be Dragons — and Horses

Take in a Black Eyed Susan on Preakness Day! (Chris Maddaloni/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Take in a Black Eyed Susan on Preakness Day! (Chris Maddaloni/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Start off the week with a rock-star historian and end it with the spectacle of dragons gliding down the Potomac River. In between, mix with a little splash of ginger and take in the second leg of the Triple Crown. Full story

May 8, 2015

Passport DC Brings Europe to Washington

If you can’t arrange a quick trip to Europe this weekend, how about the next best thing: Passport DC’s Shortcut to Europe: European Union Embassies’ Open House.

On Saturday, between 10 a.m. and 4 p.m., 28 embassies will open their doors with tons of events planned, particularly centered on food, music and cultural immersion. There is a scavenger hunt, Latvian folk dancing, Maltese sweets, Spanish wine, a drawing for a six-day trip to Estonia, German and French language lessons, and a trip to Hungary. If nothing else, consider the Belgian embassy, with its world-famous beers, chocolate, and waffles.

Last weekend, the “Around the World Embassy Tour” kicked things off.

There are two Passport DC events yet to come this month. On May 15, the National Asian Heritage Festival’s Fiesta Asian Street Fair will take place downtown. The series wraps up with the “Embassy Chef Challenge” at the Ronald Reagan Building and International Trade Center on May 20

The 114th: CQ Roll Call’s Guide to the New Congress

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May 5, 2015

At Tortilla Coast, Strasburg or Strasburger?

High cinco! (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

High cinco! (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

What’s more American than margaritas on Cinco de Mayo? How about a margarita on Cinco de Mayo at the capital of political Tex-Mex pubs, Tortilla Coast?

The Capitol Hill watering hole, renowned as the former employer of GOP stars like Rep. Paul D. Ryan, R-Wis., and the secret meeting place of Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas, and his followers, is ramping up for a two-fer: The busiest day of the year for them (Cinco de Mayo) and a Washington Nationals home game, where the Nats will take on the loathed Marlins of Miami. Full story

May 4, 2015

Have a Ball With DC Vote

Disenfranchised District denizens who dare to dream of one day having a say in how Congress handles its business can once again raise their voices in unison during DC Vote’s 3 Star Ball.

The fledgling fundraiser is scheduled to bring together advocates for home rule on the rooftop of the National Association of Realtors Building (500 New Jersey Ave. NW) Wednesday from 6:30 to 9 p.m.

Newly minted host committee member Spike Mendelsohn is slated to handle the refreshments; organizers indicated his catering arm, Spike’d, has been tasked with plying partygoers with passed hors d’oeuvres. An open bar is expected to tend to the needs of the absolutely parched. Full story

May 1, 2015

NoVa Invades Atlas District for Tag Team Beer Dinner

Granville Moore’s (1238 H St. NE) on May 4 is hosting fellow “Beer Program of the Year” nominee Mad Fox Brewing Company for a collaborative four-course dinner.

The intimate affair, scheduled to kick off with a “happy half-hour” at 6:30 p.m., is expected to feature complementary food and drink pairings arranged by the barley-and-hops loving establishments.

Per organizers, the projected carte includes:

  • Spice-rubbed duck breast with Reynard foie gras spread, charred peach and celery salad, spiced pecans and white balsamic paired with Reynard Black Saison.
  • Smoked corn & mustard mussels and frites with tomatoes and tarragon paired with Mad Fox’s new seasonal saison.
  • Orange Whip-brined roasted chicken with butter-braised radishes, artichoke puree and spring vegetables paired with Orange Whip IPA.
  • Homboldt Fog cheese, assorted jams, beer mustard and toast points paired with Mad Fox’s Oaked Diabolik.

Tickets for the boozy love fest are $58.50 per person (tax and tip included).

The 114th: CQ Roll Call’s Guide to the New Congress

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