Roll Call: Latest News on Capitol Hill, Congress, Politics and Elections
April 1, 2015

Posts by Rebecca Gale

5 Posts

February 13, 2015

Casa Luca to Offer Sunday Brunch

Maria's Light Menu feature at Casa Luca's Sunday brunch.

Maria’s Light Menu feature at Casa Luca’s Sunday brunch. (Rebecca Gale/CQ Roll Call)

D.C. brunch-goers will soon have a new spot to add to the list of upscale restaurants with bottomless mimosas: Fabio Trabocchi’s Casa Luca will be open for Sunday brunch starting on Feb. 22 from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m.

Featuring Trabocchi’s signature Italian flare (Fiola, Fiola Mare) in a more casual, family-style setting, Casa Luca is named for the Trabocchi’s 11-year-old son Luca, who helps out in the kitchen sharpening his skills as a budding chef and restaurateur.

Porchetta on Rye, one of Casa Luca's signature brunch items.

Porchetta on Rye, one of Casa Luca’s signature brunch items. (Rebecca Gale/CQ Roll Call)

The Chinatown/City Center restaurant has been open since 2013. The brunch will feature hearty fare such as porchetta on rye, Italian-style vegetarian omelets, homemade stromboli and a plentiful bread basket by Executive Pastry Sous Chef Claudia Bruni.

For $32, guests can order the Casa Luca Signature Brunch: an appetizer, main course, dessert and bottomless libations, a choice between bar manager Robin Miller’s signature “Gazpacho” Bloody Mary, Sicilian Mimosa, or Casa Luca Sangria. For lighter fare, “Maria’s Light Brunch,” $26, comes with a main course of parmacotto ham, stracchino cheese, rye crescia, yogurt, fruit and a mocktail of choice. All items are also available a la carte.

Housemade breads include [XYZ]

House made breads include Pane al Cacio di Roma, a fluffy roll with sheep’s milk, and Maritozzo, a sweet bun flavored with honey lemon and orange zest. (Rebecca Gale/CQ Roll Call)

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December 5, 2014

Hill, K Street: Grab a Drink, Get Your Party On

Time to sort through your holiday party invites. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Time to sort through your holiday party invites. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

If you’ve been stuck in the Capitol cramming on the “cromnibus” and missing the whole holiday mingling circuit, then it’s time to grab a drink and get your party on.

Some of the hottest December shindigs are still to come, offering a rare respite from the partisan vitriol and legislative gridlock. These are opportunities for some serious bipartisan collaboration, though the invites — or lack of — can be challenging to navigate. Full story

August 29, 2014

Roll Call After Dark Quaff of the Week: Iced Coffee Challenge Part 3

Is Dunkin Donuts worth the iced coffee hype?

Is Dunkin Donuts worth the iced coffee hype? (Amy Sussman/Getty Images)

“Please autumn hold your breath/ While summer collects the last/threads of her dress.”
— Carol Trawick, as viewed on a bench outside the Bethesda Library

Summer’s not over yet.

August may be winding down, but there are arguably a few more weeks of iced coffees, before the fall arrives and and pumpkin spiced latte craze** takes over.

Our iced coffee challenge continues with three final contenders (Read Part 1 and Part 2 of the Roll Call After Dark Iced Coffee Challenge).

La Colombe: ($2.75 for iced coffee or iced Americano, 16 ounces, sales tax included in price) Tucked in an alleyway in D.C.’s Shaw neighborhood, La Colombe arrived in Washington as the latest coffee craze. The over-caffeinated hype is much deserving; La Colombe roasts its own beans and the clever post-modern décor is ideal for anyone looking for a quiet coffee shop haven that doesn’t have “bucks” in the name. There’s no soy milk available, but La Colombe does offer hemp milk (!), another dairy-free alternative, at no extra charge. Extra bonus: free sparkling water from a tap. Decaf drinkers beware: a decaf drink carries a 50 cent surcharge. The coffee may be good enough to lure in repeat customers, but there is no loyalty program to reward your business.

Peet’s Coffee: ($2.55 for iced Americano, $2.45 for iced coffee, both 16 ounces) Hello, Washington, D.C., meet Peet’s Coffee, the new coffee spot replacing the kitschy ski-lodge themed Carbiou Coffees and then some. The West Coast chain is super clean, medium fast, and reasonably priced. Soy creamer and simple syrup are available at the coffee bar, which can somewhat make up for the fact that there is no rewards program for frequent visits.

Dunkin Donuts: ($2.59 for 16 ounces of iced coffee — because, really, why would you order an Americano from Dunkin Donuts?) We get it, East Coasters, the love for Dunkin’ Donuts coffee knows no bounds. But let’s call it for what it is: all right coffee. How seriously can you take a coffee brand that comes in flavors like “cookie dough” and “blueberry”? (Not that “pumpkin spice” is any better, looking at you, Starbucks.) It may be the salt of the earth among coffee taste buds, but the fandom knows no bounds. Control freaks beware: Dunkin adds cream and sugar for you and the milk options are limited to skim, whole, and cream (no soy or 2 percent). Dunkin values loyalty, and the DD Perks app provides a free medium coffee just for signing up. Also, keep an eye on your snail-mail, as the seasons change Dunkin has been known to send out coupons for free iced coffees on Monday morning. No catch, no “with purchase” gimmick. Just free coffee. And who can’t appreciate that?

**Is it worth Roll Call After Dark’s time and calories to review PSLs? Let us know: tweet to @beckgale.

August 18, 2014

Roll Call After Dark Quaff of the Week: Iced Coffee Challenge Part 2

(Mario Tama/Getty Images News)

(Mario Tama/Getty Images)

Before the days of Starbucks in every urban street corner and suburban strip mall, “iced coffee” was rare. It had not yet arrived as a mainstay of American morning beverages, nor had the $4 coffee drink become the norm.

But now, iced coffee is here to stay — it’s come a long way since the days of the Starbucks bottled Frappuccino. Which is good news for just about everyone.

This week, the Roll Call After Dark’s Iced Coffee Challenge continues with three more contenders for Iced Americanos (for those curious why, see here for the explanation). Full story

August 13, 2014

Roll Call After Dark Quaff of the Week: Iced Coffee Challenge

(Chris Hondros/Getty Images News)

(Chris Hondros/Getty Images File Photo)

In each of our caffeinated hearts, there is a special place for iced coffee.

Arguably more refreshing than a beer, cheaper than wine, fewer calories than a lemonade, and more caffeine than iced tea: Iced coffee might be the perfect summer beverage.

But not all iced coffees are created equal. So Roll Call After Dark has taken up the challenge to do a quick comparison. Full story

By Rebecca Gale Posted at 1:02 p.m.
Drink

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