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April 23, 2014

Posts in "Drink"

April 21, 2014

Calendar: 10 Years of Sixth & I, Poetic Justice at Hill Center

Happy “Sixth and I Day,” Washington! To celebrate 10 years since the synagogue at 600 I St. NW was re-dedicated as the Sixth & I Historic Synagogue, not just as a center of worship but a venue for music and other cultural and community events, the District has proclaimed Tuesday as “Sixth & I Day.”

Ten-year anniversary events are scheduled for later in the year, but in the meantime, the spot’s normal array of quality programming includes the Brad Mehldau Trio on Thursday night and its “Spring Brews” seasonal beer tasting on April 29. For more information on upcoming events, go to sixthandi.org.

Quite Poetic

One of the country’s most acclaimed poets, Edward Hirsch, comes to D.C.’s Hill Center (921 Pennsylvania Ave. SE) on Wednesday night for the “Life of a Poet” series, to discuss, well, life, with Ron Charles, the fiction editor of the Washington Post. The free event, sponsored by the Post, the Library of Congress and the National Capital Bank, will be sort of a reunion. Hirsch spent years writing for the Post’s “Poet’s Choice” column.

He’s the author of eight books of poetry, with another one on the way this year, and serves as the president of the John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Foundation in New York. The event starts at 7 p.m. in the Hill Center’s Abraham Lincoln Hall. Register at hillcenter.org.

Pull Into Dock

Casey Trees is putting on its inaugural Canopy Awards on Thursday at Union Market’s Dock5 space with food, booze, bocce and music. The event aims to fete “volunteers, friends and advocates who support our work promoting, enhancing and protecting D.C.’s tree canopy,” according to a release.

It will feature food pop-ups, the aforementioned bocce, a mini-golf course, photo booths, an open bar and musical performances from The Bumper Jacksons and Andrew Lipke and the Azrael String Quartet.

Tickets are $45 in advance and $55 at the door, and can be purchased at caseytrees.org. It gets started at 6:30 p.m. Thursday at Dock5 at 1309 Fifth St. NE.

Mix Tape

Martha Redbone, a musician with a slew of musical roots steeped in funk, blue, folk and Native American sounds, plays at the Atlas Performing Arts Center at 1333 H St. NE on Friday night. Her new latest album, “The Garden of Love — The Songs of William Blake,” brings it all together for a tune jambalaya.

Tickets are $28.50 in advance and $33.50 at the door; students get in for $20 with ID. They can be purchased at atlasarts.org. The show starts at 8 p.m.

April 8, 2014

Remington’s, Another Old-School Capitol Hill Bar, Bites the Dust

What in the name of Larry Craig is going on here? Remington’s, a long-time establishment on Capitol Hill at 639 Pennsylvania Ave. SE and iconic gay bar, is closing up shop, Prince of Petworth reports.

Remington’s will pour its last shot on Monday during happy hour, an abrupt ending for a place that’s been around for three decades.

The one-time country-western themed dive joins a long list of old favorites on the Hill that are going the way of the dodo, such as the Li’l Pub and Pour House, and a list of endangered spots by the bankruptcy proceedings swirling around Barracks Row Entertainment, whose holdings include the Hawk n’ Dove, Boxcar Tavern and Chesapeake Room, among others.

Make no mistake: This is the global warming of Capitol Hill drinking spots: Rapid change followed by unknown future.

By Jason Dick Posted at 4:35 p.m.
Drink, Eat

April 6, 2014

Arizona Wine: The Link Between Tool and Congress

COTTONWOOD, Ariz. | On this, the Republican congressman and the frontman for Tool, A Perfect Circle and Puscifer agree: The Verde Valley is a great place to make wine.

Rep. Paul Gosar, the two-term lawmaker who represents central and western Arizona, and Maynard James Keenan, the Grammy-winning and platinum-album selling rock star who happens to be the hands-on winemaker/founder of Caduceus Cellars and Merkin Vineyards, can’t say enough about the wine coming from the high-desert land here.

“Northern Arizona, particularly the Verde Valley, has the right climate to make some very interesting wines, and when you combine that with the natural beauty of the red rocks, the running creeks and rivers, the western vistas, and Arizona hospitality, it’s a recipe for success! I can’t wait to watch as this industry continues to develop over the next couple years,” said Gosar, whose official website is peppered with imagery of the valley and references to its viticulture efforts.

Keenan is counting on such sentiment, as his roots in the Verde Valley grow. His mission statement reads, in part, “My art and music has been described as ‘thick, dense, rich, complex, engaging, emotional, and spiritual,’ by those who are fans. And an ‘acquired taste’ for those kind others who are not. Arizona is ‘thick, dense, rich, complex, engaging, emotional, and spiritual,’ as well as being an ‘acquired taste.’ We are a match made in heaven and surely these qualities will be reflected in the wine that Arizona will present to us.”

In addition to his Caduceus and Merkin labels and their attendant vineyards, he has tasting rooms here, in nearby Jerome and Clarkdale; supports Yavapai College’s nascent viticulture program, the Southwest Wine Center in Clarkdale, and founded wine cooperative Four Eight Wineworks and co-founded Arizona Stronghold with fellow area winemaker Eric Glomski.

His efforts with Glomski were chronicled in the documentary movie “Blood Into Wine,” which, in addition to oneophiles and chamber of commerce types extolling the power of the vine, got a little star power from the likes of Milla Jovovich and Patton Oswalt, fans of Keenan’s music and now his wine.

Full story

By Jason Dick Posted at 6 p.m.
Drink, Eat

April 4, 2014

Calendar: A ‘Naked’ Writer, a ‘Documented’ Filmmaker

A ‘Naked’ Writer’s Manifesto

Charles Wheelan, the scribe behind “Naked Statistics: Stripping the Dread From the Data” and “Naked Economics: Undressing the Dismal Science” swings by for Monday’s Roll Call Book Club to talk about his latest offering: “The Centrist Manifesto.” Wheelan, a Dartmouth professor of public policy, is a bit fed up with the gridlocked shenanigans of the Republican and Democratic parties and calls for a centrist third party that can focus on the big issues, instead of just run for re-election and trade partisan snipes. If you think this isn’t exactly a novel idea, hear Wheelan out. He is, after all, the guy who successfully marries nudity and statistics. “The terminology may sound intimidating, but Wheelan handles it well and is a patient teacher. If you’re the kind of reader whose flagging interest can be revived by cracks about the Kardashians or the author’s faux self-deprecation, you’ll enjoy Wheelan’s style,” our own Randolph Walerius wrote of “Naked Statistics” last year.

“People ask me if I put ‘naked’ in the title just to sell books. The answer is, ‘yes!’” Wheelan cracked. He’ll discuss his book at Hill Center at the Old Naval Hospital at 921 Pennsylvania Ave. SE starting at 6 p.m. We’ll serve snacks and adult beverages, and give out free copies of “The Centrist Manifesto” on a first-come, first-served basis. To register for this free event, click here.

Most Best of D.C.

The Washington City Paper’s Best of D.C. shindig is Wednesday at the historic Carnegie Library at 801 K St. NW, a block-party-worthy soiree of the city’s favorite beer, wine, burgers, oysters, bar, chocolate, gelato — you get the picture. Tickets are $80 for general admission. The $125 Very Important Person tickets are already sold out. Lots of local artists, performers and that admission fee gets you the open bar experience. For more information go to Washington City Paper’s website.

Undocumented Screening, Redux

Former Washington Post reporter Jose Antonio Vargas returns to the District for another screening of his compelling documentary “Undocumented,” which chronicles his uniquely American journey as an undocumented immigrant and his push for an immigration overhaul. On Thursday, he’ll host a screening of “Undocumented,” which has been updated since its initial release last year to reflect current events, at the Newseum at 555 Pennsylvania Ave. NW. The movie starts at 7 p.m. and will be followed by a panel discussion with Vargas, executive producer Janet Yang and FWD.us founder Joe Green. To RSVP, go to Eventfarm.

 

April 1, 2014

Hard Times for Capitol Hill Bars

It’s been a brutal few months for bar crawlers around Capitol Hill.

First, the diviest of dives, the Li’l Pub, closed its doors, ceding the battle to the CVS next door.

lilpub 251x335 Hard Times for Capitol Hill Bars

Dead and gone. The former Li’l Pub on Capitol Hill. (Jason Dick/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Then the news broke that the Pour House, that font of kitschy sports bar badness, is closing its doors at the end of April.

spring 7 042004 2 445x292 Hard Times for Capitol Hill Bars

Not long for this world. (CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Then over the weekend, the Wall Street Journal reported that the owners of several Capitol Hill watering holes, Barracks Row Entertainment, was filing for bankruptcy. Depending on how things turn out, this could affect the Hawk ‘n’ Dove,  Senart’s Oyster House, The Chesapeake Room, Park Tavern, Boxcar Tavern, Lola’s Barracks Bar & Grill, Molly Malone’s, Pacifico Cantina and the not-yet-open Willie’s Brew and ‘Que.

hawkanddove002 011413 445x296 Hard Times for Capitol Hill Bars

Next on the chopping block? (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Yipes. If you’ve got a favorite bar out there, better support it while you can.

By Jason Dick Posted at 6:37 p.m.
Drink

March 28, 2014

Give us Your Weary, Your Tired Convention-Goers, Phoenix Says

Phoenix 013 revised1 445x333 Give us Your Weary, Your Tired Convention Goers, Phoenix Says

(Jason Dick/CQ Roll Call)

PHOENIX — For convention delegates traumatized by long commutes, far-flung venues and disparate hotel options, the prospect of drama-free access this time around is highly appealing.

It is perhaps with this in mind that Arizona’s largest city is touting its light rail system and dense downtown footprint to lure either party’s 2016 presidential convention, a relatively unforeseen twist for a place often associated with car culture and urban sprawl.

Full story

By Jason Dick Posted at 2:43 p.m.
Drink, Eat

March 25, 2014

Mark Halperin Swings by Roll Call Book Club

Mark Halperin, co-author of “Double Down: Game Change 2012,” swings by the Hill Center (921 Pennsylvania Ave. NE) Wednesday in a rescheduled Roll Call Book Club event that was snowed out last month.

Co-hosted by our partners at Hooks Books, the festivities get under way at 6 p.m. with some adult beverages and nosh, and our discussion with Halperin about the 2012 race, and possibly the 2016 one, will get started around 6:15 p.m. He’ll be on hand to sign some copies of the book until around 7:30 p.m.

Come hungry, thirsty and curious. Free copies of the book are available while supplies last.

Ward 6 Candidates to Throw Down at Rock N Roll Hotel

Two candidates for Capitol Hill’s seat on the D.C. Council face off Tuesday night in a venue best known for booking top-notch bands and peddling $3 Pabst Blue Ribbon tallboys.

Ward 6 Democrats Charles Allen and Darrel Thompson are headlining the 8 p.m. debate at Rock N Roll Hotel.

Billed as part of “D.C.’s most fun political debate series” and hosted by Washington City Paper, the event is sure to get rowdy. Plus, it’s probably the last chance to see Tommy Wells’ ex-chief of staff and Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid’s former deputy throw down before the April 1 Democratic primary.

Washington City Paper’s Will Sommer, the Washington Informer’s James Wright, and DCist’s Sarah Anne Hughes will moderate. They will be taking questions from Twitter, Facebook and members of the audience, and the two candidates will get to ask one another questions for a potion of the evening.

Doors open at 1353 H St. NE at 7 p.m. and the show starts at 8 p.m., leaving attendees with a full hour to take advantage of the bar’s happy hour. Entry is free, drinking is encouraged and the hosts remind you to tip your bartender.

March 13, 2014

Another Capitol Hill Dive Takes a Dive: Pour House to Close

It’s about to get harder to find a grubby place for a beer on Capitol Hill. The Pour House at 319 Pennsylvania Ave. SE will close its doors on April 30, Tim Ebner of the Washington City Paper’s Young and Hungry blog reports.

The closure will make way for a new restaurant from the owners of Sonoma just up the block, the Washington Business Journal is reporting.

For those of who like their brews in dark corridors, this has not been a kind year. The Lil’ Pub closed up shop in January, giving way to more toilet paper storage for neighboring CVS. The closing of a Pour House, which itself displaced dive Poli-Tiki, is just another blow for lovers of quaint. Boo!

By Jason Dick Posted at 12:38 p.m.
Be Merry, Drink, Eat

February 13, 2014

Happy Two-Year Anniversary, Boundary Road!

They’re not making a big deal of it or anything, but two years in the hyper-competitive restaurant biz in D.C. is kind of an accomplishment. So congrats to Boundary Road, which celebrates its two-year anniversary tonight at 414 H St. NE.

From their website: “2/13: Boundary Road 2 Year Anniversary- regulars, neighbors, and everyone in between are all invited to celebrate what has been a magical 2 years since we joined H street! Enjoy 10% off your tab for the entire evening.”

Chef Brad Walker’s merry crew of culinary pirates and bartenders are a good bunch, willing to experiment with everything from artichoke recipes to Czech liqueurs like Becherovka.

boundary 251x335 Happy Two Year Anniversary, Boundary Road!

Boundary Road likes to mix things up with local booze, among other comestibles. (Jason Dick/CQ Roll Call File Photo.)

By Jason Dick Posted at 6:44 p.m.
Drink, Eat

February 3, 2014

Sona Opens Doors on Capitol Hill

“It’s open! It’s open! It’s open!” the young woman yelled, stopping short in front of Sona Creamery and Wine Bar along Pennsylvania Avenue near Eastern Market last weekend. It was actual word of mouth in motion.

The establishment, which features a retail cheese operation along with a bar and sit-down dining service, opened its doors for its soft opening on Jan. 29. By the time the weekend rolled around, word had gotten out, prompting Garrotxa consumption and Bichot Macon-Villages corks to pop.

 Sona Opens Doors on Capitol Hill

Sona proprietor Conan O’Sullivan chats up a customer. (Jason Dick/CQ Roll Call)

The business is the brainchild of husband-wife duo Conan and Genevieve O’Sullivan, who started construction and renovation on the old MotoPhoto and Sprint phone storefronts last year.

Full story

By Jason Dick Posted at 3:04 p.m.
Drink, Eat

January 31, 2014

Calendar: Let Prom Season Begin!

Grab those gowns!

The Washington Press Club Foundation’s annual Congressional Dinner, now in its 70th year, unofficially kicks off the capital’s season of formal and semi-formal schmooze-fests on Feb. 5 at the Grand Ballroom of the Mandarin Oriental. As any student of D.C. parties knows: This is the fun one.

The foundation, a nonprofit borne of the old Women’s National Press Club, raises awareness of the need for diversity in newsrooms and sponsors internships and educational projects for aspiring journalists. It also recognizes the accomplishments of sometimes underrepresented segments of the media, such as regional reporters in Washington through the David Lynch Memorial Reporting Award.

Plus, it’s a blast. Sen. Jeff Flake, R-Ariz., and Rep. Donna Edwards, D-Md., will bravely take the mic to hoist a few zingers around the crowd of assembled pols, scribes and power brokers. They even got an early start by cutting a video debating who’s funnier.

Reception is 6:30 p.m., dinner and the program start at 8 p.m.

Wisdom Gin Club

Erik Holzherr, owner of Wisdom Cocktail Parlour, Church and State and Atlas Arcade is a man of many liquors, but there’s a spirit that is closest to his heart and he’s starting up the Wisdom Gin Club to show his love for the clear stuff.

On Feb. 6, he’ll let the world in on why he believes it is first among equals.

Twenty bucks will get you in for a guided tour of nine gins, including Leopold’s Gin, Half Moon Orchard Gin and local boys Green Hat Gin. Holzherr, Dan Searing and other specialists and ambassadors will be your guides. The club’s kickoff gets started at 7:30 p.m. at Wisdom, 1432 Pennsylvania Ave. SE. RSVP at Wisdom’s blog.

Jesse Ferguson Happy Hour

Friends, frenemies and colleagues welcome Jesse Ferguson, deputy executive director and communications director for the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee, back to D.C. on Feb. 7 at the Hawk ‘n’ Dove for an extended happy hour.

“Let’s celebrate Jesse for showing cancer who’s boss the best way we know how: with a happy hour,” USA Today scribe (and Roll Call alumna) Susan Davis, head of the “Jesse Ferguson Return Happy Hour Organizing Committee” implored greater Capitol Hill recently via email.

Ferguson has been shuttling back and forth from his family’s home in Richmond, Va., and the University of Texas M.D. Anderson Cancer Center since discovering cancer in his cheek and neck. He announced earlier this month on his personal blog that his doctors feel they have nipped the frightful situation in the bud.

The libations in the upstairs bar at 329 Pennsylvania Ave. SE. get under way around 5 p.m.

Wisdom Revs Up Gin Club

Erik Holzherr, owner of Wisdom cocktail parlor, Church and State, and Atlas Arcade is a man of many liquors, but there’s a spirit that is closest to his heart, and he’s starting up the Wisdom Gin Club to show his love for the clear stuff.

If you’ve ever been to Wisdom, you know they can mix a mean cocktail from any booze you choose. But it’s also a temple of gin, and Holzherr is its chief evangelist. On Feb. 6, he’ll let the world in on why he believes it is first among equals.

Twenty bucks will get you in for a guided tour of nine gins, including Leopold’s Gin, Half Moon Orchard Gin and local boys’ Green Hat Gin. Holzherr, Dan Searing and other specialists and ambassadors will be your guides. The club’s kickoff gets started at 7:30 p.m. at Wisdom, 1432 Pennsylvania Ave. SE. RSVP at Wisdom’s blog.

By Jason Dick Posted at 3:26 p.m.
Drink

January 22, 2014

Calendar: East Side King Meets Hitchcock and U.S. Royalty

And how does one withstand the latest polar vortex assault? Hunker down, hang out, listen to music, watch movies, eat beet fries and hoist a few drinks.

Real Life Monuments Men

The National Archives on Thursday, is showing a documentary about some of the real-life Monuments Men who helped safeguard Europe’s great art from the Nazis during World War II.

The Archives will screen “The Rape of Europa” at noon at the William G. McGowan Theater, a 2006 documentary about the Allies’ attempts to protect the continent’s cultural heritage.

Sound familiar? That’s the premise of the highly anticipated film by George Clooney, “The Monuments Men,” which is set to be released Feb. 7.

Both flicks look like they’re worth a gander. Free. The Archives is at Constitution Avenue, between Seventh and Ninth streets Northwest.

Toki Gets Taken Over

Austin-based food-trailer-turned-mini-dynasty East Side King roars into town Friday to take over Toki Underground at 1234 H St. NE. Visiting ESK chefs Paul Qui, Moto Utsunomiya, and Jorge Luis Hernandez will sling away for lunch and dinner from 11:30 a.m. until closing time. No reservations, and space is, as any visitor to Toki knows, small. It’s a first-come, first-served shot at noshing at some of ESK’s Thai Chicken Karaage, Beef Tongue Kare Kare Buns, Beet Home Fries, Fried Brussels Sprout Salad, Liberty Rie and Tori Meshi.

Get a ‘Rope’

Hill Center and Friends of the Southeast Library are showcasing some of Alfred Hitchcock’s pre-”Psycho” work over the next month, starting on Friday with 1948′s “Rope,” a Jimmy Stewart flick about the consequences of philosophical musings.

Future screenings will bring “Shadow of a Doubt,” “Strangers on a Train” and “Alfred Hitchcock Presents” to 921 Pennsylvania Ave. SE. Discussions will be lead by Tom Zaniello, facilitator of Capitol Hill Village’s Cinephiles film discussion group and author of a forthcoming book on Hitch. They’re all free, but register ahead of time for a spot at hillcenterdc.org.

D.C. Royalty

District-based U.S. Royalty celebrates the release of its newest album, “Blue Sunshine,” this Saturday with a show at the Rock and Roll Hotel at 1353 H St. NE, followed by an after party at Little Miss Whiskey’s Golden Dollar just down the street at 1104 H St. NE.

The show is $15 at Rock and Roll Hotel, with doors at 7 p.m. and show starting at 8 p.m. Spires opens. No cover at Little Miss Whiskey’s, where the party is slated to start at 10 p.m.

January 13, 2014

Ode to Capitol Hill’s Li’l Pub

The Li’l Pub at 655 Pennsylvania Ave. SE closed its doors one week ago, but it’s still a sad sight to behold — its signage gone, along with another link to Capitol Hill’s gritty, working-class past.

lilpub 251x335 Ode to Capitol Hills Lil Pub

Dead and gone. The former Li’l Pub on Capitol Hill. (Jason Dick/CQ Roll Call)

Prince of Petworth reported last month that the building was sold to the CVS next door, and the pub’s last day in business would be Jan. 6. Aside from the loss of something else that was simply quaint, it was one of the last places on Capitol Hill to shoot a game of pool.

It could be a surly spot — clashes being a bit inevitable when young urbanites and old contractors inhabit the same cramped space — but it was also a unique destination amid the general gussying up of Capitol Hill and its Eastern Market area.

It was a place bartenders and servers could go after their shifts. It was a place Bud wasn’t consumed ironically. It was a place that, several years after indoor smoking was banned, still smelled of tobacco. And it was one of the last connections to the old Little Tavern hamburger spots that used to dot the Mid-Atlantic. When you are featured in a Zippy the Pinhead comic strip, you know you’re true-blue Americana.

There are a few of the old repurposed Little Tavern buildings left here and there — a Subway sandwich shop near Union Market, a doughnut and burger place in Laurel, Md. — but the loss of this establishment feels particularly sad. The thought of it being used to store more toilet paper or topical analgesics just kind of stinks.

Adios, Li’l Pub.

By Jason Dick Posted at 2:10 p.m.
Down Time, Drink

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