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Jul 9, 2008 04:43 AM

Washingtonian The Best Of Washington Party Wrap-Up

Good morning,
I want to get a conversation going about the Best of Washington Party last night. IMO, it was definitely worth the price point. Even though I volunteered to earn my ticket, I would have paid for a ticket. When I walked out of there, I was stuffed to the gills and even a little buzzed from the cocktails everyone was handing out.
In an effort to talk with those who were there and make jealous those who weren't, I am going to try to report everything I had. I think I can only remember about half the list so I need a lot of help. Here is my first go:
1789-Crusted monkfish and diced vegetables in tasting "spoon"; blackberry tart/scone
Amici Mei:?
Athens Grill: Ouzo Meatballs; feta stuffed phyllo dough; grape leaves, and ?
Bastille: Chocolate macaroons with vanilla cream sandwiches
Cafe du Parc: Shellfish stew (bourbannais?)
California Tortilla: Chips and Salsa, Chips and Guacaomole
Cava: Crab cake sandwiches
Central Michel Richard: Chocolate "lollipops"
Charlie Palmer Steak: small and had a nice flavor but can't think of what it actually was.
Circle Bistro: ?
Citronelle: Ground Pork (?) Choucroute on top of a white garlic cheese sauce
CityZen: tiny mushroom rolls (play on Combos snack) and hot mushroom bisque
Cynthia's: Biscotti to go, ?
Degrees: Vodka lemonade
Equinox: pan fried green tomato with sliced virginia ham
Farrah Olivia: lightly smoked salmon (help me out because it was good!)
Filomena: Cheese ravioli
Food Matters: Deviled Eggs
Granville Moore's: Moules
Heritage India: street Indian food (like the Hawker menu there)
Hook: Sauteed Mixed Cherries on cracker
Indique Heights: Chicken Tikka Masala
Jackie's: Pasta Salad
KBQ: Brisket and pulled pork
Kinkead's: Gazpacho with shrimp and almonds
Liberty Tavern: bourbon and pureed watermelon drink, food:?
Malaysia Kopitam: Ground beef purses, rice
Mendocino: small pastry
Mia's Pizza: mixed fruit and mini cupcakes (someone explain the logic to me)
Oval Room: Pork Custard; blueberry vanilla custard tarts
The Park at Fourteenth: ?
Pizzeria Paradiso: walnut and caramel pizza
Poste: vodka and lemonade foam
Proof: calamari, shrimp, and shellfish stew
PS 7's:?
Rangoli: Bombay Burger: potato cake in bun, garlic naan
Rasika: Spicy sausage rolls
Red Hot and Blue: Pulled pork and brisket
Rock Creek at Mezza: tuna tartare in cone
The Source: Tuna tartare in multi grain cone
Taberna: Monkfish paella
Tune Inn:?
Z Pizza: fresh veggie pizza
The Majestic: Chicken pate on cracker, bourbon caramel cake, "The Civilized Picnic"
Baked and Wired: Pie, caramel sticks
Georgetown Cupcake: Key Lime, chocolate banana, many more that i didn't try...cupcakes

There are probably errors in here and obviously lots of omissions but hopefully it will get a talk going!

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  1. Some edits/additions:
    Citronelle: "Mushroom Sausage" Choucroute on top of a white garlic cheese sauce (is this their famous "mushroom cigar"?)
    Cynthia's: Biscotti to go and Multigrain (or everything?) toast with house-smoked salmon, creme fresh, tomatoes, onions, etc.
    Farrah Olivia: Seared salmon with some of their flavored powder and little balls (unidentifiable but agreed--good!)
    Food Matters: Deviled Eggs and Carrot cake
    Matchbox: Sliders
    Poste: vodka and lemonade foam--didn't see this but had some kind of rhubarb drink which was wonderful!
    PS 7's: BLT slider
    Rock Creek at Mezza: tuna tartare in cone--are you sure this was them? I distinctly remember them having a lettuce cup with brisket and spicy veggies. (Pointed this out to my husband since we're going there this weekend and he was impressed that "healthy" food was good)
    Vermillion: I think a pea soup
    Z Pizza: fresh veggie pizza, also other pizzas. We had/saw pepperoni, artichoke and mushroom, and fresh tomato with basil.
    Baked and Wired: Pie, caramel sticks, chocolate cupcakes, strawberry cupcakes
    Georgetown Cupcake: Key Lime, chocolate banana, red velvet, chocolate ganache, carrot cupcakes

    There was also a wonderful duck confit with a mustard sauce but I can't remember who served it. When you walk in it was on the left half of the space...of course I threw away my map!

    Agreed that it was a great event. Comparable to Taste of the Nation but not as much of a mob scene--much easier to get around. Then again I think there weren't as many restaurants there (although there were plenty!). We got discounted tickets through DC101 ($50 each). Not sure I would've gone for the $95 price tag. Also, the silent auction was a bit of a let down with maybe 8 items to bid on. Then again, we really went for the food! :)

    6 Replies
    1. re: KWynn

      How did Red Hot & Blue make it on a "best of" list?!!

      1. re: 4X4

        I'm DYING to know what Tune Inn was serving. And did it come with $2 Miller Lites?

        1. re: 4X4

          Good Question. The bright side of BBQ last night was KBQ. A much more thoughtful, flavorful alternative to RH&B. The brisket was probably some of the best I've had and the broccoli slaw a wonderful alternative to your average cole slaw. I was encouraged to return to the table by a fellow reveler to try the bread pudding, and all I can say is WOW! The bread pudding alone is worth the drive to Bowie.

          Anyone know the story behind Food Matters?

          1. re: Foodfan222

            I think Food Matters is endeavoring to be like a local "Diets to Go" Type of outfit but also with a full restaurant servce.
            While helping the restaurants set up, I talked to them for a moment and they did seem a bit intimidated to be at such an event/venue.

        2. re: KWynn

          Thanks very much for the edits... you jogged my memory and I think I can make some other additions. Now I remember the chef at Farrah Olivia identifying the little balls as his cottage cheese "caviar." The Poste drink foam was lemonade I think. I hadn't remembered the rhubarb. I didn't have the PS 7 slider but have had theirs at happy hour and they are nice. You are right about Rock Creek. Now, I have to try to remember where the non-Source tuna tartare was. it was like the next table over to the left from the source. The House made Duck Pastrami was maybe from Circle Bistro. It caught my eye as I was walking out. Maybe that's not what you were talking about.
          BTW: The Georgetown Cupcake ladies are fantastic. I helped them set up their sign and they were beside themselves. Plus, they are very nice to look at! I spoke with Michel Richard for a few minutes and got my picture with him. He truly loves being a part of Washington, DC.
          I say it was worth the price tag but remember I got in for free!
          KWynn: What were your highlights: mine was the mushroom dishes from Citronelle and City Zen, Farrah Olivia Salmon, and 1789 Monkfish.
          My least favorite was the strong Indian flavors at some of the Indian places, and the oval room pork custard was ROUGH!

          1. re: daves_32

            My favorites: Citronelle's mushroom sausage, Central's lollipop, Mendocino's duck pastrami (addition to the list that I had forgotten), the duck confit I had at the to be identified station, rhubarb lemon drink from Poste, Lobster roll from the place next to Hook (forget the name but same owner and I don't think on the list above--I was lucky to get one of these as they were gone fast!) Cherry dessert from Hook (better than the desserts we had when we went), and the cupcakes from Georgetown Cupcake (red velvet) and Baked & Wired (strawberry).
            Lows: crabcake from Cava was a let down (it looked great but was kind of bland), agree on some of the Indian food, burgers from Matchbox (as expected, they just didn't taste nearly as good as at the restaurant).

        3. -Willow served a delicious gaspacho with guacamole.
          -One of the weirdest things was the "pork and beans and fried sardines" from Jackie's. What were they thinking?
          -Athens Grill was delicious, and served a creative cherry tomato stuffed with gyro. Amazing!
          -Also delicious was Lebaneese Taverna with hummus and sliced lamb.

          My favorite was spicy chicken item served at Rasika. All in all, it was an extremely well done event. I'll be back next year!

          2 Replies
          1. re: smr232

            Once you were in, everything is free?