Winter Restaurant Week Is Back
The 2014 Metropolitan Washington Winter Restaurant Week sponsored by the Restaurant Association Metropolitan Washington will be here Jan. 13-19. The promotion encourages diners to dine out and eat up at their favorite restaurants and to discover new dining experiences.
During summer restaurant week, more than 73,000 diners were seated who had made online reservations, that was up 22 percent from summer 2012, according to RAMW. Restaurant revenue generated from those online reservations was more than $2 million.
New this time is a Restaurant Week Restaurant Guide. The guide will be available at area hotels and at the Walter E. Washington Convention Center. There will also be an interactive digital version. The guide will provide readers with the inside scoop on participating Winter Restaurant Week restaurants and can be used to help area diners find the perfect place to eat on future occasions.
More than 230 restaurants are offering prix-fixe $20.14 three-course lunches and/or $35.14 three-course dinners. Among new restaurants participating in restaurant week are Alba Osteria, Arsenal at Bluejacket, Bearnaise, El Centro D.F. Georgetown, G, Kapnos, M Cafe and Bar, MXDC, NoPa Kitchen + Bar, Table and Thally. You can see the full list of participating restaurants along with links to most of their Restaurant Week menus here. You can also make reservations at that website.
The Rammy Awards
Speaking of the Restaurant Association Metropolitan Washington, which sponsors The Rammy Awards each year, has opened nominations for the annual fete. The Rammy’s is the signature annual fundraiser for RAMW recognizing the best and brightest in the area’s restaurant industry. This year, the judging panel will select finalists from the pool of nominees, eventually awarding winners in 21 categories, including four to be chosen by public vote, at the 32nd Annual Gala to be held Sunday, June 22 at the Walter E. Washington Convention Center.
New beverage categories this year include Cocktail Program of the Year, awarded to a bar, restaurant, or other food service establishment with an exemplary cocktail program, and Beer Program of the Year, given to a restaurant, bar, brewery restaurant or brew pub with a diverse selection of high-quality beer. Other new categories include Service Program of the Year, honoring a nominee that demonstrates a high standard of excellence in service throughout the restaurant, Regional Food and Beverage Producer of the Year, awarded to an exceptional food or beverage artisan that creates a product utilized by area chefs and restaurants, Favorite Fast Bites, for an operator in a fast-casual environment that demonstrates a dedication to great food and superb service, as well as Upscale Brunch and Everyday Casual Brunch, presented to two restaurants that demonstrate a high standard of dining excellence and service for their brunches, one in an upscale environment and the other in a more casual, everyday environment.
Returning categories include Formal Fine Dining Restaurant of the Year, Upscale Casual Restaurant of the Year, Everyday Casual Restaurant of the Year, New Restaurant of the Year, Chef of the Year, Rising Culinary Star of the Year, Pastry Chef of the Year, Wine Program of the Year, Manager of the Year, Employee of the Year and Restaurateur of the Year.
The Upscale Brunch, Everyday Casual Brunch and Favorite Fast Bites, along with returning category Favorite Gathering Place of the Year are decided by the public. The other awards are decided by an anonymous panel of volunteer judges, consisting of food and dining journalists, educators and food service industry professionals.
RAMW will also honor two members with the Joan Hisaoka Associate Member of the Year, presented to an associate member who best exemplifies commitment to and support of RAMW, and the Duke Zeibert Capital Achievement Award, given for dedication and leadership that has helped transform Washington’s restaurant scene into today’s vibrant restaurant industry. These awards are determined by RAMW’s Executive Committee.
Nominations can be made by clicking here through midnight Jan. 29. Finalists will be announced in March.
Editor-in-Chief Mark Heckathorn is a journalist, movie buff and foodie. He oversees DC on Heels editorial operations as well as strategic planning and staff development. Reach him with story ideas or suggestions at dcoheditor (at) gmail (dot) com.