Bonfire Opens Wednesday in Dupont
Bonfire, 1132 19th St. NW, opens Wednesday, May 4, in the former Famous Luigi space. From the Social Restaurant Group, which also owns Provision No. 14, Bonfire is a campfire-focused restaurant and bar.
Designed by Swatchroom’s Maggie O’Neill, Bonfire features four areas: a large downstairs bar with high-top tables and lounge seating, a greenhouse-like enclosed patio, and upstairs bar and a small private dining room. The rooftop, which is slated to open later this summer, has fire pits and a bar. The space has high ceilings, exposed brick and an open fire feature. The décor features textiles, charred wood, rose gold and blackened steel metal accents.
Executive chef R.L. Boyd’s new American fare incorporates the fire theme as well by using grilling, smoking and cast iron cooking techniques. The opening menu features a twist on a D.C. classic: peach mumbo chicken wings and spicy ginger-cola wings served with house-made proper ranch for dipping. Tuna poke is packed with Hawaiian flavors seasoned with Aleppo, white soy and preserved lime and served with avocado, fried garlic, and no-no rice, Boyd’s name for forbidden rice. The Aleppo-spiced “handheld” crispy chicken is stacked with house-made pickle chips sharp cheddar, and mustard-mayo.
Pastry chef Ellen Diekemper’s desserts include campfire skillets like the dark chocolate skillet with Colombian chocolate and banana, topped with marshmallow and homemade graham crackers and the seasonal fruit skillet, with brown buttered apples, cinnamon marshmallow and shortbread cookies. Continuing the campfire theme, she also has a s’mores menu that includes peanut butter & banana with house-made chocolate graham cracker, banana marshmallows and peanut butter ganache; and the blueberry lemon featuring a crisp and buttery shortbread cookie with Chinese 5 spiced ganache, blueberry compote and lemon marshmallow.
The bar program from Glendon Hartley and Chad Spangler includes a collection of craft beers as well a cocktails “from the hearth.” Many of the cocktails use elements of woods salvaged from liquor aging barrels, each creating a unique aroma and flavor based on the type of wood and spirit the barrel housed. Concoctions include the Nocino, which features bourbon, sherry and smoked almond tea; and the Sas-Squash with roasted acorn squash, whiskey and smoke from a rye whiskey barrel stave. Other Manhattan and Old-Fashioned style cocktails will feature aged whiskies, brandy, aged rums and the use of several varieties of woods, smoke and fresh fruit juices.
Bonfire will be open from 11 a.m.-midnight daily.
Bistrot Royal closes after Saturday dinner
“Over the past year and half, we have been splitting our time between the two restaurants. This resulted in neither being able to reach its full potential,” the pair said in a press release. “On a personal level, our growing and busy family helped us realize the importance of optimizing our time and our continued endeavors to expand Bastille.”
In a Facebook posting, the restaurant said its lease was over and the building’s owner had sold it for redevelopment with condos or townhouses to be built.
Bistrot Royal opened in January 2015 in the former Bastille location, after Bastille moved to the Asher apartments in Old Town. Some favorites from Bistrot Royal’s more casual menu such as frisee salad with lardons, French onion soup and duck confit will be incorporated into Bastille’s upscale contemporary French cuisine.
“At Bastille at the Asher, our guests can expect the same traditional French dishes with the same consistency, but combined with the contemporary cuisine of Bastille. We will continue to showcase local, sustainable ingredients with a modern approach,” the chefs said.
Praline Bakery & Bistro opens in Glen Echo Park
Praline Bakery & Bistro, 4611 Sangamore Road, Bethesda, opened a second location next to the historic Spanish Ballroom in Glen Echo Park on April 30 serving a quick/casual menu featuring sandwiches, soups, quiches, salads, freshly popped popcorn and other fare to eat in the café or take out. It also offers a kid-friendly menu and full-service catering for onsite events.
The Glen Echo location will feature Praline’s pastries, macarons, cakes, tarts and cookies, as well as picnics to eat on the grounds served in a signature picnic satchel. Picnic options include a choice of sandwich, drink, and macaron or framboise. A French style picnic for two includes charcuterie, a cheese plate, salad, macarons, palmiers and mini ficelles; while picnics for three or more, choice of two kinds of sandwiches, salads and a dessert or French style with two charcuterie, cheese or smoked salmon plates, two salads, and desserts.
Praline will open a third location in Fairfax’s Mosaic District this fall.
Garrison launches new patio menu
Garrison, 524 Eighth St. SE, has launched a new spring patio and bar menu featuring a selection of specially priced food, wine, beer and cocktails.
Available Tuesday through Friday on the patio and at the bar between 5-7 p.m., the menu includes poppyseed gougères ($7); chicken liver parfait with seasonal mostarda ($10); smoked potatoes with ramp and spring onion aioli ($10); Virginia bison tartare with grilled house-made brioche and quail egg ($15); and local radishes with house-made kefir butter and sea salt ($5). Drink offerings include Grüner Veltliner, Leth, Steinagrund, 2014, Austria ($8); Grenache/Syrah/Mourvèdre, Domaine Paul Autard, Côtes du Rhone, France ($10); Ghost White IPA from 3 Stars Brewing Co. ($5); and punch of the moment, a daily spring punch offering for $5.
Kapnos Taverna celebrates Greek Easter
Kapnos Taverna, 4000 Wilson Blvd., Arlington, is hosting a Greek Easter celebration from noon-3 p.m. on Sunday, May 1.
The festival will be held rain or shine on the Ballston restaurant’s patio and feature spit-roasted meats, homemade spreads and flatbread, live Greek music, Greek wines and more.
Tickets are $69.57 and can be purchased online.
Nonna’s Kitchen hosts Michele Satta wine dinner
Nonna’s Kitchen, 1212 U St. NW, is partnering with Michele Satta Wine to host a $55 wine tasting followed by a $50 three-course dinner with optional $15 wine pairings at 8:30 p.m. on Tuesday, May 3.
The evening begins with a wine tasting and antipasti from 6-8 p.m. with wines selected by Giacomo Satta, Michele Satta’s son, followed by an optional 3-course dinner at 8:30 p.m. with wine pairings from Satta.
Giacomo Satta will be on hand to greet guests and take them through seven Tuscan wines. Executive chef Will Artley will compliment the wines with paired antipasti like an Italian cheese board with an assortment of freshly baked breads, halibut crudo garnished with smoked leeks and a fava bean rillette with pork rinds. Wine will include Giovin Re Toscana IGT Viognier, Cavaliere Toscana IGT Sangiovese, and varietals like merlot, cabernet, a sangiovese and syrah blend, 100 percent Aglianico del Vulture and a vermentino and sauvignon blend.
The optional dinner includes a first course of halibut crudo with smoked Fresno jam and asparagus paired with Costa di Giulia Toscana IGT Vermentino. The second course is spring lamb with ewe’s blue and pickled ramps paired with Piastraia Bolgheri Rosso. And the final course is a foie gras montecristo paired with Rotondo Aglianico del Vulture DOC.
Tickets for the wine tasting and small bites or the dinner may be purchased by contacting email@example.com.
Fuego celebrates Cinco de Mayo with food and drink specials
Fuego Cocina y Tequileria, 2800 Clarendon Blvd., Arlington, will host its fourth annual Cinco de Mayo bash with all-day specials and Mayo Madness tequila deals starting at noon on Thursday, May 5.
Fuego will kick things off at noon with an extended all-day selection of traditional margaritas, select draft beers and guacamole for $5 in a nod to the 5/5 holiday. Other specials include Patron margaritas for $8, a duo of tacos and margaritas for $10 and a four taco platter and margarita litro for $35. For dinner, Fuego will serve loaded fajitas for two priced at $50 with a sizzling mix of fresh veggies, a choice of proteins and traditional accompaniments.
All-day specials in the bar and lounge include vegetable empanadas and elote loco (crazy corn – an authentic Mexican street fare favorite), ceviche de pescado and the Fuego hamburguesa. The specially priced $5 drinks and bites include the Thursday cocktail-of-the-day Jarritos Paloma made with Mexico’s Jarritos brand grapefruit soda, fresh lime juice and tequila.
BLT Steak celebrates Cinco de Mayo with sangritas
BLT Steak, 1625 I St. NW, is celebrating Cinco de Mayo with the old Guadalajaran imbibing tradition by offering three twists on the classic sangrita paired with a flight of small-batch 123 Organic Series tequila.
On Thursday, May 5, head bartender James Nelson will be stirring up his own variations on sangrita, a classic Guadalajaran aperitif and made of fruit, citrus juices and chili powder meant to be enjoyed alongside a shot of tequila. The Blanco will pair classic, tomato based, chili infused sangrita with tequila; the Reposado will pair a spicy cucumber, honeydew sangrita with tequila; and the Anejo will pair a more traditional pomegranate sangrita with tequila. The full flight of three tequilas and paired sangritas is $30 all day at the bar and in the dining room.
El Centro D.F. celebrates Cinco de Mayo with Mexican buffet
El Centro D.F., 1819 14th St. NW, and 1218 Wisconsin Ave. NW, will celebrate Cinco de Mayo by offering a bottomless buffet from 4-10 p.m. on Thursday, May 5. Priced at $20 per person, diners can enjoy an endless buffet of authentic Mexican comfort fare with three different serving stations around the restaurants.
There will be a taco, enchilada and fajita station featuring carnitas, chicken tinga, veggie tacos, chicken fajitas, roasted pork fajitas, queso enchiladas and veggie enchiladas. Sides include Mexican rice, black beans, charro beans and esquites. There will also be passed appetizers as well as an appetizer station featuring mushroom empanadas, chicken flautas, beef and chorizo sliders, chicken milanesa tortas, beef skewers, pork sopes, shrimp ceviche tostadas, escabeche tostadas, avocado shrimp and crab salad, veggie chopped salad, chicken tinga tamales, smoked mahi with crispy plantains and guacamole and salsa with chips. For dessert, a buffet of Mexican confections will include dishes like mini churros, Dolcezza Anejo tequila gelato and tres leches cake.
There will also be $6 El Centro margaritas, frozen or on the rocks with Sauza Blue Silver tequila, fresh lime, agave nectar and a choice of strawberry or mango puree; and $5 imported Mexican beers including Corona Extra and Light, Dos Equis Lager and Amber, Tecate, Victoria, Modelo Especial, Sol, Pacifico, Bohemia and Negro Modelo.
The Prospect offers Cinco de Mayo taco specials
The Prospect, 1214 U St. NW, is offering a two for $6 taco menu from 5-10 p.m. for Cinco de Mayo.
Tacos include a slow-braised goat taco with North African ras el hanout spice, feta, crunchy romaine and a squeeze of lime, and fish tacos with crispy fried Icelandic cod, avocado-lime cream, cilantro and red cabbage. There will also be a special “Fiery Taco” with 3-hour pineapple and citrus-braised pollo asado, avocado cream, pickled habanero and an Aztec slaw of charred mango, jicama, lime juice and fresh cilantro.
Diners can wash their tacos down with $4 Coronas and Tecates, $5 tequila shots and $6 margaritas all night long.
Masa 14 debuts chef’s table on Friday
Masa 14, 1825 14th St. NW, will unveil its new chef’s table on Friday, May 6.
Located in front of the kitchen in the 100-seat main first floor dining room, the chef’s table seats up to 12 diners. Two seatings will be available on Thursday, Friday and Saturday evenings. The first seating will begin at 6:30 p.m., followed by a second seating at 9 p.m.
During each two-hour tasting, diners will sample 9-13 “off menu” dishes that will be exclusive to the chef’s table dinner. New executive chef Ryan Ratino will interact with guests as they dine, presenting his dishes and answering any questions. The price $80 per person or $125 with five wine pairings.
The restaurant’s beverage has created a boutique collection of 20 wines to pair exclusively with the chef’s table menu. The wine list focuses on natural, biodynamic wines, and specially selected rare magnums, which are not found on the restaurant’s featured wine list. Wines by the bottle will range from $60-$500 each.
Acadiana hosts Triple Crown parties
Acadiana, 901 New York Ave. NW, will whisk diners off to three days at the races with its annual Triple Crown festivities. The restaurant will show each of the horse races on big screen TVs and serve authentic $5 race track deals with customary bites and signature drinks that reflect each historic race.
Kick off the Triple Crown on Saturday, May 7, and catch the greatest two minutes in American sports with the legendary Kentucky Derby. From the bar to the patio, enjoy true Churchill Downs specialties like Hot Browns, Burgoo Stew and Derby Pie along with Kentucky’s own Bulleit bourbon in each signature Mint Julep.
Acadiana will also bring in one of the country’s officially designated “Master of Bourbon” with extensive knowledge on the whiskey category gleaned from nearly a year of traveling across the country to distilleries, rigorous training and testing. Nick Crutchfield will pour Kentucky bourbon samples and talk shop. Don your best Derby Day hat or jaunty bowtie for a chance to score gift certificates.
The on Saturday, May 21, the restaurant will celebrate the Preakness. Customary track fare favorites will include crab cake sliders, Maryland fried chicken and strawberry shortcake. In keeping with tradition, the official Preakness drink will be served: The Black-Eyed Susan with bourbon, vodka, fresh sour mix and freshly squeezed orange juice over ice and garnished with an orange slice and house-made cherry.
As the stakes raise for the final Triple Crown race, Acadiana will host its last viewing party for the Belmont Stakes on Saturday, June 11. Sample Belmont classics like short rib sliders, goat cheese Winner Purse and hazelnut macaroons. The famed Belmont Breeze, a blend of Seagram’s 7, Harvey’s Bristol Cream sherry, fresh sour mix, fresh squeezed orange juice, cranberry juice, 7-Up and a lemon wedge, will be shaken up as the specialty drink.
Logan Tavern hosts Kentucky Derby festivities
Logan Tavern, 1423 P St. NW, will have Kentucky Derby specials on Saturday, May 7, while showing the race on TV at the bar. Traditional Derby food specials will be served such as fried green tomatoes ($9), Kentucky Hot Browns ($16) with roast turkey and bacon on rustic with seared tomato, arugula and red eye béchamel, and chocolate bourbon Derby Pie ($8), from 3 p.m. until close.
A menu of various juleps for $8 will be served, such as the Mint Julep with Four Roses bourbon, mint and simple soda; the Peach Julep with Four Roses bourbon, house-made peach-tarragon syrup, mint and soda; and the Blackberry Julep with Four Roses bourbon, blackberry reduction, mint and soda. Rolling Rock will also be on special for $5.
There will also be a Win, Place, Show gift card giveaway. All guests will receive a card with a competing horse’s name, which can then be filled out and dropped in a bowl with all other cards with the matching horse’s name. A drawing will be held from the bowls of the first, second and third place finishers, and a gift certificate will be given to those drawn! There will also be gift card giveaways in a best dressed competition.
Jack Rose hosts 4th annual Kentucky Derby celebration
Guests are invited to don their finest derby attire for the first race of the Triple Crown for Jack Rose Dining Saloon’s fourth annual Kentucky Derby Celebration and Viewing Party from 3-7 p.m. on Saturday, May , on its rooftop terrace with mint juleps and derby punches, complimentary Southern bites, Kentucky bourbon flights, Flying Dog derby-inspired brews and a live viewing of the 2016 Run for the Roses.
The restaurant at 2007 18th St. NW will offer drink specials on Mint Juleps ($9), Derby Punch ($8) and classic Bourbon cocktails ($10), along with whiskeys, Kentucky bourbon flights and cigars throughout the day. There will also be complimentary Derby-inspired snacks such as Kentucky Hot Browns and cucumber sandwiches. And those looking forward to the race can watch on five large flat screen TVs located throughout the rooftop terrace and Tiki bar.
The event will also feature the new Flying Dog Mint Julep Ale, which has been aged in Angel’s Envy bourbon barrels. Derby Day brews include the exclusive Double Barrel Horn Dog, aged in Jack Rose Dining Saloon Jim Beam and Jefferson’s Reserve barrels and the exclusive tri-barrel BourBock, aged in Jack Rose Willett 12 year, Jefferson’s Reserve and Jefferson’s Ocean Barrels, all specially priced for the event.
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.