It’s no secret that getting a table at one of DC’s hottest restaurants on a Saturday night can be a challenge. Every Friday, we here at TheListAreYouOnIt.com check in with a select group of the area’s top-toques to let you know who is able to offer a Table for Two. Check back here every Friday at 4:30pm for a list of all open reservations at the area’s best restaurants. Here are available reservations for Saturday August 16th:

5335 Wisconsin Avenue, NW
Saturday Evening Table for 2 Available @

1201 N. Royal Street Alexandria, VA
Saturday Evening Table for 2 Available @

100 New York Avenue, NW
Saturday Evening Table for 2 Available @
Fully Committed

Birch and Barley
1337 14th Street, NW
Saturday Evening Table for 2 Available @
Fully Committed

Blue Duck Tavern
1201 24th Street, NW
Saturday Evening Table for 2 Available @

Bourbon Steak
2800 Pennsylvania Avenue, NW
Saturday Evening Table for 2 Available @

Casa Luca
1099 New York Avenue
Saturday Evening Table for 2 Available @

1001 Pennsylvania Avenue, NW
Saturday Evening Table for 2 Available @

1330 Maryland Avenue, SW
Saturday Evening Table for 2 Available @
Fully Committed

Del Campo
777 I Street, NW
Saturday Evening Table for 2 Available @

818 Connecticut Avenue, NW
Saturday Evening Table for 2 Available @

601 Pennsylvania Avenue, NW
Saturday Evening Table for 2 Available @

Fiola Mare
3050 K Street, NW
Saturday Evening Table for 2 Available @
Fully Committed

707 6th Street, NW
Saturday Evening Table for 2 Available @
Fully Committed

Inn at Little Washington
309 Middle Street
Washington, VA
Saturday Evening Table for 2 Available@

Iron Gate
1734 N Street, NW
Saturday Evening Table for 2 Available @

2201 14th Street, NW
Saturday Evening Table for 2 Available @

2401 Pennsylvania Avenue, NW
Saturday Evening Table for 2 Available @

1813 Columbia Road, NW
Saturday Evening Table for 2 Available @

NoPa Kitchen and Bar
800 F Street, NW
Saturday Evening Table for 2 Available @

Osteria Morini
301 Water Street, SE
Saturday Evening Table for 2 Available @

775 G Street, NW
Saturday Evening Table for 2 Available @

5335 Wisconsin Avenue, NW
Saturday Evening Table for 2 Available @

Rasika West End
1177 22nd Street, NW
Saturday Evening Table for 2 Available @

Rasika Penn Quarter
633 D Street, NW
Saturday Evening Table for 2 Available @
Fully Committed

Restaurant Eve
110 South Pitt Street
Alexandria, VA
Saturday Evening Table for 2 Available @

903 N Street, NW
Saturday Evening Table for 2 Available @

The Fainting Goat
1330 U Street, NW
Saturday Evening Table for 2 Available @

The Red Hen
1822 1st Street, NW
Saturday Evening Table for 2 Available @
Fully Committed

The Source by Wolfgang Puck
575 Pennsylvania Avenue, NW
Saturday Evening Table for 2 Available @

228 North Market Street
Frederick, Maryland
Saturday Evening Table for 2 Available @
Fully Committed

Foodie diehards, we got you covered. At TheListAreYouOnIt.com we keep our ears to the ground to keep you in the know of all the industry-insider info. Who’s serving what, who’s shaking what and where are you going to try it? It’s all here for the eating … reading … in The Buzz:

Summer Time and the Living is Eating

 B Too Launches Chef’s Counter — Explore the next level of contemporary Belgian cuisine with a weekly tasting menu served at B Too’s Chef’s Counter. Each Wednesday night, guests can grab front row seats to watch Chef Vandaele and his team prepare a six course menu. The $45 menu will include items like The Caviar Box (kelp marinated with American sturgeon caviar), grilled rack of lamb, and The Chef’s Welcome (red beet sorbet with smoked oyster vodka, Parmesan cheese crackers, waffle square). (1324 14 St NW; 202.627.2800; btoo.com)

Ten ‘Til Ten Congressional Recess Menu — While D.C. empties during Congress’s five week long summer recess, the bar at BLT Steak is hoping to fill with guests hungry for its new menu, featuring 10 gourmet snacks for only $10. Through September 8, the menu will feature 10 chef’s special plates, offered at the bar until 10:00P.M. Get a taste of summer in refreshing plates like grilled watermelon with togarashi and black olive, a smoked trout salad with a soft boiled egg and crostini, or the chilled garbanzo bean soup with mint, cucumber, and tomato. Meat lovers can expect dishes like confit pork cheek with pickled blueberry relish, adventurous crispy pig cars, or sausage sliders. (1625 I St NW; 202.689.8999; e2hospitality.com/blt-steak/)

Bread Feast — Frank Ruta, formerly of the much-loved and now defunct Palena, will preside over a nightly neighborhood Bread Feast at newly opened Bread Furst. Ruta will cook a blend of sophisticated American food with an Italian twist, assisted by Bread Furst staff and former Palena Pastry Chef Aggie Chin. The menu will be seasonal, simple, and modestly-priced, including an antipasto with cocktails and wine followed by a single menu dinner served family-style. Bread Furst will post each day’s menu on its website, where diners will be able to reserve and pay for a limited number of tables. (4434 Connecticut Ave NW; 202.765.1200; breadfurst.com)

Lobster Month Menu — Restaurant and oyster bar Catch 15 is celebrating lobster month with a three-course dinner menu including a starter, lobster entrée, and a dessert. The $30 meal is available on Fridays and Saturdays for $30. (1518 K St NW; 202.969.2858; catch15dc.com)

Meat-Free Fare at Equinox — Fans of Chef Todd Gray’s vegan brunches will have to enjoy their favorite meat-free fare at a new address. The popular weekend brunch has moved from Muse Café to Equinox. Available every weekend, the $30 brunch features a seasonal menu of dishes such as blueberry stuffed French toast, made-to-order omelettes, grilled avocado and Rhappanock peaches, and sweet corn tamales. (818 Connecticut Ave NW; 202.331.8118; equinoxrestaurant.com)

Introducing Piragua — Mio Restaurant now offers a refreshing Puerto Rican iced dessert, flavored with fresh fruit syrup and topped with a shot of DonQ rum, on its decorative patio Piragua cart. Choose tamarind, guava, mango, lime, passion fruit, pineapple, and Puerto Rican coffee ice cones through September 21. Each flavor is priced at $5 and available exclusively at the restaurant’s 65-seat bar/lounge or on the 38-seat outdoor patio. (1110 Vermont Ave NW; 202.955.0075; miorestaurant.com)

National Harbor Show Menu — Old Hickory Steakhouse now offers guests a pre-fixe menu of signature dishes to enjoy before an evening at National Harbor’s newest show. The menu ensures diners will make their performance at The Plateau, offering fresh, local ingredients from 5:30P.M to 6:30P.M. Thursdays through Mondays. Guests can choose from three starter, including a hearts of romaine salad, mixed green salad, or French onion soup, followed by an entrée of a premium grade filet of beef, Atlantic salmon, lemon thyme roasted chicken, or truffle risotto with sautéed spinach, garlic mashed potatoes, or seasonal roasted mushrooms for $50. Old Hickory Steakhouse is Gaylord Hotel’s exclusive restaurant, named after the seventh President of the United States. (201 Waterfront Street, MD 20745; 301.965.4000; OldHickoryRestaurant.com)

The Oval Room Returns — The Oval Room has made a smashing return to the dining scene with a new interior, new menu, and new faces. The million-dollar renovation includes a sleeker ambiance, with a white Carrera marble bar and floor, bold art pieces, and plush fabrics. In addition to a new a la carte menu, Executive Chef Tony Conte has introduced a four-course, fixed price menu with optional complementary wine pairings. The restaurant will also introduce a $20 lunch-at-the-bar special; those in the neighborhood will also want to drop by for happy hour, Monday-Friday from 5:00P.M. to 6:30P.M., for a 20 percent savings on all libations at the bar or on the 35-seat patio. (800 Connecticut Ave NW; 202.463.8700; ovalroom.com)

Night Owl Dining — Station 4 caters to audience and actors alike with their late night bites, perfect for grabbing after a show at Arena Stage. Enjoy the Die Hard Burger with a blend of chuck and brisket, duck fat fries, goat cheese crostini, raw tuna flatbread, and more, from 11:00P.M.to 12:00P.M. nightly. Menu prices range from $8 to $18. Pair your picks with choices from Station 4’s international wine list. (1101 4 St SW; 202.488.0987; station4dc.com)

Get Hungry and Get Ready — Join six local celebrity chefs as they celebrate their creative partnerships with Taberna del Alabardero on its 25th anniversary. Month to month, throughout the year, a small and selected group of talented chefs will bring fusion cuisine and special wine tasting dinners to Taberna. Chefs include Executive Chef Xavier Deshayes from the Ronald Reagan Building and International Trade; Executive Chef Abdellah Aguenaou from the Marriott Wardman Park Hotel; Executive Chef Rock Harper from the DC Central Kitchen; Executive Chef Victor Albisu from Del Campo Restaurant; Executive Chef Patricia Jinich from TV Show Pati’s Mexican Table; and, Executive Chef Scott Drewno from the Source Restaurant. Head over to the Events page for specific event dates. (1776 St NW; 202.429.2200; alabardero.com)

A Perfect Night Out — Enjoy summer value and a summer date night with a dinner at Vapiano and tickets to a movie at neighboring theaters. Available throughout August, purchase the $20 package for the Bethesda, Reston, Dulles, and Ballston locations and get movie tickets, sodas, and Vapiano entrees. Entrees include  Pomodoro Fresco E Basilico (cherry tomatoes, fresh basil) and Tacchino Piccante (chicken breast, orange-chili sauce, bok choy, bell peppers), among others. (vapianointernational.com/vapiano/)

Lunch “Tiffin” Menu — Zaika now offers delivery lunch! Order a “Tiffin” lunchbox delivery menu for a crowd including delicately spiced dishes like Tandoori Tiffin (chicken tikka, jeera basmati rice, chana masala, kachumber salad, raita, mint chutney), Hara Tiffin (boti lamb kabob, jeera basmati rice, chana masala, kachumber salad, raita, tamarind chutney), Palak Paneer Tiffin (cottage cheese in velvety spinach curry, jeera basmati rice, chana masala, kachumber salad, naan bread), and many others. (2800 Clarendon Boulebard, Arlington, VA; 703.248.8333; zaikadc.com)


So You Want to Start a Food Business

Launch Pad Competition — Mess Hall has announced the start of “Launch Pad,” a competition inviting aspiring local food and beverage entrepreneurs to submit their business plans for a chance at winning a series of prizes, including a Mess Hall membership, a feature in Edible DC, brand-focused video production, graphic design services, an investment opportunity from EquityEats CEO, and complimentary consulting and mentoring sessions from top area CEOs. The contest is already online and will conclude on September 27 at Mess Hall during a live interactive event at the newly launched venue where four finalists will take the stage before a crowd of dozens of industry insiders, food entrepreneurs, and a panel of high-profile local judges. One winner will be selected from the four featured finalists and announced live on-stage by the panel of notable local judges, including Alisia Kleinmann of industree, Johann Moonesinghe of EquityEats, and Brandon Skall of DC Brau, to name a few. Contestants will be judged on the thoroughness of the application, professional experience, culinary skills, business acumen, and their potential to run a successful culinary business. (www.MessHallDC.com/launchpad)


More Ways to Cool Off…

Dolcezza Launches E-Commerce Site — Have your Dolcezza fix shipped to your doorstep via Dolcezza Gelato & Coffee’s new website. Several packages bursting with four flavorful pints are available for shipping to friends, family, or yourself, including the Virginia Bounty (roasted strawberry, lemon opal basil, blueberry lemon thyme, strawberry tarragon), the Summer Vacation (black sesame, thai coconut milk, cinnamon Sumatra, pineapple honey lime), the DC Farm Stand (lemon opal basil, peppermint stracciatella, strawberry tarragon, blueberry lemon thyme), and the Classics (valrhona dark chocolate, pistachio siciliano, salted caramel, Indonesian vanilla), and more. Those who know what they like can craft their own. (dolcezzagelato.com/shop/)

Keep It Cool — Rosa Mexicano launches has launched its annual ice cream festival featuring flavors of Mexico a la mode. The festival includes desserts inspired by classic savory dishes such as guacamole, tamales, and empanadas paired with handmade ice creams infused with Mexican flavors ranging from sweet corn caramel to chili-spiced chocolate. The creative Mexican classics gone sweet are only available until August 24—get your tamal de chocolate, your crepas de cajeta, and your empanadas de manzana now before they’re gone! (5225 Wisconsin Ave NW; 202.777.9959 // 575 7 St NW; 202.783.5522 // rosamexicano.com)


Bake Bethesda a Pie!

Bake Bethesda a Pie Contest — Pies and prizes make Labor Day weekend sweet for Bethesda residents, Central Farm Markets, and Manna Food Center! The fifth annual Bake Bethesda a Pie Contest is on August 31 and includes sweet and savory pies and kids, adults, and culinary students! This year’s three judges are an impressive and talented group of food professionals: Lisa Cherkasky (food stylist, pastry chef and writer), Susan Wallace (Corporate Executive Pastry Chef at Black Restaurant Group), Peter Brett (professor at the Stratford University School of Baking and Pastry Arts, former Blue Duck Tavern Pastry Chef, and a RAMMY Best Pastry Chef Nominee). Contest proceeds support Manna Food Center. (7600 Arlington Rd, Bethesda, MD; click here)



Cocktail Updates — Black Jack has unleashed new cocktails on its unsuspecting menu and guests with the Gin & Chronic (Plymouth gin, house-made hop tonic), the Cane & Abel (Angostura aged rum, Avuá Amburana Cachaça with lime sugar and Angostura bitters), A Boy Named Sue (Baker’s 7 year bourbon, lemon sugar, Luxardo amaretto, brandied cherries), and the Pickinick Basket (21st Amendment Watermelon Wheat beer and a shot of Virginia Sweetwater Moonshine). (1612 14 St NW; 202.319.1612; blackjackdc.com)

August Magnum Cabernet Sauvignons — Every Tuesday evening throughout August, Blue Duck Tavern will pour a specially selected rare magnum of a featured Cabernet Sauvignon. With the “Blue Duck Uncorked” series, the Blue Duck Tavern team will showcase one magnum bottle each week so guests can enjoy four-ounce pours for $30 each. Blue Duck Tavern will showcase an assortment of Napa Valley Cabernets from the 1980s. On August 26, Blue Duck will pour a 1981 Cabernet Sauvignon from Silver Oak, and on September 2, a 1989 Cabernet Sauvignon, La Jota Vineyards, Howell Mountain, Napa. (1201 24 St NW; 202.419.6755; blueducktavern.com)

A Team Effort: Daikaya House Beer —Three Stars Brewing Company joined talents with Katsuya Fukushima of Daikaya to create a brand new craft beer. The Sansho Panza is brewed with fresh yuzu and sansho pepper, both of which lend a bright citrus character to the light earthy saison. Debuting at Daikaya on July 10, the Sansho Panza will be priced at $9 and celebrated alongside other brewery craft offerings and special menu items. (705 6 St NW; 202.589.1600; daikaya.com)

A Honey-Sweet Way to Save the Bees — As solitary bee populations continue to decline, Fairmont D.C. Georgetown offers a honey-sweet initiative. The hotel is displaying a “Pop-Up” Pollinator Bee Hotel in the lobby, offering a collection of nesting materials designed to attract and support bees. Fairmont is also serving a pollinator menu in Juniper Restaurant, including the BeeTini, and a portion of its proceeds will support the District of Columbia Public Schools’ Junior Beekeepers initiative from August 18 – October 31, 2014. In spring 2015, approximately 10 D.C. public schools will have their own beehives; students will learn about beekeeping and how to harvest honey. (2401 M St NW; Fairmont.com)

The Jefferson, 2014: The Year of the Author – The Jefferson has declared 2014 The Year of the Author, with a Quill bar book club and cocktails celebrating classic authors and reads. In July, Ernest Hemingway inspires a cocktail created to honor The Old Man and the Sea; August brings a Herman Melville-inspired cocktail featuring gin, sweet vermouth, aperol, and blood orange; September honors F. Scott Fitzgerald. The cocktail napkins at Quill will bear lines from the featured books, like “It is not down on any map; true places never are,” (name that book!) (1200 16 St NW; 202.448.2300; jeffersondc.com)

All Night Happy Hour All Week — Rejoice! Menu MBK now offers all-night happy hour beer, wine, cocktails, and bar snacks from 5:00P.M. to close, Monday through Sunday. Select beers like Belgium Tripel Kasteel will be available for $5 each; select glasses of white, rosé, and red wines will be available for $6 each; and select cocktails will be available for $7, such as Hemingway’s Last Call (grapefruit peel infused rum, lychee, lemon, and vanilla). On the food front, enjoy a variety of bar snacks for $10, including duck confit cigars with arugula and shaved fennel, pomme frites with garlic aioli and allium butter, curry mussels salad, and various cheeses and charcuterie. (405 8 St NW; 202.347.7491; menumbk.com)

Healthy Happy Hour — If you think healthy happy hour is an oxymoron, you’re not thinking of Protein Bar DC’s happy hours. Until September 1, enjoy guilt-free happy hours at Protein Bar DC locations with blended half price shakes. Start with a choice of protein (whey, soy, egg or vegan), select a milk (2%, skim, almond, coconut, or soy) and add a boost at no charge. A favorite is The Red Line, made with vanilla protein, choice of milk, strawberries, and a banana. (1011 19 St NW // 925 17 St NW // 398 7 St NW // theproteinbar.com)


Break Out the Grass Skirt

Tiki Thursdays – Transport yourself to the tropics at Jack Rose Dining Saloon’s hidden rooftop bar. The rooftop Tiki bar, located just off the rooftop terrace, will be open Thursdays through Saturdays with refreshing cocktails, island-inspired fare, and a Tiki Thursdays Happy Hour. Enjoy boozy coconut, pineapple, and passion fruit in ceramic Tiki mugs and juicy pork and fresh shrimp hot off the grill. Cocktails include the Break Fluid (coconut rum, gold rum, blye curacao, orgeat, passion fruit, grapefruit, pineapple, ginger ale), and more. (2007 18 St NW; 202.588.7388; jackrosediningsaloon.com)

Doi Moi Presents… — Scorpion bowls, pina coladas, and banan daiquiris cement their positions on doi moi’s summer cocktail list, which has taken a decidedly Tiki turn for the season. A new menu includes a pina colada served in a coconut mug; popular classics such as the Mai Tai and the Suffering Bastard; and under-the-radar drinks like the sherry and bourbon Bizzy Izzy and the Scotch and Pisco Straw Hat #2. (1800 14 St NW; 202.733.5131; doimoidc.com)

Bar Gone Polynesian—If you can’t manage a vacation to Tahiti this summer, head over to The Majestic where the bar’s gone Polynesian. To pair with the Tiki theme, Chef Shannon Overmiller pairs cocktails with the classic pupu platter, including crispy veggie spring rolls, spicy scallion ginger chicken wings, shrimp toast on housemade baguette, peanut satay chicken skewers and beef teriyaki skewers with pineapple. (911 King St, Alexandria, VA; 703.837.9117; majesticcafe.com)


This Summer, Take a Staycation

Be a Fan in the City — With Mandarin Hotel’s Fan in the City package, treat yourself and three fellow staycationers to a two-night stay in the opulent Jefferson Suite, with 1,900 square feet of space, spectacular views of D.C., a private six course dinner by award-winning Chef Eric Ziebold and CityZen restaurant, four Oriental Harmony Spa Treatments, champagne and cheese served poolside…and more. For reservations, contact the hotel directly. (1330 Maryland Ave SW; 202.554.8588; mandarinoriental.com/DC)

Made in the USA — Book Park Hyatt Washington’s Made in the USA suite this Independence Day weekend for enhanced amenities and patriotic treats. The suite is decorated with renowned works of American art and American artisal items, and comes with two tickets to The Phillips Collection Made in the USA exhibit. For the art skeptics, the suite will provide a copy of Why Your Five-Year-Old Could Not Have Done That: Modern Art Explained and a subscription to The Phillips Collection Magazine. Treats include breakfast for two at Blue Duck Tavern; two complimentary Washington Apple cocktails, made from a combination of house made apple spiced vodka, fresh lemon juice and sugar; and, Blue Duck Tavern’s signature apple pie, presented in-room upon arrival. (24 & M NW; 800.778.7477; parkhyattwashington.com)

Crab Week at Hyatt Regency Chesapeake Bay — Summer on the Eastern Shore wouldn’t be complete without Maryland crabs, and the Hyatt Regency’s annual Crab Week pays homage to the time-honored tradition. For two full weeks, August 15 through August 29, enjoy crab happy festivities and special staycation deals. Overnight guests can savor crab specialties whipped up by food truck sensation, Feelin’ Crabby, and enjoy an exclusive tour and feast at J.M Clayton Company, the world’s oldest crab house. Watch (or participate) in the resort’s annual crab cake eating contest.  Learn to catch, crack, and cook up your own crabs during daily demos by the pros and savor daily crab specials, as well as crab pairings.  For more details and a full schedule of activities, click over to the site. (100 Heron Blvd, Cambridge, MD; 800.633.7313; chesapeakebay.hyatt.com)

Salamander Tree Top Zip Tour – Sign up for an adventure! Get a bird’s eye view of the Virginia countryside while gliding across a canopy course of zip lines. The canopy course, beginning and ending on the resort’s Grand Lawn, is comprised of a series of rope bridges and zip lines–zip from one tree top platform to another on five different zip lines and two suspension sky bridges. The Salamander Tree Top Zip Tour also offers special team building programs that provide adventures that bond, motivate, and inspire teams. (500 N Pendleton St, Middleburg, VA 20117; 866.938.7370; salamanderresort.com)



Douglas Alexander — Southern-inspired restaurant Art & Soul has appointed Douglas Alexander as its new Executive Chef. Prior to joining Art and Soul in 2011, Alexander spent years cooking at the British gastropub Againn and 701 restaurant in Penn Quarter. Before his move to Washington, DC, Alexander worked in a number of kitchens in Portland Oregon, including Southpark Seafood & Wine Bar as sous chef and Fivespice Seafood & Wine Bar, where he was Executive Chef. A hot sauce connoisseur, Alexander is also the man behind “Angry Chef Hot Sauce,” a company he began earlier this year. (415 New Jersey Ave NW; 202.393.7777; artandsouldc.com)

Kyoo Eom — Poste Moderne Brasserie has a new Executive Chef in Kyoo Eom.  Eom brings more than 10 years of culinary experience to Poste, including nearly 5 years at 2941 Restaurant in both chef de cuisine and executive sous chef roles. Prior to that, he worked for Daniel Boulud’s signature DB Bistro Moderne and Café Boulud, where he trained under Chef Andrew Carmellini after graduating from Le Cordon Bleu at Brown College. Eom was born in South Korea and came to the United States to pursue his dream of attending culinary school. Under Eom’s guidance, Poste will retain its modern brasserie concept while refining the menu to focus on classic dishes with a modern twist. Menu highlights are likely to include a French Onion Soup embellished with beef short rib, thyme, gruyere, and croutons, and other modernized classics. (555 8 St NW; 202.783.6060; postebrasserie.com)

Samuel Kim — Clyde’s Restaurant Group has hired Samuel Kim as its new Executive Chef at 1789. Kim most recently served as the Executive Sous Chef at Colicchio and Sons, which earned the 2013 Trip Advisor award for “Top Restaurant in the USA” and “Number Two in the World” during his tenure. However, Kim began his culinary career at 1789 Restaurant as Chef de Partie Rotisseur, where his talents in the kitchen earned him a promotion to work on the opening culinary team as a sous chef at Clyde’s Restaurant Group’s Gallery Place in November 2005. Welcome back, Chef! (1226 26 ST NW; 202.965.1789; 1789restaurant.com)

Michael Maksimowicz — Formerly of Vidalia, Rouge 24, Blue Duck Tavern, and more, Michael Maksimowicz is now the new Executive Chef at Fiola. Armed with a degree from New York City’s French Culinary Institute, Macsimowicz is a seafood lover who spent several years in South Florida working his way up the kitchen, before returning to D.C. in 2009. (601 Pennsylvania Ave NW; 202.628.2888; fioladc.com)

Casper Rice — New Beverage Director and Sommelier Casper Rice started out as a student of Larry Stone at Rubicon Restaurant in San Francisco, and now brings his expertise to Fiola. With 10 years of exploration and experience in the world of wine, Rice previously created farm-to-table house-made bitters, tinctures, and syrups, earning him a place at The Inn at Little Washington, where he co-curated a Grand Award-winning wine list and managed 18,000 bottles before joining the team at Fiola. (601 Pennsylvania Ave NW; 202.628.2888; fioladc.com)



Hill Country Backyard Barbeque Returns — Here’s a welcome sign of summer—Hill Country Barbeque Market has confirmed the return of Hill Country Backyard Barbeque! The unique branded outdoor experience features Hill Country’s award-winning Texas-style barbecue, ice-cold Shiner beers, and live music on the spacious and picturesque West Lawn of the National Building Museum. Featuring cornhole toss boards and giant Jenga, Hill Country Backyard Barbeque will begin May 1 and run through Labor Day weekend. Play lawn games, drink beer, and listen to music while you dig into a plateful of dry-rub, pit-smoked barbeque and Southern sides and desserts. The picnic-friendly menu will include a barbecue chicken sandwich and barbecue beef sandwich, plus a nightly Pitmaster’s Pick featuring some of Hill Country Barbecue Market’s signature meats straight from the smokers. The menu will also include sides like confetti coleslaw, potato salad, mini skillet cornbread, and a chocolate chunk cookie for dessert. In addition, HCBB partner Zipcar will be holding an ongoing raffle for guests. Each month throughout the season, Zipcar will showcase a different theme tied to the various reasons to use the service – May’s theme is “Beach/Roadtrip,” June is “Shopping,” July is “Travel,” and August will be “Moving.” Existing Zipcar members will receive a prize tied to that month’s theme, in addition to receiving a raffle ticket to enter into a monthly grand prize drawing. New members will get a $55 gift card to Hill Country Barbecue Market and two tickets to enter into the monthly grand prize raffle. (401 F St NW; 202.556.2050; hillcountrywdc.com)

Sixth Annual D.C. Beer Week Returns — Craft beer fans rejoice! The 6th annual D.C. Beer Week returns to the National Capital Region this summer with a variety of beer-related educational and tasting events planned throughout the week of August 17 – 24. Local distributor Jeff Wells and chef/beer aficionado Teddy Folkman started DC Beer Week in 2008 to celebrate the small, but enthusiastic craft beer community in the Nation’s Capital. Since then, the event has grown each year attracting thousands. As in past years, hundreds of venues in the District, Virginia and Maryland will host a variety of beer-related events, including beer dinners, tastings, trivia nights, tap takeovers, happy hours, and more. (dcbeerweek.net)

FLOFest DC 2014 — FLOFest DC is a music, wine, and literary festival that showcases jazz, latin, and alternative rock music; speciality wines; and, international food and books! Doors open on September 1 at 10:00A.M. at the DC Gateway—be prepared for tasting and pairing workshops, an author’s pavilion, and chef demonstrations. Wines from award-winning vineyards including House of Mandela and Heritage Link will provide tastings; entertainers include jazz artist Marcus Johnson, Rudy Gonzalez Latin Band, The Donvonte McCoy Latin Jazz Orchestra, and soulful rock songstress Beverly McClellan. Tickets are $45 and include two food samplings and at least four wine tastings. (flofestdc.com)

DC Oysterfest — Listen to live bluegrass, watch top shuckers, and participate in an oyster eating competition at the first ever Rappahannock Oyster Bar D.C. Oysterfest on September 6 at Dock 5! The Union Market festival will showcase Rappahannock’s own bivalves, as well as local beer, wine, and food. Treat yourself to wines on top from Early Mountain Vineyards; cold beers from Flying Dog Brewery, DC Brau, and 3 Stars Brewery; punch from Catoctin Creek; and food from Red Apron, Timber Pizza Co, and DCity Smokehouse. The family-friendly festival will also have a kid’s corner with a face painter, balloon artist, and oyster crafts led by Virginia-based Abrakadoodle. General admission is $20 and includes your first six oysters and a glass of beer or wine. (click here)

Arcadia’s 2014 Fall Harvest Dinner — Hosted by Vermilion’s Executive Chef William Morris, join a farm-to-table dinner on the lawn of historic Woodlawn Mansion to support and celebrate the new Veteran Farmer Program. A team of all-star local chefs including Jonah Kim, Danny Lee (Mandu), and Jesse Miller (Café Saint-Ex) will reinvent classic barbeque dishes for a spectacular, four-course, family-style dining experience. Click over to the site to buy tickets for the September 7 event. (9000 Richmond Highway, Alexandria, VA; click here)

Snallygaster III at the Yards – The third annual Snallygaster beer festival will be held at Nats Stadium on Sept 13!  The beer festival unleashes the most sought after selection of beers and benefits Arcadia Center for Sustainable Food & Agriculture. This year, Snallygaster is once again tapping no fewer than 250 unique craft beers against a backdrop of fine foods, music, entertainment, games, and more. Guests can expect a sea of the scarcest and most delicious ales and lagers on draft, including a growing number of breweries and brews rarely available in D.C., and even an artisanal cider garden. Guests are encouraged to buy tickets in advance. (showclix.com/event/SnallygasterDC)

Festival of the Pig — Culinary extravaganza Maialata takes its name from the festival of the pig held in northern Italy, and Osteria Morini will carry on the tradition on September 14. Osteria Morini’s celebration will feature its first pig roast and a bounty of dishes showcasing the versatility of pork. In addition to the centerpiece of whole roasted suckling pig, Executive Chef Matt Adler will provide a table replete with platters of the restaurant’s popular Battilardo de Affettati (cheese and charcuterie board), meatballs, salads, and summer corn. Pastry Chef Alex Levin will stock the dessert table with a selection of housemade gelato sandwiches, and guests can look forward to a selection of beers from DC Brau. Tickets range from $25 to $75 for kiddos or adults. (301 Water St SE; 202.484.0660; osteriamorini.com)

Chefs for Equality — Join The Human Rights Campaign, David Hagedorn, and Amaryllis Floral + Event Design at the third annual Chefs for Equality event. Featuring top chefs and mixologists from D.C., Maryland, and Virginia, the September 23 event supports the Human Rights Campaign Foundation. Support equality alongside the chefs of Red Hen, Osteria Morini, Le Diplomate, and many, many more at the Ritz-Carlton on September 23! Tickets are $150; after-party tickets are $50. (1150 22 St NW; chefsforequality.org)

Toast the Tunes — Through September 27, 6:00P.M. – 9:30P.M., grab your friends, a chair or a blanket, and your will to party like it’s 1999 (for the 16th time)!  Join Tarara Winery every Saturday night at Shadow Lake to groove to some tunes under the stars with your favorite partners in wine. Gates open at 5:00P.M.; tickets are $15. Cheers! (13648 Tarara Lane, Leesburg VA 20176; 703.771.7100; tarara.com/scripts/eventPg.cfm/_/651/2014-Summer-Concert-Series/)

F*CK FORKS! Second Annual Event — It’s f*cking back! Industree presents the second annual F*ck Forks event on October 2 from 6:00P.M. to 10:00P.M. Hosted at the new Mess Hall, the event will include the area’s brightest culinary stars who will create sweet and savory drool-worthy dishes that don’t require utensils to enjoy. Participating chefs include Mike Friedman (The Red Hen), Marjorie Meek-Bradley (RAMMY 2014 winner), Erik Bruner-Yang (Maketto), Jennifer Nguyen (Zentan), Dimitri Moshovitis (Cava), Tiffany MacIsaac (Buttercream Bakeshop), Chris Becker (Fleet Street Kitchen), and Caitlin Dysart (2014 RAMMY Pastry Chef of the Year). Along with a portion of the ticket sales, proceeds from a chef-curated silent art auction by The Art Registry will also go directly to Fuck Cancer, an organization dedicated to providing education on cancer prevention. Attendees can expect the best in the biz of food and beverage, interactive art, music by DJ Flounder, former DC101 personality, as well as packed-to-the-brim swag bags. (http://www.fckforks.com/)

The Emporiyum Food Market — One-of-a-kind culinary shopping experience, Emporiyum, has made its way from Baltimore to D.C., stopping in Dock 5 at Union Market. The two-day market and celebration of delicious foodstuffs makes its debut on November 15, bringing together a line up of food and beverage purveyors you won’t find anywhere else. Mid-Atlantic favorites such as Erik Bruner-Yang (Toki Underground, Maketto), Spike Gjerde (Woodberry Kitchen), Bryan Voltaggio (Volt), and Luke’s Lobster welcome a roster of visitors including Paul Qui (Qui, East Side King), Momofuku Milk Bar, Mast Brothers Chocolate, Black Seed Bagels, Bittermilk, Quin Candy, Butter & Scotch, Bellocq Tea, and many more. (1309 5 St NE; theemporiyum.com)

Christmas on the Potomac — Every holiday season, Gaylord National Resort transforms into the self-titled “Capital of Christmas,” with indoor snowfalls, dazzling lights, and a 60-foot Christmas tree. It’s all part of its seventh annual Christmas on the Potomac, a 52-day celebration running from November 14 through January 4, 2015. The holiday season comes to life on November 14 with the return of ICE!, the popular, award-winning ice attraction, with more than 2 million lights, indoor snowfall, a 60-foot-tall suspended glass Christmas tree, and more Among its many festive offerings, Gaylord National Resort offers “Gingy’s Gingerbread Decorating,” a chance to decorate gingerbread with help from Gingy of Shrek; nightly holiday fountain shows atop the hotel’s 60-foot “candy” glass tree; photos with Santa Claus; DreamWorks’ Madagascar Crack’ A Lackin’ Cook-in Character Breakfast featuring Madagascar-themed items; and, a Christmas-themed scavenger hunt. For dates, prices, and additional Christmas on the Potomac events, visit ChristmasOnThePotomac.com. (201 Waterfront St, National Harbor, MD 20745; 301.965.4000; ChristmasOnThePotomac.com)


You’ll Never Want for Brunch in the D.C. Area

Alba Osteria Launches Bottomless Brunch — Alba Osteria’s answer to the ubiquitous DC bottomless brunch launches on February 1. Priced at $29.95, the brunch includes breakfast pizzas, egg dishes, pancakes, and meatballs along with four bottomless brunch cocktails and live music, to boot. Look forward to plates like friend eggs and meatballs, buckwheat ricotta pancakes, and the Monte Cristo, and sides like smoked pancetta, house-made lamb sausage, and fried potatoes. Cocktails include mimosas, white peach bellinis, infused prosciutto vodka Bloody Marys, and house-made beer-mosas. Order a la carte, as well, or if just bottomless drinks are more your style, they’re $18 a person.Yum! (425 I St NW; 202.733.4454; albaosteriadc.com)

Belgian-Flair Breakfast at B Too —Get ready for an unconventional take on contemporary Belgian breakfast cuisine with surprising new choices available at B Too. Dishes abound, including fried apple waffle donuts, hash browns with duck confit, a banana Nutella granola waffle, and a chicken waffle with chicken schnitzel and sweet onion syrup. Available to stay or to go from 7:00A.M. to 11:00A.M., these not-to-miss twists on breakfast favorites are from Chef Bart Vandaele, a recognized leader in contemporary Belgian cuisine. (1324 14 St NW; 202.627.2800; btoo.com)

Brunch and Express Lunch at Black’s Bar and Kitchen — Executive Chef Dane Sewlall has accommodated time-sensitive lunchers with a diverse lunch menu priced from $18 to $24, including beverages (wines and draft beers), starters (a soup of the day or wood-grilled bruschetta), entrees (a risotto, a hardwood grilled chicken sandwich, or Addie’s Mussels), and desserts (a cookie plate, chocolate chip bread pudding, or house-made ice cream). Newly revamped brunch offerings include a $43 buffet including oysters, charcuterie, and an egg station among other items, and a la carte items such as Black’s Benedict, a house take on Eggs Benedict that includes Virginia ham and brandy-pepper hollandaise. (7750 Woodmont Ave, Bethesda, MD 20814; 301.652.5525; blacksbarandkitchen.com)

City Tap House Brunch Service — Worry about your diet on Monday—Executive Chef Scott Swiderski’s a la carte brunch dishes, including artisan pizzas, crab cake benedict, chicken & waffles, and foie gras French toast, are now offered on weekends from 11:00AM to 3:00PM.  Wash it all down with a bottomless brunch bar, which includes endless Bloody Marys, mimosas, and beer-mosas for $18 per person. (901 9 St NW; 202.733.5333; citytaphousedc.com)

City Tap House/Terrapin Beer Company Team Up for Beer Brunch — Here’s something new—City Tap House has teamed with Terrapin Beer Company to bring you a la carte brunch dishes paired with Terrapin Beer Company beers. Pairings include biscuits and gravy with Hopsecutioner IPA, chicken and waffles with Moo-Hoo Stout, honey crisp granola with Tree Hugger Ale, and lemon ricotta pancakes with White Chocolate Moo-Hoo Stout, among other unusual and delicious-sounding pairings. As an added bonus, a Terrapin representative will be on hand to introduce a special cask version of Mosaic IPA, made with jalapeno chilies and orange peel. Drink up on Monday, January 20 from 11:00AM to 3:00PM. (901 9 St NW; 202.733.5333; citytaphousedc.com)

Bottomless Brunch is Back — Enjoy bottomless brunch bubbly at Coco Sala, featuring summer punch, berries and bubbles, and OJ fizz! The three-course “mimosa brunch experience” includes dishes like Hotcake Obsession (citrus ricotta pancakes, white chocolate lemon cream), Cheese Magic (twice baked upside down cheese soufflé, leek sauce, blue cheese pear salad), Grown Up Grilled Cheese (truffle-scented brioche, cheddar cheese, roasted tomato soup) Aztec Cheese Enchilada (pepper cheese enchilada, guava lime sauce, avocado, shaved fennel and mache salad), and other delicious offerings. (929 F St NW; 202.347.4265; cocosala.com)

Hangover Brunch – Almost every brunch is a hangover brunch, but Dino’s Grotto has it down to a science with a little hair of the dog Grotto Bar style. Instant Breakfast is Hayman’s Old Tom Gin, an egg, Worcestershire sauce, simple syrup, Thai Sriracha, blackstrap bitters, and lemon juice—eye opening whether you’re hurting from the night before or completely sober. Then choose brunch cocktails or tap beer and a main or two starters, all for $25. Standouts include the Italian Nutella and mascarpone stuffed French toast. (1914 9 St NW; 202.686.2966; dinoinshaw.com)

Et Voila! RAMMY Sidekicks — In celebration of his two RAMMY nominations, Executive Chef Claudio Pirollo of Et Voila! has added three new additions to his brunch menu, each with complimentary “sidekicks.” Additions include Eggs Benedict with salmon and Stella Artois beer; buckwheat crepe with ham béchamel, sunny side up eggs, and an Et Voila! cocktail; and, Mikado crepes with vanilla ice cream and a cappuccino. Priced from $8 to $14.50, the new offerings are served alongside Et Voila’s complete brunch menu and extensive list of Belgian beers. (5120 MacArthur Boulevard NW; 202.237.2300; etvoiladc.com)

The Grille Impresses with New Duck Press — Pressed duck has joined the Alexandria brunch scene! A traditional French duck press is the centerpiece of The Grille at Morrison House’s new brunch menu. During the brunch, roasted duck breast remnants are placed in the press, which squeezes additional juices from the duck and, once flambéed, provides an especially flavorful sauce. The brunch also includes a table of seasonal beignets, fruit, breads, and jams, personal egg orders, and a series of brunch stations featuring pressed duck, crepes, and petit fours. Enjoy brunch for $38 per person from 11:00A.M. to 2:00P.M. on Sundays, and partake in a bottomless Bellini bar for an additional $14. (116 S Alfred St, Alexandria, VA; 703.838.8000; thegrillealexandria.com)

Even More Spanish Brunch Creations — Nosh on a reimagined Jaleo brunch menu. Tempting new items include Spanish toast with caramelized bananas and rum whipped cream; smoked salmon on slices of crispy ethereal bread with hardboiled egg, goat cheese, and capers; and, a grilled hanger steak with fried egg, potatoes, and Valdeon cheese sauce. Round out brunch with Spanish churros plus frothy hot chocolate for dipping—all for $8 to $22. (480 7th Street, NW, Washington, DC; 202.628.7949 // 7271 Woodmont Avenue, Bethesda, MD; 301.913.0003 // 2250 Crystal Drive in Arlington, VA; 703.413.8181 // jaleo.com)

Lupo Verde Launches Brunch — Lupo Verde is the latest 14 St hang out to launch brunch, this time with Italian flair. Chef de Cuisine Domenico Apollaro’s a la carte menu will showcase authentic, rustic, Italian fare featuring a variety of antipasti, breakfast pizzas, house-made pastas, egg dishes, and crepes.  For the perfect pairing, Lupo Verde’s Beverage Director Francesco Amodeo has created five morning libations that are sure to delight any palate. Dishes include Uova in Camici (poached eggs in San Marzano tomato sauce, fresh basil, shallots, and grilled bread), Tagliata di Manzo con Uova a Piacere (grilled sirloin steak and two eggs any style), and many more delicious offerings. (1401 T St NW; 202.827.4726; lupoverdedc.com)

Live La Vida Loca with New Latin Brunch Offerings — Maple pulled pork and chipotle honey chicken are on the menu at Paladar Latin Kitchen, putting the excitement back in brunch with Latin American-inspired brunch food and three bottomless mimosa flavors. The new, seasonal Paladar brunch menu includes signature dishes like scrambled eggs and chorizo tacos and maple pulled pork and fried eggs. Choose from three delicious bottomless mimosas blended with orange juice, strawberries, or peach and basil. (11333 Woodglen Dr, Rockville, MD;301.816.1100; paladarlatinkitchen.com)

Jazzing Up Brunch — Pump it up with a new live jazz brunch at Rialto, starting December 21. Local musicians will play live jazz music during a specialty Italian brunch, including the Georgetown (poached eggs, fried polenta, asparagus), the Pazza (homemade sausage, scrambled eggs, mozzarella, and cherry tomato pizza) and the Rialto omelet (shrimp, tomato, marscarpone). (2915 M St NW; 202.337.1571/1572; RialtoDC.com)

Greek Brunch at Kapnos — Man about town, Mike Isabella, is now offering a new brunch menu at 11am to 3pm at the 14th street Restaurant, Kapnos.  The menu features Baklava French Toast and Spit Roasted Chicken and Waffles.  Kapnos has recently opened its patio while also adding over three dozen seats to the restaurant. (2201 14th St NW; 202.234.5000; kapnosdc.com)

Vegans Rejoice! Muse Expands Its Vegan Brunch — Vegetarians and vegans looking for an inventive answer to the age old question—where can I find a decent, meat-free brunch in DC?—should look no further than Todd Gray’s Muse at the Corcoran Gallery of Art. The popular dining establishment now offers both traditional and vegan brunches every Sunday from 11:00A.M. to 2:00P.M., with a wide selection of inspired vegan fare, from sweet pea paella with grilled ramps to potato and cheddar croquettes. (Corcoran Gallery of Art, 500 17th St NW; toddgraysmuse.com)

NoPA Kitchen + Bar Launches Sunday Brunch — Executive Chef Greg McCarty’s new brunch menu has just recently launched at NoPa Kitchen + Bar. Dishes worthy of your morning indulging include appetizers such as grapefruit and tangerine brûlée with cinnamon mascarpone  or the rutabaga soup with crab, yuzu, endive.  Definitely order a bread basket filled with freshly baked spiced plum coffee cake, roasted corn muffin, and brioche mousseline for the table.  Egg lovers, dig into McCarty’s take on the Eggs Benedict  with Canadian bacon or Smoked Salmon or the Skillet Bacon and Eggs with tomato, horseradish and gruyere.  NoPa Kitchen+Bar’s Pastry Chef, Jemil Gadea provides plenty of sweet endings like the Maple Pecan Sticky Buns with Malaga ice cream and Crepes Normandes.  (800 F Street NW; 202.347.4667)

A Very Southern Brunch — Occidental Grill and Seafood takes on Southern classics with its new brunch menu, serving up the South with drinks like the Pretty Women (strawberry-macerated Blue Ride vodka, lemon verbena, cava) and dishes such as slow-poached farm egg with braised beef short rib. Other highlights include Mascarpone whipped polenta with braised kale, Southern-style biscuits and gravy, a low country-inspired shrimp and grits, Occidental signature crab cake sandwich, and a croissant BLT with sliced avocado, garlic aioli, and American cheese. Naturally, it wouldn’t be a D.C. brunch without bottomless Bloody Marys and mimosas, available on the outdoor patio. (1475 Pennsylvania Ave NW; 202.783.1475; occidentaldc.com)

Ovvio Osteria’s Italian Brunch –Virginia ‘burb-dwellers, the new Merrifield location now has an Italian brunch hideaway where classic dishes with an Italian twist are now being served. Beginning Sundays from 10:30 to 2:30, Ovvio Osteria offers late morning feasting.  Chef/Partner Chris Watson serves a savory menu of items that incorporate seasonal Italian flavors such as pork milanese benedict served on a house made biscuit with sausage gravy, grilled Portuguese octopus panzanella with cucumber, tomato and balsamic drizzle, and steak and eggs accompanied by a potato cake.  Brunch also offers staple menu items like prosciutto, mozzarella and arugula panino as well as the full pizza menus.  To accompany your brunch, Wine Director Timothy Clune has concocted morning time refreshments using only Italian wines including a classic peach bellini and white and red sangria loaded with market fresh fruit. Dine inside or outside on the spacious, pet-friendly patio that overlooks Halstead Square. (2727 Merrilee Dr  Merrifield VA; 703.573.2161)

Osteria Morini Rolls Out Brunch — Enjoy a brand new brunch service at Osteria Morini, with a menu of classic brunch dishes infused with Italian flavors, such as ricotta pancakes with whipped mascarpone and maple syrup, frittata with mortadella and pecorino, and steak & eggs with prime skirt steak. For those who veer towards lunch offerings, Osteria will serve a variety of housemade pastas, crostini and meatballs, and the restaurant’s generous cheese and charcuterie boards. For sweet start to the weekend, sample a selection of breakfast pastries including house made cinnamon raisin Danishes and spiced pepper muffins. The brunch cocktail menu will feature modern interpretations of classic drinks, such as the Bloody Romagnolo, made with grappa and rosemary and garnished with mortadella-stuffed olives, as well as a DIY Mimosa. (301 Water St SE; 202.484.0660; osteriamorini.com)

Revamped Brunch at Pearl Dive Oyster Palace — Chef de Cuisine James Huff and Pastry Chef Carri-Anne Hamer have revamped Pearl Dive’s brunch menu, adding sweet potato Andouille hash with poached eggs and grillades and grits with braised pork cheeks to its menu. Sweet new highlights include sticky cinnamon rolls with caramel bacon sauce and French toast with cinnamon nutmeg custard. Standby favorites like the CEBLT Po-Boy and the Dive Burger remain. (1612 14 St NW; 202.319.1612; pearldivedc.com)

Ping Pong Dim Sum Party Brunch — The Ping Pong Party Brunch is back! The party continues with two bottomless drink options: a bottomless tableside beer-mosa bar for $15, including a pitcher of beer, lemonade, and three exotic juices for self-made cocktails, and a bottomless tableside mimosa bar for $15, complete with papaya, pomegranate, and watermelon juices and champagne. Ping Pong now offers unlimited dim sum options for $36 per person, along with an a la carte option for $26 per person for five dishes. (900 7 St NW; 202.506.3740; pingpongdimsum.us)

A Pintastic Brunch — A lavish brunch meets bocce and bowling at newly-opened Pinstripes in Georgetown. The weekly brunch, priced at $20 and served buffet-style, features specialties such as made-to-order omelets, carved prime rib, fresh seafood, a salad bar, and desserts. Guests can launch into Sunday funday with a $5 create-your-own Bloody Mary bar or a $3 mimosa before or after a game of bowling or bocce. (1064 Wisconsin Ave NW; 202.625.6500; pinstripes.com)

Piola’s “No Limit” Pizza Brunch –  Columbia Heights pizzeria Piola, which specializes in Italian-style thin-crust pizza, now serves it’s  “No Limit” Pizza Brunch. In addition to unlimited wood-fired pies, brunch-goers can also opt to add bottomless sparkling drinks and sangria.  Brunch offerings at the 14th Street restaurant currently include over 10 pies that range from classic Italian combinations like the Capricciosa (tomato sauce, mozzarella, ham, artichoke and mushrooms) to international varieties such as the Breakfast in Beirut (“zaatar” and olive oil, served with “labneh,” olives, tomatoes, cucumbers and fresh mint) and plays on traditional brunch fare like the Cancun (tomato sauce, mozzarella, onions, smoked salmon, cream cheese and capers). Those looking for something stronger than coffee can sip on a unlimited supply of sangria and other sparkling drinks. Brunch will be served Saturdays and Sundays from 11 a.m. – 3 p.m. Enjoy unlimited pizza for $15.95 ($7.95 for kids) and add bottomless sangria and sparkling drinks for an additional $15.  (2208 14th Street Northwest; 202.986.8729; piola.it)

Table Adds Brunch to Repertoire –  Frederik De Pue’s Shaw restaurant has just launched a revamped Sunday brunch service. A five course degustation menu will offer diners a taste of the neighborhood eatery’s full range of French-inspired fare, including servings of house made yogurt, smoked salmon crepes and skirt steak roulade. The $35 fixed-price meal is offered with bottomless mimosas for $48. (903 N St NW; 202.588.5200; tabledc.com)

Republic Brunch — Cure your ailments with a charred tomato Bloody Mary at Republic’s new weekend brunch service. The unusual Bloody Mary (and its various iterations—including options to add Old Bay or tequila!) is created using wood-grilled tomatoes, house-made arbol, guajillo pepper chili paste, fresh lime and lemon juice, Worcestershire sauce, horseradish, and house-made celery salt (phew!) Food highlights include monkey bread, beignets, homemade buttermilk biscuit with scrambled eggs and cheddar, brioche French toast, and slow-braised pork belly. (6939 Laurel Ave, Takoma Park, MD 20912; 301.270.3001; republictakoma.com)

A New Brunch in Town — Newcomer Toro Toro has launched brunch service, including a tantalizing selection of hot and cold savory plates and desserts, plus Toro Toro’s “Rodizio Experience,” a selection of hot-off-the-spit meats carved and ready for indulging. There is also a cornucopia of side dishes, as well as four mimosa cocktails and a Bloody Mary bar. The $39 brunch begins with a choice of Pan-Latin small plates that showcase South and Central American cuisine, including seasonal salads, meats, raw bar, and assorted breads and cheeses, showcased as a lavish buffet.  Next up, diners will enjoy Toro Toro’s “Rodizio Experience,” with choices that include picanha steak, chorizo sausage, achiote chicken, or Chef’s Daily Selection. (1300 I St NW; richardsandoval.com/torotorodc)


Having a Facelift

Big Growth at Catoctin Creek Distilling Company — Catoctin Creek is putting the finishing touches on their new, semi-automated, American-made bottling line, which will allow them to increase production to 10,000 or more bottles per month, a dramatic increase. The award-winning distillery has become known for its community volunteer bottling days, and while the new equipment will allow the distillery to bottle the majority of their products more quickly, they still plan to host bottling workshops on a quasi-monthly basis. The bottling line should be fully operational by the end of the month—look out for the new bottling line when you take your next tour! (120 West Main St, Purcellville, VA 20132; 202.827.4595; catoctincreek.com)

A Summer Swan Song at the Oval Room — The Oval Room will close on June 30 for a complete renovation, changing both the menu direction and the design scheme. To celebrate the restaurant’s ongoing success under Executive Chef Tony Conte’s leadership in the kitchen, the Oval Room’s most popular dishes will be featured during the month of June, including signature dishes like truffle pasta, truffle fondue, and shaved summer truffles; pastrami cured kampachi, Chinese mustard, tomato jam, and pumpernickel; crispy snapper, fennel-tarragon, snap peas, and licorice vinaigrette; Kazu marinated duck, turnip kimchee, honey stewed shallots, and confit; cassia butter poached lobster, pearls of peach, and wasabi and lemongrass broth; and veal tenderloin, artichokes, lemon balm, and Parmesan. For dessert lovers, the beet-chocolate cake, buttermilk lime sorbet, and dark chocolate mousse, and the passion fruit curd, frozen coconut yogurt, and dried marshmallow make their return for the final month of June. The Oval Room will reopen in August with a new menu and new décor—guests can anticipate bold art pieces, theatrical lighting, plush fabrics, and rich, deep accent colors of burgundy and blue. (800 Connecticut Ave NW; 202.463.8700; ovalroom.com)

Big Growth at 3 Stars — 3 Stars Brewing Company is putting the finishing touches an expansion project that will allow them to increase production by 300%! Over the past six months, they’ve doubled the brewery’s fermentation capacity, allowing 3 Stars to continue its ongoing growth and further develop local partnerships. The main component of the expansion is the addition of multiple fermentation tanks, affording an increased number of brew days and elevated production volumes. Additionally, there is a new bottling machine, and a huge push towards barrel-aged beers. In 2013, the brewery aged around 600 gallons of beer in a combination of bourbon, red, and white wine barrels. In 2014, the projected volume of barrel-aged beer is in the neighborhood of 2000-3500 gallons. (6400 Chillum Pl NW; 202.670.0333; threestarsbrewing.com)