Restaurant Eve offering free tasting dinner to those celebrating April birthdays

photo-4If your birthday is in April, Restaurant Eve is offering you a free 5-course tasting dinner in their Chef’s Tasting Room, a $100+ value.  Yup, that’s right. It’s all because of Eve Armstrong, the restaurant’s namesake and the daughter of the chef/owner Cathal Armstrong.

Find out the details in my article on The Daily Meal here.

If you’re not celebrating a birthday this month, drown your sorrows with the restaurant’s Lickity Split lunch, details here.  It’s a Forking DC pick!

Döner Bistro

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Courtesy Döner Bistro

Amsterdam Falafel better watch out. Döner Bistro is only a few blocks away and, like Amsterdam, its food tastes good to both the inebriated and sober alike. Plus, Döner has beer and wine!

On its website, Döner Bistro explains what it’s all about:

But what the f*** is a Döner?
The Döner Kebab (meaning “turning meat”) is a traditional Turkish dish served with rice on a platter.

In the 1970’s, a Turkish entrepreneur in Germany altered this dish by stuffing the Döner meat into a flatbread with salad and sauce.

This form better suited the German taste and hectic lifestyle, and its popularity quickly spread from Germany throughout Europe into Australia, Canada and across the world.

» Read more..

Daikaya: now serving ramen

20130217-103031.jpgDaikaya was greeted with long lines when it opened the doors of its first floor ramen shop on Valentine’s Day. With the Sushiko chef/owner Daisuke Utagawa and co-founder of Eighteenth Street Lounge Yama Jewayni at its helm, it’s no surprise that the restaurant is off to a good start.

Daikaya offers four types of ramen: shio [salt ramen], shoyu [soy sauce ramen], mugi miso [barley-miso], and vegetable shio [salt ramen with vegetable stock].

» Read more..

DGS Delicatessen ….$40 later

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I was feeling happy-go-lucky one Saturday morning until I got the bill at DGS. I ordered the pastrami, which takes over a week to make and is massaged by hand for three hours a day (ok that last part may be a lie). $13.

I couldn’t pass up the matzo ball soup. $7.

As I was waiting for my to-go order, I overheard the bartender pushing the DGS Bloody Mary on another patron, so my upbeat self said “hey can I have one too?” $10.

Plus tax and tip. $40. Yes, I was generous on the tip and no it wasn’t well deserved. More on that later.

I know these prices don’t seem patently unreasonable. Yet, on closer inspection, the food and the experience weren’t worth the price tag. The sandwich was good, but not that impressive. Plus, whoever layered the strips onto the bread, lined up all the fat on one end. So for half of my sandwich, I was biting into pure gristle. The matzo ball soup was awesome but small. The Bloody Mary was mediocre, in a small glass with ice and celery taking up most of the real estate, AND they don’t do spicy, according to the bartender. What self-respecting Bloody Mary provider does not do spicy. Oh, wait, here’s some house made hot sauce and cracked pepper to spice up your drink. Thanks….

As for the service, the bartender was not good at multi-tasking. I sat at a nearly empty bar for a few minutes before any eye contact or verbal acknowledgment because the bartender was having what can only be called as involved small talk with the only other two patrons at the bar.

The best part of the experience was the lady that walked up to the bar a few minutes after I sat down. She was trying to place a to-go order for her son or husband or some other beloved man in her life. She ordered the pastrami and had a very drawn out conversation with the bartender about what toppings she could get:

Can I get mayo? (No)
He likes his sandwiches smothered in cheese, can we add cheese? (No)
Can I swap out the mustard for cole slaw? (Um, we can hold the mustard and add a side of cole slaw that your prince can physically place on top of the meat with his delicate hands).
Ok, can I add lettuce and tomato? (That’s not really an option, ma’am).

Wait, this sandwich is $13??? It better be really good. I’m used to paying $5 for a sandwich. (Yes, it’s really good. Trust me).

Well, said, lady. By the way, where’s the nearest Subway? Pot Belly? I could go for a six inch, smothered in cheese and topped with lettuce and tomato.

All kidding aside, I’m willing to pay considerably more than $5 for a good sandwich as long as I feel I’ve gotten my money’s worth. I’m not sure DGS has convinced me of that yet, but I may give them another shot.

DGS Delicatessen
1317 Connecticut Ave NW
Ph: 202.293.4400
Hours: Mon-Fri: 11:30am-2pm, Sat-Sun: 11am-2:30pm
Sun-Thurs: 5:30 – 10pm
Fri-Sat: 5:30-11pm
DGS Delicatessen  on Urbanspoon

Preview: Taan Noodles

Do you ramen? You should. Ramen shops are popping up everywhere so get on the noodle train, people. The latest addition to the DC ramen scene is Taan Noodles, officially opening this Friday in one of my favorite neighborhoods (AdMo).

Taan Noodles is the creation of Executive Chef Jonathan Bisagni, whose resume includes stints at Kushi, Morimoto Waikiki, Sticky Rice, and Toki Underground.

The menu is simple. A small selection of appetizers/small plates and four types of ramen. There’s a vegetarian ramen, a duck ramen, a pork belly ramen with three types of broth, and what I like to call the meat-lover’s option — chicken confit, duck confit, and pork belly.

In addition to the food, Taan has an interesting selection of specialty cocktails, saki, and beer. I tried the Dr. Sun cocktail made with Japanese whiskey, simple syrup and bitters. I was pleasantly surprised at how the right proportion of each of these ingredients transformed the whiskey into an almost different spirit altogether.

I thought the corn fritters (sweet corn “kakiage”), served over a spicy yuzu and shiso sauce, were solid as was the duck ramen. While I would have liked a little bit more “pow” from the duck ramen, I’m not holding it against anyone since they haven’t even officially opened yet. What I do know is that Taan is an exciting new addition to the neighborhood and I look forward to trying more dishes and seeing where this noodle takes me.

Taan Noodles
1817 Columbia Rd. NW
Tel: (202) 450-2416
Hours: Mon. Closed
       Tues/Wed. 5-10pm
       Thurs. 5-11pm
       Fri/Sat. 5-midnight
       Sun. 5-10pm

Taan Noodles on Urbanspoon