As anyone who’s covered previous iterations of the Conservative Political Action Conference — the right-wing rally returning to town Feb. 25-28 — can attest, the best part of sitting through the cacophony of stump speeches is getting good and loaded afterwards.
A trio of media outlets is hoping to capitalize on that propensity to get plowed by convincing CPACers to weigh on the field of White House hopefuls via an unofficial “Cocktail Caucus.”
The straw swizzle stick poll — a collaboration between Independent Journal Review, the National Review and Facebook — is scheduled to take place at Harrington’s Pub & Kitchen (177 Fleet St., Oxon Hill, Md.) Friday from 6-9 p.m. Full story
Election night 2014 is looking like it’ll be a nail-biter.
With so many variables in play — Will the Affordable Care Act ultimately prove detrimental to Democrats’ professional health? Who will independent candidates caucus with on Capitol Hill? How long (and how many runoffs) before we divine the next Senate majority leader? — one might be tempted to grab a drink, catch a movie and perhaps wait for “The Daily Show” recap on Wednesday, rather than suffer through umpteen hours of wall-to-wall news coverage.
But that’s not how #ThisTown rolls, is it? Full story
Per Twitter, that generosity seems likely to continue while D.C. and Charm City remain on the hunt.
Reliable Source (National Press Club)
Fellow hacks can unabashedly root, root, root for Peter Angelos’ team within the comfort of the Truman Lounge. Flying Dog Lagers and D.C. Brau Pale Ales for $5 should ease the sting of not being in Camden Yards.
Now if only the NPC had an in with Boog’s BBQ … Full story
Bagley Smith chronicled the intricacies of flip cup at the Ugly Mug during her time at Roll Call. (CQ Roll Call File Photo)
By now, you’ve seen the announcement that Moira Bagley Smith is joining the staff of House Majority Whip Steve Scalise, R-La., as communications director.
While on staff here at Roll Call in the aughts, Bagley Smith wrote regularly for our old Mug Shots feature. In that role, she brought readers to Sonoma just a year after the wine bar opened, to board games at Trusty’s and to a flip cup tournament at The Ugly Mug.
“The bar sport — a beer-chugging, cup-flipping relay race — is a test of concentration and nerves, rather than strength,” Bagley Smith said in describing flip cup in 2006.
EMILY’s List is hoping to connect more young professionals with the growing universe of female Democrats via its fledgling “Cocktails for Change” initiative.
Freshman lawmakers Tulsi Gabbard of Hawaii, Grace Meng of New York and Kyrsten Sinema of Arizona are scheduled to participate in the inaugural reception, set to take place Wednesday from 6:30 p.m. to 8 p.m. at Policy (1904 14th St. NW).
According to an EMILY’s List spokeswoman, the evening is meant to be fun — “We’ll be featuring the EMILY’s Twist (a version of a lemon drop),” the aide said of the featured cocktail — with a little positive messaging mixed in. Those lucky enough to snag a spot at Wednesday’s kick-off should expect to hear inspiring words from the assembled solons, as well as from EMILY’s List President Stephanie Schriock.
Didn’t make the initial cut? (Sorry folks, they’re full up this time around.)
Dry those tears.
EMILY’s List is just getting started with its happy hour diplomacy. Female pols-in-training heading to the West Coast during recess can look forward to a similarly themed happening in San Francisco come late August.
And, don’t worry, EMILY’s List is not done stirring things up here in D.C.
According to the event’s spokesman, it was actually a scheduling conflict.
Libertarian coalition builder Matthew Hurtt announced Tuesday that Brat will not be attending the fundraiser scheduled for Thursday night. Hurtt told HOH that Brat plans to spend the evening in Virginia’s 7th District, at a local Republican Committee meeting.
Brat’s shocking win over outgoing House Majority Leader Eric Cantor, R-Va., last week inspired the event, which was hosted by Liberty Karaoke. The group brings local libertarians together each week for sing-alongs and also raises money for “pro-liberty” candidates.
“Mr. Brat is dedicating his time to getting to know the people of Virginia’s 7th District,” Hurtt wrote on the event’s Facebook page. “All too often, politicians go to Washington and forget about their constituents. Mr. Brat is committed to being a citizen legislator in the mold of our Founders, and that’s important.”
Hurtt said he hopes to reschedule the fundraiser and he looks forward to finding another date that will work with Brat’s schedule.
Our local Hank’s (633 Pennsylvania Ave. SE) is celebrating being in the running for a RAMMY award by offering up a special Jameson-spiked cooler on Thursday night.
Mixtress Gina Chersevani, potential heir to the 2014 Cocktail Program of the Year crown, assures HOH she’ll be shaking up “It’s All About the Benjamin’s” — a frozen drink featuring the aforementioned Irish whiskey, spiced sweet vermouth and atomized lemon — for only $5 (regular price: $12) from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. this evening.
The promotion is part of a citywide cocktail jamboree orchestrated by the Restaurant Association Metropolitan Washington in anticipation of the June 22 gala.
Additional participants include:
Black Jack (1612 14th St. NW): Hosting a RAMMYs-themed carnival from 6 p.m. to 1 a.m. complete with drink tickets, fair games, fried foods and raffles.
Bourbon Steak (2800 Pennsylvania Ave. NW): This high roller is expected to dole out kifu, a blend of Hangar One vodka, Cointreau, ginger, lemon and basil, shaken (not stirred) and garnished with candied ginger.
The Gibson (2009 14th St. NW): This cocktail haven is going pre-Prohibition, rolling out classic concoctions for $8 a pop from 6 p.m. to 10 p.m. at the upstairs bar.
Jack Rose Dining Saloon (2007 18th St. NW): The multi-level drinking den is spreading specialty cocktails all around. Terrace-goers can sip the Sao Paolo Sunset and Back Porch; Saloon patrons will be privy to The Art of Deception and Like Strawberry Shine; those who descend into Dram & Grain will be treated to Ode to Omaha and Skye High. Each drink will set guests back $10 from 6:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m.
“Spymaster USA” alumnus James Brandell — aka chief of staff to retiring Rep. Dave Camp, R-Mich., to you civvies — is marking the 10-year anniversary of his brief flirtation with reality TV stardom by screening the pilot episode of the short-lived show Wednesday night at 201 Bar (201 Massachusetts Ave. NE).
(CQ Roll Call Photo Illustration)
Brandell is resurrecting the British export (their version of the show survived for several seasons) in a bid to have a little fun while raising money for his latest Leukemia & Lymphoma Society campaign.
There is no charge to attend the two-hour extravaganza (think: drinks and chitchat from 6-7 p.m. and intense scrutiny of the unfolding melodrama from 7-8 p.m.), though Brandell would certainly welcome any contributions that arts aficionados would care to make.
“This is my kind of way of giving back,” the endurance sports vet told HOH of the low-key get-together.
Brandell originally made it his mission to stamp out cancer after his mother, the late Mary Ellen Brandell, was diagnosed with leukemia in 2008. He has since found another reason to keep up the good fight: his boss’ withering — but successful! — battle with lymphoma.
For those of you who missed the weekly nail-biter the first time around, the cult classic featured a handful of starry-eyed Capitol Hill denizens angling to enjoy just a taste of the spy game.
Given that no footage of the U.S.-based production remains in circulation — Brandell said a friend had the incredible foresight to burn a copy of the original The Learning Channel broadcast onto a DVD so many years ago — just imagine that this tense exchange from the U.K. programme was happening in a dilapidated cottage just south of Richmond, Va.:
In addition to Brandell, show-runners tapped Stephanie Whelpley, a Senate GOP aide who later worked her way up through the George W. Bush administration, as well as a certain then-tax reporter who may still be covering Congress today, to share in the pseudo-covert escapades. (For those who didn’t scour Tax Notes in the early part of the last decade, or follow other parts of this reporter’s un-IMDB-able show-biz career, keep digging.)
Do your part by drinking heavily (201 Bar is kicking back 10 percent of the booze tab to Brandell’s Team in Training efforts) while watching ex-Delta Force member cum “Spymaster USA” consultant Eric L. Haney put the would-be recruits through hell.
Local bartender Brad Ingwell may have to go through cancer treatment, but his pals in the industry are not going to let him do it alone.
(Courtesy 201 Bar)
Fellow hospitality vets Paige Farrell and Mike Haigis dreamed up “Brad-a-Palooza” as a way to raise Ingwell’s spirits — and perhaps a few bucks — as he shoulders the burden of attempting to vanquish the stage 3A lung cancer diagnosis that totally blindsided him this past winter.
“We’re trying to structure it as an opportunity to raise some money and show our support,” Farrell said of the mini-bar crawl.
Liquid courage is scheduled to flow freely Friday from 6-10 p.m. at both 201 Bar and Union Pub (201 Massachusetts Ave. NE); a $50 contribution (suggested) will grant participants access to a partial open bar (rail liquor), light appetizers, live music, a photo booth, a silent auction and raffle.
Per Farrell, those more comfortable donating less can still enjoy the food and entertainment as well as signature drink specials (just no open bar).
All donations will go towards helping defray Ingwell’s out-of-pocket expenses for the ongoing medical treatment.
“I’m really touched by it,” Ingwell, who serves as area director of the two participating watering holes as well as the fledgling Barrel, said of the outpouring of support he’s received from the Capitol Hill community.
Still, he’s very much looking forward to putting this whole being sick thing behind him.
“The prognosis is relatively good. They think they can cure it,” Ingwell shared.
The winners (“Team Linked” — Oscar Santillana, Emma Chaiken, Linda Santiago, Amanda Kaster and Chris Averill) scored 12 points. Can you beat them? Put your knowledge to the test and give it a try. The questions are below. No Googling! We’ll post the answers next week.
Heartbroken Razorbacks can help funnel money back to their storm-ravaged state by attending the D.C. Chapter of the Arkansas Alumni Association’s “Helping Like a Hog” fundraiser Wednesday night at the Hawk ‘n’ Dove (320 Pennsylvania Ave. SE).
A tornado devastated central Arkansas, killing 16, on April 27. President Barack Obama is scheduled to survey the ongoing disaster relief efforts on Wednesday afternoon.
The charity happy hour is scheduled to take place from 6 to 8 p.m. and will feature assorted drink specials, including a still-in-development “Arkansas-themed” cocktail ($3) as well as discounted beer ($3 Miller Lites), house wine ($4) and rail drinks ($5).
Chapter President Spencer Lucker assured HOH that 100 percent of the donations collected at the door would flow through to the American Red Cross, which has agreed to earmark the funds for Arkansas storm relief. Although there is no set fee to attend — “We’re open to any and all donations,” Lucker suggested — every $20 contributed earns the donor one entry into a special raffle.
Prizes include two sets of tickets to upcoming games at neighboring Nationals Park (gorgeous weather and timely floor wrap-up not included), as well as a gift bag assembled by the Personal Care Products Council.
Evergreen Staters stuck here in the District want to help those back home still dealing with the aftermath of a devastating mudslide by raising a few glasses — and hopefully some big bucks — Tuesday night.
(Courtesy Washington State Society)
The Oso Mudslide Relief reception is scheduled to take place from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. in the State Room at 201 Bar (201 Massachusetts Ave. NE). There is a suggested donation of $20.
The natural disaster struck the Oso community on March 22; the administration officially took action on April 2.
Funds collected at 201 Bar are expected to benefit the United Way of Snohomish County. Event organizers are also planning a raffle featuring prizes such as an Xbox One and gift certificates to local restaurants.
Congressional aides told HOH that Washington Democratic Sens. Patty Murray and Maria Cantwell and Democratic Rep. Suzan DelBene are planning to attend the fundraiser. The office of Rep. Rick Larsen, D-Wash., said the slightly hobbled lawmaker (currently on crutches) is aware of the event, but could not guarantee his participation.
During most of the year, members of the Congressional Vegetarian Staff Association must scrounge around for the few, non-animal-born scraps dining purveyors such as Capitol Hill contractor Restaurant Associates sparingly — and sometimes, begrudgingly — dish out to diet-conscious staffers.
Not this week.
D.C.’s fourth annual Meat-Free promotion is taking place from Feb. 3 through Feb. 10. The District-wide celebration of “green” living features daily eating, drinking and networking events for those who adhere to a plant-based lifestyle.