Roll Call: Latest News on Capitol Hill, Congress, Politics and Elections
July 28, 2015

Posts in "Restos"

July 22, 2015

Congress, Between a Sausage and a Veggie Burger

Rep. Doug LaMalfa goes all in on a corn dog. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

Rep. Doug LaMalfa goes all in on a corn dog. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

Dietary allegiances were tested on Capitol Hill Wednesday, as the meat lobby and vegetarian-friendly toque Todd Gray squared off in a culinary tug of war for control of the hearts and minds — and mouths — of the legislative branch.

Congressional Vegetarian Staff Association founder Adam Sarvana sinks his teeth into some plant-based nosh at inaugural Veggie Burger Smackdown event in Rayburn. (Warren Rojas/CQ Roll Call)

Sarvana sinks his teeth into some plant-based nosh at the inaugural Veggie Burger Smackdown event in Rayburn. (Warren Rojas/CQ Roll Call)

The North American Meat Institute and Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine arranged for the widely attended free lunches, with each group courting its specific constituency with custom touches. Full story

July 9, 2015

Doug Collins Fans the Flames of Barbecue Dominance

Bragging about award-winning eateries residing in one’s district is nothing new in the House of Representatives. Georgia Republican Doug Collins Wednesday did so with gusto, putting colleagues on notice that the unexpected rise of Joe’s BBQ in Blue Ridge proved their barbecue providers were the pits.

“He calls it beginner’s luck. I think we’re just turning into a legacy and tradition in North Georgia,” the two-term lawmaker boasted of TripAdvisor’s crowning of Joe’s back in May as the top barbecue restaurant in the nation. Full story

Prescient Flick Tracks the Roller Coaster Ride That Is Restaurateuring

Dustin Harrison-Atlas has a long, hard summer ahead of him.

The ambitious documentarian has given himself just a few more months to condense nearly two years of filming with headstrong D.C. chefs — including unprecedented access to the evolution of nationally acclaimed dining destination Rose’s Luxury — into a 90-minute feature about the mad genius required to make it in the hospitality game.

Frankly ... Pizza! founder Frank Linn, Rose's Luxury founder Aaron Silverman and filmmaker Dustin Harrison-Atlas pose for a friendly pic. (Courtesy Dustin Harrison-Atlas)

From left to right: Frankly … Pizza! founder Linn, Rose’s Luxury founder Silverman and filmmaker Harrison-Atlas pause for a breather. (Courtesy Dustin Harrison-Atlas)

Harrison-Atlas aims to capture the Horatio Alger-like rise of Rose’s founder Aaron Silverman and fellow food visionary Frank Linn, the proprietor of Frankly … Pizza! in his forthcoming project, “New Chefs on the Block or This is What Happens when you Open a Restaurant.” And much like the budding restaurateurs, Harrison-Atlas is well aware of all the stars that had to align to propel this labor of love promisingly forward.

“I know I’m the only one in the whole country that’s got the best new restaurant in the country on film since day one,” he said of his unique perspective.

Full story

June 25, 2015

Firing Up a Memorable Fourth

(Courtesy W Hotel)

(Courtesy W Hotel)

Independence Day doesn’t just commemorate the birth of our nation.

It’s the one time of the year we are mandated — by law (it’s enshrined in the Constitution; look it up) — to go out and have as much freakin’ fun as humanly possible.

Patriots that we are, HOH has compiled a to-do list for those interested in getting their America on all around the nation’s capital on July 4. (All events are on that day unless otherwise noted.) Full story

June 12, 2015

Dan Kildee Views BLT Disposal as a Team Effort

(Screenshot)

(Screenshot)

After securing another year of bragging rights by coming out on top in the 54th Annual Roll Call Congressional Baseball Game, Rep. Dan Kildee now faces a victory celebration decidedly not for the faint of heart.

Per the friendly wager he made on the game with Rep. John Moolenaar, R-Mich., the Michigan Democrat is owed one of the pound-plus BLTs that helped put Tony’s 1-75 Restaurant on the map.

“I think this might have to be a staff project,” the two-term lawmaker told HOH of the daunting delicacy. “There’s no way I can eat a pound of bacon, even in a month.” Full story

June 11, 2015

Cantina Marina’s Endless Summer

The surrounding area may look like urban development ushered in via H-bomb. And the ripped-to-shreds roadways running parallel to the place have probably warded off more foot traffic than a predatory sinkhole.

But those daring enough to dodge lumbering construction vehicles and navigate suspect parking conditions don’t seem to mind the added hassle once they’ve dropped anchor at Cantina Marina.

(Warren Rojas/CQ Roll Call)

(Warren Rojas/CQ Roll Call)

The seasonal retreat at 600 Water St. SW first popped onto the scene back when crowded seafood buffets and warm, sticky rum buns still ruled the Southwest Waterfront. Now, it’s almost all that remains along the desolate stretch of Maine Avenue that’s been hollowed out to make room for the sprawling Wharf project.

Still, the jam-band hosting (Rep. Collin C. Peterson, D-Minn., and The Second Amendments graced the stage there last summer.), Racing Presidents’ baiting watering hole appears content to temporarily whisk Washingtonians away from the hustle and bustle of #ThisTown.

There appear to be plenty of takers. Full story

By Warren Rojas Posted at 5 a.m.
Booze, DC, Food, Restos

June 10, 2015

Michigan Pols Bet the Farm on Congressional Baseball Game

If Rep. Dan Kildee’s team clinches victory at Thursday’s 54th Annual Roll Call Congressional Baseball Game, the Michigan Democrat has a herculean task before him. That’s because his reward for toppling freshman lawmaker John Moolenaar’s squad would be a heart-stopping sandwich — a BLT famously featuring one pound of fried bacon — procured from Tony’s I-75 Restaurant in Birch Run, Mich.

(Screenshot)

(Screenshot)

“I’ve tried once, and didn’t even come close,” Kildee told HOH of a failed attempt to polish off the pork-packed behemoth. “No one I know has ever finished it. I think it’s a myth!”

Full story

May 13, 2015

Hillite None Too Pleased About Corporate Creep

One member of the Capitol Hill community finds nothing convenient about having retail giants systematically picking off hospitality providers that have been around for decades.

Ted Arthur, a member of the New Hill East clique on Facebook, took to social media Wednesday to rail against losing yet another neighborhood institution.

The revelation that drew his ire? A write-up by Capitol Hill Corner chronicling the impending demise of, among other things, Las Placitas restaurant. Full story

May 8, 2015

Breakfast in the Capital, Shake Shack Style

Mornings at Union Station just got a bit brighter.

Shake Shack, the New York City-based burger, hot dog and shake shop, will start offering breakfast at the Union Station location on Monday, May 11th. The expanded offerings are expected to be available Monday through Friday from 7 to 10:30 a.m.

(Warren Rojas/CQ Roll Call)

(Warren Rojas/CQ Roll Call)

This is the third Shake Shack location to offer breakfast and the first in the D.C. area; Shake Shacks at JFK Airport and Grand Central Station in New York also have the option.

The expanded carte features breakfast offerings forged from: Martin’s potato rolls (same as on the burgers), Pat LaFrieda sausage, applewood-smoked bacon and cage-free eggs supplied by Niman Ranch, as well as American cheese.

Stumptown cold brew coffee (unadulterated stuff comes in stubby bottles, the half-and-half doctored variety in cartons) and fresh-squeezed orange juice round out the new recruits. Full story

May 5, 2015

Chow Down for Charity at Biscuit Bash

Hump day goes humanitarian this week with the help of the real American heroes: biscuit sandwich-crafting toques.

(Warren Rojas/CQ Roll Call)

(Warren Rojas/CQ Roll Call)

Art and Soul restaurant has invited local chefs to compete in the second annual Biscuit Bash. The friendly cook-off, scheduled to take place Wednesday on the Art and Soul patio from 6 to 8 p.m., doubles as a fundraiser for DC Central Kitchen and Share Our Strength’s No Kid Hungry campaign. Full story

May 4, 2015

Robin Kelly’s Version of ‘Cheers’

(Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

(Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Rep. Robin Kelly plans to kill two birds with one stone Thursday — celebrating her 59th birthday (again) and raising some coin for her campaign coffers — during a little get-together at Bocce’s Bar and Grill.

Although the second-term Democrat already marked her actual nameday (April 30) in the office (“Staff did surprise her with her favorite coconut cake,” Team Kelly said of the vanilla-frosted, shaved coconut-covered centerpiece procured from Harris Teeter.), the suburban Chicago watering hole (3909 Lincoln Highway, Matteson, Ill.) got the nod to serve as host for a second round of festivities.

The fundraiser (tickets start at $29 per person) is scheduled to take place from 6 to 7:30 p.m.

(Screenshot)

(Screenshot)

“Bocce’s is her ‘Cheers.’ She has celebrated many occasions there from her husband’s birthday to sorority events. But, really it’s the everyday normalcy of Bocce’s that she loves,” a Kelly aide told HOH about the congresswoman’s affinity for the local hang-out. “It’s her favorite place to go and spend time with friends and neighbors who’ve become an extended family over the years, people who know her as just ‘Robin.’” Full story

May 1, 2015

Angus King Not Afraid to Cut Corners in the Kitchen

If knowing when to delegate authority is in fact a hallmark of brilliant leaders, someone hand Sen. Angus King the keys to the Oval Office right freaking now.

(Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

(Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

The Maine independent may not have taken any of the top honors Wednesday night at the March of Dimes’ annual Gourmet Gala, but he’s got our vote for most creative problem solver.

Rather than wrack his brains for a family tradition that might have helped him surmount the culinary offerings presented by fellow solons, King threw red meat at the problem: barbecue from Kenny’s Smokehouse, to be exact. Full story

April 29, 2015

Hill Center Is ‘on Fire’

A friendly reminder posted in the vestibule of the days-away-from-opening Bayou Bakery at Hill Center. (Courtesy Bayou Bakery)

A friendly reminder posted in the vestibule of the days-away-from-opening Bayou Bakery at Hill Center. (Courtesy Bayou Bakery)

Hillites, strap on your hungry pants now. Hill Center is poised to serve up a long-awaited eatery and has cooked up a new grilling curriculum.

Countdown to Crescent City Chow

He’s put down roots across the river, but New Orleans native David Guas said he fell in love with Capitol Hill when he first moved to the north.

Bayou Bakery founder and Travel Channel host David Gaus. (Courtesy Scott Suchman)

Bayou Bakery founder and Travel Channel host Gaus. (Courtesy Scott Suchman)

During an April 27 discussion about his new cookbook, “Grill Nation,” Guas said that after relocating from the Big Easy, he spent a good deal of time at the home of then-Roll Call publisher Mary Glassman and her husband, ex-Roll Call editor James Glassman.

He found the environs intoxicating, noting that the wealth of historic properties and vibrant community reminded him of lazy days spent lounging on stoops in the French Quarter, drinking in the scenery by observing those “having way too much fun” as they stumbled by.

He’s jazzed to officially become a part of the fabric of the neighborhood with the debut of his sophomore establishment. Full story

South Dakotans Gearing Up for Potato Ole Day

The South Dakota State Society will continue its mission of taking carb-loading to new heights by whipping up another monumental batch of Taco John’s favorites on May 16.

“We’ve held this feed now for seven years due to the high demand from our membership and other displaced Midwesterners who long for a taste of home,” our tipster said of the annual tradition.

As per usual, the star attraction of the staff-prepared feast should be the signature spuds known as Potato Oles.

(Screenshot)

(Screenshot)

Full story

April 23, 2015

Tom Colicchio Displays Hunger for D.C. Advocacy

Colicchio, center, was Pingree's (far right) guest at this year's State of the Union. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Colicchio, center, was Pingree’s, far right, guest at this year’s State of the Union. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

“Guys, this isn’t a one-time deal. You have to keep coming back,” is the message Tom Colicchio said he gives to every chef who comes to Washington, D.C., with him — and it’s the message he follows.

Colicchio, 52, keeps a busy schedule. He’s the founder of Craft Restaurants and owns and operates restaurants from California and New York to Las Vegas and Miami. He’s a judge on Bravo’s “Top Chef,” which will air its 13th season this fall, and he is becoming one of the most identifiable celebrity lobbyists on food and hunger issues. Full story

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