Roll Call: Latest News on Capitol Hill, Congress, Politics and Elections
March 27, 2015

Posts in "Restos"

March 18, 2015

Meal Ticket: Approaching 50, Mr. Henry’s Tries a Place Lift

Back when Mr. Henry’s put down roots on Capitol Hill, congressman turned commander in chief Lyndon B. Johnson was still calling the shots in the Oval Office, the only Washington Senators anyone cared about were the ballplayers who took the field at RFK Stadium and relations with Cuba were far less relaxed than they appear to be today.

Eight presidential administrations later, the family-run establishment (601 Pennsylvania Ave. SE) endures — providing safe harbor to locals against changing tides that continue to wash away neighboring dive bars.

Meal Ticket: Approaching 50, Mr. Henry’s Tries a Place Lift

(Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

Not that that kind of staying power comes easy. Mr. Henry’s, which once upon a time showcased the talents of soul singer Roberta Flack and attracted its share of gay and lesbian fans, has since seemingly faded into obscurity.
Full story

March 5, 2015

Stuck Inside? Start Wining

According to the National Weather Service, D.C. denizens can look forward to digging out from beneath 4-8 inches of fresh powder before this latest white out fades to black late Thursday.

Stuck Inside? Start Wining

(Screenshot)

So, why not take chef Jacques Haeringer’s advice and mull what’s really important? Full story

February 27, 2015

Activist Toques Scour Capitol Hill for Food Aid

Just under a dozen renowned hospitality professionals looked to carve up both chambers of Congress, pressing their respective lawmakers to support the realignment of outdated global assistance provisions.

The food service vets, who walked the halls of Congress on behalf of Oxfam America, flew in from across the country on Feb. 24 to voice their support for the Food for Peace Reform Act co-authored by Sens. Bob Corker, R-Tenn., and Chris Coons, D-Del.

“This is an antiquated system that needs a total overhaul. And this legislation is the gold standard of what aid would look like if it were designed from the ground up today,” Oxfam America Senior Policy Adviser Eric Muñoz said of the proposed policy changes. Full story

February 25, 2015

Lawmaker’s Quest for Cookie Crumbles

In a truly devastating blow, Rep. Scott Rigell came up empty-handed Wednesday in his search for a cookie from the House Carry-Out, a setback that’s likely to drag down the rest of his day, maybe even the rest of his week.

Rigell, who was on his way to votes Wednesday afternoon, made a detour to the Capitol basement’s eatery for the expressed purpose of a confectionery pick-me-up. Full story

By Matt Fuller Posted at 3:57 p.m.
Food, Reps, Restos

February 12, 2015

Lisa Murkowski Immerses Herself in Beer Culture

Alaska Republican Lisa Murkowski is soaking in as much information as she can about craft brewing.

The returning co-chairwoman of the Senate’s Bipartisan Small Brewers Caucus earlier this week worked on expanding her knowledge base by poking around neighboring Bluejacket brewery in Yards Park.

According to staff, the impromptu trip to the Yards Park area came about after Murkowski struck up a conversation with Neighborhood Restaurant Group’s resident beer guru Greg Engert at last month’s “Brewing Up History” event. Full story

By Warren Rojas Posted at 2:25 p.m.
Booze, DC, Nationwide, Restos, Sens

February 11, 2015

Nando’s Serving Up Free Eats at Yards Park

Any House staffers looking to escape the drumbeat of war and Bibi bashing that’s engulfed Capitol Hill may want to consider dipping down to Yards Park Wednesday to take advantage of Nando’s latest free lunch promotion.

Nando’s Serving Up Free Eats at Yards Park

(Screenshot)

The South African chicken specialist is scheduled to give away a free quarter chicken, chicken sandwich or chicken pita to any customer who swings by 300 Tingey St. SE between 11 a.m. and 2 p.m. on Feb 11. Full story

February 2, 2015

Exit Interview: Dan Scandling’s Appreciation of Virginia Runs Deep

Although he’s worked in the District for more than two decades, Northern Virginia native Dan Scandling remains fiercely loyal to the Old Dominion.

“When I started in 1990, we had one printer in the office and a fax machine that used thermal paper! And ice was delivered in buckets to each office every day!” the veteran chief of staff said of his 25-year stint on Capitol Hill. That part of his career came to a close with the recent retirement of Rep. Frank R. Wolf, R-Va. But Scandling has made a point of staying connected to those elected to act on behalf of the state known as the Mother of Presidents.

“The delegation has a long history of putting politics aside for the good of the Commonwealth,” the newly minted senior vice president for corporate and public affairs at the Ogilvy Washington shop said. Full story

January 30, 2015

Cheese and Thank You, Sona

The little Capitol Hill creamery that could is celebrating its one-year anniversary by doling out surprise cheeseboards to people customers feel are most deserving of some gourmet gratitude.

Cheese and Thank You, Sona

How about a little “Random Act of Cheese?” (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Those interested in taking advantage of Sona Creamery and Wine Bar’s “Random Acts of Cheese” campaign are encouraged to nominate those worthy of a dairy-rich snack. Full story

January 29, 2015

Hospitality Giants Aim to Mobilize Food Fans to Action (Video)

Hospitality Giants Aim to Mobilize Food Fans to Action (Video)

Sips & Suppers co-founders Nathan, Waters and Andres address the Newseum event. (Warren Rojas/CQ Roll Call)

It turns out that huddling with food-conscious Washingtonians and raising millions of dollars for local charities was merely an appetizer for “Sips & Suppers” co-founders José Andrés, Joan Nathan and Alice Waters.

Their next objective: getting the well-fed masses up from their respective tables and into the streets to clamor for change in school-lunch policies. Full story

January 28, 2015

GOP Snowmobile Trek Mirrors Meat Week

Reps. Dan Benishek and Bill Huizenga are hitting the back roads of the Wolverine State Thursday for their 2nd Annual Congressional Snowmobile Ride — a wintry romp punctuated by plenty of meaty pit stops.

The Michigan Republicans ventured out into the snow-covered landscape in 2014.

Full story

January 15, 2015

Commander-in-Chief Helps Raise Charmington’s Profile

A “surprise” visit Thursday from President Barack Obama has helped put an employee-owned, Charm City café on the political map.

Commander in Chief Helps Raise Charmington’s Profile

(Screenshot)

Per a White House pool report, the First Belly rolled into town with Maryland Democrat Barbara A. Mikulski in tow and took the opportunity to chat up three local women about the administration’s paid sick-leave trial balloon. The “unannounced stop” fits the president’s MO of huddling with potential beneficiaries of proposed policy changes. Full story

December 30, 2014

The Gifts That Keep on Giving: HOH’s 2014 Faves

What a year we all just lived through!

There was election night drama, international intrigue and, of course, tearful farewells.

Keeping track of all the mayhem on Capitol Hill once again proved exhausting, thanks in large part to the concerted efforts of the following over achievers.

Rep. Michael G. Grimm, R-N.Y.

The Gifts That Keep on Giving: HOH’s 2014 Faves

(Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

The embattled pol is a one-man gossip mill. Full story

December 10, 2014

Indigo Skirts Major Flare Up

An early Wednesday morning scare could have sent Indigo founder Dinesh Tandon’s hospitality dreams up in smoke. Luckily, things were brought under control before the budding restaurateur was forced to switch careers.

Indigo Skirts Major Flare Up

(Courtesy HOH tipster)

“Yes, sir, a small fire broke out,” Tandon said of the minor skirmish that compelled first responders to swing by his NoMa outpost.

The culprit?

“A washer/dryer that we use for aprons and other rags used in the kitchen,” Tandon explained. Full story

By Warren Rojas Posted at 12:29 p.m.
Food, Restos

December 8, 2014

Feast Your Eyes on Our Inaugural Dining Guide

Pull up a seat, friend. Let me share the tale of how a half-baked scheme to whip up a handy guide to the most interesting places to grab a bite around #ThisTown was kneaded, chopped, seasoned and lovingly molded into the “Nom, Nom, Nom-nibus.”

Feast Your Eyes on Our Inaugural Dining Guide

(Chris Hale/CQ Roll Call Illustration)

As the resident food scribe here at Roll Call, I pride myself on ferreting out local establishments worthy of your hard-earned dining dollars.

Whether that search leads me to a smoke-belching truck idling along some random curbside, or forces me to elbow my way through a throng of high-rollers in order to claim the last bar stool at the latest hot spot matters not.

For my money, it all comes down to what winds up on the plate.

From handcrafted snacks to house-aged steaks, I weigh them all against what I believe our devoted readers would consider a pleasurable experience at a fair price. Which is why I’m as comfortable sending folks out to feast on half-smokes (D.C., represent!) as I am directing traffic toward a Michelin star-worthy outpost.

This forthcoming e-book dining guide — available soon for download at rollcall.com — aims to do just that, shining a light on novel eats from across the culinary spectrum. Some of the recommendations might be perfect for dazzling discerning palates. (Exotic nibbles at The Source! Mouth watering barbecue at DCity Smokehouse!) Others might help advance your career. (Hobnobbing at Johnny’s couldn’t hurt.) A few — such as the Indian carry-out favored by a certain civil rights champ — you may want to keep to yourself.

Need a drink? Sample the sip selections.

Craving comfort foods? Dig into the specials.

Jonesing for sugar? The sweet section runs both hot (doughnuts!) and cold (gelato, yo).

Mind you, this is just the first bite of the apple. There’s plenty more exploratory eating to be done. And I, for one, can’t wait to continue savoring everything the District has to offer.

Bon appétit!

The 114th: CQ Roll Call’s Guide to the New Congress

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December 1, 2014

Medium Rare’s Free Turkey Fry Was Red Hot

Medium Rare fried up more than 175 turkeys and spread holiday joy throughout the Barracks Row community this past holiday weekend.

Underestimating the popularity of the annual fried turkey service Medium Rare founder Mark Bucher has put together since 2008, this HOH contributor and his party quickly realized our poor planning left us needing an alternative way to cook our bird, as turnout was massive.

Medium Rare’s Free Turkey Fry Was Red Hot

(Courtesy Mark Bucher)

Bucher said the line started around 8 a.m. for the culinary assistance scheduled to take place between 11 a.m. and 2 p.m.. When he opened the doors at 9 a.m., a full two hours early, he was met with enthusiastic fans. “We were greeted by an 89-year-old grandmother, who was using a walker, who took a bus 45 minutes to have her turkey deep fried. She had received a free turkey from the Marion Barry turkey giveaway, and had nowhere to cook it,” Bucher said, noting that they tended to 19 Marion Barry turkeys this year.

Many more visitors gathered to have the turkeys fried to a golden brown, including a number of wheelchair-bound veterans. Once there, they mingled with doctors, lawyers, and even some local politicians all while being filmed by a TV crew from ABC7.

Per Bucher, visitors traveled from as far as Leesburg to have their turkeys cooked for them. Once inside, patrons chatted with one another while enjoying complimentary coffee and hot cider.

There were a few mishaps. Bucher said one turkey hit the floor of the restaurant and another was picked up by someone who did not drop one off.  There was no need to worry though, as Bucher had a few extras ready to go.

As always, the event was free to the public, though Bucher was accepting donations for DC’s “Ready, Willing and Working” charity. And for those wondering when they need to line up next year, Thanksgiving in 2015 is Nov. 26.

Related:

Medium Rare Brings Fried Turkey Service to Barracks Row

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