Travel and outdoors product reviews and trips


Fun Travels Across the United States

WASHINGTON, D.C. 

NEWS ---- (Note: Hotels, Restaurants, Attractions/Events follow after the News)

---------------- Celebrate Songkran at Bangkok Joe's. (For details, check under Restaurants below)

GEORGETOWN

EXPERIENCE GEORGETOWN LIFE

The Georgetown Business Improvement District (BID), in partnership with leading area hotels, is pleased to announce several new hotel packages showcasing Georgetown life with special rates and experiences for visitors to this iconic Washington, D.C. neighborhood. The packages are designed to encourage travelers to enjoy the rich history and character of Georgetown while discovering the essence of Georgetown life today – a unique mix of fashionable shops, high-end home décor, spas and salons, and world-class dining and entertainment. Packages are available exclusively online at the Georgetown BID’s web site, www.georgetowndc.com.

Four Seasons Hotel, 2800 Pennsylvania Avenue, N.W. (202) 944-2009.

www.fourseasons.com/washington. The only five-star hotel located in the region, the Four Seasons Hotel offers 211 elegant rooms – including 25 suites – with a variety of views including Georgetown and the historic Chesapeake and Ohio Canal. The hotel is located in a quiet residential neighborhood, composed of east and west wings connected by a glass-enclosed garden walkway.

The package* includes:

Rates beginning at $595 per room per night, available seven days a week, with a minimum two-night stay
$100 total food and beverage credit
Complimentary use of fitness club and indoor pool
Access to hotel car, 24-hour concierge service, and 24-hour room service

The Ritz-Carlton Georgetown, 3100 South Street, N.W. (202) 912-4100.

www.ritzcarlton.com/georgetown. Ideally located at Wisconsin Avenue and K Street, The Ritz-Carlton Georgetown is AAA Five Diamond hotel housed within a National Historic Landmark.

The package* includes:

Premier guest room accommodations starting at $449 per night (one bedroom suite accommodations are also available)
$50 spa credit, issued once and valid only during guest stay
Breakfast for two daily in Fahrenheit restaurant or through in-room dining
Overnight valet parking

The Latham Hotel Georgetown, 3000 M Street, N.W. (202) 339-6313.

www.thelatham.com. Located in the heart of Georgetown, this historic boutique hotel is known for its personalized services and stylish accommodations. The Latham boasts the acclaimed restaurant, Citronelle, as well as Georgetown’s only outdoor rooftop pool.

The package* includes:

Carriage Suite at $359 per night, based on double occupancy
600 sq. ft. of luxury located on two levels includes living room area with entertainment center, master bedroom area and one-and-a-half baths
Complimentary breakfast for two
High-speed/wireless Internet access

The Hotel Monticello of Georgetown, 1075 Thomas Jefferson Street, N.W. (800) 388-2410.

www.monticellohotel.com. Located in the neighborhood Jefferson once called home, the newly-renovated Hotel Monticello of Georgetown is the portrait of D.C. sophistication in one of its most enchanting locales. Guests enjoy endless amenities in a richly appointed all-suite setting, making each stay both pleasurable and productive.

The package* includes:

Rates beginning at $279 per night
15% room rate discount and free parking with three-night stay
Free VIP upgrade
Two all-day Metro passes for weekend stay guests
Complimentary Continental Breakfast
Complimentary wireless Internet access
Free Starbucks coffee

The Georgetown Inn, 1310 Wisconsin Avenue, N.W. (888) 587-2388.

www.georgetowninn.com. One of the city's most recognized establishments, The Georgetown Inn has maintained a tradition of excellence for more than 40 years. This landmark boasts traditional allure and close proximity within the picturesque Georgetown neighborhood, and offers 96 newly-renovated European-style accommodations.

Georgetown Suites, 1000 29th Street, N.W. (800) 348-7203.

www.georgetownsuites.com. The premier choice for Washington, D.C. hotels, Georgetown Suites provides the best of both worlds: all the comforts of home, all the service of a first-class hotel. Each suite is individually designed and decorated with elegant, contemporary furnishings.

The package* includes:

Rates beginning at $150 per night
Two one-day D.C. Circulator passes, with convenient cross town bus service from the hotel to area attractions
Free parking
Complimentary wireless Internet access

For more information on the Georgetown lifestyle, visit www.georgetowndc.com or contact the Georgetown BID at (202) 298-9222.

* Based on availability, USD rate does not include tax, gratuities or surcharges. Minimum stay requirements may apply for certain dates. Other restrictions, terms and conditions may apply. Offer is not combinable with any other promotion. Black-out dates apply. Subject to change without notice. Visit <www.georgetowndc.com for complete details.

RESTAURANTS

Silk Road

Spezie puts the “spice” in an “Italian Spice Route” Menu Introducing a Silk Road inspired chef’s tasting menu

Paying tribute to the culinary influence of the ancient spice trade route, also known as the Silk Road, Executive Chef/Partner Cesare Lanfranconi has created a three-course “Italian Spice Route” menu, part of this summer’s citywide Silk Road celebration.  The menu is a passport to the regional flavors of Rome, Venice and Sicily, which were stops along the historic route, with each course featuring the herbs, spices and cooking techniques traditionally used in each of the three regions. Guests will journey on a culinary tour along the spice route through Italy, choosing from Rome-inspired antipasti dishes, like Classic Roman Jewish-style Fried Artichokes with roasted lamb sausage and local tomato salad; Venetian entrees such as Spiced Crusted Seared Scallops with soft polenta and squid ink sauce; and Sicilian desserts including Sicilian cannoli with pistachios, rose flower water and saffron.

The establishment of the spice route created a global exchange of goods between east and west, blending flavors and traditions among cultures. The herbs and spices found in traditional Italian dishes date back to ancient times, when they were transported from Asia, and brought into ports in Venice and Sicily to be dispersed throughout Italy. Chef Lanfranconi utilizes authentic ingredients from Italy, as well as incorporating fresh local bounty.

In connection with a summer-long focus, Washington D.C. Celebrates the Silk Road, Spezie will offer the “Italian Spice Route” menu during dinner, starting the week of the Memorial Day holiday through Labor Day, priced at $42 per person, exclusive of tax and gratuity. Guests will also be able to order a la carte from the special menu. Reservations can be made by calling 202-467-0777. The Italian Spice Route menu will include the following:

r o m a
Antipasti
(Choice of one)

Fiori di zucca ripieni di ricotta fresca
Deep fried stuffed zucchini blossoms with fresh spiced ricotta cheese and marjoram

Carciofi alla giudea con salsiccia d’agnello e pomodori locali in insalata
Classic Roman Jewish-style fried artichokes with roasted lamb sausage and local tomato salad

v e n e z i a
Main Course
(Choice of one)

Capesante in crosta di spezie con polenta e salsa al ‘nero’
Spiced crusted seared scallops with soft polenta and squid ink sauce

Moleche ‘ripiene’ con tortino di riso agli asparai
Maryland soft shell crab and organic eggs with baked asparagus risotto cake

Bucatini all’anatra
House-made hollow spaghetti with spicy duck ragù

s i c i l i a
Dessert
(Choice of one)

Cannoli siciliani, pistacchi, salsa allo zafferano
Sicilian cannoli, pistachios, rose flower water, saffron

Granita d’anguria latte di mandorla e spezie
Watermelon shaved Italian ice, almond milk whipped cream

Located at 1736 L Street, NW in downtown Washington D.C., Spezie’s hours are Monday through Friday from 11:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m., and Monday through Saturday from 5:30 p.m. to 10:00 p.m. For reservations, please call 202-467-0777. For more information, please visit www.spezie.com.

***************

Willard Room

Willard Room Celebrates the Renaissance of Tableside Service

The lost culinary art of tableside service is experiencing a rebirth at The Willard Room, located in the Willard InterContinental, a grand historic landmark hotel located in the heart of the nation's capital. The restaurant's elegant and plush dining room now offers seven menu items finished and served tableside by a trained staff that combines dinner and theatre into one truly memorable experience.

"Tableside service is a qualified art, one that must be honed through meticulous and continual training," says William Washington, general manager of The Willard Room. "There is no question that the hard work pays off. Our staff is eager to demonstrate their talents, which allow them to develop a relationship with their guests, emphasize the freshness of the products used in our menu items, and ultimately dazzle diners with the artistry that goes into tableside preparations."

Washington, who joined The Willard Room from The Inn at Little Washington, conducts thorough, weekly training sessions with his staff so that they are well versed in executing popular appetizer items, such as the Mixed Romaine Caesar Salad (for two), mixed with Spanish white anchovy, garlic croutons and shaved parmesan reggianno, and the House Smoked Organic Salmon that is sliced tableside to order, and served with warm buckwheat blinis and house-made garnishes.

Entrées served tableside include the Mediterranean Sea Bass, which is deboned and filleted, and paired with grilled fingerling potatoes, wild mushrooms, asparagus and lemon butter sauce, as well as a Roasted Veal Kidney, which is presented tableside on a bed of herbs, carved on the château cart, and served with wild mushrooms, pomme puree and veal mustard a l'ancienne sauce. The Salt Encrusted Organic Chicken Breast, intricately prepared by Chef de Cuisine Nicolas Legret, is delicately wrapped in a crust of salt, flour, herbs and spices. This shell is then broken tableside, and the succulent chicken breast is plated with a braised chicken leg, pearl onions, artichokes and a chicken jus.

Flambéed desserts are a specialty of the house. Both the Bananas Foster and the Cherries Jubilee are prepared for two and executed to perfection before diners' delighted eyes. A cheese cart also tours the dining room at the conclusion of the meal, offering an assortment of fine artisan French and American cheeses to finish.

The Willard Room is open for dinner Monday through Thursday from 6:00 p.m. to 10:00 p.m. and on Fridays and Saturdays from 5:30 p.m. to 10:00 p.m. The Willard Room also serves breakfast Monday through Friday from 7:30 a.m. to 10: a.m. and lunch from 11:30 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. Sunday brunch is served from 11:00 a.m. to 2 p.m.

For reservations, please call The Willard Room at 202.637.7440.

Chop’t Creative Salad Company

Chop’t Creative Salad Company opens second Washington D.C. location in Dupont Circle

Chop’t Creative Salad Company has opened and brought its chef designed and custom crafted salads to another DC neighborhood ...Dupont Circle. Co-founders/Owners Tony Shure and Colin McCabe opened this new location in February 2008.

Guests of Chop’t can try any signature chef designed salad like the Palm Beach Shrimp with Romaine lettuce, cucumber, tomato, avocado, hearts of palm and grilled shrimp or can custom craft their own meal with over 60 “choppings” available. Any Chop’t salad can be turned into a sandwich by being wrapped in warm flat bread. After opening day, prices for custom craft salads begin at $5.99 which includes four basic “choppings,” such as snow peas, cucumber, fresh Granny Smith apples or white cheddar cheese. Premium toppings like grilled Angus steak, goat cheese or organic hearts of palm are available for an additional charge. 

Each salad on the menu also includes a pairing suggestion for the most complementary of their 26 homemade salad dressings or diners can choose their favorite from Chop’t’s unique selections like the Spanish Cucumber Vinaigrette or General Tso’s Chipotle dressing. Following the Chop’t belief of offering only the finest products to their customers, all of the dressings are made from scratch, without any stabilizers or preservatives.

In addition to their salad and salad sandwich offerings, the Chop’t Creative Salad Company’s Washington D.C. locations are the first restaurants in the country to offer Boylan’s “vintage soda pop” as a fountain drink.

Chop’t offers salads and salad sandwiches that are “as healthy as you want them to be” with a choice of five lettuces, over 60 kinds of ingredients, and 26 homemade salad dressings. In addition to their Washington DC area locations, Chop’t has 3 locations in New York City, where their emphasis on high-quality ingredients and quick service has earned them a loyal following that includes celebrities such as Matt Damon, Hillary Swank and Sheryl Crow.

Chop’t Creative Salad Company will be open Monday through Friday from 10:30 a.m. - 7:00 p.m., on Saturdays from 11:00 a.m. through 5:00 p.m. and will be closed on Sundays.  Chop’t will offer take-away, delivery and catering services. The restaurant is located at 1300 Connecticut Avenue, NW, Washington D.C. 20036. A second Chop’t is located at 730 7th St N.W. Washington, D.C. 20001.  

For more information about Chop’t, please go to www.choptsalad.com or call (202) 327-2255.

Charlie Palmer Steak House

Charlie Palmer Steak House Begins a New Sunday Tradition - Sunday Brunch!

Redefining the quintessential Sunday brunch, Charlie Palmer Steak Executive Chef Bryan Voltaggio has created a menu of brunch offerings featuring many ingredients exclusive to the mid-Atlantic and Chesapeake region including ramps and morels, as well as freshly shucked East Coast oysters. Priced at $36 a person, exclusive of tax and gratuity, brunch will be offered from 11 a.m. until 2:30 p.m.

Patrons will select an entrée from a variety of offerings including: Chesapeake Rockfish, citrus and blue crab risotto, peppercress and confit fennel;  “Steak and Eggs” Charcoal Grilled Angus Rib-Eye, Four Minute Egg, preserved truffle potato puree, caramelized root vegetables with cabernet natural and Braised Oxtail Frittata, morel mushrooms, ramps with Yukon Gold potato hash. An abundant buffet follows including made to order soups as well as a variety of house-made breads and pastries. Soup offerings include Traditional Chesapeake Blue Crab and New England Style Chowder with sourdough croutons and bacon lardon, with an assortment of fresh clams patrons can choose from to tailor the chowder to their tastes.

For full menu, go to www.charliepalmer.com/steak.

Chef Palmer has received critical acclaim for his signature “Progressive American” cuisine. At Charlie Palmer Steak, Palmer, along with Executive Chef Bryan Voltaggio, has reinvented the steakhouse with an innovative menu offering a twist on traditional fare. Sommelier Nadine Brown, named a “Rising Star” by Star Chefs, has assembled a notable wine cube housing over 3,500 bottles (10,000 bottles on the premises) of exclusively American wines from all 50 states. 

Winner of the 2006 “Wine and Beverage Program of the Year” RAMMY Award from the Restaurant Association Metropolitan Washington, Charlie Palmer Steak is located on Capitol Hill at 101 Constitution Ave., NW. Charlie Palmer Steak serves lunch on weekdays from 11:30 a.m. - 2:30 p.m. and dinner weekdays from 5:30 p.m. - 10:00 p.m., and on Saturdays, dinner from 5:00 p.m. - 10:30 p.m. Valet parking is available in the evenings.

For reservations, call 202-547-8100.

Cafe du Parc

Located in the former Chanel Boutique on Pennsylvania Avenue next to the Willard InterContinental Hotel, the new classic French bistro," Café du Parc, opened its doors April 2, 2007. The restaurant embraces classic bistro cuisine with moderate pricing ranging from $6 to $19, serving dinner, lunch, afternoon "petit plats" (small plates) breakfast and casual takeaway items.

Café du Parc is overseen by one of Europe's top Michelin-starred chefs, Antoine Westermann, who supervises the menu to ensure that his vision of French cuisine is appropriately transposed in an American setting. Antoine Westermann chose to dedicate himself and his entire know-how to the research and development of new adaptations of French cuisine. This alliance has created a unique symbiosis in which French cuisine is adapted to American tastes and habits. Thus, the traditionally generous American portions are reflected in this particularly French approach to vegetarian dishes, dishes that have a strong esthetic value as well as a good cost-to-quality ratio. Café du Parc will be led by Willard Executive Chef Daniel Kenney and Westermann's hand-picked brigade trained by the master in Paris.

For Antoine Westermann Café du Parc was a challenge he could not resist. "Combining the unique tastes of France and the all American demand for choice, quality products, as well as quantity and fast service, was my goal when I started this project," says Westermann. "French cuisine is usually a synonym for expensive dishes and small portions∑ I wanted to demonstrate that it is absolutely possible to marry the tastes of France to American culture where they both meet: their generosity."

Menu items for Café du Parc include, Le pâte en croûte façon Antoine Westermann, (Antoine Westermann's Pate in a crust), Les quenelles de brochet (Pike dumplings) Les paupiettes de veau (stuffed veal fillet bundles) Le confit de Canard (Duck confit) and vegetarian options like, La cocotte de légumes braisés, champignons de saison et aux croûtons à l'ail (Braised seasonal vegetables, seasonal mushrooms and garlic croutons), and Les tomates farcies aux legumes (vegetable-stuffed tomatoes.) In addition to the savory offerings, Café du Parc boasts an array of French deserts like the delicious, Les oeufs à la neige (Floating Island) and La tarte aux pommes à l'Alsacienne (Alsatian apple tart). Authentic house made pastries will also be available for carry out.

An open kitchen highlights the upper level Café du Parc restaurant which seats 96 people and is accessed by a grand staircase and an elevator. The welcoming setting is vibrant with both banquette and individual tables for dining. During the warm DC spring and summer months, Café du Parc features Parisian-style outdoor seating where guests can sit, relax and enjoy the surroundings and the offerings of the café.

About Antoine Westermann

Chef Antoine Westermann is one of the most celebrated chefs in France. Apart from the Haute Cuisine that has earned him three stars, Westermann expresses his creativity, steeped in the traditions of Alsace, in recipes for his two sandwich bars in Strasbourg, and by his generous vegetable cookery in his Paris restaurant on the Ile Saint Louis, "Mon Vieil Ami". He also emphasizes the Franco-Portuguese essence at his, "Fortaleza do Guincho" restaurant. At his highly popular Drouant restaurant in Paris, Westermann revisits appetizers "à la française", putting the focus on quality products with a predominant emphasis on vegetables.

Café du Parc: Tel. 202-942-7000 or visit web site www.cafeduparc.com.

Home | New Jersey Books | Outdoor Tips | Travels | Product Reviews | Holidays | Contact Us

All information and photography © 2007-2011 Arline Zatz. All rights reserved. Contact us if reprint permission is needed.