What's That Huge Line For?
November 14, 2014

What's That Huge Line For?

Florida Georgia Line is coming to Merriweather Post Pavilion on May 9, 2015. Get your tickets FRIDAY at 10am here.

Judging by the Vatican-like line Sunday, the supply and demand of Filipino food in the District is tilted. The crowds were eagerly waiting to sample five dishes at the Bad Saint pop-up held in the Dolcezza Gelato Factory & Coffee Lab.

The future restaurant from Filipino Americans (and restaurant veterans) Nick Pimentel and Genevieve Villamora opens this winter in Columbia Heights. We snapped Nick, who says the day exceeded expectations. “People's patience and good humor were nothing short of amazing, and our hardworking crew went all-out to get it done,” he tells us.

Highlights from Chef Tom Cunanan's menu including spring roll-like lumpiang Shanghai, a shrimp and sweet potato fritter dubbed "ukoy," and a mung bean noodle stir fry called pancit. "The hands-down winner was the lumpiang Shanghai" Genevieve says. “They're like popcorn or potato chips—addictive and easy to eat.”  Familiar food industry faces turned out to support Nick, Genevieve and Tom: The Partisan's Eddie Kim showed up at 2am to help roll 500 lumpiang after his bar shift Saturday. Mason Dixie Biscuit Co's Jason Gehring and The Partisan's Ed Witt could be seen in the kitchen.

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Now Open: McClellan's Retreat

A Civil War themed bar named for a relatively gentle general opened Wednesday in Dupont Circle. Major General George B. McClellan was known for delaying his attacks to give his opponents time to rest. Ponder this as you snag a flannel covered banquet seat and sip on a sherry cobbler. You'll find Megan Barnes, formerly of the accolade-rich Columbia Room, behind the bar and serving as general manager. We snapped her stirring a hot spiced rum perfect for the season. Six classic cocktails are on the menu, plus eight originals (and beer and wine). Find McClellan's in the former Veritas Wine Bar space on Florida Avenue. 


A Need for Speed

How fast could you make four classic cocktails? If the answer is beyond three minutes, you don't stand a chance at Speed Rack— the all-female speed-bartending competition that supports breast cancer. Local and visiting bartenders competed Monday in front of judges including Hank's Oyster Bar Chef/Owner Jamie Leeds (far left) and cocktail savant Todd Thrasher. Each round, two bartenders whipped up four classic cocktails selected by the judges moments before. The first one finished didn't necessarily win, as the judges could add seconds for poor craftsmanship.

We snapped The Gibson's/Brixton's Jewel Murray (left) going head to head with The Partisan's Julia Hurst. Julia went on to win and will compete in the finals in New York City. In good fun, some of the city's best male bartenders stopped by The Howard Theatre. Trevor Frye, Rico Wisner and Glendon Hartley served as pink bandana-clad bar backs. To date, Speed Rack has raised more than $250,000 globally for breast cancer charities.


Find Your Favorite Coffee & Cocktail

Ryan Fleming and Miranda Mirabella aren't sleeping much. That's because the newlyweds are behind Slipstream—the 3-week-old Logan Circle spot serving craft coffee by day and inspired cocktails by night. Both programs are designed to help customers try new things and discover their preferences. Breakfast, brunch and dinner are also offered, with lunch on the horizon. The laid back atmosphere will encourage you to linger, but you can also grab a $2.50 coffee and a freshly baked pastry to go. We snapped Ryan and Miranda in front of the shop's burst of color—a mural painted by Ryan's high school buddy.

Slipstream stands out by offering a selection of 8-9 javas which can be brewed as coffee or as espresso. The menu is set up to encourage customers to compare them side-by-side. But don't worry if you can't drink it straight. “Our specialty drinks are great too, they make coffee more approachable, kind of like learning to appreciate whiskey through cocktails,” Ryan tells us. The espresso tonic is a treat the couple brought with them from San Francisco. “The tonic replaces milk, but provides the same sweetness,” Miranda explains. What's next for Slipstream? Perhaps some classes on brewing at home.

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The Lighter Side of Cuba Libre

DC's passport to Cuba landed a new chef this fall. Matthew Zagorski put on a Cuba Libre DC executive chef coat after training at the flagship Cuba Libre restaurant in Philadelphia. Matthew executes James Beard award-winning Chef/Partner Guillermo Pernot's menu with finesse. If heavy foods like Ropa Vieja and fried yucca come to mind when you consider Cuban cuisine, note that Matthew has put a healthy spin on it with a brand new “Latin Grill” menu. It showcases simply grilled proteins with inventive sauces like seared tuna with a zippy mojito salsa verde. These dishes lean gluten free, and Matthew is certified to cook for guests with Celiac disease. We snapped him after trying his menu.


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