Sunday, February 22, 2015

Washington, DC: Twist

This is an extremely delayed blog post, I probably went here over a year ago (and started but never posted this), but from what I have heard, not much has changed so I thought it would be worth it to share my thoughts. As you know, I am a sucker for bottomless brunches, and an even bigger sucker for groupon/living social/gilt/etc. deals. 

Twist is located at the bottom of the Savoy Suites hotel in Georgetown. They have an omelet bar and a random assortment of food. From what I can remember and the photos below they had an omelet bar, pre-made waffle sticks with a couple of different toppings options, bacon, sausage, a rice pilaf of some-sort, grape leaves, random Mediterranean things, potatoes, a couple of other dishes and a huge fruit bowl.

Excuse the poor quality of photos, the mimosas must have gotten to me.

The food was fine. Nothing special. Mimosas were really good and free flowing. The service was great, especially for a buffet and bottomless mimosas. I didn't like how they tacked on another 10-15 dollar charge for taxes/whatever at the end of the meal. We were already going to leave a tip...it's just not right and the majority of other places do not do that. However this deal has been on the market for a little over a year at the least so they could have changed their policy. 

Would I come back? When I originally wrote this I said maybe. Even though the mimosas were good and free flowing, I have been invited to this brunch multiple times and seen the deal even more and never been tempted. 

2505 Wisconsin Ave NW
Washington, DC
Twist Georgetown on Urbanspoon

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Thursday, February 19, 2015

Columbia Heights: El Chucho

After helping out a coworker for a party at his house, another coworker and I decided we needed to take advantage of being so far up into DC. We had plans to go somewhere else, but due to my poor directional skills we wandered way past it in the freezing cold, and out of necessity decided to stop by El Chucho
I ordered their basic Margarita which was solid for being a lower grade alcohol. My friend ordered the Blood Orange Habenero Margarita which I thought was pretty good, not too spicy. However if you are super sensitive to spice then it may have quite a kick for you. Their salsa was good, but I have to say I was a little disappointed in their guacamole. It was the close to the price of table side guac, but was the quality of the pre-made guac you get with your quesadilla. We decided to split an order of their pork tacos which were legit - not being a fan of corn tortillas, the pork was flavorful enough to make me forget about the tortillas (and for those of you that are concerned, they were authentic in their double tortilla).
After checking El Chucho out online, I discovered that they have a rooftop…whaaaaaaaaat. So awesome. Margaritas and rooftops just go together. 

Would I come back? Yes, I would like to explore their menu some more...and drink margaritas on their rooftop. 

3313 11th Street NW
Washington, DC
El Chucho Cocina Superior on Urbanspoon

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Wednesday, February 4, 2015

Leftover Pot Roast Benedict

I am currently obsessed with pot roast. Obsessed I may be, but there are only so many times I can eat the leftovers the same way before getting tired of them (ok...I haven't hit that point yet, but I am sure it will come). I have made pot roast nachos before which I will definitely have to do a repeat for this old blog of mine. For some time now (over a year) I've been wanted to make some sort of breakfast with the leftovers and finally did it this morning. 

This is a VERY basic eggs benedict - you can see that I left out the hollandaise sauce. It would be delicious, but this was a weekday breakfast, and I didn't have time to make the sauce. To be honest I really didn't miss it. The yolk of the egg provided the sauce component (although not shown in this photo, I would probably serve this with 2 eggs, I just don't have much of an appetite in the morning - I made my mom's with 2 eggs) and the avocado provided a needed freshness. 

This breakfast takes about 15 minutes to make - from starting the pot of boiling water to putting the dish together. I put the pot of water on before I head into the shower and by the time I get out the water is boiling. Then I toast the muffin, reheat the pot roast and poach the egg all in under 5 minutes. So there is really only 5 minutes on hand time - that is pretty awesome for a breakfast this delicious. And with one egg, it is approx. 300 calories - perfect for breakfast and it's quite filling - I'm still full and I had this around 7:30am (currently 10:30am).

 
Ingredients
1-2 poached eggs (good walk-through here)
1/4 avocado thinly sliced
1 toasted english muffin
1/3 cup pot roast (recipe from here minus the fresh herbs, plus dried rosemary)

Directions
1. Put a pot of water with at least 3 inches of water on the stove to boil (I did medium - high heat)
2. Crack an egg into a small bowl. Once slightly bubbling, use a fork or a spoon and carefully stir the pot of boiling water to make a whirlpool. Pour egg into the middle. Cook for 2 1/2 to 3 minutes. 
3. While egg is cooking, toast muffin, slice avocado and reheat pot roast. 
4. Take egg out with a slotted spoon and let it rest while you put together the benedict. 
5. Put english muffin on a plate with the avocado on top of it or next to it (like the photo above), then the pot roast and then the poached egg. Enjoy! 


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Monday, February 2, 2015

Washington DC: 701 Restaurant

Ahh restaurant week, you came and left so soon. This year I was extremely unprepared on where I wanted to go and had a date to catch up with an old friend. Originally we picked a restaurant way up into DC, and the day of the reservation when I mapped out how long it would take me to drive that was just not going to happen after my day. I quickly texted my friend, gave her a location I wanted, and she started spurting of restaurants to me.
We settled on 701 Restaurant and I couldn't have been happier. One of my favorite things about restaurant week is that you can give a more expensive restaurant a trial run before committing to the full priced menu. Let me tell you, 701 did not disappoint.

I wish I took a photo, but the inside is absolutely gorgeous, extremely classy. Their website describes the experience being like “the warmth and charm of a private club,” which is absolutely on point. 

Once we were seated and made it known we were looking at wine, we were informed that there was a wine expert (sommelier?) there to help us if we’d like. I settled on a glass of rose – Whispering Angel, very good. Bread was brought out, which was average, except for the cornbread muffins being quite dry.
Not one to pass up bacon of any sort I ordered the Braised Bacon endive, apple, frisee, cherry mustard which was a savory, delicious combo (sadly not on their regular menu). Important to note this was more of a pork belly consistency. The freshness of the frisee really helped cut the heaviness of the bacon. Even my pescetarian friend was able to admire the lovely bacony scent coming from my dish. A tuna tartare aficionado, Amy went with what else but the Tuna Tartare wasabi vinaigrette, asain pear, persimmon-yuzo sauce and said it was delicious ($13 and on their lunch menu normally).  
For dinner I went with the “Duck Tajarin,” or Duck Spaghetti $20 as their normal menu states duck ragout (bolognese)/Trevisiano/goat cheese/crumbles cracklings. This was served on house made pasta, which really took this dish a notch up. I haven’t had a goat cheese on a Bolognese style pasta, but it worked really well. The cracklings were a nice textural addition. The restaurant week menu didn’t state there was crackling on it so the random crunch freaked me out at first – but once I knew, I really enjoyed them. Amy went with a butternut squash pasta special which she enjoyed, but would look into ordering something else the next visit.
As far as desserts go, we both had our eye on the Chocolate Pots De Crème $9 salted caramel, brownie bits mint ice cream. This was super rich, but when you paired the pots de crème with the salted caramel and mint ice cream a magical party happened on your taste buds. I don’t know why I don’t order desserts and restaurants, but desserts like these really need to make me need to start.
Service was impeccable (I pretty much grilled our server on how everything was prepared and the ins and outs of most of the dishes), ambiance was perfect and food was delicious. This is the place you need to go if you want to impress someone, celebrate a special occasion or go out on a nice date night. My only complaint has nothing to do with the restaurant but with the restaurant week menu. I prefer it when restaurants highlight their normal menu instead of throwing random specials on it – I like to try and see the actual dishes normally serves.

Would I come back? Yes, I would like to come and try more of their dishes and drinks! I just need to get my butt back into DC soon! 

701 Pennsylvania Ave
Washington DC
Penn Quarter
Archives Metro
(or Federal Triangle and walking a couple of blocks!)
701 Restaurant on Urbanspoon

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