After a very uneasy several weeks around DC, the hotels, restaurants and retail businesses prove yet again that they are the heart and soul of this city. Ready to look ahead to better days, while eager to showcase their specialized offerings, here are three happenings around Washington DC creating a lot of buzz for both locals and tourists alike.
Afternoon Tea returns to the Willard InterContinental (1401 Pennsylvania Ave. NW | (202) 628-9100) October 25, 2013, and will continue through the Holidays with service being offered between 1pm and 4pm Friday, Saturday and Sunday. Here, the savory tea sandwiches rival any in the District… orange sesame chicken salad, caramelized onion with goat cheese, cucumber with dill butter, and the list continues. These combined with the mini pastries and selection of scones (yes, the Devonshire Cream is amazing here) make for a timeless DC tradition. Note, during December tea is served daily, except for Christmas Eve, Christmas Day and New Year's Eve. They can also work with you to make special arrangements for larger parties and unique requests.
Regardless of how much you might travel and enjoy great hotels around the world, the interior of the Willard InterContinental is steeped in history and truly breathtaking. It’s a definite must-visit while in DC. The staff, along with the quality of the sweet and savory selections, is gracious and unbeatable. Keep in mind; the location of Peacock Alley can be slightly busy during Afternoon Tea as it’s essentially a long corridor connecting the main Hotel lobby on Pennsylvania Avenue with the back entrance. I would also suggest an early reservation, as they do begin to breakdown the area at the end of the day. These observations, however, are minor compared to the grandeur experienced while enjoying tea at the historic Willard InterContinental. The harp being played in the background, combined with the beautifully decorated trees lining the hallways during the Holidays, only enhance this already majestically opulent atmosphere.
Special Five-Course Beer Dinner
Though dinner at Zaytinya (701 9th Street, NW | (202) 638-0800) is always a great option in DC, this is a very unique experience. Following up on this past summer's sold out Beer Dinner with Brooklyn Brewery, José Andrés and his team, at award-winning Zaytinya, welcome a follow-up dinner with special guest Steve Hindy, the Founder of Brooklyn Brewery. This exclusive opportunity will feature specialty beers from Brooklyn Brewery and menu pairings from Zaytinya's Head Chef, Michael Costa. Limited seating is available, so reservations are required. A deliciously creative menu has been created for this event, including pumpkin falafel with tahini, bahar beer battered red mullet, braised goat with dried fruit and pine nuts, spit roasted lamb shoulder, Turkish coffee chocolate cake and so much more.
Brian Zaslavsky, GM of Zaytinya recalls how this all began with the past event, and the importance of continuing this new tradition. “All of us at ThinkFoodGroup, especially at Zaytinya, have been long-time fans of Brooklyn Brewery, their beers and the company. It also happens that Brooklyn Brewery founder Steve Hindy has also been a big fan of Zaytinya and its Mediterranean cuisine, so for DC beer week we figured it would be fun and a great opportunity to get together and showcase how well their beers paired with our food. We have done many wine dinners at Zaytinya, but this was our first beer dinner ever and it was an instant hit. We immediately knew this was the ultimate collaboration, so we began planning the next beer dinner that same night.” Your chance to experience this unique dining experience is October 29, 2013 at 7:15pm. Reservations are required, so be sure to follow up with them quickly to receive your special invite.
These sweet treats continue to make headlines, and Olivia Macaron (3222 M Street NW | (202) 965-1000) is no exception. After weeks of anticipation around the District, the doors opened this past weekend, where customers were greeted with the colorful cases of macarons in all of the traditional and unique flavors – all packaged in a beautiful setting complete with incredible photography and an intimately cozy atmosphere. “Everyone in the neighborhood has been very receptive and welcoming; from the designers down Cady's Alley, to our other retail and resident neighbors, it seems that no one is immune to the allure of our macarons,” says Joelle Williams, manager of Olivia Macaron.
Along with many locals singing their praise, they were especially pleased to have several French tourists compliment the macaron’s delicious authenticity. The macarons are amazing, and this was made obvious when they had to close early their first two days due to selling out every last macaron, and in record time. For a taste of these sweet treats, visit Georgetown’s newest favorite escape. It won’t be long before they are offering local delivery and nationwide shipping, so be sure to check back with their website in the coming weeks and months.