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  1. I ate there (Sonoma) on Wednesday night, and overall, I was really pleased. I tried the wine "tastes" but mine were all $3-$4 ($6-9 for a full glass). I had three and really enjoyed the option to test things out. And I didn't find it too expensive. We found descriptions in the wine list interesting, as each wine has a 2-3 word description next to it that does not repeat. So if you had a "light, dry finish" wine, you won't find another on the list with that same description. It will be "light, full bodied" -- you get the idea. We tried different glasses, debating if we would have described this or that wine as having a "fruity nose". I wish that I could remember my wine choices. I had three whites, and enjoyed each. I started with the black risotto. I'd read something that day about Citronelle's begula/beluga pasta, and so I had a taste for something like it. They don't compare, no, not at all, but I did enjoy the risotto. I thought it had a good balance of salt, a decent texture of risotto, and the calamari was firm without being rubbery. I'd recommend it. And eat it again. My friend started with a small-plate of the chicken - penne dish. I had a bite and while I can't remember the details, I thought that one was good enough that I almost wished I'd ordered it. For my main dish, I had prawns over a chick-pea puree. I was really surprised that the chickpea puree was cold, and couldn't decide if that was intentional or not. But it tasted good, so I didn't ask. The shrimp were on a skewer, and I always have a problem with that in restaurants. It's a nice presentation, but it also increases the possibility that I will meet my dining neighbors when my shrimp is propelled off the skewer and into their plate. It's probably just me, though. I got the small-plate size of this dish, with 4 mediums sized prawns. It was a good portion for me. I don't recall my friend's dinner, but we liked it, too. Overall, we each spent about $36, including tip. We had good service overall. Nothing to complain about. I'm really happy to have Sonoma on the Hill.
  2. Capitol Hill is having its own Restaurant Week: Capitol Hill Restaurant Week Feb 21-Feb 27 According to a flier that I picked up (at the Ugly Mug), the deal is "buy 2 entrees and get the less priced entree free!" Just thought I'd share. Some of the restaurants participating: TRATTORIA ALBERTO Lunch Only 506 8th Street, SE 202-544-2007 CAPITOL HILL TANDOOR & GRILL Lunch (not buffet) and dinner 419 8th Street, SE 202-547-3233 CAFÉ BERLIN Dinner (up to $15) 320 Mass Ave., NE 202-543-7656 TUNNICLIFF’S TAVERN LUNCH & DINNER (up to $19) 222 7th Street, SE 202-544-5680 THE UGLY MUG LUNCH & DINNER 723 8th Street, SE 202-547-UGLY SZECHUAN HOUSE Dinner Only 515 8th Street, SE 202-546-5303 LA PLAZA Lunch and dinner 629 Penn. Ave., SE 202-546-5489 MEYHANE Dinner Only Turkish Cuisine/Tapas 633 Penn. Ave., SE 202-544-4753 WHITE TIGER Lunch only (incl. buffet) 301 Mass. Ave., NE 202-546-5900 TAVERNA – THE GREEK ISLANDS Lunch and dinner (Sandwiches only) 305 Penn. Ave., SE 202-547-8360
  3. tonight: we ordered a bottle of wine (Pinot Noir) and the waiter unceremoniously opened it and poured a full glass in mine...and then the one guy's at the table and then the other female. I swirled and tasted AS IF he'd given me the option, and it was fine, but...well. It wasn't egregious error, though, I guess, just surprising (yes, I realize the drink of choice at Belga might not have been red wine, but still). I had mussels in white wine (I had a mussels craving...and the Bistrot du Coin just seems so far away) and that was fine, didn't try the frites, though my companions did eat them. Started with a green salad that came with a ...tomato sorbet? well, it was the best part of that salad. Not that it was bad, just that it was not remarkable, except for that bit of frozen tomato. That's fine. I'm glad to have them on the Hill. It's a lovely space and we sat across from the kitchen, and it was fun to see them prepare the dishes. We didn't have reservations -- got there at 5:45 and there were plenty of tables, but we were asked to be done at 7:15 when they had a reservation for our table. That seemed reasonable, and it definitely was. We even had time for dessert (I didn't have any but my companions enjoyed theirs). We started out with drinks at the ugly mug. They were nice, and it turns out one of my companions knew a bartender there. So we had good service.
  4. Chef David Guas (sp?) from Ceiba/DC Coast (that's how they introduced him) is on the Today show this morning, making a variety of dishes for Al...looks pretty tasty! Always cool to see DC getting national coverage
  5. An old friend was in town on Monday, and wearing a suit. So after consulting eGullet and another old friend eGulleteer, we decided to try Tosca. We secured 8:00 reservations and headed over. (This is my first eGullet 'review' post -- please be kind ;) ) At first, we felt under dressed (even in the suit!) in the elegant atmosphere and white-coated waiters, until we noticed the variety -- post-work business casual, fancy jeans, and plenty of other suits. After deciding on salads to start, and pasta for the mains, we enlisted Kathy Morgan's help in selecting a beverage to accompany our meal. When I want red wine, I tend to start in the neighborhood of Pinot Noir. Of all reds, this is the one I have heard the praises of, and have been exposed to the most. Kathy used that as a starting point, but suggested drinking Italian wine with our Italian food. She talked us through some points, but we essentially put ourselves in her hands and had her suggestion, which I think was "Sangiovese San Vincenti “Stignano." " My apologies for not writing that one down, but I think that was it. Our salads were both a surprise in terms of presentation. His "Caprese classica di Mozzarella fatta in casa con pomodori e basilico: Classic housemade mozzarella with vine ripe tomatoes and fresh organic basil" were actually whole tomatoes, hollowed out and filled with mozzarella. Yellow tomato slices garnished the plate, too. Yum! My salad, "Insalata di radicchio e pere con terrina di Gorgonzola e noci candite: Salad of radicchio and Bartlett pears with imported Gorgonzola cheese terrine and toasted walnuts," was a sculpture of options to assemble - shredded radicchio dressed, surrounded by a ring of walnuts on the left side with half a pear sliced next to a wedge of Gorgonzola. Everything blended together well in different proportions. The wine worked well with the salads. My pasta made me greedy (I wanted a lot more). "Agnolotti d'anatra stufata con erbette fresche e salsa del suo fegato: Pillow-shaped braised duck ravioli with foie gras sauce." His pasta was the simple "Linguine al pomodoro, olive nere e basilico fresco: Imported linguine noodles with fresh tomato sauce, black olives and fresh basil," which I thought would be boring, but it wasn't. I had only a small taste of it warm, but had both pastas the next day (the raviolli didn't hold up as leftovers, but the Linguine was amazing, subtle, and simple, even cold). I would definitely go back and order either dish again. At this point memory starts to waiver, but we did have the cheese plate, and another glass of wine. Of all the cheeses, the Taleggio was the most satisfying that night. We drank a glass of red -- I think it was Barbaresco ... Very glad we went. Will definitely go back.
  6. mhberk, I'm glad you started this thread! I live in DC now too, but I lived in LA for eight years, and I'll be in LA for a week starting Wednesday. After reading here for tips and ideas, I happened to run into a DC eGulleter on the street in Dupont Circle a few days ago and he said A.O.C. was not to be missed (A.O.C. Restaurant). It looks like it's gotten lots of praise here in the California pages, too. I hope so -- I made reservations for Friday night :) (thanks California eGulleters for helping me out with that choice!) Of course, it's not in Glendale. Which got me thinking: how are you planning to get from the airport -- assuming you arrive at LAX -- to Glendale? As mentioned, cabs can be pretty costly. The price of only a few cab rides would equal a cheap car rental -- I agree, rent a car if you can! One of the startling things about LA is how vast and spread out it is. (edited for quoting with out asking first )
  7. Good God! I live just about across the street from Dominics. Have you had their subs? Nothing fancy, but so many subs in this area have the toughest bread, whereas Dominics is just about right. I sure do miss poboys in Louisiana. I would never have thought of Dominic's! But that's huge in my family -- my mid-30s brothers and my parents meet up there, and my brothers let their kids run around under the pictures of their "glory-years" on the Springbrook HS football team (this, I believe, is "the reason" to go there). I go sometimes, too, and focus on the fried cheese (mmmm, fried cheese...). For a long, long time, mine was for Pizzeria Uno. Their four cheese individual deep dish. The Cleveland Park branch or the Georgetown branch were the top choices ...
  8. I "discovered" Krispy Kremes at Penn Station in NY, but it wasn't until I had them hot in Richmond that I ...understood. Even though I have a car, I've never allowed myself to take the trip to Alexandria for a fix. My days of fighting would seem to be over... The best (or is it the worst?) thing about this (for me) is that it is on my way home from the yoga studio on Saturday mornings... of course, I guess I feel the same way about those parm-chive-truffle fries, especially with that photo, and they're just down the block...
  9. Okay, here goes: Until you write that punk rock book on expensive bottles of wine for the rest of us, what books or other resources (websites, etc.) do you rely on? For wine, or food, I mean.
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