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Mark Sommelier

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    Washington, DC

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  1. Michel Richard's CENTRAL

    James Beard Foundation Best New Restaurant!! Winner!!!
  2. Favorite uses for Boursin?

    Use it in an omelette.
  3. Butter + soy sauce

    Soy and butter are my favorite way of flavoring Brussel Sprouts!
  4. Cuisine "Native" to the District

    WRONG, for many reasons.
  5. Cuisine "Native" to the District

    John, I have lived here and worked in the fine dining business for 30 years. I read all the responses after yours yesterday and confidently say that they are all wrong. There is no indiginous cuisine here that is unique to DC. Crappy, greasy half-smokes are available in every direction for hundred of miles. Shad and shad roe are a greater Chesapeake-James River specialty and are enjoyed in Richmond and Baltimore, too. Washington has changed so much and so often in the past 50 years that it's impossible to say what local cooking is about. The only consideration anymore when dining out in DC is : is the food edible and the service half good? Sorry to sound so negative. The local eatery that satisfies your criteria: Old Glory in Georgetown. Chinatown has some good places but is scary at the same time. Go to Peru for Peruvian chicken, please.
  6. Brunch in DC

    Brunch at Brasserie Beck was really great a few weekends ago. Full menu plus brunch menu. Nothing like starting brunch with a huge shellfish platter.
  7. Palena restaurant, not cafe. It's too good. Beck and Central are both great but very different. New Heights has fried oysters, Equinox doesn't. Simple.
  8. Dulles Corridor Restaurants

    If you aren't flying business class, where the booze and snacks are FREE, this place is a good alternative.
  9. Sommelier Etiquette

    Not always the case. ← Then move to a restaurant where they do. The wine staff must have an incentive to sell, upsell, or just get out there on the floor and push product - Lord knows that they also do a lot of related work before, and after, service. The wine staff should get, in pay, 10% of all wine sales - we've done it that way for thirty years. ← Damn! I wanna work in a place that pays 10%!
  10. For wait staff? Much less. ← @ $3.50 hour + tips
  11. Le Pain Quotidien

    I discovered that "tartine" is French for "really skimpy sandwich". You learn something new everyday!
  12. Celebrity Chefs Sucking...

    doesn't she run one of puck's restaurants? ask michel, he'll know. ← After she crashes her 1) car, or 2) career, she may well. I still don't know why she's "famous".
  13. Celebrity Chefs Sucking...

    This whole argument is a straw man. Why are these chefs "celebrities"? Because the media writes about them often and a lot. How bizarre to help create these celebrities and then complain that that's all you read about. I guess that's how things work these days. I am annoyed every time I see or hear about Paris Hilton and Britney Spears, and I still don't know who the hell Lindsay Lohan is or why I should care about her.
  14. Rules of the Restaurant Universe

    You obviously work in a really small restaurant, right?