Monday, May 19, 2014

DC Mom and Pop Spots

At graduation with Sarah and Whitney
This past weekend, I graduated from The George Washington University and hit up some amazing Washington, DC mom and pop spots. 

As a supporter of local businesses, I could not resist the opportunity to highlight these amazing locations. Go local only. Never go chain. Ever.

Lobster Risotto
As soon as we got to DC we went to a fun restaurant called Cities Restaurant and Lounge. I found this place through a unique website called DC Happy Hours. The website let's you pick the day of the week, the time of day, then maps out what locations provide happy hour during that time. We ordered the Lobster Risotto and the Peking Duck Flat Bread.  Both were delicious.

medium rare
Steak and Eggs at Medium Rare
Do you love steak and eggs for brunch? We went to a tasty little spot called Medium Rare on Saturday.  The menu is set at $23 and it includes bottomless mimosas, bloody marys, or screwdrivers, and your meal. I went with the steak and poached eggs.  It was awesome!  

Medium Rare offers brunch on Saturday and Sunday.  This place won't leave you disappointed!  I stumbled across Medium Rare through a helpful DC blog called The Bottomless Mimosa

Over 14,000 students graduated at the National Mall
 My commencement ceremony was Sunday morning at the
National Mall.  That will probably be one of the most memorable experiences of my life.  Imagine 14,000 graduates around you, in-between our U.S. Capitol and the Washington Monument.  #LIFECHANGING

Check out this hilarious video shown at GWU commencement with cameos from Robert De Niro, Morgan Freeman, Gwyneth Paltrow, Owen Wilson, and more: 


Our speaker at graduation was Jose Andres.  According to Jose Andres website, "Named 'Outstanding Chef' by the James Beard Foundation in 2011, Jose Andres is an internationally-recognized culinary innovator, passionate advocate for food and hunger issues, author, educator, television personality and chef/owner of ThinkFoodGroup." 

Enjoying the Pan de cristal con tomate
After graduation, we decided to eat at one of Jose Andres' restaurants, Jaleo. We ordered the Pan de cristal con tomate (etherel bread brushed with fresh tomato), Patatas bravas (fried potatoes with spicy tomato sauce), and Datiles con tocino 'como hace todo el mundo' (fried, bacon-wrapped dates served with an apple-mustard sauce).  

This food is like nothing you have ever had before.  The flavors are intense and you will want to savor every bite!

Roast Duck with Mein Foon
We ended our trip with a visit to Chinatown.  Chinatown Express provides customers with hand-made noodles.  We know we went to an authentic place because most customers were speaking Chinese! Our eyes were a lot bigger than our stomachs when we ordered Fried Rice, Vegetable Dumplings, Wonton Soup, Steamed Pork Bun and Roast Duck with Mein Foon. It was a great place to end our trip.

Sarah, Whitney, me, Mike after graduation
I was so fortunate to have amazing friends to spend my graduation weekend with! 

Check out my friend, Sarah's blog!

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