Friday, July 23, 2010

Meats, Cheese and Slushitos....Oh My!

1520 14th St NW
(between N Church St & N P St) 

Estadio was an experience for me that I would love to do-over time and time again - but then again, I've never been to Spain. My pre-Spain experience however was a delight. Arriving early with a friend of mine, we sat at the bar and I ordered a slushito - an icy concoction made of quince, paprika, scotch and sherry....deeeeeeee-licious. I have never had such a tasty drink before - refreshing with a slight sherry aftertaste, thank you very much. Next I moved onto the red sangria, a true test of a proper bar - it was perfectly mixed with a sprig of mint...yum. As Jim says, "I didn't know sangria was supposed to taste like wine." Of course he said that, you can't get a proper sangria in this entire city.  As the night progressed I moved onto wine (at $4 a pop), then more wine, then food and more food. I unfortunately left 1 size bigger than when I arrived.

Dinner was an assortment of meats, cheeses, eggs, fried goodness more. We ordered mixto - an assortment of cured meats of chorizo, salami, Serrano ham and more. The best chorizo I've ever had, but I was quickly informed that I've had nothing apparently if I thought that was amazing. But like I said, I've never been to Spain. Deviled eggs topped with fresh tuna, skewers of chorizo, cheese and a date dusted in pistachios, duck perfectly spiced over a bed of swiss chard, sweetbreads (not too impressed with that) all put to rest the concern that I hadn't had a proper trip to Europe to compare all of this to. That will happen in time I'm sure.

What stood out like a sore thumb at Estadio were the gigantic ugly flat screen televisions that hung over your head at the bar. Estadio seems to aim to establish an old world ambiance with its high wood chairs, thick wood tables, dark warm colors, red brick walls and chandeliers....and then you see 4 giant screen televisions. It makes no sense. Get rid of those TV's people, you are shooting yourself in the foot. Am I at Romano's Macaroni Grill or am I at a high end Spanish restaurant??? I'm confused, but then again....I've never been to Spain.

Monday, July 12, 2010

Capitol Skyline - Vegas in DC downgrades to Atlantic City

10 I Street SW

Last year the pool was overflowing, the cameras were filming, the burger's were satisfying - Capitol Skyline pool on Sunday's was a hit. What I loved so much about Sundays at the Skyline was that I could hang out with beautiful people, listen to great music, get some sun and to top it off - have a damn good burger - all for only $10 bucks (actually the most exciting thing about the beautiful people was that when you see everyone in bikinis and swim shorts - you realize that you're not that bad looking. It's quite an ego booster!).

But let's focus this discussion on what really matters - the two white bread buns surrounding an ungodly hunk of bland ground beef. In its hay day, the Spike Mendelsohn burger you would get for free with admission at the Skyline was hot off the grill, juicy, filled with flavor and dripping with cheese. The guy at the grill would hop that burger patty onto your plate straight off the fire. You'd dress it up with all the fixins and dig in and be mightily impressed. Well, the burgers at the Skyline in the year 2010 are a totally different story. Instead of walking up to the grill to claim your patty, you walked right past it to find an orgy of burger patty's sitting in an aluminum bin covered in American cheese. They looked like they were crying, all alone in that bin with no bun to comfort them, quickly losing heat and covered in consolation American cheese (not even melted). The cheese unfortunately tastes like air - pure nothingness - no texture, no flavor, nothing. You mine as well not put the cheese on there! I don't need an aesthetically pleasing burger if the flavor is totally absent. Dressing my burger up was depressing, no ketchup for miles. All I had was plain french's mustard and a bag of Lay's potato chips on the side.

No Real World filming resulting in random spurts of group dancing, no men with footballs in their hands for no particular reason walking around in hopes of getting on tape. We can't even find "Dreamboat Ken" around this summer - where was he? I mean, we need our eye candy people! You look around now and all you see is orderly roped off lines, too many speedos for your own good, sponsor promotions, bad club music and the occasional weird drunk girl giving the whole world a dance show (OK, I think that is hilarious, no complaints there). Don't get me wrong, I'm not giving up hope and I don't dislike the place - I'm still going to frequent the Skyline as much as possible this summer to get my pool time on and to be amongst good looking people - it's like oxygen to me. It's a sure good time, I'm just not as impressed as I was last year - that is if being impressed means good food and people whoring themselves out to be on national television.

Estadio is open!

1520 14th Street NW

From the hero's that brought you Proof, one of the best wine bars and restaurants in the city - Estadio is sure the please. We'll be heading there next week to give it a go. I look forward to the wine selection, 80% of which is from Spain. Holy Jesus thank you!

Friday, July 9, 2010

Tom Colicchio: Not just my crush, but also my hero

Despite his annoyingly arrogant remarks the swarthy Tom Colicchio provides on a weekly basis on the Bravo Channel for all of the American public to witness, I truly am in love with this man. At first my love for him was purely based on the way he walked into a room - I slowly also noticed there was something about his mannerisms, his stature as he stood there just staring at the contestants that I found utterly sexy. Some might call me crazy, I mean after all, he is a large bald human being by no means tan, in fact quite pasty. I'm sure his chest, once rippling with muscles in his younger years, has now be deduced to large rolls of fat with random hairs all over it, what color they are, we will never know.

My love for Tom slowly faded over the last season of Top Chef, I assume because I got a little bored with his antiquated comments on the contestants cooking. I no longer swooned when he walked on the set. I didn't really care that he was filming in DC and therefore didn't go "Tom Colicchio hunting" at the hippest of restaurants. Plus, he just started to seem petty - I mean eating delicious food time and time again and your only job is to critique its imperfections however slight. It felt more like I was hanging out with a whiny boyfriend instead of watching an enjoyable heart throb.

HOWEVER......Tom stole my heart most recently when he testified in front of the House Education and Labor Committee on Improving Nutrition for America's Children Act. WHAT???!!!!! Tom Colicchio is more than just perfectly seared tuna, finely prepared pastas and delicious wines? Tom actually cares about children?! Not just his own, but all of America's! He also shared that he is the son of a lunch lady, Mrs. Beverly Colicchio. I can just imagine, Beverly with her gray hair and face oddly resembling her son's, serving us sloppy joes and mac and cheese at my elementary school. My favorite hot lunch item was the deep fried burritos - I loved them so much because of that chewy substance that they called "meat," but I knew it wasn't meat, it was something else - I did not care what.

Point is, Tom has revived my crush on an old pasty white bald man. Move over Woody Harrelson.