Weekend in DC: Day II

In a rush…Shann and I moved to a new apartment in the East Village this past weekend. We now live with Steph and Darien, close friends also from Hawai’i, in a rather adorable 4-bdrm. Much cleaning, unpacking, and shopping to complete. Short posts this week – waiting for Time Warner to install internet in the apartment!

Now, heading back two weeks for a weekend trip to DC…

Saturday morning at Cafe Bonaparte in Georgetown begins with…

…iced lattes…

…and warm cappuccinos.

Then, crepes with caramelized onions, Italian sausages, green pepper and Fontina…

…another with eggs and Swiss cheese…

…and one more, featuring wild mushrooms, onions, scallions, ricotta, and goat cheese. The weekend morning menu also offers a range of breakfast omelets in addition to sweet crepes outfitted in dreams of honey-yoghurt with pistachios, caramelized mangos with lemon gelato, and a classic Nutella and cream.

Post-meal, we took a leisurely stroll through the waterfront pier, but hankering for something sweet and chilly, something like, say oh, gelato…we popped in for an afternoon stop at Dolcezza…

…where we oogled flavours of Yellow Peach Bourbon, Dulce de Leche, Avocado Honey Orange and Counter Culture Tiramisu.

Off to the side were little pyramids of churros organized on white porcelain stands, plain and piped with dulce de leche. Visually tempting, but lacking the lure and appeal of warm churros fresh out of the fryer.

I finally settled upon a scoop each of Peach Prosecco and Lemon Opal Basil…both beautiful with a taste true to name but lacking the vibrant boldness of L’Arte del Gelato in NYC. I’m well aware that fruit based gelatos are lighter than their chocolate/espresso/dulce de leche counterparts, but L’Arte manages to successfully retain honest fruits flavours while bringing about a lusciously rich product. Dolcezza verged on the end of tooo light.

Shann went with the Formosa Plum, while Nat, Darien, and Kelly selected a trio of equally vibrant flavours – all based on summer fruits.

We whittled away the dusk hours over iced coffees, catching up on the last two (or was it four? – how time flies!) years since we’ve left Hawai’i. Dusk settled into night, and after a short nap back the apartment we headed out to Dukem for dinner.

Four combination platters were shared between the seven of us. I cannot recall the name of every dish, but personal favourites included the Minchet Abesh (chopped beef braised in a ginger and garlic sauce), Melasena Sember (tripe and tongue with carrots and jalapenos in a ginger sauce and the Lamb Wot (lamb stew).

It must be the curious tang of injera, or something about the combination of meats, injera and eating with your fingers, but if the food did not eventually come to an end (and by end, I mean, having finished the dishes), I feel as if I could continue on eating Ethiopian forever. Unlike Chinese or Italian, Ethiopian food feels oddly weightless in my stomach while in the process of consumption…in a manner, I suppose, not so different from how spicy food makes some people hungrier.

Cafe Bonaparte
1522 Wisconsin Ave NW
Washington, DC 20007
(202) 333-8830

Dolcezza Gelato
1560 Wisconsin Ave NW
Washington, DC 20007
(202) 333-4646

Dukem
1114 U St NW
Washington, DC 20009
(202) 667-8735

Weekend in DC: Day 1


Shann and I took off to DC for the weekend, leaving NYC Friday afternoon and returning just a touch past midnight on Sunday. We were there to visit a few of our closest friends, Kelly, Darien, and Nat, all of whom we grew up with in Hawai’i. Good Ethiopian, gelato, the farmer’s market and bakeries were on the agenda, but friends were doubtlessly first priority.

After a groggy five hour trip, the bus dropped us off, blurry-eyed and hungry at Dupont Circle. We stepped off and the first the first object to meet my glance was the bright Krispy Kreme sign flashing “hot” and “now.”

“Oh. Shann. Doughnuts.”
“Doughuts?”
“I think we want doughnuts…no, I know we want doughnuts.”
“For real”
“You want?”
“Let’s do it!”
“Want to split one since were having dinner right after?”
“Okay.”
“Or we can split two.”
“Yah, that sounds better.”

And so, fresh off the bus, we started off a very pleasant weekend with two doughnuts: the original and a glazed chocolate cake. As the very kind gentleman behind the counter threw in an extra original doughnut, I couldn’t help but wonder, are all people in DC this friendly?

We met Kelly along with a few friends back at their apartment – a fantastic four-bedroom with a kitchen bigger than both our bedrooms, and a living room larger than our entire apartment. My notion of living space and accompanying rental prices has been thoroughly warped after living in NYC for over a year. But even with all those factors, I wouldn’t trade life in NYC for anything else at the moment.

Zorba’s was on the dinner agenda, a casual Greek restaurant perfect for a low-key night with friends. Oddly enough I ate Greek fairly often in Hawai’i, favouring the now gone Greek Corner right outside Kahala Mall, as well as that other restaurant across from Bubbies in Manoa. New York, or rather, the life I live in New York, has not met much in the way of Greek, though I’m sure it’s out there. I kept it simple that night, with the Fasólia Plakeé featuring white beans baked with onions, tomatoes and parsley, a side of dolmathes and Greek salad.

Shann went with the Yéro Plate with salad and french fries. Speaking of fries, I’ve had a most intense french fry craving for the last two weeks, and I think/hope some of it has rubbed off on Shann. No more than a second after swallowing my morning vitamins, or stepping out of the shower, the craving kicks without warning. When I crave a particular food object, I crave it. The worst is when you wake in the middle of the night, lost in the depths of a french fry fantasy.

Kelly had the Shish kebab platter while Chrissy did the Ionian Salad and Cathie dined on the lighter end with tabouli and pita.

Post-dinner we walked around Dupont Circle for a bit – the weather was nice and quiet after-dinner walks are best types of walks. We stopped in at Sweetlicks for ice cream, operated by a very nice man in a very strange shop. The sign outside proclaimed “homemade” though I remain highly doubtful on the matter. Nonetheless, my coconut with chocolate shards was pleasant enough, though I found Kelly’s mint Oreo particularly lust-worthy.

It was early when we returned to the apt, but the clock somehow turned to 3am before we called it a night. Time flies fast with six girls, television and a guinea pig named Miso.

Zorba’s Cafe
1612 20th St NW
Washington, DC 20009
(202) 387-8555

Sweetlicks
1704 R St NW
Washington, DC 20009
(202) 797-2736