Where To Spend National Food Days in DC: February 2017

Well, here we are. One month in to this thing called 2017.

Take a break from the 24-hour news circus and plan your food calendar for this month.


February 9 – National Bagels and Lox Day

Where you can celebrate:

  1. Bethesda Bagels. Easily my favorite bagel shop in the District, and probably where I’ll be on February 9.
  2. Bagels Etc. The cutest little one-room bagel shop on P Street NW will definitely meet if not exceed your lox n’ bagel expectations.
  3. Brooklyn Bagel Bakery. If you’re in Arlington, stop by and get the CLASSIC “NY lox” with capers, onions and tomato.
  4. Buffalo & Bergen. In NoMA, don’t miss the “foxy loxy” signature breakfast sandwich with hot lox, egg & cheese, capers, and red onions. Lawd have mercy.


February 13 – National “Italian Food” Day

Where you can celebrate:

  1. Filomena. Possibly the best Italian food gem in Georgetown. I want to propose to their “Festivale In Venezia” dish, with fettuccine and lobster meat, topped with crab meat.
  2. Casa Luca. A simple, yet stunning menu. The spaghetti comes with a duck egg sunny side up and 3 g of black truffle (!!!).
  3. Fiola. If you’re into changing seasonal menus (and you should be), you must make a reservation at Fiola. Burrata with white grapefruit, spaghetti with tiger prawns; you get it.
  4. Centrolina. Can’t leave our baby off this list. Head to this popular City Center eatery and enjoy branzino (Mediterranean sea bass) or gnocchi with rosemary butter.
  5. Red Hen. A total knockout of an Italian restaurant, you can find Red Hen tucked away in Bloomingdale near Boundary Stone. Caramelized scallops with black truffle polenta and Tuscan chicken liver mousse. A pricier venue, but worth the splurge.


February 18 – National “Drink Wine” Day

Where you can celebrate:

  1. ENO Wine Bar. I went to ENO during its opening week several years ago and was instantly charmed. Airy interior, killer burrata, and completely reasonable prices for delicious wine.
  2. Floriana. I recommend this restaurant for all days for all reasons, not the least of which is their excellent wine selection and romantic ambiance. Plus, 50% off bottles on Wednesday and Sunday.
  3. Iron Gate. Hidden away on N and 17th Street NW, Iron Gate is home to some of the most knowledgeable sommeliers I’ve met in DC. Cozy up with a glass of Malbec under the starry ivy canopy on their patio, complete with bonfires and throw blankets.
  4. Jug & Table. On the main drag of Adams Morgan, Jug & Table is located below Roofers Union and offers expertly selected wines paired with vinyl records playing all night long. Enjoy a full “jug” of wine for $25 during happy hour!
  5. Vinoteca. Vinoteca is a classic choice to celebrate this holiday. Seeing as February 18 falls on a Saturday this year, I recommend going for brunch, when you can take advantage of their Bacon Peanut Butter Sandwich or the Steak & Eggs Poutine.


February 22 – National Margarita Day

Where you can celebrate:

  1. Rosa Mexicano. Trust me, it’s not a cliché to get your marg on at this wildly successful franchise. These folks are EXPERTS, especially when it comes to mezcal. My favorite thing is the crushed tequila worm salt they put on the rim.
  2. Oyamel. There’s a reason the Obama family eats at this Penn Quarter hot spot. José Andrés serves up some of the most beautiful and innovative margaritas in town.
  3. Lauriol Plaza. I’ll be honest – I ONLY go here for the frozen swirl margaritas – they look like tequila candy in a pitcher! Go for their generous 3:00-7:00 happy hour.
  4. El Rey. Good vibes, great tacos and classic margs – all this and more at the U St eatery.


February 24 – National Tortilla Chip Day

Where you can celebrate:

I’m interpreting this as National Nachos Day. Here are some places that have seriously decadent nachos.

  1. Mission. Always a lively spot during happy hour, Mission in Dupont has my favorite “Nachos Volcan” with queso blanco oaxaca, cheddar, jalapenos, charred corn, beans, pico de gallo and guac.  You can add chorizo, shrimp or carnitas for $5, and I always do.
  2. American Ice Company. I’ve ended more nights than I care to admit with my face in a plate of their brisket nachos.
  3. Black Jack. Hidden above Pearl Dive Oyster Palace, Black Jack offers duck confit nachos with pepper jack and tomatillo-avocado salsa. Duck. Confit. Nachos.


February 25 – National Clam Chowder Day

Where you can celebrate:

  1. Hank’s Oyster Bar. Hank’s is near and dear to my heart; not only do they serve the freshest oysters in town, but I can get a bowl of true New England clam chowder whenever I’m home sick for Cape Cod.
  2. Luke’s Lobster. With locations in Georgetown AND Penn Quarter, Luke’s can help you get your chowder fix all over town. I mean, you should probably ALSO get a lobster roll, because they’re insane, but try to stick with the theme, people.
  3. Old Ebbitt Grill. Old Ebbitt, as any local will tell you, is a DC institution. My favorite way to experience it is to hit up their late night menu mid-week which has the bacon-clam chowder and crab cake sliders.


February 27 – National Chili Day

Where you can celebrate:

  1. Ben’s Chili Bowl. If I have to explain why this is #1, you and I cannot be friends.
  2. Hill Country Barbecue. This made our list due to one particular dish: the Chili Mac. Texas Red Chili served over Longhorn Cheddar Mac & Cheese. Swoon.
  3. Glen’s Garden Market. Everything at Glen’s is tasty and fresh, but I’m especially fond of their beef & bean chili. Working around the corner from their Dupont location is a struggle.

Talk about the month of FOOD love – so many reasons to eat and party! Don’t forget Mardi Gras on February 28th, and check back next month for the March Calendar!

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