Young and Hungry

Pizza Vinoteca Closes in Ballston

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Pizza Vinoteca closed last night in Ballston after just under six months of serving grilled pizza and wine. The restaurant isn't the only one to struggle in that location: Protein Bar, which had a shop in the same building, also closed last year after last than eight months because of the lack of foot traffic.

CEO Ari Malcolm had reworked the concept before it opened at 800 N. Glebe Road in December. The restaurant's original New York location, which closed just a few weeks before the one here opened, boasted digital kiosks and iPads on every table for ordering. While the Ballston outpost had some high-tech touches—like an argon gas-based wine preservation and dispensing system as well as a custom-made 900-degree grill with 16 burners, infrared heat, and three wood chip smoke boxes—it didn't have the same gadgets.

At the time of Pizza Vinoteca's Ballston opening, Malcolm told Y&H the New York location's technology somewhat overshadowed the food and drinks. But he hadn't ruled out electronic ordering systems for a fast-casual concept. Malcolm initially said he hoped to open a grab-and-go version of Pizza Vinoteca in the D.C. area if all went well in Ballston. Needless to say, those plans are now on hold.

Photo by Jessica Sidman

Last Night’s Leftovers: Dining Toddlers Edition

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What happens when food writers bring their toddlers to fancy restaurants [Post]

16 questions hipster bars need to answer [BuzzFeed]

Chef Robert Wiedmaier plans two new Maryland restaurants. [Washingtonian]

12 new frozen and frost drinks to try this summer [Zagat]

Sally's Middle Name opens on H Street NE today. [PoPville]

The Corner Tex-Mix, now open in Arlington, combines Salvadoran, Mexican, American, and Mediterranean food. [ARLnow]

Restaurant Eve adds another lunch deal. [Eater]

Photo via Shutterstock

Tupelo Honey Cafe Opens With Southern Comfort Food and Late-Night Brunch

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Brunch has somehow morphed into a meal that encompasses everything up until dinner on weekends. At Tupelo Honey Cafe, which opened in Courthouse yesterday, it's expanded into late night thing, too.

The Southern-themed restaurant, a transplant from Asheville, N.C., offers a "moonrise" brunch from 10 p.m. to 1 a.m. on Fridays and Saturdays (in addition to a regular brunch). Late-night eats include bacon biscuit slider with orange jalapeño marmalade and cream cheese, sweet potato pancakes, and chorizo, egg, and pimento cheese tacos. A $15 roasted yellow tomato bloody mary called the Queen Mary is garnished with pimento cheese-stuffed olives, pickled okra, lemon and lime wedges, celery, asparagus, pickled jalapeño, cherry tomato, and lime salt rim. Somehow there's room for vodka or white whiskey in there. Read more Tupelo Honey Cafe Opens With Southern Comfort Food and Late-Night Brunch

D.C.’s First Commercial Rooftop Farming Company Launches With a Garden Above Oyamel

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Occasionally, chefs are ambitious enough to build a rooftop garden, but a new company called Up Top Acres, the first commercial rooftop farming business in D.C., is looking to vastly expand the city's urban agriculture.

Up Top Acres comes from three D.C. natives who went to Wilson High School together. Kristof Grina studied agriculture at the University of Vermont and spent the past few years managing an organic farm in Maryland, Kathleen O'Keefe majored in urban planning at Yale and works for the Downtown BID, and Jeffrey Prost-Greene is a business major from the University of Massachusetts Amherst.

For its pilot farm, Up Top Acres is working with ThinkFoodGroup to grow microgreens, herbs, and edible flowers on the rooftop of the building that houses Oyamel. Everything they grow will be used on the menus of José Andrés' downtown restaurants, including Jaleo, Zaytinya, Minibar, and China Chilcano. Grina got connected with Andrés after helping the restaurateur with a garden at his house. Read more D.C.’s First Commercial Rooftop Farming Company Launches With a Garden Above Oyamel

Last Night’s Leftovers: Morning Coffee Edition

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Why the worst time to drink coffee is actually the morning [Post]

Lupo Verde owners plan a second location in Palisades. [WBJ]

Cava Grill to open downtown Silver Spring location. [Eater]

10 suburban restaurants worth a drive this summer [Zagat]

Ri Ra Irish Pub closes in Clarendon. [ARLnow]

Graffiti protests Subway coming to Mount Pleasant. [PoPville]

Photo via Shutterstock

Where to Drink During SAVOR Week

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SAVOR, the Brewers Association’s annual craft beer and food extravaganza, returns to the National Building Museum for a sixth year of hob-knobbing and hops-gobbling this weekend. Tickets for the fancy affair have long been sold out, but that doesn’t mean you can’t join the fun. Once again, bars and restaurants have put together a week’s worth of events celebrating beer, including many from the brewers in town for SAVOR, as well as other breweries from D.C. and around the world.

Out of over 70 events to choose from, here are highlights for each day of the week:

MONDAY

4 Hands Tap Takeover at ChurchKey, 6 p.m. to close
Welcome St. Louis’ 4 Hands Brewing to D.C. by sampling from 10 drafts. Standouts include Madagascar, an Imperial milk stout aged in bourbon barrels with whole vanilla beans, and Super Flare, an IPA with mango, guava, and Brettanomyces (wild yeast) brewed in collaboration with Wicked Weed Brewing. As with most tap takeovers, there is no admission fee; beers are pay as you go.

Monday Night Beer Club at Pizzeria Paradiso Georgetown, 6 to 10 p.m.
This month’s meeting features 12 beers from London’s Weird Beard Brewing, and D.C.’s very own 3 Stars. Among them will be Paradiso: Sun, a rustic farmhouse ale brewed with cedar tips that is part of a series inspired by Dante’s Divine Comedy. Don’t forget: Entry is granted via the restaurant’s back door only. (Luckily, there’ no secret knock.)

Something Different:

The Craft of Comedy at The Big Hunt, 7 to 11 p.m.
In its third year, this stand-up, drink-up combo will feature local comedians and 10 beers from five breweries: 3 Stars, Atlas Brew Works, Lagunitas, Sam Adams, and Victory. Admission is free, and beers are pay as you go, with each beer ordered offering the chance to win a pair of tickets to SAVOR and other beer-centric raffle prizes. Read more Where to Drink During SAVOR Week

Last Night’s Leftovers: Put An Egg On it Edition

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11 places where you can top your dishes with a fried egg [Eater]

The eight best wings in D.C. [Thrillist]

How Michael Pollan, Alice Waters, and Slow Food theorists got it all wrong. [Washingtonian]

D.C. restaurants translated into emojis [Express]

Tips for eating cheap in D.C. [DCist]

Try some of Filipino cuisine’s most challenging dishes at Kalye, a two-day pop-up [Post]

Photo of Duke's Grocery by Jessica Sidman

Dacha Beer Garden Launches Brunch This Weekend, Indoor Cafe Coming Soon

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Dacha Beer Garden has come a long way from the days when guests used porta-potties and brought Chinese food from the carryout next door. When it reopened this season, the Shaw spot had real restrooms and real food. And beginning this weekend, Dacha will also offer  brunch.

Every Saturday and Sunday from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., the beer garden will serve dishes like Belgian waffles with fruit, house-smoked salmon, and a spread of sausages. Poland-born chef Michal Matejczuk is also serving a bagel sandwich stacked with a sunny-side up egg, bacon, fried green tomato, and pimento cheese on one side; and a lentil-barley pancake, caramelized onions, and beer cheese spread on the other. Dishes range from $10 to $17 (tax included)  Brunch-goers can upgrade their meal to include bottomless mimosas for $15. The beer garden will serve beer cocktails and mead mimosas in addition to its usual brews.

Dacha will also be opening a cafe and market on the first floor of the building it took over next door, formerly China Express. Co-owner Dmitri Chekaldin says it's expected to open by the end of June. The cafe will serve coffee, pastries, and sandwiches as well as sell groceries like milk, bread, and local produce. The owners plan to convert the building's upper two floors into a bar and restaurant over the next couple years.

UPDATE:  Dacha initially offered a prix-fixe brunch for $32. They've now switched to an a la carte menu.

Photo by Jessica Sidman

Dine n Dash With Chef José Andrés Returns June 9

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Join Chef José Andrés and World Central Kitchen for a culinary experience on June 9. 12 restaurants, 5 food trucks, one night. There will be entertainment and an after-party to accompany a night of craft cocktails and specialty plates.

At Dine n Dash, you choose your starting restaurant, then you will dine and dash to all restaurants and food trucks from 6-9pm. All guests are invited to a special after-party with José Andrés and the band City of the Sun. VIP guests will enjoy Pedicab support, VIP areas at various restaurants, and additional seating and cocktails and desserts at the after-party.

All proceeds benefit José Andrés’ non-profit, World Central Kitchen. WCK finds smart solutions to hunger and poverty in Haiti, the Dominican Republic, Zambia and more. José Andrés and his team are training the next generation of cooks in Haiti, building clean stoves and work spaces, educating cooks and students about food safety and sanitation, all while empowering communities and strengthening economies.

Grab your tickets at dinendash.info and enjoy top DC food and cocktails. We’ll see you there!

Last Night’s Leftovers: Matchbox Expansion

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Matchbox seeks $11 million for 48 locations by 2020. [Post]

The new Washington Nationals wine has nothing to do with Washington. [Washingtonian]

Nine restaurants where you can find soup dumplings [Eater]

More of the best barbecue in the D.C. area [DCist]

Hop, Cask and Barrel liquor store coming to Wisconsin Avenue NW. [PoPville]

A guide to Negronis [BYT]

Photo by Jessica Sidman

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