Picture: Yeats at Pepitas’ by John Sloan (1910), oil on canvas. National Gallery of Art. See below for more background.
A recap of the week at 17° Cork by Northwest – Washington, D.C.’s newest and 3rd best dining guide.
San Lorenzo – Heavyweight cooking in a middleweight-sized space at the Shaw Italian spot that opened last year.
Corduroy – The best D.C. restaurant you are probably not thinking about. For over a decade, Chef Tom Power has been cooking excellent food at his refined restaurant.
Added/Removed from Recommended Restaurant List:
Thankfully there were no places removed this week, after a brutal run of restaurant closures in the last few weeks. We have some additions to the list in the pipeline – so follow us on social media for updates.
We continued building our list of great wine shops in the District. This week we highlighted Weygandt Wines in Cleveland Park.
There were a few interesting stories around the intertubes to flag:
ESPN’s Baxter Holmes did a different kind of profile of San Antonio Spurs Coach Gregg Popovich. “Pop” is a huge food and wine aficionado, and Holmes documents the depth of his love. How big? When asked about his legacy – which includes multiple NBA championships – said its not coaching: “Food and wine. This is just a job.” Check out Holmes’ twitter feed for additional bits that didn’t make the piece.
Laura Reiley, recently hired by the Post to cover the business side of food, did a very disturbing piece on the proliferation of cheap caviar. She explains that as Russian and Iranian sources dried up, China stepped in and cut the price. This made it available in many more places but with troublesome consequences. Fraud is rampant, so there is a good chance the kind of caviar you are getting is mislabeled. It may not be caviar, and it may not even be an animal product. Also, Borax is commonly added to extend shelf-live.
Finally, a study proved what we all know but often forget: Twitter Is Not America. One of the interesting things to see, as this site stood up and went onto social media, is just what a cesspool Twitter is. Instagram is a more positive environment and Facebook drives more consistent traffic to the site. We’ve already adjusted our strategy to take into account the tragedy of the digital commons.
More on the Painting:
The painting is in the holdings of the National Gallery of Art, but not currently on view. From the NGA website:
“This scene depicts a lively gathering of poets and artists at Petitpas’, a French restaurant and boardinghouse in the Chelsea district of Manhattan. Shown from left to right around the table are literary critic Van Wyck Brooks; painter John Butler Yeats [father of the poet]; poet Alan Seeger; the artist’s wife, Dolly Sloan; Celestine Petipas (standing); fiction writer Robert Sneddon; miniature painter Eulabee Dix; John Sloan, the artist (corner); Fred King, the editor of Literary Digest; and, in the foreground, Vera Jelihovsky Johnston, wife of the Irish scholar Charles Johnston.”
Sloan was associated with the Ashcan artists who rose to prominence in New York around this time. Their leader was Robert Henri, and he provided their motto: “art for life’s sake,” rather than “art for art’s sake.” Many of the paintings from these artists capture the grittier side of city life. This one is more joyful in content and color.