Week in Review – 6/20/21

Image: Bernt Federau, Place de l’Alma, Paris, (1960).

After a reprieve, summer is starting to bite, and we can start to relish those random drops from A/C condensation as we walk past apartment buildings.  On the upside, cicadas have nearly finished their (literal) orgy of sound and squashing.  As for the D.C. dining, we added three spots to our recommended restaurant list – two of them homages to food from childhood that are to-go only.  So, let’s turn to the week that was on our site and in other D.C dining news.

Updates to the Recommended Restaurant List


Lucky Danger – Chef Tim Ma took over the Prather’s on the Alley space to do a take-out/delivery only homage to American-style Chinese food.  Not surprisingly, it is very good.

Taqueria Xochi – China Chilcano’s shutdown last year gave Chef Teresa Padilla a chance to start a tiny shop next to Service Bar on U Street that focuses on the sandwiches and tacos of her home region in central Mexico.  They built on an early buzz to create a success story.  With drinking on U Street picking up, we suspect that they will continue to bloom.

Gypsy Kitchen – The first D.C. outpost of an Atlanta-based restaurant group is also stacked with alumni of José Andrés places. It beat our expectations.

Other News

There is lots of news this week.  On a straight dining news level, several places are now opening up their dining rooms and even their bars.  We cannot recall all of them, but Red Hen and Thip Khao jump to mind.  And Tim Carman dropped a sandwich guide like a bomb on the region’s foodie community.

Chef Johanna Hellrigl is stepping back from Mercy Me, though the solid foundation she laid with the menu is not going to fade anytime soon.  And she is not that far away if they have any questions.  We wish her the best.

Also stepping aside is the director of the Mayor’s Office of Nightlife and Culture, Shawn Townsend.  Commonly referred to as the Night Mayor, Townsend generally got high marks for his work, especially over the last year.

The Boston-based bakery shop Tatte keeps going with news that they are taking over the old Momofuku DC spot.

Barred in DC sniffed out that the Sheppard is coming back to a spot in Mt. Pleasant.  A follow up exchange indicated that they are changing the name.  The original name was a nod to the Texas Senator that was the father of prohibition.  The ironic nature of the name no longer works.  2021 is not 2016 in many ways.

Laura Hayes finds another great story.  This one about resilience and the hope of giving back.  Worth a read.

Hayes was also one of several people that were pointing out that the crazy idea of a subterranean miniature golf course in Dupont aimed at adults just might be fun and work.

9th and U:  There was a strange confluence of unrelated and disturbing incidents last week on this stretch of U Street.  There were shots fired, one of which broke a window at Gogi Yogi.  More prominent was the violent ejection of a patron from Nellie’s that provoked protests and led to the temporary shutdown of the bar.  There was also a disturbing incident with a machete-wielding youth outside Shaw’s Tavern not too far away.

Levi Dalton (if you are interested in wine at all, give his podcast a listen) has pointed out a tragedy in the French wine world.  A reminder that we are not done with absorbing the impact of the last year.

In a story that must be more than annoying for Pizzeria Paradiso, but is kinda funny in its absurdity, someone stole its portable pizza oven.  It happened last year, but there was a recent sighting in Maryland.  Free pizza to those with information leading to its return.

There were also two less serious food-related crimes this week.  First, there is an imposter In-and-Out Burger food truck.  I fear what they think is animal style.  There was also a journalistic crime committed in the pages of the New York times.  The act was one of a series of snide arrogance (my how the expertise cited in that lede paragraph wilted) toward the District, an assault of cliches, including the crucial element of this type of crime:  a Cafe Milano reference.  The perpetrators remain at large free to write again.  The whole story seemed to be a self-own on the Times, but I’m not sure they realize it.


We’d like to say you could not get content like this from anywhere, but nearly everything we cite is someone else’s work.  But we do pull it together for you!  And we have a handy dining guide for D.C. with  300+ recommended restaurants that you can sort by cuisine, neighborhood, and current operating status (dine-in and/or take-out, etc.) in either LIST or MAP format.  Now that you can’t get anywhere and that is all our work.

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