What’s Happening in Washington, DC: April 20, 2015

Go for organic and biodynamic wines; get geeky during cocktail hour; and dine well on rabbit, venison, and other haute dishes

The Oval Room is hosting a four-course dinner featuring the wines of Le Cadeau Vineyard.

Based on our proclivity for the drink, the District could be considered the imbibing capital of our country as much as it’s the seat of our national government. We hold the distinction of being the city that drinks more wine, beer, and spirits per capita than any other city in the U.S. and this is also the kind of place where you can’t throw a rock without hitting someone with a Master’s Degree, Ph.D., J.D., or M.D. Book smart and street smart people are everywhere and that makes us a nerdy bunch. It also means we can sometimes take a scholarly approach to our leisure activities, nightlife, and dining scene—as long as the fun includes good food and drink that piques our intellectual curiosity and titillates our senses. Where else but in D.C. can you hang out with the Declaration of Independence and get the low down on the origins of cocktails?

EdibleDC Releases the Digital Version of its Spring 2015 Magazine
You can’t be in the know about the local, sustainable food scene in the DMV if you don’t read EdibleDC, which is now available in a digital version. Susan Able, Publisher and Editor-in-Chief, is the driving force behind this award-winning magazine that “celebrates the food culture of the capital region.” The spring installment highlights new food businesses opening in northeast D.C., a food-focused venture capital firm bringing pop-ups and new food businesses to the area, and pace setting women making wine in Virginia, and that’s just what we found in the first 10 pages. Read on to find where to buy artisanal pickles, cheese, and more.

History of the Cocktail Series to Launch May 16
We should all raise a toast to the National Archives Museum exhibition, "Spirited Republic: Alcohol in American History." This ten-part series of events celebrates America’s love affair with booze and cocktails and traces the history back to the naissance of our nation. Each event in the exhibition series features acclaimed spirits and cocktail gurus waxing poetic about our Spirited Republic and covers a different era in our drinking history, beginning with B.C.--Before the Cocktail on Saturday, May 16 at 3 p.m., and ending with The Platinum Age of the Cocktail on Saturday, December 12 at 3 p.m. The series runs through January 10, 2016 in the Lawrence F. O'Brien Gallery at the National Archives and for a limited time you save an additional 10% on tickets if you buy the 10-series package.

Le Cadeau Wine Dinner at The Oval Room
For impeccable service, world class food, and a refined yet relaxed ambience, few D.C. restaurants match The Oval Room’s understated elegance. On April 28, at 6:30 p.m. they are hosting a four-course dinner featuring the wines of Le Cadeau Vineyard, an award-winning winery that’s known as “the rockiest vineyard in Oregon.” The real gift here is the marriage of executive chef John Melfi’s cuisine paired with phenomenal wines whose story will be told by owners Deb and Tom Mortimer. Le Cadeau’s fragrant Pinot Noirs take center stage including Cote Est, Equinoxe, and Diversité, with bit parts from second label Aubichon Chardonnay and Pinot Noir Reserve Mountain. The wines accompany fragrant dishes like savory rabbit ragout served with house-made pappardelle pasta, English peas, and chanterelle mushrooms; roasted venison with smoked avocado purée, honey cap mushrooms, strawberry, and rhubarb. If you are lucky enough to snag one of the coveted seats, the price is $150 per person all inclusive and you can make reservations by calling (202) 463-8700.

Organic and Biodynamic Loire Valley Wine Dinner
Make your dinner plans for Earth Day by reserving a seat at Bastille’s contemporary French feast with fantastic wines. Chefs Christophe and Michelle Poteaux are the culinary force behind this mod French boîte in Alexandria. On Wednesday, April 22 at 6:30 p.m., they will serve a five-course meal paired with organic and biodynamic wines from the Loire Valley, which was one of France’s early pioneering regions in biodynamic viticulture back in the early 1990s. The menu features modern versions of classic French dishes like mâche salad with Touraine Boucheron cheese, hazelnuts, and Anjou pear, and roasted rabbit with rhubarb, tarragon, spring onions, and heirloom carrots. The wines demonstrate the variety and quality of wines from the Loire and include a bubbly Muscadet Sèvre et Maine, a garnet Gamay Noir, and a charming Quarts de Chaume, all for the price of $119 per person with wine and $69 per person without featured wines, exclusive of tax and gratuity. Call (703) 519-3776 or email to reserve your seats.

Teutonic Wine Dinner at Boss Shepherd’s
On Thursday, April 30, Boss Shepherd’s is hosting a wine dinner featuring German-style wines from Oregon produced by the Teutonic Wine Company in Portland, Oregon. Winemaker Barnaby Tuttle will be on hand to discuss his pairing choices and share why he favors all cool climate, all the time. These are terroir-focused wines that speak of place and executive chef Jeremy Waybright has designed a mouthwatering four-course menu to honor their singularity. You can expect to dine on hand made pastas, pork belly, duck and foie gras, and panna cotta served with two German imports and three Oregon wines. The evening starts with a Sekt, includes a Willamette Valley Riesling and Pinot Meunier, a Pinot Noir, and a Mosel Icewine—all for just $79 per person excluding tax and gratuity. The party starts at 6:30 p.m. and you can reserve a seat by calling (202) 347-2677 or by email.

Summer Whitford is the D.C. City Guide Editor at The Daily Meal and the DC Wine Examiner. You can follow her on Twitter @FoodandWineDiva.

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