What’s Happening in Washington, DC
It’s been said that Christmas is the season of giving, so don’t be a Scrooge. Instead, find a few cool ways to give back this week. If you are already thinking of heading to the islands, you can put the money to good use and help families in Haiti cook by providing safe, clean, sustainable stoves. After the devastating hurricane, many homes and fuel sources were wiped out, and people are struggling just to cook and eat. You can also make your money count locally by supporting neighborhood food and drink businesses in Columbia Heights and their small business initiatives. And if you’re in a posh mood, head to one of the Washington, D.C. restaurants that actually deserves its recently awarded Michelin star and get geeky about tea. D.C. is a blast during the holidays with greenery festooned monuments and twinkling lights, so embrace the frenzy and enjoy it over a few nibbles and tasty cocktails.
Dec. 1: Voodoo Manoir Celebration of Haitian Culture to Benefit Haitian Families in Need
Help devastated families in Haiti while celebrating Haitian cuisine and culture in a historic mansion dedicated to visionary leader Josephine Butler. On Thursday, from 7:30 p.m. to midnight, sustainable energy company Hawthorne Hemlock will transform the mansion into a small slice of Haiti with a five-course menu prepared by Haitian-born chef Stephan Berrouet Durand; craft cocktails from Vieux Carré; and an exhibition of photographs of Haiti and its people from artist Deborah Terry. The event is being held to support the International Lifeline Fund and each ticket ($225 per person) sold will provide an energy-efficient, sustainable stove for a family in Haiti.
Dec. 2: "A Taste of Columbia Heights" at Columbia Heights Night
If you appreciate the culinary diversity of Columbia Heights and want to put your money where your mouth is, join supporters of the Columbia Heights Initiative on Friday from 7 p.m. to midnight at the Columbia Heights Civic Plaza as they host the first Columbia Heights Night. The event will feature a selection of cuisines prepared by the corridor’s favorite restaurants and food vendors accompanied by seasonal cocktails, dancing, and live music and entertainment. The inaugural event will celebrate the neighborhood’s diverse businesses and residents, as well as raise money for initiatives that enhance and promote commerce within Columbia Heights. Tickets for the evening are $75 and are 100-percent tax deductible. A ticket gains access to the event and includes four drink tickets and an amazing dinner buffet.
Dec. 17: Masters of Food & Wine Event at Blue Duck Tavern
If you think you know oolong from British breakfast tea, consider putting your palate and tea knowledge to the test at Blue Duck Tavern’s Rare Tea tasting on Saturday, Dec. 17 at 1 p.m. The tasting is in the Mezzanine Loft, where incredible works of art from The Philips Collection vie for attention with six rare and vintage teas paired with inspired small plates. The price is $85 per person, not including tax and gratuity, and reservations (by email or phone at  419-6620) are necessary because it’s even harder to get a seat now that Blue Duck has earned a much-deserved Michelin star.