Dreaming of Spain in the City

ARROZ

901 Massachusetts Avenue, NW, Washington, DC 20001 (https://arrozbymic.com/)

*** and 1/2 (Excellent/Outstanding)

“Life moves pretty fast…” at least according to Ferris Bueller. I initially intended for this blog to detail dining adventures on a regular basis. But life has a tendency of throwing curveballs, and we’ve been busy as of late…just not eating our way through the DMV. However, with a recent chance to celebrate my birthday, I jumped at the opportunity to head to the well reviewed Arroz. Mike Isabella continues to spread his wings: this time delving into the flavors of Spain, Portugal, and Morocco. Spoiler alert: I hope to find these flavor profiles in more places within reach. If Isabella is able to execute this well as his empire continues to grow, the DMV will be that much luckier.

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On the Road with CPT: Charleston

The first time I came across Chef Sean Brock was on the beloved PBS Show, The Mind of a Chef. Here was this bearded, bespectacled fella, giggling along with Chef David Chang as they ate way-too spicy Kentucky Hot Chicken and then pounded whiskey at a distillery. But then he started talking about heritage cooking and utilizing South Carolina ingredients that were long forgotten; some of which nearly disappeared. The pride he showed in describing his love of food was inspiring. It was while watching this passionate side of Brock, that I made sure to make a mental note to put his flagship restaurant, Husk, on my list of must-try restaurants. So when my wife and I were searching for a honeymoon destination in the U.S., I threw out Charleston as a possibility. Spoiler alert: between the views and the food, Charleston did not disappoint.

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A Pillar of Penn Quarter

FIOLA

601 Pennsylvania Avenue, NW, Washington, DC 20004 (http://fioladc.com/)

*** and 1/2 (Excellent/Outstanding)

Fiola, the Italian fine dining bastion from Chef Fabio Trabocchi, has been well established for some years now. Recently, however, the original DC establishment from Chef Trabocchi has had much of its press stolen by his newest restaurant, the seafood-heavy, Fiola Mare. But, we may be seeing a resurgence from the former. With its supposed top-notch pasta and seafood, along with a recent shining review from Tom Sietsema in The Washington Post, Fiola was among the top choices in searching for a location for my mom’s milestone birthday celebration. And after our dining experience, there is no denying that the Trabocchi original continues to shine bright.

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