Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Washington, D.C., an Unsuccessful Search for a Fortune Cookie, & Beer

If you follow me on Facebook or Twitter, you may know I recently returned from Washington, D.C. I went to our nation's capital to visit my college roommate, Flo (whose recent "appearance" on the blog can be found here), to meet her new baby, Lucy (about whom I could gush for hours, but that's not the purpose of this blog), and to visit my Audriella (whose recent move from Austin to D.C. I chronicled here).

A glimpse of Baby Lucy, who was playing ducky that day.

I stayed with Audriella and her boyfriend, Mr. Jones, whom you may remember from his infamous fortune-eating incident back in December of 2009.

My hosts in their new digs.

My first night in D.C. the three of us had great sushi at Banana Leaves, a pan-Asian restaurant located near Dupont Circle. We followed that up with dessert and book shopping at Kramerbooks, which may be my favorite bookstore (wait, wait, wait- I could never diss The Strand like that). However, Kramer's does offer a bar/cafe situation that I absolutely adore, and on this particular night the musical stylings of singer/songwriter Acacia Sears made everything even better (as if that was possible).

The next night we went out for dinner at Top Thai in Crystal City, Virginia. (I think- I don't know if CC is just a neighborhood of Arlington or what. Actually, now that I think about it, that's quite possible. I'M FROM TEXAS, PEOPLE.) Dinner was delicious yet again, BUT...are you sensing a theme here? NO FORTUNE COOKIES.

Being the experienced diner that she is, Audriella owns the Fearless Critic's DC Area Restaurant Guide. (I have the Austin edition and have been pleased with the reviews and suggestions.) Using this and Urbanspoon, we immediately began searching for Chinese restaurants. We had planned to visit D.C.'s Chinatown on our quest for fortune cookies, so we narrowed our search to that neighborhood. New Big Wong is the Fearless Critic's top choice in Chinatown, and is also the Washingtonian's choice for "Best of Chinatown." Unfortunately, the restaurant is only open until 5:00 pm and we were searching for dinner options on a Tuesday night. The first and second rankings were inaccessible by train, which left them out of the running for us on that particular evening. However, China Garden in Arlington, Virginia, was ranked third on the Fearless Critic's list, was easily accessible by metro, and was open until 10:00 pm. To top it off, we called to confirm that they offered fortune cookies. They did. Winner.

And then my Audriella remembered that the Champs sports bar near her apartment has $2. beer specials on Tuesday nights. She had Miller Lite; I had Blue Moon. She had a Reuben; I had Fish & Chips.

The following evening we went out for Ethiopian food at Dukem on U Street. There was a fish involved then, too, but I'll spare you the details. Beer: St. George. 

After dinner, we met up with a friend of mine at Bar Pilar, where they happen to have Magic Hat #9 on draft. Having had it bottled and on draft, I can honestly say that it's better on draft.

At Bar Pilar

Perhaps you recall my last Magic Hat post, where I wrote about the wacky sayings found on the undersides of the bottlecaps. Thanks to my friends at Apothecary in Austin, Texas, I've amassed a bit of a collection of Magic Hat caps since that post:

This round of Magic Hat wisdom tells us, "Philosophy is not a luxury item," "Life is not a dress rehearsal," "Embrace alternative methods this time," "To truly live, you have to give," "Minds awaken on roads less taken," and asks, "How did you get like this?"

As my search for a fortune cookie in D.C. was ultimately unsuccessful but I did consume some Magic Hat #9, this seemed like an excellent opportunity to share more of the sometimes witty but always interesting sayings that accompany this Not Quite Pale Ale.


  1. Score one for DC!
    I'm not sure who/what DC is competing against, but still, I believe the above quote to be applicable.
    And: I can't believe you found out the singer at KramerBooks, when did you have time to do that; also, how big of dorks are we for calling a Chinese food restaurant to see if they give out fortune cookies? No wonder the lady was confused.

  2. Ok, I just got really thirsty...I'm sorry, were you saying something?

  3. I just have to comment that baby Lucy (even just the glimpse of her ducky feet) is and sounds adorable! Glad you had a fun and eventful trip to write about!


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