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Restaurant Week II

This is my twice yearly public service blog about Restaurant Week in DC (August 24 – 30). Do you take advantage of this? Restaurant Week takes place twice a year, once in the frigid cold of the post-holidays and then again in the dog days of August. Times when diners are likely to be few. For all the details, Google “restaurant week dc.” For those out of the area, many cities schedule these. A three course lunch (starter, main, and dessert) is only $20.09.

We’ve been doing this for a few years now. We have a group in our office that book lunch at some participating eatery every day of the bargain week. Not the same folks for every place. You know, some really like Italian, but aren’t so keen on Indian, whatever. I’m pretty adventurous when it comes to food; Ethiopian, Peruvian, bring it on. Pass the curried goat, would you? Some folks, eh. Meat and potatoes. If you like to explore new cuisines, like I do, it helps to know a lot of different folks. I usually book for four and we always manage to fill the table. The upshot for the customer is that you get to try one of those $50 and up places at a discount price. And the restaurant hopes that if you like the meal, you will be back.

We have our favorites, places we revisit anytime we can get a deal. Our group likes any place by chef Jeff Tunks; DC Coast, Ceiba, Acadiana, or TenPenh. One or two of these seems to get revisited each time, but we try to check out places we have never been before. This year, we are going to Morton’s of Chicago, an upscale steak house. We have also booked The Palm and three other places we know we like.

Well, you get the idea. Events like this are a great benefit of working in Washington and make a welcome change from that styrofoam container of noodles from the grazing bar. Its only a week, budget for it both diet-wise and monetarily and you should survive. The best part of it is that you get to eat with friends, always a plus. You can book online for most of these at www.opentable.com, a free reservation service. The tables go quickly.

Oh, yes, I started a group here on Gov Loop called Gov Gourmet which is dedicated to discussions on food and drink. If you are interested, please feel welcome!

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John Sporing

I do take advantage of restaurant week. I like to take the opportunity to go with friends and colleagues to places that government employees normally would not visit for lunch. I also like to take my intern(s) out. Provides them with a good meal and opportunity to network, while not damaging my wallet too much.

Denise Hill

Thanks. I am excited. I usually find out about Restaurant week the day after. I’m calling and emailing friends looking for lunch and dinner gatherings.