Thursday, January 19, 2017

LOGAN: Hemphill Fine Arts have Announced 'Early Alma Thomas' Exhibition - February 4 - April 1, 2017

Hemphill has announced a new exhibition, Early Alma Thomas opening on Saturday, February 4, with a reception from 6-8pm. The exhibition will remain on view through April 1, 2017.

As a founding member of the Barnett-Aden Gallery in 1943, Thomas interacted with artists Romare Bearden, Jacob Lawrence, and Lois Mailou Jones, and others. As the post-war era accelerated, Washington painters were quick to embrace the abstract expressionist movement. Thomas’s realist works pushed toward abstraction in the 1950s as she pursued an MFA in painting at American University, where she deepened the pursuit of a bold use of color and shape which defined her late career works.

Throughout the 1950s, Thomas appropriated the tools of Abstract Expressionism and characteristically made them her own, applying pigment in blocks of color to create compositions incorporating figures and still life elements, and later, densely layered abstractions of night skies and earthly subjects. Thomas’s adept use of minimal brushstrokes to render forms is in use among all the paintings, whether figure or object, night sky, or spring flowers.

“Etude in Brown – Saint Cecilia at the Organ, c. 1956-58” employs a highly graphic russet palette of reds and oranges, a diminutive figure anchoring the foreground. Dashes of white pigment represent the head and figure of Saint Cecilia, the scale and placement of the figure creating a cathedral of space filling the canvas.

The five paintings selected for this exhibition provide a timeline of Thomas’s shift from realism to abstraction in a few short years. This seldom-studied period firmly places Thomas in the center of modern American painting.

Alma W. Thomas (American, 1891 - 1978) was born in Columbus, GA and moved to Washington, DC with her family in 1907. In 1924, she became the first graduate of the Art Department at Howard University, and in 1935 received a Master of Arts in art education from Columbia University. Her work is represented in the collections of The Columbus Museum of Art, The Baltimore Museum of Art, The Museum of Modern Art, The National Gallery of Art, The Howard University Gallery of Art, The Phillips Collection, The Smithsonian American Art Museum, The Hirshhorn Museum, and The Whitney Museum of American Art, among numerous other public, private, and university art collections.

Hemphill was founded in Washington DC in 1993. The exhibition schedule features modern & contemporary art in all media by artists ranging from emerging to mid-career to modern masters.

  • Tuesday–Saturday, 10:00am–5:00pm, and by appointment.
Hemphill Fine Arts is located at
1515 14th St NW
tel 202.234.5601

Wednesday, January 18, 2017

U STREET: SweatBox to Host Open House - January 28

SweatBox to Host Open House Saturday, January 28
SweatBox Team to Offer Live Demonstration and a Raffle for Five Free Sessions 
and MYZONE Heart Rate Monitor
For those looking for a new way to achieve their New Years health resolutions, SweatBox is hosting an open house Saturday, January 28 from 2 – 4 p.m. The event is free and open to anyone interested in learning more about DC’s newest boutique fitness concept that brings strength training together with bursts of cardio to create an efficient, results-driven workout.
The open house will offer potential new clients the opportunity to meet with the SweatBox team and watch live demonstrations of each component of the workout including the XT Trainers and IC7 Cycles. Guests will be able to speak with program developers over complimentary refreshments. Anyone who attends the open house will have the opportunity to win a raffle for a 5-pack of SweatBox sessions plus a MyZone Heart Rate Monitor (a total value of $245).
SweatBox is located at
1612 U St NW
Phone: 202 588 9252

MVT: Historical Society of DC Reopening at Carnegie Library - January 17th

A little late on this one - but good news is always welcome
Welcome back The Historical Society of DC, which reopened to the public on Tuesday, January 17 at the Carnegie Library after a temporary closure to remediate mold found in two areas of the building. The building has been tested and cleared and will be ready to welcome visitors with exciting new exhibits and learning opportunities. Click here to check out all of the upcoming events, tours and exhibits!

Spring Valley: Millie's DC is Coming Soon to Spring Valley! - Update

We wrote a piece on Millie's, the Nantucket restaurant coming to DC. Here is a short update
The wait is almost over! The highly anticipated opening of Millie's is coming soon to the Spring Valley neighborhood.
About Millie's
As featured in the New York Times, Town & Country, and USA Today, Millie's pays homage to the relaxed, beachside attitude so loved by locals and visitors of Nantucket. The California baja-style menu focuses on fresh, local seafood and produce and the island-famous Madaket Mystery. The Millie's familly at Georgetown Events looks forward to bringing a taste of the island to Washington, DC.
Millie's will be opening at
4866 Massachusetts Ave NW

NOMA: Federal Capital Partners Enters Joint Venture w/ Level 2 and Clark Enterprises to Develop $100 Million 'Highline at Union Market' Apartments

Federal Capital Partners® (FCP) has entered into a joint venture with Level 2 Development, LLC and Clark Enterprises, Inc. to develop The Highline, a $100 million apartment community at 320 Florida Avenue, NE. The community will be comprised of 318 luxury apartment homes including four penthouse units and approximately 10,000 square feet of first floor retail space.
“The Highline is an exciting opportunity in one of the most vibrant and exciting submarkets of Washington, DC,” said Wade Casstevens, FCP Senior Vice President. “We are particularly pleased to be developing this extraordinary project with Level 2 Development and Clark Enterprises, both strong local companies who have done an exceptional job of designing and planning The Highline over the last few years.” Level 2 and FCP recently completed Takoma Central, comprised of 150 premium apartment units above Busboys & Poets and next to the Takoma Metro Station in Takoma, Washington, DC.
Designed by Eric Colbert & Associates, the 12-story, modern-industrial architectural design integrates warehouse-style windows with industrial-framed glass cubes that weave in and out of the Florida Avenue façade at varying depths. The project was inspired by New York's meatpacking district and the elevated park known as the High Line. Other unique elements of the design include materials reminiscent of rail cars, and steel columns that echo the riveted steel supports of the nearby railroad underpass. Located one block from the NoMa/Gallaudet Red Line Metro Station, The Highline at Union Market will provide a significant pedestrian connection between the NoMa and Union Market neighborhoods through a park it will build adjacent to the project.
“This project embraces the history of the Union Market District as well as the railway, while setting a new standard of design for the area”, said David Franco, a principal at Level 2 Development. “We are looking forward to working again with FCP on the project.”
The Highline will include a rooftop pool as well as sustainable features equivalent to LEED Silver, including a green roof, bio retention facility, energy-efficient building design and 105 bicycle parking spaces. The Highline will offer its residents and retail businesses extraordinary access to nearby amenities including the dozens of retailers and restaurants at Union Market, now one of Washington, DC’s top destinations, the vibrant NoMa business district, Gallaudet University, the NoMa/Gallaudet Metro Station and Union Station.

Thirteen 3- bedroom townhomes will be built off-site in ANC 5B in conjunction with DC Habitat and set aside for households earning no more than 50% of the area median income. In addition, four percent of The Highline’s units will be set aside for households earning no more than 80 percent of the area median income.

United Bank and EB5 Capital provided construction financing for the project. MAC Realty Advisors assisted the venture in acquiring development financing.

Tuesday, January 17, 2017

ALEXANDRIA: Saturday & Sunday Funday at Bastille Brunch Cocktails and more at Bastille

Brunch at Bastille has always been delicious, but now, Chef Christophe & Michelle Poteaux’s French-inspired restaurant, Bastille, has added some new twists and additions to their Saturday & Sunday brunch menu.

Bastille introduces the Mimosa Brunch. Guests will receive a carafe of freshly squeezed orange juice and a bottle of sparkling wine in order to create their own ‘tabletop’ Mimosas. The Mimosa set-up is priced at $22. Also available at brunch are aperitifs including a Kir Royal-Blanc de Blancs Brut NV mixed with choice of Crème de Cassis, Crème de Mûre or Crème de Pêche; Bastille’s Spicy Mary--Tomato, Siracha, Cayenne and lime; Parisian Morning--orange juice, Aperol, and sparkling wine and the Dirty Mary--tomato, horseradish, olive juice and black pepper.

For dining, the menu includes a choice of hors d’oeuvres such as oysters—fresh or Rockefeller; beignets de crevettes served with spicy guacamole and lime; cheeses and charcuterie, salads and sandwiches including a “Brunch Burger,” Virginia Grass Fed beef *burger, Brioche bun, bacon, cheddar, lettuce, tomato, and crispy onions, topped with a fried farm-fresh egg and “Plats du Brunch,” which include smoked salmon, egg dishes and shrimp and grits. For dessert, Chef Michelle offers cookies and cream--house-baked cookies and vanilla ice cream; Bread pudding du jour a la mode; a Liège-style caramelized waffle with warm apple compote, salted caramel sauce and vanilla bean ice cream and crème caramel au potiron--pumpkin crème caramel, pecans, Valrhona Dulcey chocolate, caramel ice cream.

Brunch is available every Saturday and Sunday from 11:30 until 3 p.m. and is a three-course prix fixe at $29 or available a la carte.
Bastille is located in The Asher at 
606 N. Fayette Street, Alexandria

For reservations and further information, log into, or call 703-519-3776.

Friday, January 13, 2017

BROOKLAND: Inauguration Week and February Distillery Dinners at Brookland's Finest

Here are the upcoming food and cocktail offerings at Brookland’s Finest, including for the inauguration and Women’s March next week, as well as the restaurant’s monthly distiller dinner series in February.

Inauguration Week at Brookland’s Finest

During inauguration week, Brookland’s Finest will tap a keg from women-owned brewery Denizens Brewing Company, donating proceeds from the beer to the Chesapeake Bay Foundation. The bar will also serve $10 White Russians and $10 Orange Russians (fresh squeezed orange juice, simple syrup, vanilla-infused Civic vodka and cream), with proceeds also going to the Chesapeake Bay Foundation. Additionally, on February 17, the restaurant will offer a three-course dinner menu with beverage pairings from Republic Restoratives, Denizens Brewing Company and Catoctin Creek. The collaborative menu will include items like charcuterie, prime rib with mashed potatoes, and an apple tartlet.

February Distillery Dinners with Jos. A. Magnus & Co.

The following week, the restaurant’s Chef/Partner, Shannon Troncoso, will team up with Jos. A. Magnus & Co. to kick off the monthly distiller dinner series for February. Each Tuesday of the month, the restaurant will offer a three-course dinner along with cocktail pairings made with Magnus spirits. The first distiller dinner of the month will be held on February 7, and includes a first course beet salad, followed by stuffed Maine lobster and completed with a seasonal fruit flan. The cocktail pairings will feature classics like a gin and tonic, a Bloody Mary and a bourbon Manhattan. The three-course dinner is priced at $35 per person, exclusive of tax and gratuity. 
The menu changes every week during the month of February, and the full lineup can be found here.

Vigilant Beet Salad… Goat cheese fritter, baby kale, house granola, grapefruit vinaigrette
Paired with Vigilant Gin and Tonic

Stuffed Lobster... Wild Maine Lobster, Shrimp, Leek, Creamy Polenta, Grilled Rapini, Citrus Buerre Blanc
Paired with Royal Seal Green Bloody Mary

FlanSeasonal fruit flambe 
Paired with Magnus Bourbon Manhattan

Brookland's Finest is located at
3126 12th Street NE

IVY CITY: La Puerta Verde to Open in The Historic Hecht Warehouse - January 17th

Mindful Restaurant Group to complete culinary trifecta within the historic Hecht Warehouse in Ivy City with the opening of casual Mexican eatery La Puerta Verde on January 17th.
Completing Mindful Restaurant Group’s culinary trifecta within the historic and newly renovated Hecht Warehouse in the up-and-coming Ivy City neighborhood, La Puerta Verde – a casual Mexican eatery paying homage to both Mexican cuisine and the many individuals owner Ari Gejdenson has had the pleasure of working with throughout his journey in the hospitality world as a restaurateur – will open to the public beginning with dinner service on Tuesday, January 17th.
La Puerta Verde – which translates to ‘The Green Door’ - is simultaneously reminiscent of a traditional Mexican Hacienda and nostalgic to its Ivy City roots. Featuring 3,800 square feet (6,800 square feet total between the three connected restaurants including Ari’s Diner, DOCK FC, & La Puerta Verde), and seating for up to 85 guests – 60 in the main dining room and 25 at the bar – celebrated design gurus Eric Gronning - owner and principal of Gronning Architects PLLC ( - and Tony Mize of Septcarres (, teamed up to create a space that fuses traditional Mexican accents while maintaining the integrity of the Hecht Warehouse’s raw structure. The airy space with high ceilings features pops of bold colors including deep blues, earthy greens, warm oranges, and bright yellows, walls and flooring adorned with talavera tiles, and three large vibrant and original murals from DC-based graffiti artist and pioneer CHELOVE coexist amongst a backdrop of re-purposed cargo containers, while still embracing rustic elements including the original warehouse columns. In Mexico the color green represents hope and Mindful Restaurant Group’s hope is that through their green door guests will find the perfect place to connect and enjoy the spirit of Mexico right here in the heart of Northeast Washington DC.
A team effort, the menus at La Puerta Verde place an emphasis on offering authentic Mexican dishes, based on traditional regional recipes while utilizing the freshest ingredients. Guests will be able to enjoy signature savory dishes such as Grilled Avocado Guacamole, Calamari Sinaloa – calamari tossed with pickled vegetable relish, Pescado a la Talla – grilled whole fish in banana leaves and guajillo marinade, and Carne Arrachera – grilled beef skirt steak with chorizo and cactus paddles, spring onions and queso fresco, amongst others. The bar program at La Puerta Verde will feature a selection of tequilas, mezcal, beers (local and imported), as well as a creative and carefully curated craft cocktail menu showcasing Mexican spirits and ingredients. Signature cocktails – all priced at $12 – include the LPV Magarita with Silver Tequila, triple sec and fresh lime juice, the Jardin Ahumado (Smoky Garden) with Mezcal, fresh lime juice, cilantro, the Mezgroni with Mezcal, sweet vermouth,amaro, the TQ Del Sol with Silver Tequila, house grenadine, OJ, Sangria with Red wine, brandy, berries, citrus, the Horchata Borracha with Reposado tequila, horchata, fernet valet, and a Michelada with Tecate, tomato juice, and lime, to highlight a few.
La Puerta Verde also serves as Mindful Restaurant Group’s homage to the Mexican culture and influences found throughout Washington DC. Mindful's founder Ari Gejdenson was inspired to create La Puerta Verde after working alongside so many passionate and talented people in the restaurant industry that left Mexico and now call DC their home. Over the years people have shared pieces of their Mexican culture, heritage, and cuisine with him, which he fell in love with. When the Hecht project in Ivy City presented itself, Ari knew Ivy City would be the ideal place to connect this newfound love of Mexican cuisine and culture with his beloved home of Northeast DC.
“It would be nearly impossible to run a restaurant in Washington DC without encountering the vibrant and substantial Mexican culture and community on a daily basis”, said Ari Gejendson, founder of Mindful Restaurant Group. “Those who have immigrated to the States often find themselves working in a kitchen, as prep and line cooks, as sous chefs and chefs de cuisine. I personally became inspired working with such individuals throughout the past few years opening and running restaurants. La Puerta Verde is the result of that inspiration and I’m excited to honor them.”
La Puerta Verde is open for dinner service Tuesday through Thursday, and Sunday from 5:00PM to 10:00PM, and on Friday and Saturday from 5:00PM-11:00PM. La Puerta Verde is listed on Open Table and reservations are available directly at The restaurant also plans on announcing Happy Hour details in the near future.

La Puerta Verde joins fellow Mindful Restaurant Group restaurants Ari’s Diner, Dock FC, Ghibellina, Sotto, Denson Liquor Bar, Harold Black, and Acqua Al 2. 

La Puerta Verde is located at
2001 Fenwick St NE
For additional information on Mindful Restaurant Group please visit