The National Cherry Blossom Festival kicked off Wednesday, March 20. If you haven’t yet consulted our first list of food and drink specials, you should go ahead and do so. In the meantime, here are 11 more local offerings. Offers are available throughout the festival—which concludes April 14—unless otherwise noted.
The Deal: These downtown hotspots honor one DC icon (cherry blossoms) by serving another: the gin rickey, Washington’s official cocktail, for $12. The mixture of gin, lime, and a splash of soda will be served at the three Passion Food Group restaurants.
The Deal: Stay healthy, cherry-blossom style, with Bayou’s cherry and arugula salad. Priced at $6.50, it includes chickpeas, toasted almonds, feta, honey, and whole organic cherries hydrated with fresh-squeezed orange juice. It’s topped with yogurt dressing.
The Deal: Chef Robert Wiedmaier’s cherry-centric menu features dishes such as grilled Gulf shrimp with baby arugula, toasted hazelnuts, barrel-aged feta, and cherry balsamic vinaigrette for $17; a slow-roasted pork tenderloin accompanied by sweet potato purée and sautéed mustard greens and topped with a sour cherry demiglace for $29; and a decadent Black Forest chocolate cake with cherries spiked with brandy and Chantilly cream for $10.
The Deal: Sweeten things up at this NYC import with a cherry blossom punch, made with Absolut CherryKran and Mandarin vodkas with fresh lemon juice and a splash of cranberry—that’s $11. Pair it with zeppole, lemon-powdered Italian fritters filled with ricotta and served with cherry-preserve dipping sauce. Those cost $9.95.
The Deal: Ceiba’s Cherry Blossom Combo includes the Cereza Bloom cocktail with Veev Açaí spirit and Leopold’s cherry and sour mix ($10) and albóndigas de pato—duck meatballs with cherry ranchero salsa for $9.
The Deal: All seven Chop’t locations in the Washington area will offer a house-made batch dressing called the Cherry Blossomic Vinaigrette, made with balsamic vinegar, Dijon mustard, and cherry preserves.
The Deal: Pastry chef Tom Wellings has two cherry-blossom-inspired dishes at Fiola. The first is a $12 panna cotta made with Tahitian vanilla beans, sugar, and cream and topped with brown-butter-toasted Marcona almonds, black pepper, orange zest, and salt, and drizzled with raw cherry blossom honey. That’s topped with a milk froth flavored with cherry blossom honey and vanilla and sugared rose petals. A second dish featuring cherry blossom macarons is also in the works—call the restaurant for updates on availability and pricing details.
The Deal: Executive chef Philippe Reininger is putting a creative twist on the classic Manhattan cocktail by turning it into a boozy ice cream sundae using 515, an exclusive whiskey created just for J&G by local distillery Catoctin Creek. For $9, the 515 Manhattan sundae features cherry sorbet, 515 Catoctin Creek whipped cream, orange bitter meringue, and orange chips. There will also be a cherry-yuzu rickey cocktail ($12), made with sour cherry purée, fresh yuzu juice, lime juice, seltzer, and 515. For non-drinkers, J&G will also offer a mocktail: a house-made cherry-yuzu soda for $5 made with sour cherry purée, fresh yuzu juice, simple syrup, and seltzer.
Jardenea at the Melrose Hotel
The Deal: The Melrose Hotel’s newish restaurant is offering a four-course dinner prix-fixe dinner for $80 per person as well as a Japanese sake flight for an additional $42 per person. The lounge will also serve two cherry blossom martinis alongside the menu: the Sake-Chaca-Tini, made with sake and fresh pineapple juice, and the Absolutely Blossom, concocted from cherry brandy and a dash of grenadine. They are $12 each. The deal is only available from April 8 through 14.
The Deal: To celebrate the festival’s finale on Sunday, April 14, Lincoln’s executive chef, Demetrio Zavala, will feature a cherry blossom brunch accompanied by cherry blossom bellinis with house-made cherry sorbet. Dishes include a lamb chop served with minted spaetzle and cherry tapenade and French toast jubilee with cognac cherry syrup and white chocolate pudding. Prices range from $7 to $16.
Plume at The Jefferson Hotel
The Deal: The Jefferson Hotel’s fine-dining restaurant will offer a special dessert of pistachio crème brûlée with Morello cherry compote and yuzu ice cream as part of the $85 prix-fixe menu. You can order it à la carte for $16 at neighboring bar Quill, which will also offer the Sparkling Sakura, made with sake, cherry purée, cherry blossom syrup (prepared with cherry blossom tea infusion), and Prosecco, for $15.