Jean-Louis Palladin Tribute Menu and Book Sale at Michel by Michel Richard
Menu: Tuesday, December 6, through Saturday, December 10; book sale: through December, or while supplies last
Chef Jean-Louis Palladin spawned a generation of disciples from his kitchen in the Watergate Hotel, including Eric Ripert, Daniel Boulud, and Michel Richard. The latter toque celebrates Palladin’s life with a six-course menu of dishes inspired by the master at Michel ($150 per person) including foie gras terrine with black truffle pasta and prosciutto; snails with crispy sweetbreads and chanterelles; roasted duck in date sauce; and chocolate “pasta” (see the full menu here). A limited number of Palladin’s out-of-print 1989 cookbook, Cooking with the Seasons, is available to purchase for $50 (all proceeds go to the James Beard Foundation).
José Andrés Holiday Book Signing and Clementine Festival at Jaleo
Signing: Friday, December 9, from 5 to 7:30 PM; festival: Monday, December 5, through Sunday, December 18
Fun fact of the day: Spain is the world’s largest grower of clementines. Now you can impress your friend/date/friend’s date with this fact at all three Jaleo locations during the clementine festival, where the orange fruit makes its way into tapas, cocktails, and desserts. Start off with the Seville—a mix of sherry, clementine juice, Campari, and blood orange bitters—before diving into dishes such as seared calamari with artichokes, clementines, and ham, or cider-sauced pork belly with squash and clementines (see the full menu here). On Friday, December 9, drop by Jaleo Bethesda, where Andrés himself will hold court and sign copies of his three cookbooks (all of which are available on-site to purchase). Stave off hunger (and thirst) with complimentary passed tapas and “Jaleo Hour” specials like $4 sangria, wine, and beer.
Game Roast at Watershed
Friday, December 9, from 7 to 10 PM
Literally pregame for the weekend at Todd Gray’s Watershed, where venison, game hens, and pheasant are all part of the meaty menu; there are also apps like country pâté, sides of collards and roasted potatoes, and a Chablis-poached pear for dessert. Live music and DC Brau beers take you back (or keep you in) the college years.
Kickoff Party for Georgetown’s 12 Days of Merriment in the PNC Bank Lot
Saturday, December 10, from 1 to 4 PM
Take the edge off holiday shopping with hot cocoa tastings from Degrees at the Ritz-Carlton and Häagen-Daz, plus a fruitcake eating contest, live entertainment, and more during a party to celebrate a dozen days’ worth of shopping and dining deals in Georgetown. Even if you can’t make the Saturday festivities, you can still take advantage of plenty of restaurant and bar specials through the week—$5 “shopper’s relief” cocktails at Mie N Yu, free hot chocolate (or $3 spiked cocoa) at Paolo’s, a mini cupcake giveaway at Sprinkles, and more (see all the specials here). Shoppers can also get goodies in the stores—like wine and quick makeovers at Ella-Rue—so check out the lineup of store specials and pampering promotions.
Gingerbread House Decorating Party at Cork Market & Tasting Room
Saturday, December 10, from noon to 2 and 3 to 5
Both kids and parents will get a treat at Cork Market’s gingerbread house decorating party. Christmas cookies, maple pecan bars, and salted caramels are on offer for the youngsters and their chaperones, while the adults can sip gratis wines while preparing for the sugar high. Reserve a gingerbread house for either of the two afternoon sessions by e-mailing firstname.lastname@example.org.
Looking Ahead: Future hot seats, tickets, and reservations to snag now
Birch & Barley's holiday party is next Monday, December 12, and reservations ($45 per person) are already going fast. Greg Engert has put together a tasting of rare seasonal brews, which will be paired with small plates by chef Kyle Bailey. Check out the Facebook event page for more details.
Equinox hosts its annual winter solstice dinner on December 16 at 7. If past years are any indication, the four-course meal with wine pairings will likely sell out. This year, Karen Nicolas, the new executive chef, composes the seasonal lineup. Call 202-331-8118 to reserve space.
You’ll want to save space in your schedule (and budget) for chef Cesare Lanfranconi’s white truffle dinner at Lia’s in Chevy Chase on Tuesday, December 20. There are a limited number of spots left for the five-course feast ($200 per person, including wine pairings), which showcases fresh truffles and vinos from Piedmont. See the lineup here, and reserve a seat online here.