How Restaurants Are Getting Into the Spooky Spirit
A roundup of some local spots that are tricking and treating.
Saturday, October 25
Looking to test-run your costume? Bring the kids to the Ritz-Carlton Pentagon City’s Fyve Restaurant Lounge (1250 S. Hayes St., Arlington) for an afternoon costume-and-tea party. From 2 to 4, there’ll be entertainment by a magician, afternoon tea, and an array of Halloween-themed food including marshmallows, chocolate frog cakes, and ghost- and pumpkin-shaped sandwiches. At the end of the party, prizes will be awarded for the best costumes. It’s $49 per person and free for children under three; call 703-412-2760 for reservations.
Halloween isn’t the only macabre October holiday. Celebrate Mexico’s version of spooky fun with the Day of the Dead festival at Penn Quarter’s Oyamel (401 Seventh St., NW). For one week, the restaurant will transform itself into a Dia de los Muertos scene with a special menu designed by Mexican-cooking authority and author Diana Kennedy. The menu features a selection of exotic seafood dishes ($8 to $12), including Tabascan-style fish cooked in banana leaves, Veracruz-style rice with seafood, and peppered oysters from Tamulipas. Oyamel has also created two cocktails for the holiday. The Santa Muerta contains a heady mix of aged tequila, grapefruit juice, passion fruit, piloncillo sugar, anise, and vanilla ($11); Frutas Ahumadas is a smoky blend of arbol chili, tequila, mescal, fresh mint, chamoy, and mango ($12). Call the restaurant at 202-628-1005 for reservations.
On Tuesday, October 28 at 6:30, Kennedy will deliver a free lecture on Mexican cuisine at the Mexican Cultural Institute (2829 16th St., NW).
On Wednesday, October 29, Les Dames d’Escoffier will fete Kennedy with a cocktail party at Oyamel. It’s $50 for Les Dames members and $60 for nonmembers. RSVP by October 24 to firstname.lastname@example.org or call 202-973-2168.
Thursday, October 30
The annual Boo-Fest at Buzz Bakery (901 Slaters La., Alexandria) returns this year with an afternoon of fun for parents, children, and even dogs. From 2 to 4, children can decorate sugar cookies, play games full of prizes, and enjoy Buzz’s new bar beverage—the Babycino. The caffeine-free drink is made with regular or chocolate milk and a dash of house-made chocolate sauce and is topped with foam ($1). Parents can sip gratis cups of steamed apple cider. Watch out, kids: From 4 to 7, dogs are invited for a cocktail-and-costume party. The best dog costumes will be rewarded with prizes.
Friday, October 31
2941 Restaurant (2941 Fairview Park Dr., Falls Church), has two eyes fixed on Halloween. First, pastry chef Anthony Chavez has designed a treat for the holiday called Eye Scream. This festive dessert, composed of Valrhona white chocolate, pistachio mousse, and raspberry-lychee coulis, is presented on a bed of dry ice ($15). The restaurant has also created the Evil Eye, a cocktail made with muddled blueberries, pomegranate syrup, cranberry juice, and Ketel One vodka ($10). Both are available throughout the month. On October 31, chef Bertrand Chemel will craft a four-course Halloween dinner ($100 per person) that will include both creations. Call 703-270-1500 for reservations.
Friday, October 31, through Sunday, November 2
Mixologist Ria Freydberg of Restaurant 3 (2950 Clarendon Blvd., Arlington) has created an assortment of cocktails for her favorite holiday. Highlights include Spider Cider (Captain Morgan’s rum, butterscotch schnapps, and caramelized-apple purée) and the Jack-o-lantini (vodka, pumpkin syrup, and white-cranberry juice). Also look out for the Vampire Blood cocktail and Boo-Berry Hill. The drinks are $10 each and will be available throughout Halloween weekend. For restaurant reservations, call 703-524-4440.
Friday, October 31
Old Town speakeasy PX (728 King St., Alexandria), has a special cocktail lined up for the night. The Black Ghost is a mix of squid ink, black-olive juice, vodka, and dried ice. Reservations are required—call 703-299-8385.