• Ici Urban Bistro, the recently revamped French restaurant in the Sofitel, just snagged pastry chef Beverly Bates from Bistro Bis. The Culinary Institute of America grad has big names like Gordon Ramsay and Michel Richard on her résumé—she worked with the former in 2002 and the latter during her first stint in DC.
• Turns out it’s not just the restaurants in the nation’s capital that are obsessing with foodie interpretations of the presidential nominees. A Seattle blogger found—among other things—a Hillary Clinton nutcracker in a Washington-area airport. We just can’t resist mentioning that Dupont Circle’s Firefly restaurant recently added Rocky Mountain oysters to its menu for a short time. Although the nutcracker’s packaging claims Clinton can “crack the toughest nuts,” she’ll be disappointed to know that yet another pair has escaped those “stainless steel thighs.”
• Although Oyamel is often regarded as one of the best Mexican restaurants in the area, Mexican-cooking expert Diana Kennedy found quite a few ways to improve the kitchen on her recent whirlwind through town. The 90-year-old Kennedy, a cookbook author who could be called the Julia Child of Mexican cuisine, schooled Oyamel head chef Joe Raffa and his staff on everything from composting to stainless-steel griddles. Next time you’re there, note the fluffy texture of the new tamale filling.
• Capital Spice asked Good Stuff Eatery business partners Spike Mendelsohn—of Top Chef fame—and Mike Coletti for help in deciding where to eat in New York City. The two burger slingers directed the bloggers to Bar Q, a new Asian-style barbecue joint from chef Anita Lo. Turns out, the hidden West Village kitchen is run by chef Sean Scotese, a toque who worked with Mendelsohn and Coletti at Mai House and also shared a bachelor pad with them.
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