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This week we take a stroll through Foggy Bottom with neighborhood bloggers Kat and Jared. By Emily Leaman
Jared and Kat among the snow drifts in Washington Circle. Photograph by Chris Leaman

Here’s something you don’t run across every day: neighborhood bloggers who don’t actually live in the neighborhood they blog about. Foggy Bottom bloggers Kat and Jared live in Arlington and Columbia Heights, respectively.

But that doesn’t mean they don’t have ties to the neighborhood. Both work in Foggy Bottom, and both attended George Washington University as undergrads. Says Jared: “I still feel very much a FoBoian.”

You might be wondering about their blog’s name, FoBoBlo. It’s a riff on an informal nickname residents used for a grocer on F Street: FoBoGro. “As soon as Kat said FoBoBlo, we knew we found our name,” says Jared.

Geared toward GW students and neighborhood residents, the site’s content runs the gamut from restaurant reviews to recaps of GW sports games. Regular features include Humpday Sales, a Wednesday roundup of Craigslist finds, and Friday Wat, an open thread where readers post funny videos.

We caught up with Kat and Jared to find out what’s new in their neck of the woods. Read on for their picks on everything from favorite lunch spots to happy hours.

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Posted at 06:26 AM/ET, 02/17/2010 | Permalink | Comments ()
Attention, Washington males: Men’s-fashion blogger A. can help you go from style dud to stud. Read on for his tips. By Emily Leaman

In its first incarnation, District Cut, a local men’s-fashion blog, was launched as a high-school project. Blogger A.—he keeps his full name and face off the Internet—was one of its founders. “We were the guys in the class who decided to take the easy route by doing a blog,” he says. “It became something I loved to do.”

The group cultivated a regular following, and after the project ended, A. decided to keep the site going. He relaunched it under the name kidGQ, a nod to the publication he saw his father read when he was growing up and one he describes as “Vogue for men.” Unfortunately, GQ publisher Condé Nast wasn’t amused; the magazine powerhouse sent a cease-and-desist order, forcing A. to come up with a new name. That’s how District Cut was born.

“When I talked to other bloggers about the legal issue, they told me it meant that I was doing something right and getting noticed,” says the 19-year-old Catholic University student. “Now I take it as sort of a rite of initiation.”

A. fills his site with photos from magazine fashion spreads and style icons, product reviews, street-style features, and even videos. “The content has grown with my age, but now I think it has reached its peek with modern, up-to-date information on menswear and consistent, contemporary advice that all men in Washington could use,” he says. His audience ranges from fashionable Hill staffers to bearded hipsters.

We caught up with A. to get his take on Washington style and his advice for sartorial newbies. Read on for where he shops, his fashion pet peeves, and much more.

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Posted at 05:59 AM/ET, 02/10/2010 | Permalink | Comments ()
Love brunch? We do. Read on for our interview with the late-morning-meal expert Claudia Holwill. By Emily Leaman
Brunch in the City's Claudia Holwill. Photograph by Chris Leaman

Blogger Claudia Holwill is brunch’s Carrie Bradshaw: “My college roommates and I watched Sex and the City together, and it always seemed to trigger my desire to write,” she says. “I’m not the type to write about my personal life or dating life, so I went with food instead.” The name Brunch and the City seemed the perfect fit.

She started the blog two years ago to fill what she saw as a hole in the food-blogging scene: “No one else was really covering brunch, and I knew there was so much more that could be shared,” she says. Holwill blogs about her favorite brunch spots, of course, but also posts recipes, foodie gossip, and the occasional ode to bacon, her favorite food. Her most useful feature: a list of bottomless-drink deals at brunch spots throughout Washington.

We caught up with the 29-year-old to find out where she’s brunched lately. Read on for her favorite brunch spots, recipes for at-home brunches, and her pick for the most unusual brunch menu in town.

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Posted at 06:43 AM/ET, 02/03/2010 | Permalink | Comments ()
This week, we’re in the kitchen with home cook and blogger Rivka Friedman from Not Derby Pie. By Emily Leaman
Not Derby Pie's Rivka Friedman. Photograph by Chris Leaman

Have you ever had Derby Pie? We haven’t, but the chocolate-and-walnut-laden dessert sure sounds delicious.

For blogger Rivka Friedman, the pie is a family classic—a specialty of her mother’s—so it was only natural that her cooking blog, Not Derby Pie, would borrow the name. But why the “not”? Apparently Derby Pie is trademarked by Kentucky-based pie company Kern’s Kitchen, which lays claim to inventing the dessert. The Washington Post ran an article about Kern’s in 1982 and included several spin-off recipes. Friedman’s mom made one, and the family loved it; the trademark-honoring name Not Derby Pie has stuck around the Friedman household ever since.

Friedman launched the blog in 2007 after spending hours every day reading other cooking blogs. She doesn’t have formal cooking training, and she doesn’t follow recipes—but that’s half the fun. The 26-year-old has developed many of her of food preferences from traveling—Friedman lived in Israel for two years—and she spends a lot of time trying to replicate dishes and flavors she tastes in restaurants. “The blog has been a place to document that process,” she says. “The need for fresh material constantly pushes me to try new things.”

We strapped on an apron and caught up with Friedman to get her favorite recipes, cookbooks, kitchen gadgets, and more. Oh, and her biggest kitchen disaster? We asked her that, too.

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Posted at 06:57 AM/ET, 01/27/2010 | Permalink | Comments ()
This week, we learn how to spruce up our digs with home-design blogger Jenn Lore. By Emily Leaman
Home-design blogger Jenn Lore at U Street furniture store GoodWood. Photograph by Chris Leaman

You can’t get more Washington than a home-design blog whose name riffs on the federal government. Enter Department of the Interior.

Jenn Lore, who works at Edelman PR, launched the blog a year ago as an outlet for her creative side. She uses the site as a scrapbook of sorts, posting photos from magazines, products she likes, artwork, and more. “I write for someone like me: a younger urbanite who loves repurposing vintage finds, likes feminine but unfussy design, and who has a major crush on the idea of rural living,” she says.

Lore doesn’t have professional training—home design is simply a hobby—but she’s been interested in it for as long as she can remember: “I was the only kid on the block who would rather spend a weekend afternoon rearranging my room than playing on the swing set.” Her current canvas? A one-bedroom apartment in DC’s West End.

We caught up with the Staten Island native to talk shop about interior design. Read on for Lore’s tips on making a small room look bigger, landlord-friendly design ideas, where to find bargain furniture, and lots more.

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Posted at 06:10 AM/ET, 01/20/2010 | Permalink | Comments ()
The Redskins’ season may have ended last week, but the debate is just heating up over what the team should do next. We tapped Hogs Haven’s Kevin Ewoldt and Ken Meringolo to get their predictions on what the Skins might have in store. Sports lovers, read o By Emily Leaman
Kevin Ewoldt (left) and Ken Meringolo are lifelong Skins fans with lots of football know-how—and opinions. Photograph by Chris Leaman

With a disappointing Redskins season on the books—the team went 4-12 this year—we hoped Hogs Haven bloggers Kevin Ewoldt and Ken Meringolo would be able to find a silver lining. Does a 2020 Super Bowl win count? Ouch.

Hogs Haven was founded in 2006, but the duo took it over last January from their predecessor Will Allensworth. Native Washingtonians, Ewoldt and Meringolo have been lifelong Skins fans. Says Meringolo, “I think I learned how to walk, talk, and become a Redskins fan all at the same time.”

The pair try to keep their blog posts informative and accurate yet light. Ewoldt has a background in improv and stand-up comedy, so he likes to incorporate humor into his writing—and his Photoshopping. Some of his hack jobs have ended up on Sportsillustrated.com.

We pressed Ewoldt and Meringolo to make some solid predictions on the future of our hometown team. With Jim Zorn and Vinny Cerrato out, there’s lots of fun guesswork to do. Read on to see what they have to say, and be sure to leave your thoughts in the comments.

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Posted at 06:25 AM/ET, 01/13/2010 | Permalink | Comments ()
Curious about Washington’s art scene? ReadysetDC bloggers give us the skinny on everything from hot local artists to don’t-miss bands. By Emily Leaman
Left to right: ReadysetDC's Tracy Clayton, Justin Young, Jordan Culberson, and Allicia Tek. Photograph by Chris Leaman

The arts-and-culture blog ReadysetDC was launched last year as an outgrowth of Justin Young’s design company, Readyset Creative Studio. A Prince George’s County native who now lives in Logan Circle, Young noticed what he calls an “urban renaissance” happening in DC. He started the blog to document it in everything from art to transit to planning to architecture.

When the blog started, Justin wrote all the posts, and his wife, Rachel DiLima, shot the photos. Now it’s a team effort: The site is manned by four editors—one also shoots pictures—five contributing writers, two photographers, and a video producer. “We’re always growing,” says Young.

We wrangled four of the creative forces behind ReadysetDC for our arts-and-culture-focused interview: Young, photo editor Tracy Clayton, culture editor Jordan Culberson, and contributing editor Allicia Tek. Read on for their answers about such topics as best up-and-coming artist, where to see street art, and their art-related New Year’s resolutions.

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Posted at 07:41 AM/ET, 01/06/2010 | Permalink | Comments ()
This week, we step into the kitchen with food blogger Olga Berman. By Emily Leaman
Blogger Olga Berman braves the snow for a quick photo shoot. Photograph by Chris Leaman

Olga Berman launched her blog, Mango & Tomato, in May 2008 to document her adventures in the kitchen. She’d been posting on another site for nearly a year, but after discovering a burgeoning food-blog scene in Washington, she decided she wanted to join in.

She posts recipes, recaps of food events, restaurant reviews, and some drool-worthy photos of her kitchen successes. Berman also participates in cooking challenges and contests with other bloggers and documents her creations at Mango & Tomato.

Berman, a Bureau of Labor Statistics employee, grew up in Moscow and moved to Seattle when she was 13. After graduating from the University of Washington, she got a job at the Department of Labor and moved to the DC area. She has lived in Arlington for seven years.

We caught up with Berman to get her best recipes and tips for succeeding in the kitchen. And because she’s a frequent traveler, we found her favorite food destination. Read on for her answers.

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Posted at 08:41 AM/ET, 12/23/2009 | Permalink | Comments ()
Need some sartorial inspiration? Check out this week’s blogger interview with the self-proclaimed Curator of DC Style. By Emily Leaman
DeVon takes a turn on the other side of the camera. Photograph by Chris Leaman

Blogger DeVon, who doesn’t publish his last name, calls his street-style site a showcase, not a blog: “An art curator collects, arranges, and maintains exhibits. That’s what I’m doing—collecting pictures of fashionable Washingtonians and displaying them in a tasteful manner.” He launched Curator of DC Style in September and has already documented more than 60 fashionable subjects.

DeVon started blogging at the prodding of his wife, who’d been encouraging the 31-year-old to join the blogosphere for more than a year. “I always felt I didn’t have the time to really work at it, but at some point I felt overwhelmed with inspiration to start cataloguing fashionable people that cross my path,” he says. An amateur photographer, DeVon takes to the streets with a Canon Rebel XT and stops subjects who seem to have a good eye for style.

We caught up with a smartly dressed DeVon to get the skinny on men’s fashion—pocket square, anyone?—and find out what he likes and dislikes about Washington style. Read on for his answers.

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Posted at 07:43 AM/ET, 12/16/2009 | Permalink | Comments ()
Hold on to your sweet tooth—this week’s interview with Jenna Huntsberger is chock-full of recipes and tips for how to make some seriously tasty desserts. By Emily Leaman
Jenna Huntsberger showing off her latest culinary creation. Photograph by Chris Leaman

“I started blogging with the lofty goal of being a Martha Stewart-type for the young urbanite,” says Jenna Huntsberger. Her blog, ModernDomestic, which launched in July 2008, originally encompassed Martha’s core tenets—food, decorating, homemaking, and housekeeping—but she soon honed in on her favorite topic: baking. She’s stuck with that theme ever since.

A Eugene, Oregon, transplant, Huntsberger moved to Washington three years ago for work. “At first I wasn’t very sure about DC. The culture is so much more aggressive and career-oriented than the West Coast,” she says. “I’ve really come to love it.” The 27-year-old works in the communications office at the American Association of Naturopathic Physicians, an organization for doctors who practice wellness-based natural medicine. The office, says Huntsberger, is very health conscious: “I try not to bring my baked goods there.” Her more common taste-testers: fellow choir members at All Souls Unitarian Church in DC’s Columbia Heights.

We caught up with Huntsberger to get her best recipes and baking tips. And just for kicks, she told us about the worst recipe she’s ever tried and her biggest kitchen disaster.

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Posted at 06:39 AM/ET, 12/09/2009 | Permalink | Comments ()