Through Thursday, September 18
Jonesing for late summer heirloom tomatoes? You can have them lots of different ways—spun into cold soup; stacked with fried eggplant; chopped into panzanella salad—during the Sagra di Pomodoro Festival at Cleveland Park’s Dino (3435 Connecticut Ave., NW; 202-686-2966). A five-course tasting menu is $45 ($25 more gets you three wine pairings and an after-dinner drink). Dinner reservations taken 6 to 9:30 Monday through Thursday; 6 to 10:30 Friday; 5:30 to 10:30 Saturday; and 5:30 to 9:30 Sunday.
Wednesday, September 10
One of our favorite summer patios is the one at Hudson (2030 M St., NW; 202-872-8700), which you can laze on with a bottle of wine even if you’re not having dinner. Tonight, the restaurant celebrates the winding-down of summer with an extended happy hour featuring a bunch of tropical-themed specials ($5 Red Stripes; $8 Dark & Stormies) and a buffet of free hors d’oeuvres. The party kicks off at 7 PM with a steel-drum band. At 9, DJ Adrian Loving takes over until midnight. Entry is free and open to anyone—RSVP to Victoria@vmpublicrelations.com.
Thursday, September 11
We love a good Greek festival, and the contemporary-themed one at Zaytinya (701 Ninth St., NW; 202-638-0800), which runs through September 22, goes beyond lamb-on-a-spit. During that time, the popular mezzeteria will highlight the forward-thinking cooking of Athens chef Christoforos Peskias, jazzing up the regular menu with such dishes as pork-belly souvlaki done sous vide and served with tzatziki foam and grape-leaves three ways. That pork belly might be a little tricky to pull off in an apartment kitchen, but tonight at 5 PM, Zaytinya chef Mike Isabella is holding a free demonstration at the Penn Quarter FreshFarm Market (Eighth St., NW, between D and E sts.) that’ll show you how to make a few simpler modern-Greek dishes at home.
Saturday, September 13
Penn Quarter’s annual Arts on Foot festival (Seventh and F sts., NW), held from 11 AM to 5 PM, is—no surprise for the restaurant-crazy neighborhood—packed with culinary events. There’s a full day of wine seminars and chef demos (Cedric Maupillier from Central Michel Richard is at 1; Massimo Fabbri of Ristorante Tosca is at 3:40). The three sampling pavilions, where you’ll find tastes from over 30 eateries—including Rasika, Poste, Cafe Atlantico, The Source, Cowgirl Creamery, and Co Co. Sala—might just add up to the ultimate graze-fest. The festival and demos are free, but there will be a small charge for the restaurant samples.
Sunday, September 14
Jamie Leeds, chef/owner of Hank’s Oyster Bar and the recently opened CommonWealth, will hold a cooking demonstration at the Dupont Circle FreshFarm Market (1500 block of 20th St., NW, bet. Massachusetts Ave. and Q St.) this morning at 11. Will Leeds celebrate this month ending in -er with an oyster recipe, or stick with the British stylings of her new restaurant? Free.
Writer, grits purveyor, and all-around Southern cooking expert John Martin Taylor is giving a talk on the gastronomic history of the Carolina Lowcountry. The presentation, held by the Culinary Historians of Washington, runs from 2:30 to 4:30 PM at the Bethesda/Chevy Chase Regional Services Center, Meeting Room A (4805 Edgemoor Ln., Bethesda; 301-320-6979). Free.
Photograph courtesy of Flickr user Manjith Kainickara.