In the Mood for a Chicago-Style Hot Dog? Restaurants Gear Up for the Inauguration

Over the next week, look for $44 multi-course menus, Obama-inspired cupcakes, and Champagne-soaked inaugural ball afterparties.

2941 Fairview Park Dr., Falls Church; 703-270-1500
At this artful, glassy dining room, chef Bertrand Chemel is creating a $44 three-course bar menu to honor President-elect Barack Obama. Through Saturday, January 31, diners can sup on such cold-weather creations as Chilean turbot and roasted squab breast. Sommelier Stefano Cappelli will stock four red and four white wines, with each bottle priced at $44.

Café Atlántico, Jaleo, Oyamel, and Zaytinya
Café Atlántico, 405 Eighth St., NW, 202-393-0812; Jaleo, Penn Quarter, 202-628-7949, Bethesda, 301-913-0003, Crystal City, 703-413-8181; Oyamel, 401 Seventh St., NW, 202-628-1005; Zaytinya, 701 Ninth St., NW, 202-638-0800
José Andrés’s restaurants will serve special three-course prix fixe menus on Monday, January 19, and Tuesday, January 20. Menus are $25 at lunch and $44 at dinner. On Inauguration Day, parade spectators can grab a to-go cup of Oyamel’s Mexican hot chocolate for $5. Check the restaurants’ Web sites for menus.

All four will have extended hours: Sunday, January 18, 11:30 to 11; Monday, brunch 9 to 11:30, lunch 11:30 to 4, dinner until midnight. The same hours apply to Tuesday, but the restaurants will open at 8 AM. Monday and Tuesday, the restaurants’ bars will stay open until 2 AM.

As part of Art.Food.Hope, a fundraising dinner series on Monday, January 19, Andrés will cook a dinner in his home. The series benefits DC Central Kitchen, Martha’s Table, and FreshFarm Markets. Tickets, which are $500 per person, have sold out. Click here for more.

701 14th St., NW; 202-393-3983
From Friday, January 16, through Wednesday, January 21, Jeff Tunks’s Nuevo Latino restaurant is offering a four-course inauguration menu for $44. Dishes include grilled sugarcane shrimp, a rib-eye steak with chimichurri sauce, and coconut cake with blueberry-and-cream-cheese frosting. Two bottles of wine—a Pinot Gris from Oregon and a Zinfandel from California—will be available for $44 each.

1720 14th St., NW; 202-265-2675
On Monday, January 19, this snug wine bar is offering a free glass of wine to customers who have volunteered on this year’s Martin Luther King Day (bring proof).

On Inauguration Day, Cork will hold a late-night postball party from 11 PM to 3 AM. RSVP to

3435 Connecticut Ave., NW; 202-686-2966
From Monday, January 19 through Sunday, January 25, anyone wearing an Obama or Biden button or piece of clothing to this Cleveland Park Italian spot will get a free “appetizer treat.” The restaurant will also offer a variety of special menus: $35.09 for three courses off the regular menu or $44 for three courses with wine pairings. From Wednesday on, you can also get a special early menu—three courses for $24—plus a 25-percent-off wine-and-cocktail happy hour at the bar if you arrive before 7.

2761 Washington Blvd., Arlington; 703-778-9951
This Lyon Park hangout is saying goodbye to the Bush era on Monday night with an “out with the old” menu of Texas grub including chicken-fried steak with gravy, brisket, and Texas chili. Tuesday night, the menu shifts to an “in with the new” theme, featuring Chicago-style hot dogs and Italian beef sliders. Dinner will be served from 5 to 11, and some dishes will be available until midnight.

818 Connecticut Ave., NW; 202-331-8118
January 18 from 11:30 to 2:30, Todd Gray’s downtown restaurant will serve a special three-course brunch with live jazz ($35 per person). The menu includes pan-fried oysters with caper-parsley butter and celeriac purée; cream-of-parsnip-and-apple soup with duck confit; smoked salmon with fingerling-potato salad; hazelnut-brioche French toast; Eggs Chesapeake with crabmeat and spinach; grilled salmon with horseradish velouté; pan-roasted rockfish with mascarpone grits; pecan-pie tart; chocolate crème brûlée; and mascarpone cheesecake.
On Inauguration Day between 7 and 5, coffee, cider, hot chocolate, muffins, and cookies will be sold outside the restaurant.

Good Stuff Eatery
303 Pennsylvania Ave., SE; 202-543-8222
In honor of the inauguration, former Top Chef-er Spike Mendelsohn’s Good Stuff Eatery is adding a morning menu to its usual lineup of burgers and shakes. Tomorrow through January 21st, you’ll find cinnamon buns, eggs on brioche, bacon, and coffee at the Hill hangout. We’ll see how they compete with the hangover-curing Spike’s Five Napkin, the gluttonous egg-and-bacon-topped burger available year-round.

Tuesday night, Mendelsohn will host a jeans-friendly inaugural Burger Ball, with mini-burgers, shakes, beer, and wine; $99 per person. To purchase tickets, call Micheline at 202-543-8222 or e-mail

Hello Cupcake
1351 Connecticut Ave., NW; 202-861-2253
This Dupont Circle bakery has created the Very Berry Obama—a vanilla cupcake with red and blue berries and cream-cheese icing—in honor of the inauguration. January 17 through 21, the kitchen will stay open until 2 AM.

2030 M St., NW; 202-872-8700
This mod restaurant/lounge in the West End is offering a $44 four-course menu highlighting the Obama family’s favorite foods, such as shrimp ’n’ grits and duck quesadillas.

Le Bar
Sofitel Lafayette Square, 806 15th St., NW; 202-730-8700
This downtown DC hotel bar will serve midnight breakfasts from Sunday, January 18, through Tuesday, January 20. From 11:30 PM to 2 AM, partygoers can choose from a menu including everything from omelets to grilled New York strip steak.

Legal Sea Foods
Penn Quarter, 202-347–0007; 2301 Arlington, 703-415-1200; Tysons Galleria, 703-827-8900; Reagan National Airport, 703-413-9810; Westfield Montgomery mall, 301-469-5900
On January 20, cups of clam chowder will sell for 44 cents (regularly $4.50) with the purchase of any entrée. The Penn Quarter location will stay open until 2 AM from January 16 through 20.

405 Eighth St., NW (Café Atlántico); 202-393-0812
José Andrés’s six seat restaurant within a restaurant will host three dinners from Sunday, January 18, through Tuesday, January 20. The $444.44-per-person dinner includes wine pairings, a signed copy of Andrés’s new cookbook, Made in Spain, and a signed copy of DC Central Kitchen’s book, Feeding the Soul of the City. There are two seatings, at 6 and 9 each night, and reservations open Friday, January 9, at 10 AM. Half of the proceeds will go to DC Central Kitchen.

775 G St., NW; 202-737-7663
A lineup of musical acts and special dinners is scheduled at this Penn Quarter wine bar. January 18, singer and DC native Alice Smith performs at 10:30. Tickets are $40, and dinner reservations for the show will begin at 9. If you’re hoping just to catch the show, there are a few seats for sale in the lounge.
January 19, there will be a four-course dinner along with a performance by jazz singer Melody Gardot. Dinner seatings begin at 9, and the cost is $120 per person including tax and gratuity. A handful of tickets to watch the 10:30 show from the lounge and bar are $40.

Watch the swearing-in ceremony and the inaugural parade on four flat-screen TVs during an Inauguration Day buffet brunch, which will run from 10 to 2:30. The $75 price tag (including tax and gratuity) includes unlimited Champagne.

The evening of January 20 from 11:30 PM to 3 AM, Proof will hold an Inaugural Ball after-party. For $250 (including tax and gratuity), guests can enjoy up to three glasses of Dom Pérignon, Krug, and Louis Roederer Cristal Champagnes and snack on passed hors d’oeuvres including foie gras and caviar. Melody Gardot and her band will once again perform. Those who wish to forgo the Champagne can pay $100 and opt for a cash bar.

Restaurant Nage
1600 Rhode Island Ave., NW; 202-448-8005
While most restaurants are paying homage to Obama, this Modern American spot is saluting Vice President-elect Joe Biden. It’s holding two Biden brunches on Sunday, January 11, and Sunday, January 18, and another on Wednesday, January 21. Sip on a cup of “Can I Call You Joe” coffee and watch political comedy by a Biden impersonator. The Delaware-themed menu features scrapple, Sussex County pancakes, and chicken in a blanket.

Rocklands Barbeque and Grilling Company
Glover Park, 202-333-2558; Rockville, 240-268-1120; Arlington, 703-528-9663; Alexandria, 703-778-9663
The Glover Park location of this barbecue mini-chain will keep its doors open 24 hours a day from Sunday, January 18, through Tuesday, January 20 (the Rockville and Arlington outposts will also extend their hours). All four locations will sell bottles of Obama Hot Sauce for $5.99.

3333 M St., NW; 202-337-9338
This tiny make-your-own-salad storefront in Georgetown is offering four deals in conjunction with the inauguration. From Saturday, January 17, through Wednesday, January 21, a signature salad comes with a free bottle of Honest Tea, reportedly one of Barack Obama’s favorite drinks. An Obama salad—a mixture of spinach, chicken, broccoli, carrots, toasted almonds, and basil—comes with a free serving of Sweetflow frozen yogurt. And if you order the Patriotic Sweetflow topping—fresh blueberries and strawberries—you get $1 off the serving. Those attending the swearing-in ceremonies get 10 percent off their bill when they show their ticket.

Alexandria Inauguration Restaurant Week

Saturday, January 17, through Sunday, January 25, a number of Alexandria restaurants are participating in the city’s Inauguration Restaurant Week.

The following eateries will serve a three-course, prix fixe menu for $35 (not including tax and gratuity):

Bastille, 1201 N. Royal St.; 703-519-3776
Bilbo Baggins, 208 Queen St.; 703-683-0300
Cafe Salsa, 808 King St.; 703-684-4100
Chadwicks, 203 The Strand; 703-836-4442
Chevys Fresh Mex, 7732 Richmond Hwy. (Mount Vernon); 703-619-0909
Del Merei Grille, 3106 Mount Vernon Ave. (Del Ray); 703-739-4335
Farrah Olivia, 600 Franklin St.; 703-778-2233
Finn and Porter, 5000 Seminary Rd. (West End); 703-379-2346
Fish Market, 105 King St.; 703-683-1135
Flying Fish, 815-A King St.; 703-600-3474
Geranio, 722 King St.; 703-548-0088
Jamieson Grill, 400 Courthouse Sq. (Carlyle); 703-253-8640
Joe Theismann’s, 1800 Diagonal Rd.; 703-739-0777
La Bergerie, 218 N. Lee St.; 703-683-1007
Las Tapas, 710 King St.; 703-836-4000
Monroe’s, 1603 Commonwealth Ave., Del Ray; 703-548-5792
O’Connell’s, 112 King St.; 703-739-1124
Pat Troy’s Ireland’s Own Restaurant and Pub, 111 N. Pitt St.; 703-549-4535
Raw Silk, 719 King St.; 571-312-1941
Shooter McGee’s, 5239 Duke St. (West End); 703-751-9266
Stardust, 608 Montgomery St.; 703-548-9864
Tempo, 4231 Duke St. (West End); 703-370-7900
Two Nineteen, 219 King St.; 703-549-1141
Union Street Public House, 121 S. Union St.; 703-548-1785
Villa d’Este, 818 N. Saint Asaph St.; 703-549-9477

The following restaurants will serve dinner for two for $35 (not including tax and gratuity):

Dishes of India, 1510-A Belle View Blvd.; 703-660-6085
Duke’s Bar & Grill at the Embassy Suites, 1900 Diagonal Rd.; 703-838-9602
Fontaine Caffe & Creperie, 119 S. Royal St.; 703-535-8151
King Street Blues, 112 N. Saint Asaph St.; 703-836-8800
Overwood, 220 N. Lee St.; 703-535-3340

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Ann Limpert
Executive Food Editor/Critic

Ann Limpert joined Washingtonian in late 2003. She was previously an editorial assistant at Entertainment Weekly and a cook in New York restaurant kitchens, and she is a graduate of the Institute of Culinary Education. She lives in Logan Circle.