Food  |  Things to Do

8 Fun Food Events Around DC This Weekend

Why choose between the Kentucky Derby and Cinco de Mayo when you can celebrate both?

Get your sparkle on this Thursday. Photograph courtesy of Brabo.

On Thursday head to Old Town, Alexandria for a very sparkly happy hour at Brabo. The restaurant launches its new Summer Sparkle Program with a tasting of complimentary sparkling cocktails and snacks. The restaurant will hand out “sparkle cards,” where customers will earn a punch for every cocktail they order. Once you hit ten, there’s a free invite to their end-of-summer soiree.

Washington Nationals pitcher Gio Gonzalez hosst Uncork for a Cause on Thursday to raise funds for the Washington Nationals Dream Foundation and Hialeh Baseball. Not only will you get access to a rooftop and a Jos. A Magnus cocktail bar, but you’ll also get a bottle of Gonzalez’s very own limited edition Sonoma red wine. Tickets are $250.

If you have one of those #RoséAllDay t-shirts, this is the perfect time to break it out. Slate Wine Bar + Bistro in Glover Park celebrates the return of rosé season with an all-day tasting on Thursday. You can choose from two wine flights, one of all European rosés ($15) and another of American rosés ($17). Order a couple of appetizers and make it a night.

Friday is Star Wars day (May the Fourth be with you…get it?). To celebrate, EatBar and Buzz Bakeshop will have treats perfectly suited for a galaxy far, far away. Pop in during the day for some Chewbacca and Yoda macarons ($4.25) or a Darth Vader-themed cupcake ($4). When cocktail hour hits, try the Queen Amidala or Lord of the Sith (each $12)

The crew behind Alexandria Korean spot JuMak hosts a feast and fundraiser at District Space on Friday. The four-course meal includes dishes like pork belly wraps, spicy whelk salad, and beef loin with cold noodles ($60 per person). You can match them with a la carte Korean beer, soju, or custom cocktails.

Cheer on the horses in style with bottomless mint juleps. Photograph courtesy of the Watergate Hotel Facebook page.

Even if you’re not the betting type, it’s still fun to watch the Kentucky Derby when there’s food and drink involved. Keep it classy at the Watergate Hotel during a viewing party at its the Next Whiskey Bar on Saturday. The $50 tickets include a bottomless build-your-own mint julep bar, live band, and classic race food like cucumber sandwiches and ham biscuits. Come decked out in your finest race-day attire, because there’ll be a costume contest, too.

If you really can’t choose between watching the Derby or celebrating Cinco de Mayo, here’s some good news—you can do both! On Saturday, all three floors of Jack Rose in Adams Morgan celebrate “Cinco de Derby” with juleps, frozen margaritas, tacos, derby punches, and Mexican beers. It’s open to the public starting at 3 PM on the terrace and 4 PM in the saloon. Admission is free. 

Get your hands on some local produce as two more farmers markets open for the season. Photograph by Flickr user GNIKRJ.

It’s not Sunday in DC if you don’t yoga and brunch, right? Combine the two at Pinstripes, where a CorePower instructor will lead you through a flow before you sit down to a bottomless brunch buffet. Tickets for yoga are $5 and include a free mimosa, as well as $5 off the regularly-priced brunch.

Sunday marks the first day of the 2018 season for the Capitol Riverfront and Bloomingdale farmers markets. Starting at 9 AM, the two will be open for business every Sunday. Stock up on local produce, then head to a nearby spot for brunch — think Bluejacket if you’re in Capitol Riverfront or Big Bear Cafe in Bloomingdale. 

At Tail Up Goat (bottom), all the bread is made in-house, including the brown-rice variety used for toast with Greek yogurt, turnips, hazelnuts, and mint. Photograph by Scott Suchman.
Eat at Tail Up Goat (for a good cause!). Photograph by Scott Suchman

And heading into the week…

Louisville brandy distillery Copper & Kings will be in DC on Monday at Service Bar to host its MixT&pe semi-final event. Six local bartenders face off to create three cocktails inspired by their favorite songs and musicians. The stakes are high—among the local bartenders repping spots like Radiator, Hank’s Cocktail Bar, and Lucky Buns, only one will make it to the national finals in Louisville, KY. 

Dine for a good cause on Tuesday at Tail Up Goat. The Adams Morgan restaurant will host Spike Gjerde and Opie Crooks of Woodberry Kitchen and A Rake’s Progress for a five-course menu inspired by the Mid-Atlantic. Tickets are $125, and all of the proceeds from the dinner will go toward Dreaming Out Loud, a group focused on food justice.

And speaking of all-star chef dinners, here’s one you’ll want to plan well in advance for. Pineapple and Pearls will host a benefit dinner for Ment’or on Monday, June 4, and ticket sales will go live on Friday, May 4 at 10 AM. Host chef Aaron Silverman will be joined by Chef Dave Beran (of Alinea, Next and Dialogue), chef Matthew Kirkley (of COI and now the American Bocuse d’or Team in 2019). The all-inclusive cost for the multi-course meal with beverage pairings, tax, and tip is $595 per person.

Mimi Montgomery Washingtonian
Home & Features Editor

Mimi Montgomery joined Washingtonian in 2018. She’s written for The Washington Post, Garden & Gun, Outside Magazine, Washington City Paper, DCist, and PoPVille. Originally from North Carolina, she now lives in Del Ray.