Fun Food Events Around DC This July

A Romanian food festival, an oyster happy hour, and cookbook readings are on the table this month.

Dauphine's oyster happy hour takes place every Friday this summer. Photograph by Jennifer Chase.

The weather might be steamy and unbearable these days, but there’s still plenty to look forward to this summer in DC’s culinary world. Here are some fun food events on our menu:

Celebrate Romanian culture at The Wharf’s District Pier (101 District Sq., SW) with three days of Romanian food, Transylvanian folk music, spoken word performances, and Carpathian dances hosted by the Romanian Embassy and the Romanian Cultural Institute. The events take place 5 to 9 PM on Friday, July 7; and noon to 8 PM on Saturday, July 8 and Sunday, July 9. The event is free and no tickets or reservations are required. 

Eating and drinking is prohibited on the Metro, but at Metrobar (640 Rhode Island Ave., NE), in the Bryant Street development just off the Red Line, you can sip transit-themed cocktails and sample food truck fare inside a repurposed Metro car. Metrobar is hosting a much-anticipated soft opening event for the railcar on Saturday, July 8 from 5 to 9 PM, but tickets are limited and given out via a free lottery. Food trucks Bun’d Up and Abu Layla Kush will be there through closing time. 

Learn to recreate Southeast Asian flavors in your home kitchen at the “Street Food: The Mekong” workshop at the Hill Center (921 Pennsylvania Ave., SE) on Tuesday, July 11 from 6 to 8 PM. Chef Mark Haskell, a Hill Center regular, highlights bánh xèo, the Vietnamese savory crepe, in his street-food-focused course. Registration goes for $69 and includes complimentary beer and wine.

Bold Fork Books owner Clementine Thomas. Photograph courtesy of Bold Fork Books.

Bold Fork Books is hosting cookbook authors and book club events all summer at its Mount Pleasant shop (3064 Mt. Pleasant St., NW). On Wednesday, July 12 at 7 PM, baker Stacey Mei Yan Fong discusses her book 50 Pies, 50 States: An Immigrant’s Love Letter to the United States Through Pie, which includes recipes like California artichoke pie and Maine blueberry and Moxie pie. Tickets, starting at $10, include admission and pie.

A cocktail bar, LaPop, is hidden underneath the refined Afghan restaurant Lapis (1847 Columbia Rd., NW), and on Wednesday, July 12, the two come together with the “What are Afghan cocktails?” night. The bar’s mixologists will experiment with how flavors from Afghanistan—not generally a drinking culture—might make their way into spirit-based concoctions. The event starts at 5 PM and $5 tickets  include a welcome tasting of a housemade beverage.  

Politics & Prose is hosting a reading of Ramen for Everyone, a new picture book by cookbook author Patricia Tanumihardja, at the Takoma Park Maryland Library (7505 New Hampshire Ave., Takoma Park) on Wednesday, July 12. The book, recommended for kids age 4 to 8, includes recipes and ideas for personalized ramen. Register for the free event here.

The scene at a previous Best of Washington party. Photograph by Jessica Sidman.

Washingtonian’s own Best of Washington party takes over the Anthem (901 Wharf St., SW) on Thursday, July 13, with unlimited food from more than 60 of Washington’s best restaurants, from Anju to Xiquet. Tickets, which start at $195 and benefit the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society, are available here.

On a lazy Friday afternoon this summer, stop by the New Orleans-inspired Dauphine’s (1100 15th St., NW) for a new oyster happy hour that runs from 11:30 AM to 3 PM every Friday through Labor Day. Local oysters from Maryland and Virginia go for half price (around $1.75 each). The restaurant’s regularly scheduled happy hour begins immediately afterward. 

MVEMENT’s monthly Flava Food Truck Block Party takes place at the Sandlot in Anacostia (633 Howard Rd., SE) on Friday, July 21 from 4 to 9 PM. The event, which spotlights Black-owned roving food businesses on the third Friday of each month, is free to attend. 

The dining room at Lutece in Georgetown. Photograph by Channing Foster.

Georgetown’s Lutèce (1522 Wisconsin Ave., NW) will host guest chef Nico Russell of Oxalis, an award-winning seasonal restaurant in Brooklyn, for a one-night dinner focused on midsummer ingredients. Reservations for the Monday, July 24 dinner, a collaboration between Russell and Lutèce’s chefs, are available through Tock and start at $115 per person. 

A friendly annual competition and fundraiser between bars, War of the Rosés, brings together 18 bars and restaurants that donate 10 percent of their rosé sales during the month of July to charities of their choice. The owners of Beau Thai and BKK Cookshop started the contest in 2018. See a full list of participating restaurants and their chosen charities here

All month, Cheesetique (2411 Mt Vernon Ave., Alexandria and 4024 Campbell Ave., Arlington) is throwing a “Mozzarella Fest,” offering a special menu that highlights burrata, cow’s milk mozzarella, and mozzarella di bufala along with summery accompaniments like roasted yellow tomatoes and Italian drinks like spritzes and Negronis. Special events at the Del Ray location this month also include movie nights and winemaker appearances. 

Kevin Tien will resurrect his Petworth restaurant Himitsu for two months this summer. Photograph by Scott Suchman .

Chef Kevin Tien’s lauded but relatively short-lived Japanese restaurant Himitsu is getting resurrected for the months of July and August as Little Himitsu, a pop-up inside Petworth’s Little Vietnam (828 Upshur St., NW)— the restaurant’s former space. The menu, divided between Little Vietnam and Himitsu dishes, includes tuna handrolls, a catfish sando, and Himitsu’s karaage. Book a reservation through Little Vietnam’s Instagram

Ike Allen
Assistant Editor