As Hurricane Sandy looks set to strike with a windy, watery fury early next week, it’s time to plan your provisions. This being Washington, the grocery stores are going to resemble picked-over hellscapes by Sunday evening, so don’t delay. And while you’re at it, don’t limit yourself to bread, milk and toilet paper.
Instead, how about ...
Our friends in Michigan know a thing or two about hunkering down and staying warm with a beer. So if I’m going to be stuck inside, it’s going to be with some bottles from the Wolverine State.
Founders’ Dirty Bastard is one of the finest Scotch Ales around: Rich and malty, with plenty of caramel and brown sugar flavors. My only concern is that it goes down so smoothly that it won’t be long before I’m staring at a clutch of empty bottles.
I would love to have Bell’s boozy winter-only Expedition Stout socked away (or know of a place that has it in bottles), but the Kalamazoo Stout is a fine beer in its own right: a dark, roasty brew whose sweet coffee notes are balanced by plenty of hops.
Finally, there’s New Holland Dragon’s Milk, a jet-black ale that’s aged in oak bourbon barrels. Yeah, it’s as good as you’d think.
(If you’d like to sample Michigan beers before Sandy hits, by the way, Meridian Pint will have all three of these beers on draft tonight at their Michigan Appreciation Night, along with other hard-to-find Michigan drafts and bottles.)
— Fritz Hahn
When it’s nasty outdoors, I like to keep it hot and spicy indoors. (Oh good grief, I’m talking about food here!) I’m talking about A&J Restaurant in Rockville and Annandale, and their delicious fresh noodles and pan-fried pork dumplings. I’m talking about Bangkok Golden Thai in Seven Corners, though not for the Thai cooking, but rather its white-hot Laotian dishes. Try the pork orm (a traditional curry stew) or the duck larb (minced meat seasoned with kaffir lime and some serious spice) and never look back. And finally, if I find myself stuck in the office, I’m talking about happily consoling myself with an order from Great Wall Szechuan House. I’ll take anything off the ma la menu, but let’s go with dan dan noodles, ma la tofu and that wonderful pork chop.
— Justin Rude
The thing to remember about a hurricane is how much boring downtime you’re left with when the lights are out — not just at home, but at all your favorite hangouts.
First, I’m grabbing industro-flashlights and tons of batteries, and then I’m stopping at a store with an enviable magazine rack for Vogue, Vanity Fair, the New Yorker, iD, Foreign Policy (the last two mostly just to be obnoxious), and copies of “This is How You Lose Her,” by Junot Diaz and “NW” by Zadie Smith. When else will I get a chance to do nothing but read, sans modern distractions?
— Lavanya Ramanathan
If you weather the storm without losing power (and if you do, tell us where you live!), take advantage of your electricity by catching up on new movie releases. This week’s newcomers include the well-received “Magic Mike” — Steven Soderbergh’s film about male strippers starring Channing Tatum — and “Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter,” which needs no introduction. Or you could take a tip from other Washingtonians and watch “That’s My Boy,” which is sure to win a Razzie, and yet was the most rented DVD in the area last week, according to Redbox.
— Stephanie Merry