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Delicious Deviltry At The Rammys

By Amy Argetsinger and Roxanne Roberts
Tuesday, June 9, 2009 12:00 AM

Delicious Deviltry At The Rammys

The RAMMYs: All the self-regard of the usual Washington industry-group banquet -- but with much better wine!

Early into Sunday's annual Restaurant Awards Gala, we were told that "restaurants are the center of our communities" -- though haven't we heard the same claim made for newspapers, public servants, etc., at other recent dinners? But let's just give it to the restaurant folks, because they throw a much wilder party: Big ice sculptures, a late-night dance floor, ladies with elaborate tattoos and strapless gowns.

Also: A spirit of conviviality that bordered on the rude, poor emcee Sue Palka of Fox 5 shouting above the din of chefs, sommeliers and maitre d's whooping it up on their night off in the Omni Shoreham ballroom.

Also: People who take "creative black tie" seriously. Dudes in kilts. Heartthrob chef Barton Seaver in a pale linen blazer and jeans, no tie. A pack of fellows in sparkly achkans who turned out, when they took the stage for the "hottest restaurant bar scene," to be the gang from Co Co. Sala. (Other prizes: Robert Wiedmaier of Marcel's and Brasserie Beck, chef of the year; Restaurant Eve, fine dining restaurant of the year. More in tomorrow's Food section.)

And who else but restaurant folks would give a lifetime achievement award to "the dean of Alcoholic Beverage Control attorneys in the District of Columbia," Dimitri Mallios. "He kept me out of jail!" said Paul Cohen of Capital Restaurant Concepts (J. Paul's, Georgia Brown's) in a video tribute.

The veteran attorney took the stage to accept his prize. Said Mallios: "I was told I only had a few minutes to talk, so here's my message -- if you want a liquor license, call Dimitri Mallios, 296-1000."

Dupont Mystery: 'Real World' Or Not?

Internet sleuths spent the weekend mulling unconfirmed tips that MTV's "The Real World" has already picked a group-house locale in Washington -- a brick mansion in Dupont Circle currently overtaken by construction crews. Evidence thus far: DCist.com quoted a teller at the bank next-door saying the lady at the dry cleaners said the "Real World" was moving in.

So we did the old "reporter" thing and, you know, made a phone call to Doug Jemal, D.C. super-developer and owner of 2000 S St., most recently used as office space. Is MTV your new tenant? "I can't tell you that!" he said, laughing. But ANC Commissioner Mike Feldstein told us that is, indeed, the house: Crews have been remodeling and gardening for the past couple of weeks, he said, with filming starting later this month and expected to last until November.

Sotomayor Still Has A Leg To Stand On

Sonia Sotomayor broke her ankle yesterday morning -- and still powered through meetings on Capitol Hill. The Supreme Court nominee tripped at LaGuardia Airport before boarding her flight to D.C., and an X-ray at GWU's Medical Center confirmed there was a small fracture in her right ankle. Sotomayor was released on crutches -- and kept six appointments with senators.

Hey, Isn't That. . . ?

-- Joe Biden hitting some balls at the Hains Point course Saturday a.m. Navy blue golf shirt, khakis. Signed an autograph for the snack bar lady.

-- Owen Wilson lunching at Peacock Cafe in Georgetown yesterday. The casually dressed blond actor showed up with four friends, had a turkey burger and wheatgrass juice.

-- Eric Benet drinking cab-sauv and ordering a ton of sushi at Maté in Georgetown Sunday. Jeans, black tee, leather vest, shades on top of his head. The R&B star is in town for a save-the-children confab on Capitol Hill today.

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