Thursday, July 9, 2009; 1:00 PM
The Going Out Guide staff discussed where to find PhotoHunt, Annapolis restaurants and especially, the ideal location for a breakup talk on Thursday, July 9 at 1 p.m. ET.
washingtonpost.com: Welcome, chatters. A quick reminder before we start Got Plans-ing it today: another Going Out Guide happy hour will take place tonight at BLT Steak starting at 6 p.m. We promise some particularly tasty food: BLT's signature popovers, peppered beef filet, mini grilled cheese, stuffed mushroom caps and black bass ceviche. But that's not all, no, that's not all! We'll have great prizes at this happy hour, too. You could win $100 gift certificates to BLT Steak or CommonWealth or a two-night stay at the Bellmoor Inn in Rehoboth Beach, Del. Want to discuss dating in D.C.? We'll be all ears on that topic, and are even bringing along the editors of Date Lab from The Washington Post Magazine. If you want to be contacted about signing up for Date Lab, you can tell us when you get there. Michelle Jacoby of the company DC Matchmaking (dcmatchmaking.com/) will also be on hand to offer mini-consultations about dating. To take advantage of the drink specials, please note that the restaurant's rooftop bar accepts cash only. The restaurant is offering $4 Dos Equis and $5 Bud and Bud Light bottles, $6 Absolut and Absolut Peach cocktails and $7 house red and white wines. That enough self-promotion for you? Fantastic. Let the chat begin.
London, UK: I am looking for a good place to host after wedding drinks near Dupont Circle - since I don't live in DC anymore, I am at a total loss! Somewhere casual where we can maybe block off a room... any suggestions? thanks!
Fritz: Depends on the time, your budget, how fancy you want and the number of people in your party, all of which are big "if"s.
But places I'd look into: Science Club, the Library room upstairs at Darlington House, one of the top two floors of Russia House (probably the fourth, since it's more intimate), Buffalo Billiards (for a more casual feel, with gaming).
If you're a gambler, try the rooftop of the Embassy Row Hilton (with pool and AMAZING view) or the Beacon Hotel.
Capitol Hill: I'm supposed to meet up with some friends at the 18th Street Lounge tomorrow, and I was wondering if they were still leaving their "no jeans" policy unenforced. I'd rather wear my Diesel jeans than my $30 slacks from Macy's, even though they frown upon the former. I'd be in a Zegna button down and a blazer, so it's not like I'd look like a shlub.
Fritz: I only wear jeans to ESL these days and never have any problems, as long as they're not stonewashed or "too light." (Seriously, that's been an excuse to get turned away before.)
Honestly, they seem to care more about shoes than jeans, or whether you're wearing a T-shirt.
Washington, D.C.: I've been working for the weekend and desperately need to get out and do stuff this weekend. Any suggestions? Anything really worth seeing at the FringeFest? Exhibits? Outdoor events?
Stephanie: I'd definitely hit up some shows at the Fringe Festival. If you want some suggestions, then you can read my picks from the preview or check out a list of other promising shows based on last year's performances. Fringe fanatic Mike Riley also let us in on his show predictions.
Washington, D.C.: How do I get to the rooftop of BLT Steak?
Anne: For our happy hour, you'll walk in, then out into the lobby, then take the elevator up. It will be easy -- there will be a bunch of people and signs there to direct you. Say hi to our friends Catherine and Mark.
Waterside Eats : Hi Gurus, My boyfriend and I have an anniversary coming up and with the weather finally being nice we'd like to spend it having a nice dinner somewhere on the water. We live in Rosslyn and have a car and are hoping to find somewhere we can enjoy a nice meal and avoid the crowds and overpricing of the Georgetown waterfront. Do you have any suggestions for quality yet casual waterfront dining in the VA/DC area. Thanks for your help!
Fritz: I'm usually disappointed with waterside dinners in D.C. and Va., especially if you want somewhere nice for an anniversary. Don't get me wrong -- I love hanging out at Cantina Marina with a cold one and some fish tacos, but it's not really a "nice dinner" kind of place.
I'd steer you instead to Annapolis (only 45 minutes from D.C.), maybe O'Leary's for good seafood and a view, or Mike's or Jimmy Cantler's for crabs.
I heart the '80s: So, I'm thinking of going to get my red vest and Delorean fix tomorrow night at the I love the '80s film fest. Has anyone been? Does it get crowded? How early should one get there as not to be a "squeezer?"
Jen: Excuse me, that's not a vest. It's a life preserver.
I haven't gone and watched a movie in its entirety, but I have definitely passed by at around 7:30 p.m. on a Friday evening, and Gateway Park looks crowded, but not quite a squeeze situation. I imagine it fills up further once dusk settles in, so I would think that arriving around 7 or 7:15-ish might not be a bad idea, especially if it's a nice night and you can just picnic for a bit.
Chatters, anyone care to share their crowd experiences at the I Love the '80s series?
JR's: Hey all, A few of us ladies want to go to JR's on Monday for Broadway night. Will we be really out of place there? I was looking on the website and there were no ladies in any of the pictures. Thanks
Fritz: Well, it *is* a gay bar. I've only been to the show tunes night once and don't remember any women.
Whether you'd feel out of place is up to you, but as long as you're not attracting undue attention to yourself, I don't see why it would be a problem.
Annapolis, Md.: Hi Gurus,
Meeting with some friends tomorrow in Georgetown for a day of bridesmaid dress shopping and celebrating the bride to be. We're looking for a fun place for lunch between dress appointments - someplace girly but hip, modern, fun and, most importantly, super delicious. If it were you, where would you go? maybe something outdoors? Maybe Mie and Yu (never been there for lunch)? Thanks!!
Stephanie: I'm a huge fan of Leopold's. The food is delicious and the interior is really bright and airy, plus there's outdoor seating if the weather is nice. I'm a huge fan of the breakfast there (get the scrambled souffle!) and it's served till 4, I think, so people could choose if they want to go the brunch route or not.
Gateway movies: I got there at 7 last week to save space for Top Gun, and it was pretty empty. By 7:30 there was a steady trickle, and the place was pretty much packed by 8:15. If you're planning to bring a large group or are going to insist on having room for your lawn chairs, definitely get there before 7:30...but if you're solo or in a group of 3 or less, you can probably wander in after 8 and find a spot without getting too many dirty looks.
Jen: Good to know. Thanks for the intel!
Alexandria, Va.: Help a brother out. Y'all always talk about good proposal spots, but what about good breakup spots? I don't want to tarnish either of our homes with the bad memories of a breakup, nor do I really want to be alone with a possibly angry/distraught significant other. Are there any good outdoor or indoor summer spots where I could get this over with before August? Thanks for your (albeit sad) help.
Anne: Hm. I don't know if we Gurus actually want to be associated with any recommendation that comes with this kind of scene, since we're more in the business of bringing people together for good times. Although Fritz picks the World War II Memorial, because he hates it and wouldn't feel bad having bad memories associated with it. I would say that if it has to be outdoor, be thoughtful and be in a place where you can have some privacy, because obviously this is an emotional thing. And pick a place where you can both (separately) escape from easily. Chatters, what's your take?
Dupont: So my pay cut kicks in this month which means nice dinners, expensive cocktails, pricey concert tickets will have to be severely limited. Looking for fun ideas of ways to still go out without dropping a lot of money. I'm 30 and have lived in DC a few years so don't feel like the intern guide is entirely relevant. At least I still have a job right?
Fritz: Actually, Dupont, this is one of the reasons that we turned the annual Interns' Guide into Free and Cheap D.C. this year -- lots of us are tightening our belts. We've gone beyond the usual dirt-cheap happy hours to find places that have great drinks for $5 at happy hour, advice from Tom Sietsema about dining out on a budget and how to see plays for less.
There's also the weekly Free and Easy column on the blog every Monday, which has DJ nights, movie screenings, breakdancing, cultural festivals -- and none of that will cost you a cent.
Oh, and let me plug tonight's happy hour at BLT Steak: Free food from the well-reviewed steakhouse, discounted drinks, prizes and a rooftop deck with a view of the monuments. Sounds like fun without spending a lot or acting like an intern hoovering up the free wings at the Hawk and Dove.
Dupont lady: JR's Broadway Night -- It's packed, PACKED every week. As a straight girl with many gay men friends, I do NOT do JRs on Mondays...I don't get any hostility, its just soo crowded, seems like a hook up scene...
Fritz: It really is a hookup scene.
Photo hunt?: Hi Gurus, I love playing erotic photo hunt and there used to be several bars in DC that offered this. But now I can't find it anywhere. I hear it's at the Four Provinces in Cleveland Park, but do you all know who else has it? I was told Rocket Bar does, but it DOES NOT. LIES!! Please help!
Fritz: Recessions? Asylum? Mackey's?
You should also read Amanda Hess' City Paper story on >the King of Photo Hunt.
Break-up spot: DO IT NOW! It doesn't matter where. I'm sure bad things have happened in your apartment before and you aren't dwelling on it today. Don't be cruel and draw out a relationship that isn't working. =(
Anne: Totally agree. That comment about "get it over with before August"... ouch.
Arlington, Va.: Hope you gurus are enjoying the awesome weather this week! Any ideas on where to pick up some provisions near Jazz at the Sculpture Garden to avoid having to lug picnic fare to work or waiting in the crazy lines for overpriced food and drinks?
Fritz: Julia's a fan of Teaism. I prefer Nando.
You should check out Julia's list of places to get takeout near the Mall. It was written with July 4 in mind, but is still a good guide year-round.
Falls Church, Va.: Hello Gurus, is there anything special that you can tell me about Saturday's Joel/John concert at Nationals Park? Thanks!
David: This is the first show of the current stretch, but I wouldn't expect any rust from these two. They are the definition of old pros. It will be a long show -- somewhere between three and three-and-a-half hours, with individual sets and surely a few numbers together. Expect lots and lots of hits -- this isn't one of those "let's try to sell the new album" tours. It's "let's give the fans what they want." It may actually be the first time that happens in Nationals Park!
Chantilly, Va.: Break up with her on the Metro. That way there are too many people around to cause a scene and you can each go your own separate ways on another train.
Anne: Near a Metro, yes. But not on the train -- how awful for all the people around who have to hear it, too! No need to make it more humiliating.
Feeling old on U street: oh Gurus, help. I feel like I've lost my fun mojo and I'm in my early 20s (how is this happening!). Boyfriend and I are trying to plan something fun and exciting, as we've been together for a while now and busy lives have taken over, spending time together now means home cooked meals and TV when it used to mean fun nights out, trying new places, being spontaneous.
I'm trying to think of something exciting to do and am failing miserably. I would like it to be something we haven't done before (being a resident of this city for 6 years that can be hard) - I've eaten at most restaurants on U street/Logan Circle/Columbia Heights/Dupont area that I would care to - but even just going out to dinner seems kind of blah and boring. I was thinking about going to Old Town as we haven't spent much time there but unsure about a good, affordable place to get lunch/dinner.
Help a girl out, I feel like I'm 20-something going on 40-something sometimes, and want to feel my age again.
Stephanie: Buck up, U Street! It's just a phase. Here are some ideas to get you started: Pack a picnic and head to an outdoor movie screening or a Fort Reno concert. Rent bikes and pedal your way to Mount Vernon or kayaks and paddle around Roosevelt Island. Check out the Fringe Festival schedule and see if there's an oddball performance that piques your interest. Go to the opening reception of a new exhibition. Play putt-putt at a new bar. Want more suggestions? I have like a million, so come hang out tonight and we'll talk.
Fritz, why do you like the Gibson?: Do you think it's trying a little too hard to come off as a "speakeasy" kind of place or is it a new-old bar with a gimmick that's more pretense and irritation than anything else. Most importantly, though, the cocktails? I'm super picky about how my cocktails are shaken, stirred and/or poured. It's hard to make a perfect drink, especially the traditional ones since bartenders seem to focus on the modernization of freshly bruised, freshly squeezed, organic this, etc, etc. While I appreciate fresh and sometimes organic, I want a bar that focuses on the perfect pour--not all the tricks of the trade of the moment.
Fritz: Why do I like it?
I appreciate that the menu puts new twists on old recipes, and uses fresh fruits and juices, bitters and syrups made in-house, and all sorts of weird liqueurs that very few bars elsewhere even consider. I like that the bartenders can be inventive if you ask, and enjoy showing off their knowledge.
I like that it's never overcrowded, and that I can relax (for a few hours, at least) without overly loud music and people leaning over my shoulder to order at the bar.
Does this mean it's hard to get in sometimes, and that it can take almost too long to get drinks at times? Yes to both. But if you go on a Sunday evening, a Tuesday night, a Wednesday after work -- there's rarely a problem getting in.
break up: I would be so angry (on top of being depressed) if my boyfriend took me out in public to break up with me. have some respect for her and do it inside somewhere.
Anne: Right, why make this worse?
breakup spots: At first I was thinking, "man up and do it at your house" but then you do look like the jerk who made her come to your house to just break up with her. And she doesn't want the memory in her place so I suggest a hotel lobby/bar.
David: I think a simple letter will do, no need to be there in person. "Dear baby, Welcome to Dumpsville. Population: you."
Breaking up is hard to do .... : I'm sorry for your pain - and obviously thanks for being sensitive. I'm thinking a good walking path would do the trick. Seems to me, that often difficult things to discuss do well on a walk when you don't have to look into each others eyes, when you can have a silence ... . In fact, I see the canal in my mind's eye. It can be quite private but still 'in public'. You also have the option to stop for coffee if that seems appropriate.
Stephanie: This gets the award for most thoughtful response!
Washington, D.C.: Okay, I need a bar etiquette question answered. I have a bunch of friends from out of town who now live here. Many of them routinely bring a flask into bars to avoid buying anything. Their justification is that (a) it helps the bar to look busier and doesn't cause the bar any harm because they weren't going to buy a drink anyway, and (b) drinks are expensive and we are poor. I've lived here 7 years and felt that this was very un-DC (and tacky, but that's a matter of taste), but I wanted to go to the closest thing we have to an authority on bar etiquette. Please help!
Fritz: There's so much going on in this question that I don't know where to start.
It's not etiquitte. It's rude, it's borderline illegal to consume alcoholic beverages that were not sold on premises, and it could get you banned from all the places you usually hang out. (I'd LOVE to see your friends get caught at the Black Cat, Eighteenth Street Lounge or places with large bouncers.) But let's look at some of these points closer.
"It helps the bar to look busier."
I frequently get emails and complaints from readers about how they went to check out a bar, but grew annoyed that it was so crowded/busy that they left without buying anything. Happens to me, too. And you know what? We'd be buying things, helping the servers make money and keeping the place in business. Your friends aren't. Who would the bar owner rather have in?
"Drinks are expensive and we are poor."
Welcome to D.C. This is really, really common. I've been an intern, a low-paid hourly wage slave, an underpaid 22-year-old at his first job, and you know what? I dealt. I went to happy hours with free food and cheap crappy beer. I went to the Front Page and Lucky Bar and all the other $1.50/$2 drink nights, like generations of interns before me. It happens to everyone. I mean, do you have a Ferrari? "Cars are expensive, and we are poor" is pretty much the same thing. If you don't have the money, you don't need to go out and drink. Stay home. Go to a house party in Columbia Heights or something and bring a sixer of Natty Light.
Look at it this way: A friend scores a promotion and everyone decides to go out for a nice meal. You settle in around the table at the restaurant. Everyone orders, and when the waitress asks what you want, you pull out a ziplock bag stuffed with a bologna-and-American-cheese sandwich and say, "nope, I'm having this instead." Just as classy to pull out a flask in the bar.
Alexandria, VA: We're going to the concert at Nationals Park on Saturday and are planning to take Metro, do you know where we can find out what time the last train leaves from the station there? I couldn't find it on the WMATA website, and I know I saw it published somewhere for a soccer game recently. Thanks!
Fritz: It's Saturday, so I'm guessing 2:30/2:40 a.m.
To Feeling old on U street: This 40-something wants you to know everything I did last Friday: Jazz in the Sculpture Garden, Folklife Festival, Nats game, Artomatic, and the 9:30 Club for Tittsworth and the rest. It ain't about age my friend.
Stephanie: Amen. And thanks for throwing down so many other awesome ideas.
do like my FIANCE: and leave a voice mail
Fritz: Uh, whoa.
Photo Hunt: Union Pub has photo hunt
Fritz: But is it the right version? Not just any photohunt will do.
Dupont: What the deal with the U.S Royalty show? Does the RSVP ensure you get in, or should I still plan on showing up early? Are they serving drinks?
Fritz: The RSVP ensures that your name will be on the list at the door. People whose names are on the list get priority. (And at this point, with capacity limited to a few hundred, it looks like only people whose names are on the list will get in.)
If more people RSVP than there is room for, then it's totally first-come, first-served.
And yes, there will be a bar.
Arlington, Va.: Re: walking path - uh, yeah, that won't be awkward when you break up halfway through a walk, then have to walk next to each other the rest of the way back if the breakup isn't mutual.
Stephanie: I think this seals it. There isn't a good way to break up. I was thinking: do it over ice cream. Because ice cream makes everything better. But then what if she's lactose intolerant?
RE "Dear baby, Welcome to Dumpsville. Population: you." : I'm all about the text message/e-mail/letter/phone call. It makes the other person stop focusing on the relationship and its/their shortcomings, and instead think about how bad of person you are and how lucky he/she is to not be with you anymore. I really think it helps the healing process....
David: And let's face it -- you probably ARE a bad person and she IS lucky not to be with you. So it really works out.
Washington, D.C.: I once had someone break up with me over dinner (as in he scheduled dinner to break up with me...) and then he had the nerve to ask me for my half of the dinner cost when I was on my way out of the restaurant to leave his stupid a-- to finish his dinner alone. Be polite, be respectful--if you've been with someone this long that it's a hard breakup, you obviously respect the other person enough to be civil in this as well.
Fritz: Man, some dudes is jerks.
JR's: i went with a small group of girls (maybe 5). BE WARNED: there is no dancing in JR"s. not for the gays or the straights. i was barely swaying to the beat of the music and was asked to leave. I was pissed and don't recommend going.
Fritz: More JR's advice.
Bethesda, Md.: Greetings GoGs! Submitting early; I'm excited about the new W in town and planning to take some visitors there this evening - are reservations required for bar seating (lobby and the rooftop indoor/outdoor)? ps - thanks for blog on Fritz's pre-opening tour of W!
Fritz: They don't really have a reservations system in place yet for P.O.V. (the rooftop bar and lounge), though they'll be going on Open Table soon. The seats (106 outside, 64 inside) will be split between reservations, walk-in and tables that are reserved for hotel guests. The Lobby bar -- aka the Living Room -- doesn't require reservations.
Last night was pretty much chaos -- they had to close the doors around 7:30 because the entire hotel was at capacity -- but crowds should be less hectic tonight, I'm told, especially if you arrive after happy hour.
Arlington: I wonder if the person who is breaking up hoped to ease the news with their girlfriend reading this chat. I'm sure a lot of girls whose boyfriends live in Alexandria are nervous now!
Anne: Oh geez. Maybe those panicked women should bond together, petition the government, something sort of like this.
No dancing at JR's?: What is that place, like a gay "Footloose?"
Fritz: Everybody cut!
JRs and Dancing: Jr's is a narrow bar, if you DO go for Showtunes, be preapred for 1) No Dancing, 2) Extremely crowded, and 3) Leaving the supersized purse at home.
No self respecting Homo wants to be prodded in the back by your Louis Vitton knockoff that you got on the street corner in Georgetown, and yes we'll call you out on the knockoff.
And while we're on rules, don't tell us how fabulous we are and please just because you know another gay, it doesn't mean that we'll be perfect for each other. I swear I was once on the receiving end of a "You should meet my friend Bobby, he just got out of prison, you're perfect for each other" conversation.
Just some thoughts...
Fritz: Man, this is the best advice you could get if you're going to JR's Monday.
flasks / popcorn: I totally agree about the flasks. Do you think it's the same thing to smuggle in popcorn to the movie. On the one hand, it's 'against the rules' on the other hand - the prices are beyond fair - it's gouge time! If you want to enjoy popcorn in a movie theater it seems like your choices are either to go against the theater's policy or to be gouged. What's your take?
Stephanie: Well I'd never bring a flask to a bar, but I've definitely brought my own soda to a movie (though I'm not much of a popcorn fan, so I can't speak to that). I figure you've already paid a fair amount to get into the movie, and I don't feel like paying an extra $5 for a Coke that's 5 times more than I can drink.
Question about Ultrabar: Gurus,
You are my ambassadors of Quan. What, too dated? Anyway, I need your help. A group of girls, late 30's is looking to go dancing on a Saturday night in a few weeks. I've heard good things about Ultrabar, but I seriously haven't been to a dance club since the days of Pollyesther's and...wait for it...ZONES! (You remember Zones, right? Near "The Bank"? God, I'm old). Anyway, will Ultrabar fit the bill for this age group, where we can be slightly cheesy, but not too cheesy, and not feel too old? Don't worry, it's not a bachelorette party :) THANKS!!!
Fritz: Yes -- I like Ultrabar. (It's fairly similar to the old Ritz, but much nicer.) It's small enough to have fun and not one of the vast warehousey places like Fur or Ibiza. You'll be on the older end of the crowd, but there are plenty of late 20s/early 30s along with the college kids. Just ignore them and get your dance on.
Actually, Ibiza might not be a bad idea if you want a larger dance club experience. Tends to get good DJs on the weekends, but is, you know, in the middle of nowhere.
Canal for breaking up: Unless they've been together a while and then she might think he's going to propose!
David, I also hope you were joking with the letter. To the guy, break up in person, its the right thing to do.
David: Yes, of course I was joking. "The Simpsons," anyone?
Photo Hunt: Whitlow's has erotic photo hunt. So does Rumors.
Fritz: I knew our readers could come through on this one.
RE: Erotic Photo Hunt: Ventnor's in Adams Morgan has it.
Dupont Circle South: I walk to work past what I think is a new bar, Public Bar on 18th St next to Sesto Senso. Is it new or did I just now notice it? Any word on what it is like? Also I have heard that the infamous ESL is there as well, but I don't see any signs--how does one get to it?
Fritz: Public Bar is a pretty cool loft-style sports bar that replaced the old Five dance club. Lots of screens on exposed brick walls, huge booths, great rooftop deck. It's also kind of pricier than most sports bars. It's not a bad weekend hangout.
ESL is down the block. Look for the long line and get in it.
Downtown D.C.: Hey Gurus,
I already have another Happy Hour placed on my calendar today - but the thought of this awesome food and spending some time on a rooftop really makes me want to check out BLT Steak tonight as well. Am I going to be able to pop in early and leave early without it feeling awkward?
Fritz: Just don't say "Bye" on your way out. That might hurt our feelings if it's at 6:10.
Alexandria: Similarly, I'm looking to plan an anniversary activity - and I'd love to go to the beach during the day and then eat crabs for dinner. Any ideas about where I can do that? Thanks!
Fritz: I'd say Saint Mary's, or Chesapeake Beach in Charles County. Not a huge beach, but good seafood.
Or you can go to Bethany for the day, then hit the Fenwick Island Crab House afterwards. I really do love that place.
Popcorn: At many (most?) movie theatres - def the AMC chain - it is legal to bring in any and all outiside food and bev as long it doesn't annoy other guests (I guess smelly things like a sardine sandwich?).
Fritz: Right. It's legal to bring food into Nationals games as well. But where's the last bar you went to that said it was okay to BYO Flask -- besides HR-57, which charges a corkage fee?
Shaw: Ugly Mug has erotic photohunt
Fritz: Y'all are great.
Washington, D.C. : Go to her place. Be a man, and if she reacts badly (by which I mean crying, not violence), deal with it.
I had a college boyfriend take me to the cafeteria to break up with me, in his words, so I wouldn't cause a scene. That backfired. And to this day it blocks out remembering anything I might have liked about him for the months prior.
Fritz: Dear breaker-upper: please note the words "Be a man" and "deal with it."
Falls Church, VA: Hey Gurus, any suggestions on a place to have a birthday gathering for my pregnant wife? Since happy hour is out (unless you know of a place that makes great mocktails) I was thinking a dessert oriented place would be ideal, preferably something in Arlington, but DC works too. Thanks!
Falls Church, Va.: Hola Gurus! Planning for a birthday dinner with about 12 people....WE WANT SUSHI! Gonna do dinner Friday and save the debauchery for Saturday. Semi-classy without the $$$. I was stoked because I know sticky rice does a late HH but when I looked on their website, they only do the late on Monday: true or false?? If true, that's my spot. If false, could you recommend a good sushi spot in DC proper (any hood) that would accommodate about 12 on a Friday night? Cool decor is a plus! Thanks so much and feel free to come by!! :)
Fritz: Sticky Rice does indeed only do the late-night on Monday. But I would still try to go by on Friday, because I really like their sushi, especially at their current price-point. I would think that they could accommodate you upstairs, and then you're set for a night of bar-crawling on H Street.
Photo Hunt: I routinely play Erotic Photo Hunt at the 1409 Playbill. Wait, is it bad to admit that? Oh well, this is anonymous, right?
Fritz: Totally anonymous.
Happy Hour: I have to miss your happy hour tonight (ugh!) because I'm meeting some friends from high school on the Hill or Eastern Market area. Something other than been and wine deeeefinitely needs to be involved in this happy hour, but I'm totally blanking on what bars/restaurants have happy hour specials for cocktails. Any advice, all-knowing gurus?
Fritz: Rail drinks at Capitol Lounge are a go-to. Jordan's 8 has some specials, too. Oh, and Matchbox's great cocktails are discounted until 7, I believe.
Washington, D.C.: Have you heard about something going on this weekend involving fire trucks?
Anne: Whoo-whoo-whoo-whoo! (That's the sound of our plug alert going off. Funny how it sounds kind of like a police car/fire truck siren.) Yes, we have. Seriously, if you have a kid who likes trucks, you're probably required to take her to this. Just bring your earplugs.
Ataloss, D.C.: Thank you for taking my question. Happy summer! Thirteen-year old (going on 20) niece visiting at the end of July for a weekend. Any suggestions for can't miss activities? Thank you.
Anne: Definitely take her to the Sculpture Garden Friday night concert, maybe to the Eggleston exhibit. Hang out at Tryst or Busboys. Your description of your niece makes me think of the Style Rookie blogger, who recently posted about going to a Dylan concert -- think she'd like that? (It would require a road trip.) I'll let David give you better music ideas.
David: If she'll be here by Thursday 7/30 you'll definitely want to take her to the season-ending Fort Reno show with Title Tracks and Casper Bangs. Depending on the weekend you'll have a chance to see either Dylan or Paul McCartney -- both a bit of a hike, but that's music + history lesson in one.
Dancing at JR's: Technically, you're not allowed to dance at JR's because the establishment does not have a "dance floor license" or some such. So -- or at least they say -- they could get in trouble if people dance there.
Stephanie: I actually got reprimanded in a bar in NYC for this. I was just barely bopping around to the music and a bouncer came over and told me to stop. I couldn't help but laugh in his face as soon as the words "license to dance" came out of his mouth. I'd never heard of such a thing....
Logan Circle, DC: Is there any sort of shuttle or public transportation to Merriweather. I have tickets for Rock the Bells this Sunday but still looking for a ride. Thanks.
Fritz: There is not, Logan, and that's one heck of a cab ride.
Some of the local party bus services do runs for concerts like Dave Matthews or J*mmy Buff*t, but I don't see any for Rock the Bells.
Washington, DC: So this question might sound like I'm just trying to do some major drinking action (which is mostly true) but where can one get saki bombs in the metro d.c. area? Extra points if the places are affordable.
Fritz: I may or may not have done saki bombs with Kirin and the house saki at Cafe Asia's happy hour, where it's like $2.50 for the beer and $3 for the saki.
Alexandria, Va.: Interested to hear from Gurus: If you could do a restaurant and/or bar tour of any Metro accessible neighbordhood within the District or NoVA where would you go?
Fritz: 14th Street is the obvious answer: Cork, Bar Pilar, Saint Ex, Marvin, Policy, Gibson, Black Cat with four blocks. Might also say H Street, though that's kind of obvious these days. And Clarendon, with Eventide, Liberty Tavern, 3, Sette, Galaxy Hut ...
Germantown: Best Bet for family fun in the DC area this weekend? Is the Spiked Sunday pool thing kid-friendly?
Fritz: Spiked Sunday is definitely kid-friendly. Lots of little ones running around and splashing in the pool. Good burgers, too.
washingtonpost.com: Well, that's about all the break-up ... I mean, going out ... advice we have time for today. Thanks for all your questions and comments. And we'll see you tonight at the BLT Steak happy hour!
The Going Out Gurus write about restaurants, bars, movies, the arts, special events and visitor attractions, and they're out every night to keep you on top of the D.C. entertainment scene. Check in with them throughout the week on the GOG Blog or join their live Q&A every Thursday at 1 p.m.
Editor's Note: washingtonpost.com moderators retain editorial control over Discussions and choose the most relevant questions for guests and hosts; guests and hosts can decline to answer questions. washingtonpost.com is not responsible for any content posted by third parties.