Got Plans?: Low-key seafood restaurants, edgy theater companies and all-star concerts

The Going Out Gurus
of The Washington Post's Going Out Guide
Thursday, April 22, 2010; 1:00 PM

The Going Out Guide staff talked about low-key seafood restaurants, edgy theater companies and all-star concerts on Thursday, April 22, at 1 p.m. ET.

____________________ Hey y'all. Did ya hear we were giving away five pairs of tickets for the Sweetlife Festival? We are indeed. All you have to do is answer this question: What would be your all-time, all-star bill for an outdoor concert and why? You can choose musicians alive or dead and we'll give points for interesting potential collaborations. We've got Steph, David, Fritz, Justin, Alex and me (Julia) on deck to answer all of your going-out questions. Let the games begin.


Skins Fan Rex in Petworth: Tonight is the first-ever primetime NFL Draft (7:30pm). I'd like to watch it in a bar with friends, but we want to hear the volume on the TV. Most places have the volume off. Any suggestions about a good place in the District?

Fritz Hahn: We had a couple in the Nightlife Agenda, including the ESPN Zone (obviously) and the Park at 14th, which is hosted by Stephon Heyer and has an open bar on Guinness from 5-7 and $5 premium cocktails until 8.


Washington, D.C.: Outdoor concert choices: The National. Nina Simone. Leonard Cohen. Counting Crows.

Julia Beizer: *This* is an eclectic bill.


Eastern Market: All-Time, All-Star Bill.

Assuming there aren't any "scheduling conflicts," we can bridge decades at Nats Park with:

The Clash New Order Arcade Fire

Arcade Fire and the Clash can team up for Guns of Brixton and all three can get together for Bizarre Love Triangle.

The Outfield can open, for obvious reasons, but they only get to play one song.

Julia Beizer: A contender. . .


Springfield, Va.: My husband and I are going out for the first time in six months (our son was six months old on Tuesday). Saturday night is date night. Where to eat and what to do after we dine?!?

Julia Beizer: Give me more, Springfield. You looking to stay in the NoVa. area? Or want to get down in town? What do you guys like to do?


Bethesda: If the Verizon Center can sell-out a Bruce Springsteen concert with thousands of people in their 40's and 50's, why can't I find a cool, fun bar where folks that age can dance and drink? I only seem to find bars/dance floors filled with twenty-somethings.

Fritz Hahn: Because Bruce Springsteen is an event -- a once-a-year (maybe) get-a-babysitter, make-plans-for-dinner event. And the truth is that most people in their 40s and 50s aren't going out to bars every week, as you're finding. There are places like the Carlyle Club in Alexandria, the Outta the Way Cafe in Derwood or the Stained Glass Pub in Silver Spring, all of which draw an older-than-20somethings crowd. But not too many places with dance floors.


Washington, D.C.: Herr Fritz - please do this and every other Norwegian in town a favor, and let us know which retailers and bars in the area carry Nogne O. Tusen takk!

Fritz Hahn: I've seen Nogne O on draft at ChurchKey and Birreria Paradiso in the past (but not now), and in bottles, too.

And I've seen it on sale at Chevy Chase Wine and Liquor for around $10 per half-liter bottle.


Alexandria, Va.: I'm looking for a good Mother's Day brunch spot in Old Town Alexandria. My parents aren't exactly adventurous eaters. I was thinking about Warehouse, since they're both fans of Southern cuisine. What are your thoughts?

Julia Beizer: Warehouse seems like as good a bet as any. In the area, I like Vermilion a lot.


Gettin Green: GoGs - really want to take in Earth Day events this week and weekend. Is there a comprehensive online schedule of the events esp. Sunday's Climate Rally? And what's the fallback if it rains :(? Thanks!

David Malitz: There is no online schedule, comprehensive or non-comprehensive. Last year the set times were not released until the day of the show. Don't expect it to be any different this year but we will let you know via the blog, Twitter, Facebook, etc., if any info comes out before Sunday. But don't expect. The fallback if it rains? One word: ponchos.


Sweetlife Festival: All-time, all-star bill for an outdoor concert and why? We'd kick it off with a little DC homegrown Thievery Corporation. Followed by Sir Snoop Doggy Dogg himself (since smoking is now prohibited indoors). Then finish it off with George Clinton and the refurbished Mothership (we have to be outside for the funk ship to land). Now that would be the sweet life.

Julia Beizer: Amazing. By the way, did the rest of y'all see Chris Richards's fantastic story about the Mothership? You should.


My dream lineup: Dave Matthews Band, Girltalk, Drake and Elvis. Oh, and Lyle Lovett. There you have it.

Julia Beizer: I listen to entirely too much Drake these days.


Germantown: Do you guys have a best bets for plces to grab drinks/w/drink specials before and after Nats games? Last game I went to Barracks Row and Ugly Mug had a free shuttle to the game and a bunch of specials. Any other joints like that; in any other areas?


Fritz Hahn: Molly Malone's and Ugly Mug are running carts to/from games. Honestly, I'd still head to Barracks Row, either walking or taking the Circulator. Good collection of bars, including Matchbox and Lola's, and of course the Lil' Pub at the corner of Eighth and Penn.

Actually, if you take the Circulator, you can also go to Tune Inn for a cheap beer-and-a-shot, or the Hawk and Dove's daily happy hour deals.

Your choices right around the stadium are the new Justin's Cafe (kinda small, but with Nats crowds that doesn't matter) or the Bullpen.


Mom, Shakespeare and the Sig-other: So I think Shakepeare is one of the three great English poets (Springsteen and Suess being the other 2), and towards that end, we have been going to the Shakespeare Theater which has also served as a regular "quality-time/bonding-experience" with Mom. But the Sig-O is tiring of Shakespeare, and that's understandable -- how many Henry, Richards and cross dressing twins do you need?

I put it to you Gurus; with subscription season fast on our heels, what is the run down on the character of local theater seasons?

Can Studio still be counted on to stage at least one full-frontal show?

How to differentiate between Arena and Signature?

Would one of the newer theaters prove too inaccessible?


Julia Beizer: I am of no help here, except to say that I may adopt your list of the top three English poets. Well played.

Stephanie Merry: First, might I recommend you check out the story Lavanya and I wrote last week about small local theater companies? There is some really exciting stuff going on in that scene, and if you're interested in season tickets on a budget, Washington Shakespeare Company would be a good place to start, being that they'll be in their new theater space in Rosslyn. Speaking of new spaces, Arena has a great season planned in its phenom new state-of-the-art facility (can't wait for Arabian Nights!). But when it comes to getting a season subscription, it really depends on what your little trio of theater-goers likes. Stellar musicals? Signature Theater. Fresh fare from up-and-coming playwrights? Studio Theatre. Or something a little edgy? Woolly Mammoth.


Washington, D.C.: Hi GOGs. Missed Tom yesterday and am hoping you can help me. Looking for a good (but not stuffy) seafood restaurant in DC proper. Was thinking Hank's Oyster Bar might fit the bill but wanted to get your thoughts and see if you had any better suggestions. Thanks!!

Julia Beizer: I think Hank's would fit the bill. Cute place. DC Coast comes to mind, but it's a notch up on the stuffiness scale.


Bethesda, Md.: With my family's hometown team -- FC Barcelona -- playing Inter this afternoon (am writing on Tuesday), I am in the mood for soccer.

Any word on when Estadio is slated to open its doors?


Fritz Hahn: None of us have heard anything about Estadio showing soccer, and given how its sister bar Proof doesn't really even have TVs, that's not surprising. But I'm jonesing for some Spanish food. I walk by there almost daily, and construction's well under way. I'd guess June or July is a possibility.


Fairfax, Va.: Where's a good place to go dancing? I'm not looking for ballroom dancing, nor am I looking for heavy metal R&R. Is there someplace in the Metro area where I can take my lady for Motown, blues, jazz and also dance along? Thanks!

Fritz Hahn: The obvious answer here is the New Vegas Lounge on P St., where the Outta Town Blues Band performs Motown, Stax, blues and funk covers for dancing crowds every weekend. I always have fun there.

You could also try Peachez Cafe in Upper Marlboro, which gets bands like the Young Bucks, who are playing next Thursday.


Springfield, Va.: We like music, events... pretty much anything. We haven't been out in six months! It would be nice if the activity after dinner provides us with some interaction, too, though. Something really fun to make us forget how tired we are and feel like we're back in our college years. :)

Julia Beizer: Actually my first thought might fit your needs nicely. What about taking in a nice, civilized dinner at Eventide and then heading over to Spider Kelly's for shuffleboard or Big Buck Hunter and all that good stuff. Kind of a young 20s vibe in there these days, but you can handle it.

Want to head into D.C. proper? Maybe try a place like Cork or Masa 14 and head over to the Black Cat afterward.


Dupont Circle: My ultimate, outdoor concert would include: Opening Acts: Fine Young Cannibals (b/c their soul/pop sound would be great to hear midday while the sun is beating down) and B-52's (b/c they would get the dance party started) & Headliners: Girl Talk (b/c he makes for a sweaty good time) & New Order to finish (b/c they effing rock and it would be an epic finale sing-along!!)!!!

David Malitz: Wow. We are all just floored at that Fine Young Cannibals pick. Not that it's bad, just seemingly outta nowhere. B-52's are definitely party starters. Girl Talk gets people moving even if I don't completely understand it. New Order ... who doesn't love New Order? The question is - which sone for the epic finale sing-along? I guess I'd go with "Temptation."


Rufus, D.C.: Are you going to give us an update soon on Doggie Friendly Happy Hours and Events? It's that time of year!

Fritz Hahn: Tom Sietsema actually took care of the Dog-friendly patios piece last month. I'd add Saturdays at the Argonaut, Mondays at Cantina Marina and Sundays at Acadiana to his list.


Arlington, Va.: Dear Gurus - I have a hair appointment in Logan Circle tomorrow afternoon and a date with my boyfriend for dinner at Birch and Barley afterward. Unfortunately I couldn't get a reservation until 8:15 and we will meet up around 6:30. Any suggestions for where to get a drink while we wait for our dinner reservations? I know Church Key is the obvious choice but since we can't get there early I don't know if either of us is willing to withstand the crowds - I'm hoping for something nearby that is low-key.

Fritz Hahn: At 6:30 on a Friday, you might be able to get to the bar at ChurchKey, but only just. We've had good luck with getting seats at the bar at Cork on the early side, so that's a definite possibility. I like the happy hour cocktail deals at Masa 14, and Bar Pilar's always a good option if you don't mind a three-block walk.


Washington, D.C.: Gurus,

I'm trying to plan a wedding for next spring. Can you suggest a few Reasonably Priced places in D.C. or close to D.C. that have good views or outdoor spaces. Does this exist? Help!!


Julia Beizer: This is a really hard question to answer in three minutes, but the short answer is that a) it all depends on what your idea of reasonable is and b) probably not in D.C. proper. I've heard that the Josephine Bulter center is one of the more affordable venues in town and it's right by Meridian Hill Park, which is super pretty.

Virginia wineries are popular spots for weddings and obviously those views are beautiful, pastoral and all of that good stuff. Not sure if that's what you're going for though.


Springfield, Va.: Hey GOGs, I enjoy reading your discussion every week.With that said,can you recommend a bar that serves Harp on tap around Dupont circle area? I'm going to sweetlife festival on Saturday and would like to grab a drink or two before heading there.Also do you know if they will be serving alcohol at the festival? Thanks in advance.

Alex Baldinger: Gotta think James Hoban's will take care of your Harp-in-Dupont needs.


Outdoor concert: Willie Nelson, Cesaria Evora, Ella Fitzgerald, Ladysmith Black Mambazo, Shakira, and Fela.

Julia Beizer: I love that all of these answers have one that totally makes me laugh out loud. In this case, it's Shakira. (And for the record, I'd totally love to see her live.)


Charlottesville advice: Hi -- I've got two friends visiting from England for a week in May. We've talked about a day trip to Monticello. Any wineries you recommend in the area, or any good restaurants in Charlottesville? Thanks!

Stephanie Merry: I was actually just discussing C-ville eats a few days ago, because I'm headed there for a bachelorette party. I love, love, love both Continental Divide and L'Etoile on Main Street. If you want to bring your friends to the downtown mall for dinner though, then I'd say either Bang! (for Asian food) or Enoteca (a wine bar with yummy panini). As for Virginia vineyards, this Weekend article should give you some ideas.


Non stuffy seafood...: DC proper = Tackle Box.

Julia Beizer: Good point. I'd go Hank's if s/he wants a sit-down, meal-with-friends type of meal though. I had a great one there a few months back, lots of rose, lots of oysters. Sam, Jackie -- you there? Holla at your girl.


Germantown: Fritz - I am a huge fan of Dogfish beers - any other breweries in the DC area w/similar beers -their IPAs are my favorite?

Fritz Hahn: Dogfish is really one of a kind, but I'd steer you towards the lovely ales from Frederick-by-way-of-Denver's Flying Dog brewery, including the awesome Raging Bitch IPA, which they brewed for their recent 20th anniversary.

The St. George Brewery in Hampton isn't super local, but their beers -- including the custom-brewed Tuppers Hop Pocket -- are solid.


I'll be the nerd here: How are Springsteen and Seuss English? They should be on the top American poets.

Stephanie Merry: You mean Sprinsteen isn't a Brit? I kid. I think the poster meant English language poet.


Feeling guilty for nitpicking: Lil Pub is on 7th and Penn SE, next door to the CVS.

Fritz Hahn: No, no, you're totally right. I always think of the Metro plaza being at the corner of 8th and Penn and Lil Pub being right next to it. I'm wrong, and man, do I enjoying drinking at the most pretense-free bar on the Hill.


Ultimate Concert Lineup: Jimi Hendrix opens with another rousing rendition of the National Anthem followed by performances from Janis Joplin, Jim Morrison and the Doors. At midday, John Bonham and Keith Moon perform a drum solo, and then Blind Melon, Sublime segues blazing Nirvana set. The night is capped off (no pun intended) by a Tupac and Biggie collaboration. This line-up would probably necessitate a substance-free backstage...

David Malitz: You'd only want to keep Jimi around for the national anthem? Can't we get him a full set instead of Sublime?


Alexandria: Fritz, does anyone ever have Unibroue beers on tap around here? I'd especially love to get some Maudite - I've only ever had it in a bottle and haven't seen it in stores in awhile (though the Alexandria Whole Foods sometimes has Le Fin Du Monde).

Fritz Hahn: I see Maudite all the time when I'm out and about, but it's one of those things I don't usually tweet about. Belga Cafe often has it, and I think I saw it at Beck not too long ago. (If that wasn't Maudite, it was another Unibroue handle.)


Washington, D.C.: Trendy Lunch Spot

GOG: Help! I work at a PR firm in town, and I'm planning an intimate lunch for a tech client next month. We'll be inviting a select group of bloggers to this lunch and want to host it at a trendy, sought-after spot. The event would be for no more than 15 people. We'd need a private room. Ideas so far are Zaytinya, The Source, Proof, The Palm, Sei and Ris. What would you recommend?

Julia Beizer: Well, I love Proof, but I'm pretty sure it does not have a private room. If Sei does, I'd say that's the best bet for your criteria. Definitely not Ris -- as much as I like the place, it does not say "tech bloggers."


Springfield date night: I remember the first night out after having a baby, also when my daughter turned 6 months old. We went out to dinner and didn't have the energy to do anything after. You know what I would have enjoyed more than eating out? Checking into a hotel, ordering room service, then sleeping for a couple hours.

Julia Beizer: Advice from someone who's been there....


Rex The Dog: I also think Adams Morgan Bar and Grill does Doggy Happy Hours as does Larry's Lounge on Wednesdays.

Fritz Hahn: Thanks, Rex. You listening, Rufus? I didn't know Larry's had restarted the patio for the year. Nice little neighborhood bar, that one.


Looong Day: The Heavy - Lenny Kravitz - Stevie Wonder - (during the 'break' James Taylor/Carly Simon) - John Legend - Aretha Frankllin - reunited Fabulous Thunderbirds - jam with all the above to the close

Julia Beizer: Love the epic super jams.


Dear GOGs: I will be playing nanny to my 4-year old niece for a week in July while her mother attends a conference. I've found a few good activities on WaPo's local events calendar, and stand-bys like the Natural History Museum and Air & Space occurred to me. Not having kids myself, the fun places in town for 4-year olds aren't on my radar just yet. Can you or the chatters point me in the right direction?

Justin Rude: Having a whole week gives you a number of options, and that is a well catered-to age group. Jammin' Java hosts a bunch of good kid's shows, and for children's theater you can't go wrong with either Classika or Imagination Stage.

Stephanie Merry: Just be sure you make a stop by the carousel on the Mall. I took my soon-to-be 4-year-old niece on an amazing whirlwind day of activities (Natural History! Botanic Garden! Eastern Market!) last summer and the only thing she remembers is the horsies. Oh, and the metro. She loves trains....


For the Spring wedding: Friends of mine had their wedding ceremony (in May) at the World War I memorial on Independence Ave (inexpensive to reserve, I believe) and the reception was a dinner cruise on the Odyssey. Don't know if that counts as reasonably affordable but the views couldn't be beat.

Julia Beizer: We had no idea you could have a wedding here. Very cool. History buff Fritz is totally geeked out on this right now.


Vienna, Va.: Loving all the concert ideas but we have got to get Prince into the mix somewhere.

Julia Beizer: Make it happen, Vienna.


Capitol Hill: When will the jazz-on the park at the sculpture garden start? Is it based on weather or date?

David Malitz: Jazz in the Garden starts the last Friday of May every year and this year is no different. Begins May 28 and runs through Sept. 10.


FYC: Now I'm going to have to listen to FYC on my online service. Nothing beats Roland Gift wailing away. Hmmm, maybe follow that up with some Style Council...

Fritz Hahn: I just had Long Hot Summer on my iPod this morning to rinse away the disappointing sound of Paul Weller's latest album.


Shakira: I'm the poster who suggested the line-up with Sharika. I forgot to add that you shouldn't pick my selection because I can't use the tickets -- I live in Pa. and can't come down for the festival.

But don't don't laugh at Shakira! She speaks three or four languages.

Julia Beizer: I mean it in the nicest way. I really do love her. Except at the gym. Sometimes the Shakira "She-wolf" video comes on when I'm on the elliptical and I feel all dirty and have to turn it off.


Turning twenty-one: Son turning twenty-one too soon. Want to take him out to dinner and let him order his first (legal) drink. Brasserie Beck? What are some DC options for mom and son to have (sentimental, on my part) lovely evening. (Of course, he'll be going out afterward with his peers.)

Justin Rude: Honestly, you nailed it in one. I think Brasserie Beck is a perfect choice.

Fritz Hahn: Yeah, Brasserie Beck is great. I'd also suggest ChurchKey, and that you give them a call in advance and ask if Beer Sommelier Greg Engert is going to be there. He's a whiz with beer, but also very personable and hip, and he could make your son feel like a rockstar.


Why can't I find a cool, fun bar where folks that age can dance and drink?: Because we are at home drinking wine that doesn't cost $10 or more per glass.

Fritz Hahn: Zing!


Ris: For the tech bloggers - I work near Ris and had lunch there with about 6 co-workers during Restaurant Week and it was AWESOME. It was jammed for RW and we ate in a private room that might be great for the bloggers. Our waiter was young and cool but very knowledgeable, down-to-earth. It might be a great fit for their group.

Julia Beizer: I'm not saying it's not a good restaurant. I'm just saying it's a little beige if you're going for "trendy." Trendy food? Sure. Trendy space? Seems like it's a better fit for an older clientele.


In The District: QUEST: Would like to find a place in DC that has an outdoor bar that is street level (not a rooftop deck) for happy hour.

CONSTRAINTS: I'm looking for a place where they have an actual bar outside and not just tables. I may end up hanging there solo (due to the often unreliable friend) so I'd like a place to sit or stand without taking up a table or seats that could go to a group. Bonus if it's not exorbitantly expensive.

RESOLUTION: ??? (please supply)

Thanks as always for the help!

Fritz Hahn: Very few places in D.C. have an actual outdoor bar on the sidewalk due to the logistics of running lines, etc. Would Cantina Marina count? You'd get that excellent outdoor view as well as the outdoor bar.

Poste's patio has a bar outdoors, but it's really just people mixing drinks and opening bottles of beer. And it's kinda pricey, or was last summer.


Billy Idol: (Marley, Muse, Radiohead lineup)...and to harken back to the days of yore, maybe Billy Idol could get a 3-song set? Mony Mony? Eyes Without a Face? White Wedding or Rebel Yell?

David Malitz: Yeah let's at least have "Eyes Without a Face" running on loop between sets or something. True story: when I went to see multiple Silver Jews shows on their 2006 tour, the song that played when each show was over was "Eyes Without a Face."


Washington D.C.: Where should a straight girl and a gay guy go out tomorrow night to meet appropriate hot men? Thanks, gurus!!

Stephanie Merry: I used to have just this problem, and when one of my closest friends (gay male) and I (straight female) were both single, we'd just take turns: one night at Eighteenth Street Lounge and the next at Be Bar (RIP). Though -- now that I think of it -- I was probably at a disadvantage, because it looked like he was my boyfriend. Anyway, Fritz and I discussed and I recommend Nelly's, because even though it's a gay bar, it does get some straight dudes. Fritz would go with Mixtape or a similar DJ night, though you'll probably get more straight females than males. Chatters, any other suggestions?


Foggy Bottom: Hi GOGs, Not exactly a "going out" question, but I'm looking to find a batting cage in the general DC area for my softball team. I live in Arlington, but have a car. Any suggestions?

Julia Beizer: We talked about the cages at Cameron Run last week. Not super close to the Metro, though. Anyone have a closer-in suggestion?


For Nanny for a week: Don't forget the great outdoors, too. Take her to Great Falls--great place to clamber around on the rocks. Also, if you could swing a day at the shore she'd probably love that (and sleep all the way home in the car).

Stephanie Merry: Good call.


Working Prince in...: Madonna, Michael Jackson, and Prince.

Enough said!

Julia Beizer: So META. I feel like this show happens all the time, courtesy of DJ Dredd.


IPA: The Flying Dog Raging B!tch is indeed fantastic - but fair warning that it's stronger than most beers. It comes in the smaller class at Rustico, which is a clear sign of impending giddiness.

Speaking of - any idea when the Ballston Rustico is suppose to open?

Fritz Hahn: It's not THAT strong -- 9.7, maybe? -- and it comes in pint glasses at Galaxy Hut, where I enjoyed it last weekend. (The new patio Nanobar is very cool -- a sort of child's fort built out of kegs.)

I heard end-of-summer for the new Rustico, which is right about the time that we'll (hopefully) be enjoying the new Birreria Paradiso in Old Town Alexandria and the 31 beers of Fireworks in Court House, not to mention the Madd Fox Brewery in Falls Church.

Man, it's a great time to be a Virginia beer drinker.


Virginia? Where's that?: I'm about to meet my mom in Rosslyn for lunch -- as much as I appreciate a good Chipotle outing, do you have recommendations for a must-have lunch out there, near the metro or within a mile preferably? Thanks!

Julia Beizer: Rosslyn doesn't have great lunch options -- as detailed in a recent John Kelly column. You could go up the hill a bit to Ray's Hell-Burger?


Because we are at home drinking wine that doesn't cost $10 or more per glass.: and our liquor is better than 80% of the bars out there. I'm heavily biased towards the Brown brothers, who else in DC really knows their liquor?

Fritz Hahn: If you can invent and/or mix drinks like the folks behind the bar at PX, the Tabard Inn, PS 7's, Rasika, Proof, Room 11 or Wisdom, I'd be mightily impressed. And you should probably open your own place.


Dupont Circle: Seriously, 'Johnny Come Home' by Fine Young Cannibals is something we can all get behind. If you haven't already, play it NOW! As for the New Order finale, you are spot on David. I'd vote for Temptation too.

David Malitz: You have your orders people - play it NOW!! Obviously I just posted this one because I like when people tell me I'm right, so thanks! Here's New Order doing "Temptation" at the Hacienda a long time ago.


son's 21st: From the view of being more than 10 years past that night for myself, i can say that if he's going out after, mom may want to take him somewhere with kind of substantial food. Smartest thing my friends did on my 21st was take me out to a restaurant that had huge dishes of pasta for dinner.

Fritz Hahn: This is a strong consideration, and may make me lean towards the hearty menu at Beck.


Re: Madonna: (Chatter suggested her for a outdoor show.) Not entirely a GOG question, but I just watched the Madonna episode of Glee. I really wish there was an adult version of glee club. I'd join in a heartbeat.

Julia Beizer: Passing along your plea. Any organizers out there? Make it happen.


Cutting a long story short: Once many years ago, due to the bands having to cancel the show, I missed seeing a little known band, "Red Hot something" according to the doorman, opening for one my favorite bands, Fishbone. I'd like to see them and Bad Brains together.

David Malitz: You and Chris Richards.


McPherson Square (re-do): On the steps of the Lincoln... Gladys Knight and the Pips, Jeff Buckley, Marvin Gaye, Led Zepplin, Jimi Hendrix, and Prince

Julia Beizer: Oh, Jeff Buckley. Amazing.


For Nanny for a week, again: Also, I seem to remember reading somewhere in the paper about a kid's park in McLean that was really great -- perhaps it was in last week's GOG chat? I just can't pull the name from my aging brain.

Julia Beizer: It was last week's chat. And Justin answered that one too. It's called Clemyjontri Park so don't beat yourself up for not remembering the name.


The sweet life: My picks would be: Pavement, The Cure, Prince (sorry, the artist formerly known as Prince), Flaming Lips and Bjork.

David Malitz: This is basically a mash-up of recent Coachella headliners, right? We're still waiting on word to see if Pavement's reunion tour will bring them to D.C. Bjork and Prince together on stage could be pretty freaky.


Rosslyn lunch idea: I like the views at Domaso inside the Hotel Palomar. Oh, and the food's pretty good too.

Julia Beizer: Another suggestion. Man, I haven't been to Domaso since we left our office in Va.


Herndon, Va.: Hi Gurus! I am celebrating my 25th birthday this weekend but still have not decided where I should celebrate. I am still a little new to the area and don't know where the hot spots are. There will be about 4 or 5 of us gals and I was thinking of the U street area. Any suggestions for a good dinner spot and a lounge to go to afterwords?

Fritz Hahn: You won't be able to score a 9 p.m. reservation at Marvin, but you might want to call and see if you can make reservations. Fun, funky scene that won't might not break the bank if you order correctly. (Drinks can be a little expensive, if that's a consideration.) Masa 14 can be fun with a group, too -- fancy bar, small plates for passing and sharing, good vibe. Oh, and Cafe Creme for something more simple but still delicious.

Marvin's still the most popular dance spot on U, I think, if you measure in terms of lines. The Bliss Dance Party at U Street Music Hall is always a good time and gets plenty of raves from our readers, and it's happening this Saturday. If the weather's nice, I like the rooftop patio at Local 16, though it can be absolutely packed on weekends. And I'd be remiss if I didn't mention Cafe Saint-Ex, just because it's always packed with a crowd who's ready to enjoy themselves.


Thanks, Fritz: Exactly. I want my son turning 21 to feel like a rock star and important and wonderful -- because he is. And not embarrassed to be with his mom. Am calling Brasserie Beck within the hour. But will wait to hear from chatters if other options are offered.

Fritz Hahn: Just FYI: Beer guru Greg Engert is at ChurchKey/Birch & Barley. I'd still lean that way. If you're calling Beck, ask if their beer guy, Thor Cheston, is working that night. He won't steer you wrong.


Answers and Questions: For the trendy lunch space for the bloggers -Sei was a good call. Just had dinner there on Monday and there's a semi-private room. Oya also has a semi-private room that was cool enough for Anna Kournikova a few weeks ago.

For the Rosslyn luncher - Spice of Life cafe next to Kanpai sushi would be a great place for an Earth Day lunch. I miss their spinach melts now that I don't work in the area!

My question - I'm entertaining two high school kids visiting from MA this weekend. They're doing all the touristy DC stuff this week with the uncle and then going to King's Dominion on Saturday. Should I take them to Annapolis on Sunday or brunch at POV followed by the Earth Day event on the Mall?

Julia Beizer: Thanks for the answers, onto the question. I would totally do the latter. The Mall is super-fun when there's an event going on. Didn't quite realize POV had brunch, but I feel like that would be a super cool place to see as high schooler.


Steph, Theater and Fritz, Springsteen: Hey Steph - care to expand on your use of the term "edgy" for Wolly Mammoth? I always thought of Studio as edgy (the whole annual naked cast thing), how do you mean it when you say it?

So for the 40-50 something who likes dancing and springsteen, if you acknowledge that there are no dance floors catering to our demographic, then the follow on might be, "at which dance place are we likly to feel the least awkward". The Sig-O has been making dance noises as well.

Stephanie Merry: I see your point. I guess my best answer is: It's all relative. I also might be biased because I just spent weeks working on this story about small theater companies, and their brand of edgy (Molotov Theatre's bloody shows, for example, that involving cutting out tongues onstage) is above and beyond. Some might call that kind of theater downright grotesque. Meanwhile, someone that's used to Harman and Kennedy Center shows might call Studio Theatre edgy. But Neil Labute and Tarell Alvin McCraney? To me, that's fresh but pretty mainstream. Then again, the 2nd Stage productions at Studio definitely take risks. I'd qualify those as edgy, for sure.

Fritz Hahn: Here's the thing about Springsteen: The bars that play lots of Springsteen/Bon Jovi/U2 for dancing tend to be really collegey bars like McFadden's, Sign of the Whale, Rumors, etc. (Okay, the bar at Rumors always has some 40-50-somethings in among the 20s and 30s, but they're not in the majority.)

What about some of the tribute acts that come through the State Theater, like Bruce in the U.S.A.?


McLean, Va: Driving through Rosslyn the other day I noticed the big dome, which looks like a Planetarium. What's in the Spectrum? Also, where is the closest planetarium? It had me reminiscing over grade school field trips.

Stephanie Merry: The Artisphere, next to the Spectrum, is where Washington Shakespeare Company will be performing as of October. Synetic Theatre (usually) performs in the Spectrum, and they are currently staging Metamorphosis in the space. As for planetariums, there's one in Arlington on Quincy Street.


Streamimg video: It would be great if the chats can be stream in video, so we can see you -- the GOG panel -- discussing and answering questions. Would you consider using the same video technology (vForum) currently being used for ?

Julia Beizer: Seriously, Paul/Chad. Get out of our chats.

We'll switch over to vforum, for sure, but chatters, just so you know, we are totally not that cute. You do not want video of us.


Washington, D.C.: For the person looking for an outdoor bar, Smith and Wollensky on 19th between L & M has a 100% real one, complete with friendly servers. I often sip solo there and have never felt uncomfortable. It is small-ish, though and can fill up at peak times.

I think Rumors at 19th and M also has one, but it's not somewhere that comes to mind as an ideal place to hang solo.

Fritz Hahn: Right, S&L. I always walk by that bar and think about stopping in. I'll get on that.


Petworth: Wow, the concert lineup is a hard question. Do we go with the roots music theme and put together Johnny Cash and June Carter, Jerry Lee Lewis, Elvis, Buddy Holly, Carl Perkins?

Do we go all folky and put Woody Guthrie and Pete Seeger and Ronnie Gilbert and Paul Robeson up there?

Then I think of some of the stadium shows I saw in the 80s (the Clash opening for the Who. Flock of Seagulls, the Fixx, and the Police. The Grateful Dead, Tom Petty, and Bob Dylan.) and think that recreating those would be fun.

Or maybe we need a whole music festival - I think that would do. And then I realize that what I need to answer this question is the New Orleans Jazzfest program. And then I give up.

Julia Beizer: This answerer is amazing!


Re: My picks: Sorry, but what is coachella?

David Malitz: It's a big rock festival out in California desert. This year's edition just happened last weekend. Thom Yorke, Jay-Z, Gorillaz, Phoenix, pavement, Vampire Weekend, 392 other bands. And one drunk dude who couldn't get his flip-flip on.


Fairfax: I need an authentic Latin restaurant for my child's Spanish language class project. Could be Spanish, Mexican, Cuban -- just authentic (no Las Tolteca or Taco Bell ;)Any suggestions in possible northern Va., or D.C.?

Justin Rude: The easy answer is that Jose Andres has you covered with some authentic and upper scale options like Oyamel and Jaleo. That having been said I would go with the much more economical and just as authentic El Charrito Caminante. Mexican and Salvadorian street foods like papusas and tacos made the right way with no unnecessary frills. If your kid is an especially adventurous eater I recommend the lengua burrito supreme and the fried plantains with cream.

Fritz Hahn: I was in Taqueria Distrito Federal in Columbia Heights the other day for tacos and I was the only person there who wasn't chatting in Spanish. And they have a huge cooler of Mexican sodas and homemade aquas frescas.


Ashburn, Va.: Outdoor concert line-up, one the National Mall. Two stages, the Washington Monument stage would have Bon Jovi, The Eagles, Springsteen and Tim McGraw. The Lincoln Memorial Stage would have Depeche Mode, Yaz, Modren English and Jeff Buckley singing Hallelujah at sundown.

Julia Beizer: Nice. We're rounding up the finalists right now.


Nanobar?: What is the patio at Galaxy Hut all about? Is it different then the previous little alley?

Fritz Hahn: It's actually off the alley, behind the building itself, in what used to be the keg storage area out back. One keg, tapped like you're at a friend's backyard cookout, one cooler full of canned beer. Neither the draft nor the cans (I think) are available inside. Last weekend was the tasty Blue Mountain Lager from Afton, Va.


Mulletts and Low Standards: Any bars in the DC area that cater towards the hair band fans? You know Kix, Posion, White Snake, etc? Particularly ones where women with low standards hang out?

Fritz Hahn: Dunno about the "low standards" part, but I get my Whitesnake/Crue/AC DC fix at Tattoo Bar on weekends, and if you can catch the cover band Toxic Mouse at Clarendon Grill, you should do it. They're like a headbanging Legwarmers, complete with costumes, BC Rich guitars and scissor kicks.

Justin Rude: The parking lot of the Rockville Ice Arena doesn't have very many women with low standards, but when the late night rec league hockey games end there is a lot of hair metal and beer. And sweaty middle-aged men.


Outside Bar: Way late, but just saw the question. Outside bar: Rumors. Seriously. The bar opens to the patio and there's great people watching.

Fritz Hahn: Okay, fine. Putting the Rumors rec out there.


Arlington, Va.: You guys moved out of your Court House location?? Bummer....I enjoyed an occasional "Guru sighting" when I was out and about.

Fritz Hahn: "Oh, look. David's chatting up a barista at Starbucks again."

"Wow, Fritz is at Cal Tort. Again."

Actually, David still lives out that way, so keep your eyes peeled.

David Malitz: I will be the one wearing ridiculous sunglasses. I have amassed quite the collection.


Silver Spring, Md.: Outdoor Concert: How about a Heavy Metal Parking Lot Redux -- Judas Priest, AC/DC, Mettallica and Nirvana. I know, an odd addition to a heavy metal line-up but Kurt probably woulda dug it and I woulda loved to have gotten to see him play.

Julia Beizer: Nice.


Nanny to four year old: Wolf Trap also has a children's Theatre in the Woods for another idea. Calendar is on

Justin Rude: I love this one. Great suggestion.


Blue Mountain up here?: That's right down the road from my dad's house. I bring a growler back when I go visit. I had NO idea they were at bars up here!

Fritz Hahn: Galaxy Hut is the only bar I know of that's pouring Blue Mountain beers on the regular. Maybe Columbia Firehouse in Alexandria, which has an EXCELLENT selection of local brews.


Spanish club outing: Took my son and his friends to Jaleo where they got the tapas experience along with waiters who spoke Spanish and took the time to help our group order and exchange conversation in the language. I think highly of Jaleo.

Fritz Hahn: Sounds like an excellent experience.


Outdoor Concert Line-Up: All time? could it not include Bob Marley and the Wailers? After that I'd go with Muse to kick it up a notch and perhaps Radiohead to close it out. Maybe that's just me though.

Fritz Hahn: Do you realize you just suggested that BOB MARLEY SHOULD OPEN FOR MUSE?

_______________________ And that about wraps it up for us, kiddos. Before we get to your winners, Fritz and Lavanya would like you to know that they're very disappointed Fugazi wasn't even mentioned. Where's the D.C. love? On to your winners:-- Thievery Corporation - Snoop - George Clinton-- Willie Nelson - Cesaria Evora - Ella Fitzgerald - Ladysmith Black Mambazo - Shakira - Fela.-- The one with the "Tupac and Biggie collaboration" because, like, so impossible. -- The long answer that ends in New Orleans Jazzfest, and-- Heavy Metal Parking lot.

E-mail us at and we'll hook you up with the deets on how to get your tickets. Thanks for playing and we'll catch you next week!


Petworth: I'd just like to second Fritz on the Taqueria Distrito Federal thing. Call Luis and set up a class visit - he would SO love something like that! And the food is really good too.

Fritz Hahn: Aha! Class visit solved in the most delicious way possible.


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.

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