Chef Victor Albisu, center, and his team from Taco Bamba Taqueria celebrate winning a RAMMY in the category of Favorite Fast Bites of the Year on June 30 in Washington. (Amanda Andrade-Rhoades for The Washington Post)

On at least one night a year, the District’s bartenders, chefs, busboys and maitre d’s get to step away from their posts and party like everyone else. The 37th annual RAMMY Awards, hosted by the Restaurant Association Metropolitan Washington, is that night, where the DMV’s best restaurants and industry professionals are recognized for their hard work and get to let their hair down a little.

This year’s event, however, struck a slightly sober tone. John G. Laytham, co-owner of the Clyde’s Restaurant Group, died in January, and his presence loomed large as dozens of his former employees toasted him at the show. The RAMW renamed an award after Laytham, and D.C. Mayor Muriel E. Bowser (D) was on hand to announce the creation of John Laytham Day, which will be held on his birthday, Nov. 12.

The rest of the night saw some 2,500 foodies and industry pros noshing on bites provided by local embassies and sipping cocktails. One of the most popular options? The Instagram-friendly liquid nitrogen caipirinha from Barmini by José Andrés.


The RAMMYs were held at the Walter E. Washington Convention Center in Washington. (Amanda Andrade-Rhoades for The Washington Post)

Andra "AJ" Johnson and Will Patton, both of whom were representing Bresca, prepare drinks at the RAMMYs. (Amanda Andrade-Rhoades for The Washington Post)

From left, Paola Velez, Martel Stone, Brandon Dawson and Kwame Onwuachi, of Kith/Kin restaurant, toast after Onwauachi won a RAMMY for Rising Culinary Star of the Year. (Amanda Andrade-Rhoades for The Washington Post)

Paul Carlson, the owner of Vinoteca and Royal, cradles his seven week-old daughter, Lucilla Carlson, waiting for the start of the event. (Amanda Andrade-Rhoades for The Washington Post)

Cedric Harris dances with Juliet Bodinetz. (Amanda Andrade-Rhoades for The Washington Post)

Camila Cecchini, left, snaps a selfie with Amy Gagne at the awards event. (Amanda Andrade-Rhoades for The Washington Post)