Eats: At the risk of sounding cliché, I’m going to have to say the palak chaat at Rasika West End was the tastiest thing I ate in DC. I’ve never had the fried spinach dish before and will admit I probably wouldn’t have tried it without reading all the rave reviews, but it certainly lived up to the hype. I could have eaten it by the bucketful, and the rest of our meal wasn’t bad either. Aaron ordered lamb chops that were incredibly tender, and I got the chicken tikka masala, which I actually didn’t order, but couldn’t bear to send back because it was just too good not to dig in.
Rasika West End | 1190 New Hampshire Ave NW, Washington, DC 20037, United States | www.rasikarestaurant.com
Drinks: Hank’s Oyster Bar offers a top notch cocktails as well as a nice selection of beer and wines. Best of all, double happy hour, one from 5-7 and a second from 10-12. Both with $1 oysters and drink specials. Oh and their food is ridic good. I highly recommend trying the molasses braised short ribs with mac and cheesy.
Hank’s Oyster Bar | 1624 Q St NW, Washington, DC 20009, United States | www.hanksoysterbar.com
ChurchKey is a close second. They have the best selection of beer around, and the food is outstanding. Unfortunately, they have no happy hour specials, and the place is always packed. Always. If you want to beat the rush, try to go during the week and get there before 5 PM.
ChurchKey | 1337 14th St NW, Washington, DC 20005, United States | www.churchkeydc.com
To-dos: Sadly, my DC to-do list was pretty much a great big bust. Honestly, looking back on those three months, we consumed more a lot more food than we did culture, which may have been a mistake. I blame school and the weather and the cherry blossoms. But we did enjoy going out for some runs around the monuments. Although all of that went right out the window once I scheduled my thesis defense.
I would also recommend catching a movie at the West End Cinema. Not your usual cineplex, this theater offers intimate viewings of a unique selection of films and docs along with homemade concessions and adult beverages. I really would have liked to go there more during our stay.
West End Cinema | 2301 M St NW, Washington, DC 20037, United States | www.westendcinema.com
Spot: I’m not sure if Kramers would have been our go-to spot if it wasn’t a block away from our apartment, but I am certainly happy it was nearby. The bookstore, restaurant, and bar was the perfect place for all occasions. On a Friday for a happy hour, there’s always Kramers. Sunday morning brunch, there’s always Kramers. It’s Tuesday, there’s always Kramers.
Kramerbooks & Afterwords Cafe | 1517 Connecticut Ave NW, Washington, District of Columbia 20036, United States | www.kramers.com
Find: We stumbled upon Dolcezza the weekend before we left town, which was probably for the best. If I had known this little gelato shop existed before that, I most likely would have been eating there twice a day. In out last week, I tried the salted caramel and Virginia peanut butter, but my favorite was the brown butter. If only there was more time, I could have tried flavors like chocolate roasted peanut, mango and habanero pepper, Thai coconut milk, Bartlett pear, and avocado honey lime.
Dolcezza | 1704 Connecticut Ave NW, Washington, DC 20009, United States | www.dolcezzagelato.com