Become the architect of your own leaning tower of burger mayhem at Big Buns Gourmet Grill. For the foundation, sandwichistas may choose from four grilled items—a certified Angus-beef burger ($6.39), marinated-overnight chicken ($6.39), daily delivered mahi-mahi ($7.59), or freshly prepared portabella mushrooms ($6.29)—and then situate the sustenance within a bun or atop a bowl of mixed greens. There are more than two-dozen toppings available to add style and flare to the culinary creation, including unlimited helpings of pickles, tomatoes, grilled onions, or salsa; premium toppings such as avocado, bacon, or crispy fried-onion straws are also options ($0.79 each). Slab a slice of cheese ($0.39 each) onto the burger like a gambler laying his final five dollars onto the blackjack table, or drizzle the decadent dinable with one of Big Buns' four sauce and dressing options. The end result is a customized comestible that will pique your hunger tooth and activate dormant burger glands at the base of your skull so that your jaw unhinges a little.
The Melting Pot transforms date nights and friendly outings into rich, sensory experiences by gathering diners around communal pots of fondue and adorning their tables with sumptuous four-course feasts of cheese, salad, chocolate, and steakhouse fare. Bubbling pots of emmentaler, lager-laced cheddar, and creamy fontina quell urges to engage in skewer swordfights as guests eagerly dip and slather slices of crisp granny-smith apples or crusts of artisanal bread. Creamy peppercorn ranch and decadent burgundy-shallot vinaigrette drape plates of crispy salad greens and roma tomatoes before servers parade out the pièce de résistance—fresh shrimp, sesame-crusted ahi, and succulent slices of filet mignon that bathe in roiling pools of coq au vin and bourguignonne. As a tasty digestif, dessert-savvy diners coat brownies, marshmallows, and unlucky car keys in cauldrons of milk, dark, and white chocolate.
Named one of the 5 Best Places to Study Wine in the country by Food & Wine magazine, Washington Wine Academy has something for novices and experts alike. The school’s offerings include professional-certification classes, tours of local wineries, singles mixers, and wine-and-a-movie nights, all overseen by top wine writers and sommeliers. This blend of education and entertainment has proven successful: on average, the Academy educates more than 1,000 enthusiasts per month and hosts more than 300 wine and beer events each year.
Students and visitors gather in the academy’s brick and mortar wine school–the first of its kind in the DC area. A large hall provides the perfect setting for presentations or Model UN practice, and the nearby Crystal City Wine Shop stocks an extensive collection of beer and wines from around the world.
Since opening their first location in 1996, Robeks' associates and franchise owners across the country have been passionate about the benefits of healthier eating, and what they can do to help guests maintain active and healthy lifestyles, all through portable smoothies. Customers can step up to the counter and order from a menu of fresh, premium ingredients in unique, made-to-order combinations. Robeks Premium Fruit Smoothies aims to create innovative ways to reach the daily recommended 9-13 servings of fruits and vegetables without compromising on flavor. Each Robeks Premium Fruit Smoothies location makes a concerted effort to support the neighborhood it resides in, through local organizations, such as Save the Children.
Aromas of waft from Asia Bistro's busy kitchen, wrapping around stone fountains and lush potted plants to delight noses with hints of marinated short ribs and ginger salmon. Diner’s eyes widen as the heaping plates grace their tabletop or bar top—as they hold a lychee martini in one hand and chopsticks in the other—before slurping up soupy udon noodles or spicy tuna rolls. Bento boxes quickly find themselves bare as eaters nibble on pickled kimchi and tempura while listening to the Wednesday and Thursday night live music performances. Come warm weather, guests indulge in fresh sashimi as the carnivorous mermaids once did, in the open air of an outdoor patio.
Aladdin's Eatery's signature pita pockets—free of fat, cholesterol, oil, sulfites, and preservatives—envelop bites of healthy Lebanese cuisine. The staggering menu bursts with traditional Middle Eastern fare, including more than 70 vegetarian and vegan options as well as tender lamb dishes and marinated, char-grilled shawarma meat. Lightly toasted rolled pita sandwiches, stuffed pita pockets, and pita pitzas swathe fresh vegetables in wholesome flatbread. Freshly squeezed juices and blended smoothies alchemize fruits into frosty sips, washing down Levantine feasts or miniature Sinbads shipwrecked on molars.