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.
A team of friendly gurus runs each club. Fitness buffs of all buffness levels feel welcome in the fun and accommodating atmosphere at Washington Sports Clubs. During your two weeks, you get access to all the professional equipment, group exercise classes, locker rooms, and facility amenities offered (some group exercise classes require a reservation). Different clubs have on-site features such as pools, Pilates and yoga, babysitting services for a tag-along papoose, electricity, and more. Search for the club that suits your checklist here.
Sisters Frances and Ginger Park share a love of chocolate passed on from their mother, and that shared passion has been on display at Chocolate Chocolate for nearly 30 years. In their cozy sweets boutique, the pair collects an array of artisan confections, from imported Swiss Laderach chocolates to house-made truffles, that have earned accolades from The Washington Post, Washingtonian Magazine, and other national outlets. Their DC Monument line—featured in the March 2012 issue of Food Network Magazine—showcases white, milk, and dark chocolate treats shaped like famous DC monuments so that customers can live out their fantasy of biting the Capitol Dome without the hassle of reverse-engineering a shrink ray.
Nestled next to historic Georgetown, The Health Club at The Fairmont Washington, D.C. houses a 50-foot lap pool, racquetball and squash courts, Italian-designed Technogym equipment, and a full complement of fitness classes. Complimentary towels, toiletries, and locker services complete with dry saunas cement this health hub's status as a luxurious sundae of wellness topped with a bubbling jacuzzi cherry. A spread of brand-new cardiovascular equipment whirs beneath the glow of flat-screen televisions, and the club's inset spa offers massage and skincare services to pamper by appointment, like a rental grandma.
While most restaurants have made some memorable deliveries, not many can say they sent doggie bags full of chicken wings to 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue. President George Bush and his Secret Service agents ordered up a mess of wings and chowed down on the spicy flavor that first made Wingos famous back when it opened in 1983. Today, the small Georgetown storefront still serves up its original recipes in varieties such as teriyaki, lemon-pepper, and nuclear-spicy hot wings alongside a selection of half-pound Angus burgers, hot dogs, cheesesteaks, and cold-cut sandwiches. During the summer, they open up a Coney Island–style ice-cream window and dole out scoops in pints, floats, milkshakes, or carved into the face of your favorite Mount Rushmore president.
The beef served up at BGR The Burger Joint comes from free-roaming, grain-fed cattle, but is merely the canvas for the stacked masterpieces that this eatery conjures up. Buns are made locally, the toppings are fresh and the whole sandwich is grilled to order. You can create your own, choosing from various veggies and cheeses, or opt for one of the classics. Be sure to try the Wellington, served with onions, black truffles and crumbled bleu cheese. If you aren’t a fan of ground round, there are veggie burgers and turkey burgers, along with an ahi tuna concoction and a Greek-spiced lamb burger. Add a side of fries (both regular and sweet potato are on offer) and top it off with a hand-spun chocolate, vanilla or strawberry shake.