Small Bites: Bethesda Bartender Shines at D.C. Competition

Small Bites: Bethesda Bartender Shines at D.C. Competition

Plus: Takoma Park celebrates FeBREWary, Valentine’s Day deals in the area

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Bartender Richard Torres alongside his award-winning cocktail.

Bendure Communications

Silver American Brasserie bartender Richard Torres earned the “People’s Choice” award in a craft cocktail competition at Capo Deli in the District last month.

Torres took on seven other Washington region bartenders in the event that benefitted the Humane Rescue Alliance. He didn’t win the tournament-style competition for the title of “Top Dog,” but the more than 100 attendees chose his cocktail.

Torres oversees the bar program at Silver in Bethesda and the District. His winning cocktail was based on a fresh “Appletini” already on the Silver menu, plus the required competition ingredients from the event’s sponsors. Torres said he used sponsor El Silencio’s mezcal, “the smoky cousin to tequila,” to balance the flavors of his creation.

For amateur mixologists, here’s Torres’ winning recipe:

  • 1.5 ounces of fresh-pressed green apple juice
  • 1 ounces of apple syrup
  • 0.75 ounces of Blue Henry orange syrup
  • 1.5 ounces of El Silencio mezcal
  • Four dashes of Bar Keep Apple Bitters
  • Blue Henry candied apple slice garnish with a cinnamon stick

Takoma Park celebrates FeBREWary

The event is Maryland’s annual monthlong celebration of craft beer, with opportunities to enjoy various pairings and small-batch offerings at restaurants and breweries across the state.

The Old Takoma Business Association has matched craft brewers with local restaurants as part of its celebration, with a different opportunity each day from Feb. 18 to 23. The schedule:

Monday – DC Brau Brewing Co. at Busboys and Poets, 235 Carroll St. NW. DC Brau will officially release its India Pale Lager.

Tuesday – Anxo at Takoma Beverage Company, 6917 Laurel Ave.

Wednesday – 7 Locks Brewing at Olive Lounge & Grill, 7006 Carroll Ave.

Thursday – Jailbreak Brewing Co. at Roscoe’s Neapolitan Pizzeria at 7040 Carroll Ave. Also $5 happy hour deals at Takoma Station Tavern at 6914 4th St. NW.

Friday – Silver Branch Brewing Co. Special Beer Pairing Dinner and Tap Takeover at Republic, 6939 Laurel Ave.

Saturday – Black Flag Brewing Co. at Great Shoals Winery Tasting Room, 7050 Carroll Ave.

Valentine’s Day deals

Several restaurants and retail establishments in the county will have Valentine’s Day specials and related sales.

  • Bethesda Row French bistro Mon Ami Gabi will have several special items through Valentine’s Day, including French Kiss Oysters with spicy cucumber and champagne verde sauce, Maine lobster bisque with crab and apple salad, and dark chocolate sorbet with salted vanilla meringue.
  • The Fresh Market at Congressional Plaza in Rockville had a Valentine’s Day dinner for two offer including an entrée, two sides, a dessert and a dozen roses. The grocery chain’s premium choice sweetheart ribeye is available through Thursday.
  • Baskins Robbins at Congressional Plaza in Rockville has a $5 Love and Kisses sundae for a limited time.
  • Cosmetics store Ulta at Congressional Plaza in Rockville will have a Galentine’s Girls Night Out special from Feb. 14 to 16, offering $30 blowouts and free gifts for two.
  • Massage Heights at Congressional Plaza in Rockville is offering $125 gift cards for $100.
  • City Perch at Pike & Rose will have a four-course tasting menu from Feb. 14 to 16 for $75, along with an optional $35 wine pairing.
  • Champagne and chocolate-covered strawberries will be available for $20 at iPic Theaters at Pike & Rose from Feb. 14 to 16.
  • Wildwood Kitchen at Wildwood Shopping Center will offer a special Valentine’s Day menu for $65, along with an optional $35 wine pairing.
  • Oakville Grille & Wine Bar at Wildwood Shopping Center will offer a three-course Valentine’s Day menu and every diner will receive a complimentary glass of champagne.
  • Balducci’s will deliver a Valentine’s Day of two entrees and two desserts for $75.

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