Ignore the fact that I don't have hair to flip. It's not important, I tell you!
Every Spring my parents like to come and visit for a long weekend. It's the perfect time of year in DC - it's warmer than Michigan (not hard to do) but not unbearably hot and humid as it's soon to get here. Generally, they try to visit twice a year. Although I'm sure 99.9% percent of the purpose for their visit is Fitz, they also want to visit with us, my dad's brother, and my mom's cousins (the ones who generously allowed me to live with them when I was still planting my roots in DC.) It's always a lot of fun to visit with family so much in one weekend (no, I'm serious. I actually enjoy it.)
Friday afternoon, I left work a few hours early so my dad and I could check out the Cherry Blossoms. Unfortunately, they were a little late this year so we just walked around the Tidal Basin, the FDR and MLK memorials, and chatted.
Padre and wimpy Cherry Blossoms
That night while Andy was hitting the books in class (ah, grad school) Mom, Dad, my cousin Bridget, and I headed out to Graffiato. I've heard about this place for years. Everyone raves about it. Why haven't I gone? Well, you see, I married this Dutch guy from the midwest. You may not know this about midwestern, meat-n-potatoes men, but they don't like their tapas. Not. One. Bit. They'll eat them, sure, but then they make haste to the nearest McD's. How did I get my dad you go, you may ask? King of Meat 'n' Potatoes himself? Majority rules. Ladies: 1, Ken: 0.
Back to the food - it was delicious! Graffiato is one of the city's top rated restaurants and it really proved itself. I loved the atmosphere - trendy yet casual. We enjoyed the following:
Flying Dog's Atlantic Lager (one of my favorites!)
Cheese & Cure board including: Humboldt Fog (goat cheese), Gorgonzola Dolce, Speck, Prosciutto di Parma, and Hudson Camembert
Risotto with blue crab, fennel, and meyer lemon
Gnocchi with pork neck, whipped ricotta, and fried rosemary
Chicken Liver Mousse with toasted brioche and orange marmalade
Zeppole (italian donuts)
It was definitely one of the highlights of the weekend! And much to my dad and Andy's chagrin, there were more tapas to come!
Saturday night we headed out to Sterling, VA to have dinner with my aunt and uncle (dad's brother) at Sweetwater Tavern. I ordered what I thought would be tasty crabcakes. I bet they were tasty. Alas, I was fighting a cold and couldn't taste much. Oh well :(. Everyone else seemed to really enjoy their food, though.
The next morning Andy and I rose bright and early for the Cherry Blossom 10-Mile Race! Last year I did really well with the race but this time I was still fighting a cold. Despite the cold, though, I did well! A few of my Chi Os did the race, too, and afterwards we headed out to brunch at Faccia Luna in Clarendon. It was their first weekend hosting brunch and I thought they did well! It's a nice alternative to the usual brunch spots in Arlington because sometimes I just don't want to wait 45 min for eggs and mimosas.
That evening we had our second round of tapas at Jaleo, another well-liked place in DC. Fact: I've hated this place for years. I was beyond annoyed with everyone talking about HOW AMAZING IT IS! I went there twice before and I was underwhelmed each time. It just wasn't worth the money. My cousin was determined to prove me wrong. He loved this place and he insisted I was "doing it wrong." So, we headed over there and I suppose I was doing it wrong. I loved it. You should go. We should go together. It would be great.
Did this lovely dining experience change Andy's mind on tapas? Not really. He still made haste to McD's to feel full. Bless his heart.
The next day mom and dad headed back to the Mitten. Can't wait to see them in June!