- The Washington Times - Tuesday, May 29, 2007

SPECIAL TO THE WASHINGTON TIMES

Chefs Jeff Tunks of Acadiana, Jeff Buben of Vidalia, Ann Cashion of Cashion’s Eat Place and colleagues from Pawley’s Island, S.C., and Atlanta will dish out a feast June 10 to benefit the New Orleans Southern Food and Beverage Museum.

The event takes place from 6 to 9 p.m. at Acadiana (901 New York Ave. NW, 202/408-8848) and is priced at $100 per person, including an open bar with Southern signature drinks.

All proceeds from the event will go directly to the museum, whose New Orleans home is scheduled to open in the fall. The museum will represent the cuisine and culture of 16 states and will host special exhibits, demonstrations, lectures and tastings showcasing the food and drink of the South. For reservations and information, call 202/222-0987.

Celebrating the crawfish season, Acadiana is presenting its patio diners with an authentic Louisiana crawfish boil from 3:30 to 6:30 p.m. every Friday until June 20. Aside from a spicy mound of mud bugs, the boil — priced at $13 per pound — includes potatoes and corn. A bucket of four ice-cold Abita Lights costs $12. Shrimp can be substituted for the crawfish at $17 per pound. No reservations are necessary, and it’s first come, first served.

Down on the waterfront at Phillips Flagship Restaurant (900 Water St. SW), eight District chefs will compete to create the city’s best crab cake at the second annual I Love Crab Cakes competition from 6:30 to 9 p.m. June 7.

The competing chefs include Greggory Hill of David Greggory, Kevin Mesiah of Seafoodie, Rob Klink of Oceanaire, Janis McLean of the Morrison-Clark Inn, and Bryan Voltaggio of Charlie Palmer Steak. Chef Ris Lacoste will serve as mistress of ceremonies; the panel of judges will be made up of chefs and food writers.

The winning chef will receive $3,000 to help pay for a culinary intern in the winner’s restaurant. All proceeds will benefit the children’s educational program of the National Capital Area Chapter of the American Institute of Wine & Food, a nonprofit educational organization. Those attending will enjoy the crab cakes, bloody marys and lots of wine and food; they will get a chance to vote for the People’s Choice award. Cost is $60 for institute members and $75 for nonmembers. For reservations, call 202/333-0421.

Beginning Friday, Zola (800 F St. NW, 202/654-0999) will offer a special lunch combination with the International Spy Museum’s new Operation Spy. The package includes a ticket to the new program, followed by a three-course lunch served from 11:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. Monday through Friday.

Participants in Operation Spy assume the role of a U.S. intelligence officer with the assignment of locating a missing nuclear device on the verge of being sold to a rogue nation. This mission combines live-action, video characters, themed environments, special effects and hands-on activities.

Each session lasts about an hour. Zola’s Spy for a Day pricing begins at $15 per person and secures tickets to Operation Spy and confirmed reservations for the three-course lunch immediately following the mission.

Several new restaurants have opened in Washington in the past few weeks:

• Robert Wiedmaier’s second restaurant, Brasserie Beck (1101 K St. NW, 202/408-1717) is serving Belgian-French bistro specialties.

• Mio (1110 Vermont Ave. NW, 202/955-0075) opened May 2. The kitchen, under the auspices of executive chef JohnPaul Damato, most recently with Jaleo, features American cuisine with global influences.

• The latest addition to the Adams Morgan area is Las Canteras (2307 18th St. NW, 202/265-1780) which fuses traditional Peruvian dishes with contemporary concepts.

Also in Adams Morgan, Jack’s Restaurant & Bar (1527 17th St. NW, 202/332-6767) is offering a Dog Days of Summer promotion. Patrons can stop by for a quick drink at the outdoor patio, weather permitting, while their dogs enjoy treats of water and Milk-Bones at the restaurant entrance.

Chef Rob Klink is introducing a new concept of surf and turf at the Oceanaire Seafood Room (1201 F St. NW, 202/347-2277): grilled barramundi with osso bucco jus. The barramundi is the national fish of Australia, but the fish served at Oceanaire is farmed in Massachusetts.

Morton’s (8075 Leesburg Pike, Vienna, 703/883-0800) is hosting a Toast of the Town champagne tasting at 6 p.m. June 8 at its Tysons Corner steakhouse. The price is $70 per person inclusive of tax and tip. The reception and tasting will feature Morton’s hors d’oeuvres and the champagnes of Moet Hennessey.

Chef-magician Savino Recine of Primi Piatti (2013 I St. NW, 202/223-3600) has chosen June 23 as the date for his next dinner-cum-magic-show.

The courtyard of the Fairmont Washington Hotel features an herb garden next to Juniper restaurant (2401 M St. NW, 202/457-5020). Chef James Phillips chooses chives, parsley, rosemary, spearmint, tarragon and thyme fresh from the garden daily to us e in his regional and seasonal cuisine.

Between 5 and 8 p.m. every Wednesday beginning next week, Mr. Phillips will be serving Juniper Menu Samplers along with half-priced bottles of wine and specialty cocktails outdoors in the new Juniper Way in the courtyard garden. A menu of Juniper Samplers allows guests to choose three items out of seven for $19.

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