- The Washington Times - Wednesday, September 26, 2007

Good things come in small bites during Jaleo’s Pintxo Festival, which runs Oct. 9-23 at all three Jaleo locations (480 Seventh St. NW, 202/628-7949; 7271 Woodmont Ave., Bethesda, 301/913-0003; 2250-A Crystal Drive Arlington, 703/413-8181).

A pintxo is a small one-bite tapa from the Basque region of Spain, typically served on a toothpick or a slice of bread. During the two-week celebration, Jaleo will feature a changing assortment of 10 pintxos of the day, priced from $1.50 to $3, available throughout the day. Special $1 pintxos will be available at the bar during Pintxo Hour from 5 to 6 p.m. Oct. 10-11, 15-18 and 22.

Jaleo chefs will demonstrate classic and modern pintxo recipes at 11 a.m. Oct. 7 at the Dupont Circle Farmers Market, and at 5 p.m. Oct. 11 at the Penn Quarter Farmers Market.

To celebrate Munich”s famed Oktoberfest, the Hay-Adams Hotel (16th and H streets Northwest; 202/638-2570) is offering a special German dinner menu, including smoked pork loin with sauerkraut, sauerbraten with red cabbage, green peas with smoked pork knuckle and warm apple strudel. The special dishes will be available in the downstairs Off the Record restaurant at a community table for one week from Oct. 1 to Oct. 5, with prices ranging from $8 to $24.

Brasserie Beck (1101 K St. NW, 202/408-1717) now features 100 Belgian beers on its menu. Beer specialist Bill Catron has arranged to have two Belgian beers found nowhere else in America on the Brasserie Beck list: Bacchus, a Flemish red ale, and Campus, a pilsner served on draft.

Special Sundays have started at 701 (701 Pennsylvania Ave. NW; 202/393-0701) and will continue all winter. From 5 to 9:30 p.m., diners can enjoy a one-ounce caviar tasting for $20 per person, and a three-course menu for $27.95 featuring seasonal dishes, accompanied by live music. During happy hour from 5 to 7 p.m., Monday to Friday, chef Alex Powell introduces complimentary bar fare at the bar and in the lounge.

On Oct. 6, Legal Sea Foods (Tysons Galleria, 2001 International Drive, Arlington; 703/827-8900) invites guests to a special six-course wine dinner showcasing Virginia wines. Dinner begins at 7 p.m. and is priced at $75, all inclusive. Each course, which includes such dishes as scallop carpaccio and swordfish with Smithfield ham, will be paired with wine.

Girls’ Night Out wine dinner, with a menu created by chef Katsuya Fukushima, takes place at 7 p.m. Oct. 17 at Cafe Atlantico (405 Eighth St. NW; 202/393-0812). The five-course menu, available for $125 per person, all inclusive, features wines crafted by notable women winemakers such as Eileen Crane of Domaine Carneros.

Following a $25.2 million makeover at the Renaissance M Street Hotel, the hotel’s M Bar (1143 New Hampshire Ave. NW; 202/775-0800) is offering a small-plates menu that includes sliders such as butter-poached lobster, seared tuna, and beef burgers with mushrooms and Swiss cheese, or bacon and cheddar. Prices range from $4 to $24.

Every Thursday until Thanksgiving, happy hour takes place at Charlie Palmer Steak (101 Constitution Ave. NW; 202/547-8100) on the roof. From 5 to 9 p.m., guests can enjoy free hors d’oeuvres and cocktail fare while enjoying drinks, conversation and music played by a DJ. The view of the Capitol is terrific.

Jack’s Restaurant & Bar (1527 17th St. NW; 202/332-6767) has a new executive chef, Hector Playuk, who has created a tapas menu available daily at the bar. Prices range from $3.95 to $7 and include such dishes as grilled marinated flank steak with sherry sauce; meatballs; a casserole of lamb with wine, mustard and peppercorns; and shrimps sauteed in olive oil, garlic and Spanish peppers. The chef will host a free culinary demonstration and tasting on Sept. 27 at 6 p.m. to give patrons some tips on creating a tailgate party for the football season.

On Oct. 3 at 6 p.m., executive chef Janis Mclean of Morrison-Clark (1015 L St. NW; 202/898-1200) will share her tailgating party secrets with a culinary presentation and tasting. The Morrison-Clark will present its tailgating-inspired menu during the week of Oct. 1, highlighting avocado dishes.

Chef Tim Elliott of Mie N Yu (3125 M St. NW; 202/333-6122) has created a Tokushu menu. Tokushu means “unique” in Japanese and Mie N Yu’s menu is a lighthearted interpretation of traditional sushi, including such dishes as Peking duck, Thai shrimp, fungi roll (a mix of wild mushrooms, truffles and lemon soy) and oo-toro (sashimi of tuna with Thai basil pesto, daikon and carrots).

Throughout October, Butterfield 9 Restaurant (600 14th St. NW; 202/289-8810) will serve its Harvest Menu, a three-course dinner priced at $35 per person with a three-course wine pairing for $18 per person. Starters include a sweet corn soup and caramelized plum and arugula salad; main courses include grilled pork tenderloin with fresh peach compote and arctic char with an eggplant terrine.

Taste of Bethesda returns to Bethesda’s Woodmont Triangle (Fairmont, Norfolk, St. Elmo, Cordell and Del Ray avenues) from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Oct. 6. Fifty restaurants will be represented, and four stages will offer musical and cultural performances, with a children”s area for cookie decorating, face painting and giveaways. Admission is free. Tickets to taste different foods will be sold on-site: A serving costs one to three tickets, and four tickets will be sold for $5. The free Bethesda Circulator will take visitors to and from the Bethesda Metro station and public garages.

Good news from Alexandria: Hank’s Oyster Bar is now open (1026 King St.; 703/739-4265) in Old Town. Hours for lunch are 11:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. Tuesday to Friday; dinner is served from 5:30 to 10 p.m. Tuesday to Friday; Saturday hours are noon to 11 p.m., and Sunday is noon to 9 p.m.

Buzz bakery in Alexandria (901 Slaters Lane; 703/600-2899) encourages patrons to sidle up to its brownie bar. Pastry chef Josh Short prepares 10 different varieties, each priced at $2.

In Arlington, Willow Restaurant (4301 N. Fairfax Drive; 703/465-8800) has a new wine director. Alison Christ, a mosaic artist who has been working with the team at Willow for more than two years, brings an artist’s perspective to wine and wine service.

On Oct. 30 and 31, Nathan Beauchamp, executive chef of 1789 Restaurant (1226 36 St. NW; 202/965-1789) will prepare a top-secret menu priced at $45 per person. The menu will feature tasty fare with shock value. The names of the dishes will be withheld until the end of the meal, at which time the printed version of the tasting menu will be presented.

Pig trotters, beef tongue and a spooky dessert are in the plans. The atmosphere will be festive with pumpkins, gourds and mums, as well as spiders, bats and things-that-go-bump-in-the-night. The a la carte menu will also be available.

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