Is there a better venue than the National Building Museum for parties? Highly unlikely. The space stunning—the architecture is magnificent. Even better, because it’s so enormous, events there are sure to be fun—filled to the brim with sociable Washingtonians and typically covered with tables of food and bevies from wall-to-wall.
Toast of the Town, hosted by Wine Enthusiast magazine on June 22, was such an event. There were dozens of tasting tables from vineyards and wine importers from across the nation. And, of course, there were just as many tables of bites from Washington’s best restaurants.
The event began at 6 p.m., so in lieu of happy hour, ladies and gents headed over to the Museum in their best work attire for an endless array of sips and snacks. Live music from the David Bach Quartet kept things energized, and the folks behind the tables were happy to explain the flavor profiles of the cuisine and the flavor notes in the vino.
It was a lovely little evening and we will be back next year.
Here is some food porn of our favorite bites…
Light and refreshing spoonfuls of tuna tartare from BLT Steak—I definitely took two.
Mad Fox Brewing Company served focaccia bites with grilled marinated vegetables, balsamic mayonnaise and herb goat cheese, which came along with a Belgian farmhouse ale—a pleasant change from the vino for this girl.
Guacamole from Rosa Mexicana is always a good decision.
The purple mashed potatoes and wild king salmon cakes made by Chef Richard Hetzler of the Mitsitam Native Foods Café in the American Indian Museum drew our attention and tasted just as unique and appealing as they looked.
Ruth Chris’ steak tenderloin sliders were a crowd pleaser—who doesn’t love red wine with red meat?
Acacia Bistro’s chocolate bonbons were rich, velvety and soft chocolate bites of heaven.
Lastly, Bastille’s chocolate foie gras truffles with summer berries were by far the most innovative dish of the evening.
Other participating restaurants providing snacks included Cava Mezze, Fuel Pizza, Georgia Brown’s, Indique Heights, Station 4, The Melting Pot, Tonic at Quigleys, PJ Clarke’s and more.
Our favorite vino came from Casa Vinicola Zonin, which was located at Table 2. Zonin is Italy’s largest privately held wine company and owns 11 wine estates in 7 wine regions of Italy for a total of 10,000 acres, and is present in 109 countries all over the world. Vinicola Zonin is located in Gambellara, in the province of Vicenza, and the U.S. headquarters is located in Charlottesville, Virginia. You can find them on Facebook and Twitter for more information and giveaways.
Wine Ethusiast had some great goodies in the gift bad—wine markers and cork openers that are handy for those evenings when you’re staying in with your vino. Wine Enthusiast has a magazine, online buying guide that works on iPhone and iPad and a free weekly newsletter, Top Shelf. You can follow Wine Enthusiast on Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest.