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Weekly Blog Round Up

Mussels Heard around the DC Foodies blogoshpere this week...At long last, the much anticipated Throwdown with Bobby Flay episode Mussels and Fries aired on Food Network Tuesday evening. Bobby's worthy opponent this week was DC's Chef Teddy Folkman of Granville Moore's in NE Washington (not NW,hear that Food Network?). The Throwdown, taped in March 2008, was held at The Argonaut and featured DC Foodies founder Jason Storch and his wife Amy (of Amalah) as judges.

Apparently, Chef Folkman kicked some Flay ass (and absolutely stole the show) with his blue cheese, bacon, spinach and shallot mussels and golden brown fries. Chef Flay's mussels in a coconut-green chili broth just couldn't cut the mustard, but Jason and Amy did their best to make it look like it was a close call. Apparently, it wasn't.

If you missed Throwdown Mussels and Fries, you still have a chance to catch the reruns.

1789 in Georgetown has a new pastry chef, according to Apples & Bananas. A month after Daniel Giusti was named the new Executive Chef (after the departure of Nathan Beauchamp), Travis Olsen has been named the new Pastry Chef. Olsen is a DC native and formerly worked for the Clyde's restaurant group. According to Apples & Bananas, Olsen hopes to bring "traditional American desserts" to the menu. Perhaps he can make a killer version of lemon meringue pie, which so eludes foodies and critics alike in this town.

On Don Rockwell, Nick Freshman gave a preview of what's to come in the newly opened Spider Kelly's in Arlington. Fresh, daily ground meat for burgers comes in two styles; one with fat back and one without. Even the chicken for chicken burgers is ground on the premises and early reports declare it moist and flavorful. Three-day brined chicken with a zesty rico sauce will be sure to satisfy fans of El Pollo Rico, its inspiration. Spider Kelly's also offers 20 beers on tap and emphasizes that there will never be a dress  code or cover charge.

Blogs and boards have been buzzing about Corduroy's new happy hour. According to General Manager Ferhat Yalchin, the "wine and cheese" happy hour will offer wines by the glass for $6, and a cheese plate, featuring 5 cheeses for $7. Happy hour will be served every weekday from 5-7pm.

DC Restaurant Week fans take note: Yalchin also announced that Corduroy will NOT be participating in Restaurant Week this summer (for those of you who may not be aware, RW dinner will be priced at $35.08).

Brunch seems to be a DC institution-a way of unwinding from the prior week, curing a hangover with some hair of the dog, or bracing one's self for the week to come with a stiff Bloody Mary. This week, Metrocurean lets reader know that you can add Matchbox to your list of brunch options. The menu includes sweet and savory dishes in cast iron skillets, along with brunch and champagne cocktails.

Metrocurean also dishes on the planned 2008 opening of a Matchbox outpost in Capital Hill.

Finally, did you know that DC Foodies writer and butter afficionado,Taresa Schmidt has her own blog, Cook and Book? You can read about Taresa's love of all things food, cooking and farmers markets on her site, as well as on DC Foodies.



The mussels at Granville Moore's were built up quite a bit before I had a chance to visit for the first time this past Monday evening. The beer menu was superb as advertised, but the mussels were lackluster. Don't get me wrong, the broths of the Formage Bleu and Navigateur were seriously good, but the mussels themselves were miniscule, and adding insult to their already small size, overcooked. While I'll certainly make it back for another try, I am left with the hope that their recent success doesn't detract from their food.

Mike Bober

kcr211 - Check out Teddy Folkman's interview with Washingtonian Magazine's Best Bites Blog: http://www.washingtonian.com/blogarticles/restaurants/bestbites/8634.html

When asked about the mussels they use, he says that they purchase rope-grown mussels from a farm on Prince Edward Island. Here's the part that speaks to what you're talking about:

"I know summer’s a little harder for mussels because the shells are a little thinner, the mussels are a little smaller. It’s just the season. But at least I know with this fishery when that season’s gonna be."

Generally speaking, mussels are always going to be smaller and less impressive during the summer months, whether farm-raised or wild.

I would give them another shot in September, when mussels come back into their natural growth season. They should be much nicer then.

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