MULTIPLE LOCATIONS—Cherry Blossom fever is in full swing, with restaurants all over town capitalizing on the bright pink bud. Tonight, Mockingbird Hill and Southern Efficiency transform into a Cherry Blossom PUB. And Claudia’s Steakhouse just announced a new “Cherry Lavender” cocktail, while Bar Dupont’s lineup — including the “Sherry, I Shochu Chu Choose You” — starts March 20. Meanwhile, The Ritz-Carlton Georgetown’s The Living Room has The Cherry Bounce with historical roots: as legend has it, George Washington kept it in a canteen for a trip out west in 1784.
CHINATOWN—A rainy Fat Tuesday didn’t stop hundreds from heading to the National Building Museum for the 18th Annual St. Jude Gourmet Gala. Six figures were raised via silent and live auction, while 30-some restaurants served a whopping 500 dishes apiece to feed the giving crowd. Among the highlight bites: The Source’s roast beef po’boys, Floriana’s short rib lasagna, Centrolina’s boccone dolce dessert, and Farmers & Distillers’ “What About Bob?” vodka cocktail.
PENN QUARTER—Zaytinya is featuring an all-vegan specials menu for the next seven weeks. Why? Head chef Michael Costa and José Andrés are exploring the Greek Orthodox Lenten tradition of eschewing meat during the seven-week period leading up to Greek Easter on April 16. Specials, from wraps and mezze to desserts, will be available throughout the day.
PENN QUARTER—Oyamel’s 10th Annual Tequila Mezcal Festival is in full swing until March 12, featuring a series of complimentary tastings in the bar and ticketed dinners hosted by purveyors Fortaleza Tequila/El Silencio Mezcal, and 123 Organic Tequila. Last night’s kickoff party was a drunken hit, with a dozen unique tequila and mezcal tasting stations, passed bites, and specialty cocktails (one is the timely-named Blurred Borders). [EaterWire]
DOWNTOWN—Attention, Michael Phelps fans: Last night, the Olympic gold medalist was spotted at The Oval Room, dining with South Dakota Republican John Thune and a big group. They arrived at 7 p.m. and stayed for roughly two hours. [EaterWire]
MULTIPLE LOCATIONS—Restaurateur Michael Schlow is teaming up with Taylor Gourmet to create a limited edition hoagie, The Alta Strada, available March 1 to March 14 at all locales (except National Airport). The sandwich, named for Schlow’s Italian restaurant, features house-roasted turkey and imported ham. Proceeds benefit Chance for Life. [EaterWire]
EVERYWHERE—Starting today, D.C.-area Amazon Prime members can order delivery from dozens of local restaurants, including Maketto, Ben’s Next Door, Hill Country Barbecue Market, and Kapnos. Use the app to track the status of a delivery, browse menus, and start eating on the couch in less than an hour. [EaterWire]
OXON HILL—MGM National Harbor Casino’s FELT Bar & Lounge is getting into the St. Patrick’s Day spirit with a new lineup of cocktails that are green in color, Irish by origin, and made with spirits with green in their name (like Green Hat Gin), all created by master mixologist Antony Sazerac out of Las Vegas. Bet on catching the luck of the Irish at the nearby casino floor. [EaterWire]