A LOFTY GOAL One man found high-ﬂying inspiration to lose weight 8
HORSE-ENDORSED A Virginia spa oﬀers pampering for humans and their equines 8
A CUP ABOVE Five cocoas from local eateries leave powder in the dust 9
THE WORD ON THE STREETCAR The future of Washington-area transit looks a lot like its past 6
JANUARY 19, 2014 | A PUBLICATION OF
READEXPRESS.COM | @WAPOEXPRESS
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Your Best Shot | Submitted by Frank Podczerviensky of Herndon, Va.
Kermit to Teach ‘Ribbits 101’ Healthy frogs, healthy MoCo, says Montgomery County’s Department of Environmental Protection. Jan. 30 marks its first training session to teach volunteers to identify frog and toad calls, then collect data in hopes of boosting conservation efforts, BethesdaNow reported. The county fears that falling amphibian populations are affecting the wider ecosystem. Truth: It ain’t easy being green. QUESTS
Nemo’s Dad: ‘If Only I Had Known About Hashtags …’ A Virginia woman carefully balanced flattering persistence with stalking when she launched a flyer and social media campaign to find a man she met at a bar in Old Town. (She didn’t give him her number; “I made the wrong choice,” her flyers read.) OldTownCourtney’s #FindBen campaign paid off when she indeed found Ben, according to Old Town Alexandria Patch. #YOLO FOWL PLAY
Woman: ‘Bawk Off, Man!’ A 6-foot-tall white male in his early 20s followed a woman and her children into their Springfield, Va., home to … sell them poultry? That’s what the unwilling customer told West Springfield police in late December after the man entered her home around 8:30 a.m., said a Fairfax County police report and Burke Patch. When the woman refused his goods, the strange salesman left without further incident. (EXPRESS)
LIGHT ’ER UP : Herndon, Va., resident Frank Podczerviensky had been visiting the Manassas National Battlefield for a few weeks when he decided he wanted to go back at sunset to take some photos. His trip paid off, and late last month he captured some spectacular dusk lighting on one of the battlefield’s many cannons.
Want to see your pic in print? Submit your best shot by joining our Flickr pool at flickr.com/ groups/wapoexpress. Share a photo from the Washington region, and it could appear here.
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WS, T HE NE E A LITTL ASKEW
for what it’s worth
THIS SHOULD BE A THING
How Fitting for King
Many people get time off from work for Martin Luther King Jr. Day, and it’d be a shame to waste it on the couch. Unlike Presidents Day, which is now just an excuse for furniture sales, MLK Day still means something — it’s a chance to reﬂect on the civil rights movement and the contributions of Dr. King. Sure, you could do that at home, but we have a better idea: Visit one or all of these ﬁve places to see remembrances of King and learn more about his monumental place in history.
Inscription on the Lincoln Memorial: Walk 18 steps down from the center of the chamber of the Lincoln Memorial and you’ll find an inscription that commemorates the exact spot where King gave his famous “I Have a Dream” speech, shown. This is history in itself: It’s the only time a memorial on the Mall has had an add-on of this variety, according to the National Park Service.
Wax figure in Baltimore’s National Great Blacks in Wax Museum: This wax museum, devoted solely to black history, features a life-like figure of King at 26 and audio from his “I Have a Dream” speech. 1601 E North Ave. #3, Baltimore. Holiday hours, 9 a.m. to 6 p.m.
MLK at the National Cathedral: King gave his last Sunday sermon from a pulpit at the National Cathedral on March 31, 1968, less than a week before he was assassinated. The pulpit still exists, as does a carved niche statue that depicts King preaching. It’s in one of the Cathedral’s bays on the main level. Free and open to the public. Bust in the Capitol’s Rotunda, left: King was the first African-American to be immortalized in the Capitol. The bust was added four days before the first official MLK Day in 1986. Visitors can take a tour, which includes the rotunda, from 8:50 a.m. to 3:20 p.m.
“No matter what your niche or style of music is, there seems to be a place for everyone here to grow and succeed.” — STEPHANIE WILLIAMS, founder and managing editor of the music website D.C. Music Download, explaining what’s unique about the music scene in and around D.C. The publication is set to celebrate its two-year anniversary on Saturday, Jan. 25, with the help of a few local bands at D.C.’s 9:30 Club. For more info, go to dcmusicdownload.com. For What It’s Worth is produced by Marissa Payne and Rachel Sadon. Have suggestions for the page? Email us at firstname.lastname@example.org or tweet us @WaPoExpress.
The Man, the Myth ... Terry McAuliffe isn’t your standard politician. Well, at least in terms of his background. In that sense, Virginia’s new governor is actually kind of interesting. Can you tell which two of these stories about him are true and which one isn’t? A. McAuliffe once wrestled a 280-pound alligator for a $15,000 political contribution. B. McAuliffe hunted wild boar in Hungary with Britain’s Prince Andrew for fun. C. McAuliffe and Toronto Mayor Rob Ford are childhood friends. ANSWER: “C” IS FALSE. ON THE OTHER HAND, MCAULIFFE IS VERY CLOSE FRIENDS WITH BILL AND HILL ARY CLINTON.
MLK Memorial, left: After undergoing a bit of facelift last year to remove an inscribed quote that many felt misrepresented King’s point, the nation’s official Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial will surely attract a crowd Monday.
The concept of highly fluctuating weather patterns, like those felt earlier this month when the D.C. area emerged from the teeth-chattering polar vortex to weather so balmy that January’s annual No Pants Metro Ride could’ve also been the No Shirt Metro Ride. It seems Mother Nature is up to her old temperatricks lately.
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Comedy Central’s newest series, “Broad City” (10 p.m. Wed.), comes with the Amy Poehler stamp of approval, so you know it’s going to be funny. Based on a Web series of the same name, it follows broke New Yorkers Ilana Glazer and Abbi Jacobson as they awkwardly navigate life. The show sounds a lot like HBO’s “Girls,” but with more silliness and less drama.
Dionne Warwick and the Let Freedom Ring Choir
2700 F St. NW; Mon., 6 p.m., free; 202-467-4600, kennedycenter.org. (Foggy Bottom)
‘Monty Python’s Spamalot’ Venerable British sketch troupe Monty Python’s reunion show isn’t coming to America. Toby’s has the next best thing: “Spamalot,” the musical based on the ﬁlm “Monty Python and the Holy Grail.” It’s full of Spam, laughs and an evil rabbit. Toby’s Dinner Theatre of Columbia, 5900 Symphony Woods Road, Columbia, Md.; Sat. through March 23; $51-$56; 800-888-6297, tobys dinnertheatre.com.
‘The Following’ Network TV’s most buzzed-about series returns Sunday at 9 p.m. on Fox for a second season. Former FBI agent Ryan Hart (Kevin Bacon) has dis-
tanced himself from the agency after cornering serial killer/cult leader Joe Carroll (James Purefoy), who appeared to die in an explosion. Now, Joe’s psycho followers are wearing masks of his face, below, and up to no good. TUESDAY
David Broza Israeli singer-songwriter David Broza is known for blending rock with pop and even ﬂamenco. For his latest album, “East Jerusalem/ West Jerusalem,” he takes it a step further, adding Israeli and Palestinian sounds. Sixth and I Historic Synagogue, 600 I St. NW; Tue., 8 p.m., $30-$35; 202408-3100, sixthandi.org. (Gallery Place)
‘Ella Fitzgerald: First Lady of Song’ Freda Payne, left, best known for her 1970 hit single “Band of Gold,” says she grew up listening to Ella Fitzgerald. Payne takes on the iconic title role in “Ella Fitzgerald: First Lady of Song” The musical follows Fitzgerald’s career from homeless street dancer to legendary performer. MetroStage, 1201 North Royal St., Alexandria; through March 16, $55$60; 703-548-9044, metrostage.org.
FRIDAY AND SATURDAY
Monster Jam Monster Jam, coming to the Verizon Center this Friday, attracts three kinds of people: A. Kids looking for a life-size version of smashing together their Hot Wheels cars; B. Road ragers jonesing for some vicarious stress relief; and C. Other. Verizon Center, 601 F St. NW; Fri. 7:30 p.m., Sat., 2 & 7:30 p.m., $10-$65: 202-628-3200, verizoncenter.com. (Gallery Place)
Tedeschi Trucks Band It seems it really is better together for husband-and-wife duo Derek Trucks and Susan Tedeschi. Their bluesy sound, which they’ll bring to Warner Theatre Saturday, won the pair a Grammy in 2012. Warner Theatre, 513 13th St. NW; Sat., 8 p.m., $57.50-$85.50; 202-783-4000, warnertheatredc.com. (Metro Center)
The Beatles U.S. Albums Box Set To commemorate the 50th anniversary of the Beatles’ famous introduction to America on “The Ed Sullivan Show,” Capitol Records is releasing a box set of all 13 Beatles albums released in the U.S. The set ($159.99) includes the original titles, track mixes and album art used in the U.S. releases.
MSP Polar Bear Plunge And PlungeFest This will be the 18th year that participants willingly dive into the frigid waters of Sandy Point State Park to raise money for Special Olympics Maryland. When you warm up, head to PlungeFest to see sand sculptures and live music. Sandy Point State Park, 1100 East College Parkway, Annapolis; Sat., various times, minimum $75 donation for adults; 410-242-1515, plunge2014.kintera.org.
MARVIN JOSEPH (THE WASHINGTON POST)
SASCHA STEINBECK (GETTY IMAGES)
The Millennium Stage free performance series continues Monday when ﬁve-time Grammy winner Dionne Warwick joins the Kennedy Center’s Let Freedom Ring Choir for a musical tribute to Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s enduring legacy. Arrive early to claim up to two free tickets distributed in the Hall of Nations at 5 p.m. Kennedy Center,
THE WASHINGTON POST
THE BEST THINGS TO DO THIS WEEK | COMPILED BY EXPRESS STAFF
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more snow. more terrain. WINTER ESCAPE PACKAGE STARTING AT $81 For reservations please call 888-804-5341.
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Throwback Tracks After decades gone, streetcars in D.C. and NoVa will transform how many commute
transportation options and needs to complete an environmental impact study before receiving federal approval. No timeline is set. Anacostia: A 1.1 mile track will connect Anacostia Metro Station to Joint Base Anacostia-Bolling. It’s targeted for completion later this year. A proposed extension would run through historic Anacostia.
The number of people who are predicted to commute along Columbia Pike by bus daily by 2030. Today, 16,000 people take buses along the Pike every day.
Buzzard Point in Southwest to Takoma could run along Georgia Avenue. This line is the least developed and still under initial study. No timeline is set.
A new streetcar arrived on H Street NE in December for testing. The line is scheduled to begin service this spring.
The Region’s Streetcar Future
What To Expect:
The District: Proposed 22-mile “priority” system
District of Columbia: $1 billion over the next five to seven years H/Benning: The nearest streetcar project to completion, H/Benning runs along H Street NE for 2.4 miles between Union Station and Benning Road. The first streetcar is on the tracks and testing has begun. The service is expected to begin in spring, once a safety certification is approved.
SOURCE: DISTRICT DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION
Virginia: Proposed Columbia Pike and Crystal City routes
G.W. MEMORIAL PKW
JEFFERSON DAVIS HWY
S. RE WAL ED T E DR R .
Union Station to 2 Georgetown: Set to connect with the H/Benning line, this east-west segment would give K Street workers a new mode of transportation along that congested thoroughfare. The city has completed an analysis of the
E RG EO DR. S. G S ON MA
“Streetcars fill a gap in our transit portfolio,” says Dennis Leach, deputy director for transportation for the Arlington County Department of Environmental Services. “This is a maturing of the region’s transit system.” With 5.8 million residents and counting, Washington is pushing its transportation infrastructure to its limits. Metro trains and buses are overcrowded. Car commuters waste more time in trafﬁc than those in any metro area nationwide, according to the Texas A&M Transportation Institute. Electric streetcars, which pollute the air less than buses and cars and are cheaper than new Metro stations, could provide relief. City planners are forging
SOURCE: VIRGINIA DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION; EXPRESS GRAPHICS
Streetcars ride along rails embedded into public streets. They require overhead wires, called catenaries, in most locations, but some modern streetcars can run for 2.5 miles without them. In most cases, streetcars will share a lane with other traffic, but along K Street NW there may be a dedicated transit lane for streetcars and buses only. The streetcars planned for the District are about the same length as a bending bus, but hold more people — up to 160 riders. (EXPRESS)
NEWLANDS & COMPANY INC.
4 This 9-mile stretch from
EVA RUSSO (FOR THE WASHINGTON POST)
When you think about the future of transportation, you probably imagine driverless cars, hoverboards and maybe the Hyperloop. The reality — at least, for the immediate future — is less sci-ﬁ. The tech that’s set to alter the way we get around is the same that ruled D.C. and its suburbs a century ago: the streetcar. Streetcar fever is upon us. The tracks are laid and cars are here for D.C.’s H Street NE line. In Arlington and Fairfax, plans are in the works.
Pentagon City plans call for a streetcar along the median.
Virginia: Columbia Pike: This $250 million streetcar project would stretch from Bailey’s Crossroads to Pentagon City. After about a decade of studies, the planning process is under way. Streetcars still need to be procured, a process that takes about three years because cars are made to order. Engineering design plans are expected to be presented to the Arlington County Board in this year.
Crystal City: This line would run along Crystal Drive to connect Pentagon City to Potomac Yard and the Alexandria border. A preliminary estimate puts the cost at $144 million. The project is in an early phase, with an environmental assessment expected in mid-2014. A.A.
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cover story ahead. After a decade in the works, the H/Benning line is slated to open this spring. D.C. wants to extend that line to Georgetown and build a new one to run from the Southwest Waterfront to the Maryland border, plus a shorter line in Anacostia. Arlington and Fairfax are getting into the game as well, with streetcar lines planned for Columbia Pike and through Crystal City. These projects aren’t cheap: In D.C., the government’s 37-mile streetcar proposal, of which 22 miles have been designated “priority,” is projected to cost federal and District taxpayers $1 billion over the next ﬁve to seven years. Arlington anticipates a $250 million investment in federal, state and local dollars in the Columbia Pike line, which will link Bailey’s Crossroads and Pentagon City. Preliminary estimates for the Crystal City line, which will run south to the Alexandria border, clock in at $144 million. Most of this is at least a decade away. In the meantime, com-
Case in point: H Street NE. The area known as the Atlas District has seen a surge of new bars, restaurants and apartment buildings in anticipation of the coming streetcar line. “The businesses and residential developers along that route know that there is a transportation option that is going to regularly bring people to and from there,” Nicholson says. That economic windfall is what proponents say will justify the initial investments. Some fans just think streetcars are cool. They’re old, but new: Like using a typewriter app on an iPhone. “There’s a bigger ‘wow’ factor with streetcars than with buses,” Nicholson says. Planners hope streetcars will have enough “wow” to lure car commuters as well. “We’re doing streetcars to convince travelers, commuters and tourists that you have options,” Nicholson says. “You don’t have to be in a single car.”
“Streetcars ﬁll a gap in our transit portfolio. This is a maturing of the region’s transit system.” — DENNIS LE ACH, DEPUTY DIRECTOR FOR TRANSPORTATION FOR THE ARLINGTON COUNTY DEPARTMENT OF ENVIRONMENTAL SERVICES
muters can expect to be inconvenienced as rails are installed along busy thoroughfares. Leach likens this moment to the 1970s, when the region made heavy investments in building Metrorail. Despite any complaints modern Washingtonians may have about Metro, the system allowed the city to grow in ways it wouldn’t have otherwise. “We are lucky that the community and the elected ofﬁcials in the ’70s made the decision to do it,” he says. If streetcars sound retro, they are. They dominated D.C. streets for about 100 years, until the systems were shut down to make way for private automobiles in the 1960s. “The need to continually move people in a clean way brought us
back to the streetcar,” says Ronaldo Nicholson, the District’s chief engineer. Streetcars may be costlier to deploy than buses, but they can hold more passengers. About 16,000 people ride buses every day along the 4.9-mile stretch that the Columbia Pike streetcars would serve. Projections put that number at 30,000 by 2030. Buses already run every two to three minutes during peak times. Advocates say streetcars’ larger capacities are the only way to keep up. There’s an even bigger draw for ofﬁcials here and in cities such as Portland, Ore.; Tucson, Ariz.; and Cincinnati: Streetcars revive neighborhoods. Property values increase, apartments and condos go up, and new shops open.
AMBREEN ALI (FOR E XPRESS)
Nothing attracts detractors like a public meeting. So when I showed up at a District Department of Transportation event in November — the ﬁrst in a series discussing streetcar plans for the north-south corridor — I was ready to jot down signs of debate. I shouldn’t have bothered to bring a pen. The harshest comment I heard all night? “We already have such great public transportation around here, so I’m not sure we need it.” It’s not that everyone in the District is gung-ho for streetcars. But the loudest complaint seems to be that they haven’t arrived fast enough. With service set to start on H Street, the only question is where the network will head next. The streetcar debate is more heated in Arlington, where the issue may decide a spring County
Streetcar Fighters Board election. Citizen groups have sprung up on either side of the ﬁght: Arlington Streetcar Now and Arlingtonians for Sensible Transit. Arlingtonians for Sensible Transit’s Bill Vincent argues that the millions needed for the Columbia Pike project could be better spent elsewhere in the county. Besides, there are lower cost alternatives, adds Vincent, a consultant who formerly ran a nonproﬁt focused on bus rapid
Read the DC Rider page weekdays in Express for the latest developments with streetcar projects and all other area transit news.
transit. “A lot can be done to make the buses faster, higher capacity and more attractive to riders,” Vincent says. “If buses can no longer handle demand, then we can talk about streetcars.” That doesn’t sound like a good deal to Chris Slatt of Arlington Streetcar Now. The computer programmer bought a house on Columbia Pike in 2008 because of streetcar plans. “I talk to a lot of people like me who are excited about a better experience than a bus, and a more reliable schedule,” says Slatt, who’s eager to patronize more businesses along the streetcar route. He also questions how much better bus service can be without a dedicated lane. Both groups are focused on education, so Arlington residents can expect to hear more debate. In the District, meanwhile, the only people going back and forth on streetcars will be the ones riding them. VICK Y HALLET T (E XPRESS)
Get There. Find the next train arriving at a stop near you, and when it will get you where you’re going.
Get Informed. The Washington Post’s Dr. Gridlock team diagnoses your commute with the latest news on Metro.
Get Events. What’s happening near your Metro station? Read up on events from Express and ExpressNIghtOut.com.
Get Talking. Warn other riders about the band of tourists at the Smithsonian stop or recommend a new drink deal in Dupont.
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Up, Up and a Weight Loss A tiny plane was just the ticket for getting an aviation writer to stick to his resolution When it comes to weight loss, the stakes for Alton Marsh are sky-high. The 69-year-old aviation writer has been assigned a piece that requires ﬂying in a P-51, a teenytiny plane from World War II that was designed to carry just a pilot. With modiﬁcations, a passenger can come along. But that person can’t look like Marsh did at the beginning of 2013 — at 6-foot-1 and 239 pounds, he wasn’t about to squeeze into anything. Marsh admits he hasn’t been disciplined about watching his weight, which nudged upward over the years. Even when he got on a jogging kick a while back, there was no guarantee he’d actually log mileage. “I’ve put on running clothes and gone to the park, and then I’ve driven to Panera Bread instead,” Marsh says. Last March, determined to get in ﬂying form, Marsh joined Sport & Health’s North Frederick, Md., club, near his home, and signed up with personal trainer Jenny Foit. The plan she devised for their twice-aweek appointments was tougher than anything he’d ever done alone. “I call them beat-up sessions,” says Marsh, who found himself on
Alton Marsh has lost more than 40 pounds working out with personal trainer Jenny Foit.
an inclined treadmill dashing faster than he thought possible. (“She’d say, ‘Can you do eight?’ And I’d say, ‘Of course not,’ ” he says. But he did intervals at 8 mph.) Then came situps, pushups, assisted pullups, moves on exercise balls and so on. When Marsh had knee surgery shortly after they started training together, Foit switched to mostly upper-body exercises. The weight kept coming off, which Marsh attributes to Foit’s nutrition advice. The hardest food
“I’ve put on running clothes and gone to the park, and then I’ve driven to Panera Bread instead.” — ALTON MARSH, 69, ON HIS BAD HABITS BEFORE HE GOT SERIOUS ABOUT LOSING WEIGHT
200 pounds this fall. He knew he’d need to maintain through the holidays in order to get on that plane in January. And Marsh recently got word that his ﬂight has been pushed back until April, so he has to keep it up even longer.
to give up? The mint ice cream sandwiches that had become part of Marsh’s daily diet. “I had to forget them now and forever,” Marsh says. And that didn’t change when he reached his goal of getting under
Wellness We’ve heard of spas with horseback-riding lessons and even horse grooming. But a horse couples massage, too? For that you have to go to Salamander Resort & Spa (500 N. Pendleton St., Middleburg, Va.; 866938-7370, salamanderresort.com).
In their Human/Horse Synergy Ride program, a spa therapist and an equestrian expert evaluate the two of you as you take a riding lesson ($250). After, you can each enjoy the spa treatment they recommend — such as a massage, chiropractic adjustment or acupuncture — for an additional fee.
MATT OWEN/SALAMANDER RESORT & SPA
That’s a Horse of a Different Posture
Try downward dog on a standing horse.
For example, while a masseuse works out your knots and kinks, a chiropractor might do adjustments to your horse’s neck, jaw or spine. “[The chiropractor] will also pull their tail, and you’ll hear the vertebrae crack,” says equestrian director Sheryl Jordan. “You’ll see them get very relaxed. They’ll close their
TEDDY WOLFF PHOTOS (FOR EXPRESS)
His strategy is to change things up while still pushing himself. He’s switched from personal training to TRX group training with Foit, so she can monitor his progress. “Al has followed me through everything. If I had a class called jumping off a bridge, he’d do it,” Foit says. He’s her assistant in the sessions, demonstrating plank variations with his impeccable form. Marsh may be the oldest person in the room, but that doesn’t stop him from holding the positions longer and pounding out more reps than anyone else. “One of my goals was to humiliate others,” jokes Marsh, who can list other perks that have accompanied his 40-pound (and counting) weight loss. Tests from a recent doctor’s appointment show that his cholesterol levels have plummeted, which means he no longer needs medications he’d been taking for a decade. He’d developed a waddle to counterbalance his extra weight, but he can walk normally again. And he’s shopping for slim-ﬁt pants. He’s ready to turn 70 in February (“I’m up there, and my weight is down there,” he says), and then ﬁnally take that long-awaited plane ride. He’s nervous, however, about what will happen once he lands. “After April, it’s uncharted territory,” Marsh says. But he has an idea for how to keep his resolution going in 2014: Zumba. VICK Y HALLET T (E XPRESS)
eyes; their lower lip will droop. They love it.” If you love horses but don’t have one, take a 45-minute yoga class in the stable ($20) or try Yoga on Horseback ($150 per half hour session). After a mat warm-up in the stable, you will do poses on the horse. Yes, the horse becomes a living yoga mat as you pigeon pose your way to health. TR ACY K RULIK (FOR E XPRESS)
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It’s Winter In a Cup
HOME SWEET HOME Prefer to enjoy a cup of quality hot cocoa on your couch? The following local sweet shops offer take-home mixes, available for purchase in-store or online.
ARTISAN CONFECTIONS’ BITTERSWEET HOT CHOCOLATE MIX
Made with 64 percent cacao Valrhona chocolate, Bayou Bakery’s hot cocoa ($3.25) is more bitter than sweet. Chef David Guas adds a hint of vanilla and tops it off with whipped cream. “It has enough body to feel indulgent,” Guas says. The New Orleans native also whips up some mean beignets: Order a side of three ($3) to add sweetness to your piping cup.
FLEURIR’S COCOA MIX Fleurir’s bittersweet cocoa mix is made of a smooth combo of four chocolates, while the spiced white cocoa mix has hints of almond, nutmeg and clove ($15). 3235 P St. NW, 202-465-4368 and 724 Jefferson St., Alexandria, 703-838-9055; fleurirchocolates.com
CO CO. SALA’S HOT CO CO. POPS
Baltimore-born gelato chain includes just three ingredients: whole milk from grassfed cows, organic cane sugar and lots and lots of organic cocoa from Turin, Italy. The puddinglike treat should be consumed slowly. Those who can’t handle the richness can try it with steamed milk ($4) or a scoop of hazelnut or chocolate gelato (called a chocolate affogato, $4.50).
1515 N. COURTHOUSE ROAD, ARLINGTON; 703-243-2410, BAYOUBAKERYVA.COM
1025 N. Fillmore St., Arlington, 703-524-0007 and 2910 District Ave., Fairfax, 703-992-6130; artisanconfections.com
PITANGO CO CO. SALA
Just add hot milk to this decadent mix of dark and milk chocolate, cocoa powder and vanilla bean ($16).
Short of reading “The Polar Express” in front of a ﬁreplace while listening to Bing Crosby, few things in winter are as comforting as a cup of hot cocoa. While those chalky, just-add-water mixes will do in a pinch, why bother when the D.C. area abounds with some seriously sophisticated options? “When it’s too sweet, you taste all kinds of chemicals and you wonder what you’re drinking,” says Noah Dan, CEO of Pitango Gelato, where you can order a classic European sipping chocolate. “The best hot cocoas have a mix of bitterness and sweetness.” And you certainly won’t ﬁnd any dehydrated marshmallows ﬂoating in these cups. HOLLEY SIMMONS (E XPRESS)
The chocolate lover’s paradise offers singleserving chunks of chocolate on a stick that you can stir into warm milk ($4). Flavors include dark chocolate and salted caramel. 929 F St. NW; 202-3474265, cocosala.com
Pitango VARIOUS LOCATIONS; PITANGOGELATO.COM
Pitango’s sipping chocolate ($3.50) makes Swiss Miss taste like water from the Potomac. The intense concoction from the
Poste Moderne Brasserie 555 EIGHTH ST. NW; 202-783-6060, POSTEBRASSERIE.COM
Chef Dennis Marron drew inspiration from pimandes — chocolate- and chili-coated almonds — for his spiked hot cocoa of the same name ($15, above). First, Marron steeps cinnamon sticks, vanilla beans, vanilla sugar, chili, milk chocolate and dark chocolate in milk. Next, he adds WhistlePig whiskey and Grand Marnier and tops it with Frangelico-laced whipped marshmallows for a hint of hazelnut. “The Grand Marnier is not traditional, but I like the way it gives the drink a longer finish,” Marron says. Try the
THE SWEET LOBBY
In the summer, this Clarendon gelato shop alleviates the heat with icy scoops. In the winter, the addition of a three-chocolate hot cocoa ($4.75) brings temps back up. Made with Ghirardelli chocolate mocha mix, white chocolate syrup, dark chocolate syrup, cane sugar, organic whole milk and dashes of cinnamon, nutmeg, allspice and cloves, the temperate offering is sweet and aromatic. “We churn the chocolate for an hour and a half so it’s well-blended and rich,” owner Christian Velasco says. Top it off with whipped cream or marshmallows.
cocktail in Poste’s outdoor winter lounge, equipped with fire pits and blankets.
2719 WILSON BLVD., ARLINGTON; 703-869-6522, BOCCATO.COM
The Sweet Lobby 404 EIGHTH ST. SE; 202-544-2404, SWEETLOBBY.COM
Yes, it’s European-style hot chocolate, which means it’s thicker than your average cup of cocoa. Yes, it’s made with 70 percent Belgian dark chocolate, so it’s rich and bittersweet. Yes, it’s made with a touch of brown sugar and a little cream, so it’s got a depth of flavor. But the real draw of The Sweet Lobby’s hot cocoa is the house-made marshmallows available in maple rum, vanilla bean, cardamom and chili varieties. “The marshmallows float on the top and slowly melt,” owner Winnette McIntosh Ambrose says. “But some people can’t wait and mix them in themselves.”
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fun & games ACROSS 1 32-card game 5 Chalky mineral 9 Eats in the evening 13 Solemn promise 17 Currency abroad 18 Chocolate source 19 Syllables sung while skipping 21 ___ gin fizz 22 “Bonanza” brother 23 Bit of high jinks 24 “Snowy” bird 25 Do a takeoff on 26 Stare at, as a wreck 28 Like a fast driver 30 Emulated a parrot 31 Ski lift
WARM HEARTED 33 Bouncers’ requests 34 Person saying “you’re it!” 37 Remove rinds 38 Serious kind of arrest 42 Emotional upheaval 43 Opera solo 44 Hasty escapes 45 Cowboy boot part 47 Perform penance 48 Is affected by 49 Skip over 50 Amateur’s opposite 51 Women’s counterparts 52 Minimal amount of rain 53 More cunning 55 Narrow groove 57 Reason to gather signatures
Last Week’s Solution
60 “Cheers!” alternative 61 Execute, in old France 62 “Cat got your tongue?” e.g. 63 Far from original 64 Cause of a rash reaction? 65 Yell 67 Truth ___ (interrogation injection) 68 Men’s headwear of the 17th and 18th centuries 71 More skilled 72 Bubbly mixer 73 Word with hall or slicker 74 “___ you serious?” 75 Ewe’s milieu 76 Barber’s symbol 77 Common military color
79 Home of logs 81 Small boys 83 ET carriers 84 Angler’s need 85 Muddied the water 86 Long drive over the wall 88 Sheet-music symbol 89 Berber language 90 Sick 91 Cubicle item 92 Artist’s studio 93 007 film 98 Tyrannical 104 Flabbergasted 105 Like freakish coincidences 106 Art supporter? 107 Boxing victory 108 Chimney passage 109 Ancient city near Carthage 110 Metric volume measure 111 They were once together 112 Flowerless decorative plant 113 Exceeded 55 mph, e.g. 114 Veteran sailors 115 Type of load DOWN 1 Burn the surface of 2 African antelope 3 Kuwaiti or Omani 4 Taj Mahal, for one
I N N E XT W E E K’S
Some of the area’s best restaurants are tucked away in nondescript strip malls. We’ll show you where to find them.
5 “Full House” surname 6 Was part of the picture 7 Not of the clergy 8 Tom Collins or Rob Roy 9 Burial markers 10 Prodding person 11 Prefix with normal, legal or chute 12 Flexible Flyer, for one 13 Gradual absorption 14 Landed 15 Sao ___ and Principe 16 Sit up and take notice 18 It goes wallto-wall in some homes 20 In the beginning 27 America’s bird 29 Strange 32 Weapons used by hired muscle 34 Private student 35 Spanish sherry 36 Colt or Magnum 37 Kind of school 38 Saharan “ship” 39 One spelling for a Mideast prince 40 Enough to be estimated or measured 41 Ancient Roman senate 42 Pack down tightly 43 At least two eras
44 Faithful 46 “The Long and Winding ___” 48 As of 52 Christian the fashion designer 54 Rich, dark soil 55 Highway rig 56 Spring melting period 58 Run at the curb 59 Big piece of cake 60 Mumbai garment
61 Hide, as a dog’s bone 63 “Seinfeld” character Elaine 64 Alien-seeking project 65 Stop 66 West Indian sorcery 67 Wise Greek statesman 68 Freshwater game fish 69 “Peer Gynt” composer
EDITED BY GARY COOPER
70 Ship or mail 72 Health-food store staple 73 Grocery-store vehicle 76 Regular hangout 78 Most big and strong 79 Raccoon cousin 80 Balloon filler 82 Wee bit 85 Frilled strip 87 Teeny toymaker
88 Go over again, as a contract 89 Copy machine supplies 91 Clear before takeoff, perhaps 92 One who weeps, in a saying 93 Fisherman’s handled hook 94 Admire amorously 95 Deep scowl 96 Earns after taxes
97 Get a handle on 99 Pro ___ (proportionally) 100 Throw out of kilter 101 Metered vehicle 102 Word with bug or misty 103 Medication amount
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fun & games WUMO | WULFF & MORGENTHALER
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POOCH CAFE | PAUL GILLIGAN
be extraordinary Falls Church â€˘ Washington DC â€˘ Silver Spring
PEARLS BEFORE SWINE | STEPHAN PASTIS
Last Weekâ€™s Solution
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