Baby Wale (Washington D.C.)


We’ve been in DC since the beginning of the week. Our major agenda here is non-stop visits to the various Smithsonian museums with the boys and trying to eat reasonably well, with lunches in the vicinity of the museums and dinners not too far from our hotel by the Convention Center. For the meals I received a number of excellent recommendations from members of the excellent DonRockwell.com forums—easily the best resource for DC area dining tips (and more). Among the places mentioned within walking distance of our hotel was Baby Wale. My kids were very excited when I told them we were going there and then less excited when they learned that the name referred not to infant cetaceans but to a type of fabric. Now, like them, you may be wondering why anyone would choose to name their restaurant Baby Wale. The answer is that this is the second restaurant opened (some 5-6 years ago) by the proprietors of a long-standing restaurant named Corduroy. That restaurant is in fact next door and is a fairly formal affair. Baby Wale is an altogether more informal place, from decor/feel to the casual livery of the servers to the menu. It’s not exactly a family restaurant—really more of a pub—but the menu worked really well for our family. And early’ish on a Monday night (well, I don’t know if 7.30 is that early) it was perfectly fine with two small kids. Herewith the details on our meal. Continue reading

The Publican (Chicago)

The Publican
I first ate at the Publican in Chicago in early 2010. This was just over a year after it opened and it was hot, hot, hot. I enjoyed that dinner very much*. And so even though it is now 2015, and I haven’t really kept up with its reputation, it was my pick for a place to go to when we passed through Chicago this weekend with the kids in tow: their regular menu is very kid-friendly; and there is no way in hell that even very badly behaved children can put a damper on anyone’s evening at the Publican (they’d have to be screaming into a megaphone to be heard) and ours are very well-behaved indeed when an iPad is deployed.

On the whole, it was a nice meal but it didn’t get me as excited as the previous. Continue reading

Rasika (Washington D.C.)

Reshmi Kabab
I know I said a couple of days ago that I have a lot of meal reports yet to complete from my two weeks in Los Angeles; but here is a quick detour to DC. I took a 36 hour trip there, right after returning to Minnesota from Los Angeles, to do some grant approval work for a government agency. I got there early on a Tuesday evening, spent all of the next day at the agency I was working for and left for the airport from there. This meant I only had dinner available on the Tuesday. I was between two places: Little Serow and Rasika. I picked Rasika for three reasons, only one of which had to do with their own merits: standing in line outside Little Serow in mid-summer DC heat/humidity did not appeal and nor did the thought of being in a day-long panel meeting after eating a searing hot Thai meal; also, given my constant cribbing about the quality of Indian food in the US, it seemed foolish to pass up an opportunity to eat at what a number of people say is one of the best Indian restaurants in the country, if not the best. (See here for some of that constant cribbing.) Continue reading