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Ollie's Trolley

Some of the confusion is because there are two Ollie's. The larger and more noticable one is around E St. and 11th. The smaller of the two which used to be connected a long long time ago but not anymore is on L St. around 15th.


thanks everyone!

Aug 29, 2008
mrspvr in Home Cooking


The husband and I bought our first house in the Fall of last year. We were super excited to start a garden. I was super excited to plant some lavender in the herb area of the garden. So................ What do I do with it? Ha! It grew nice and big and bushy. Any ideas? I just love the smell of it! Aside from the obvious- scent your rice or your lamb with it, what else can I do? Will tea work? Do I have to dry the leaves first for that? Does anyone know an easy way to make soap or any other household-y type things? What else can I use it for?

Aug 27, 2008
mrspvr in Home Cooking

my hardcore Italian Father-in-law

Please. Help. Need gift certificate for my sweetheart Father-in-law. He's about to retire. He's from New York. (Brooklyn) His brothers still live there. I gotta find a gift certificate. Please tell me about a place in Little Italy or somewhere that they would love to go, talk about old times, feel like mob bosses, and enjoy a cigar outside afterward. I need this suggestion as fast as possible.
Thank you Big Apple buddies...

Jun 08, 2008
mrspvr in Manhattan

Whole Fish, DC

Ten Penh does this and it's very good. Asian style. Don't remember a lot of detail. It was some time ago but remember being impressed. I think it was fried but you can order it steamed I think?

quick advice for ocean city

Leaving shortly to drive up to ocean city from washington dc. don't know OC at all. I'm from Philly and moved to DC a few years ago. Help me find a place that maybe is along the ocean. inexpensive. doesn't have to be fancy. Just good. I'm by myself. Sad occasion and want to see the ocean so comfort food might be good but anything as long as it's Chowish. Thanks.

Mar 11, 2008
mrspvr in Mid-Atlantic

Make my life easy and tell me

Great ideas! My Mom is HUGE politics buff, but dinner resies won't be until about 8pm. We just don't do the early thing...

Make my life easy and tell me

Nice idea! We love the pre-dinner drink at a separate restaurant than our reservation.

Make my life easy and tell me

Good ideas and she would LOVE the James Bond thing. I saw something questionable happen in the kitchen there once. Not a really big deal but it stuck in my mind and made me wonder what else happens that I didn't see. Not that you can't say that about anywhere!

Make my life easy and tell me

Thank you but I find Sonoma to be hit or miss and I think my Mom likes less modern surroundings anyway. Maybe Bristo Du Oc is good suggestion.

Make my life easy and tell me

Too late! Already love it there. But I agree.... we never had this conversation.

Make my life easy and tell me

where to take my Mom on the Saturday after Thanksgiving. She'll be coming to town for a few days and my husband and I know we'll be ready for a restaurant by then. She is 66. We are 34. We can't do my original ideas...Blacksalt, Hook or even Cafe Atlantico because there's just too much seafood for her. She doesn't do shellfish at all, only scales and fins and I know we'll all want to do appetizers as well as entrees.

No Italian. We do a large Italian meal every Wednesday before Thanksgiving. Dino and Obelisk are therefore out.

No tapas...Zaytinya, Jaleo, etc... are out. Unfortunately.

We've taken her to Nora already and we don't want to go to Vidalia or Central. I think Proof is too trendy for her? She LOVES the whole Washington DC thing and Tabard Inn seems great but a little bit of a yawn-fest as far as the menu goes for my husband and I although perhaps it's not a terrible option in the end.

What about Marcels, or Blue Duck? Never been to either. Although I'd like to get a little closer to my own neighborhood. We are in the Hill.

And don't say The Source! We are saving that for ourselves...:>)

Bar at Palena may be a little bit Not-A-Big-Deal enough for her because she'll feel like we're Only Sitting In A Bar. (But for chicken like that I'd sit in the parking lot, personally.)

I feel like I should have an immediate list of places on hand and for some reason they just aren't coming....
Please help!

Opinions on Famous Luigi's?

Can't figure this place out. Haven't eaten there yet. Don't want to waste my time if it's awful. Anyone been there? It's on 19th between L and M NW.

What did you make for dinner tonight?

whoops, forgot the mozz cheese in there.

Sep 11, 2007
mrspvr in Home Cooking

What did you make for dinner tonight?

pasta in a garlic, red onion, olive oil and butter sauce. lots of garlic. spinach and basil, two different kinds of peppers, portabellas, beach mushrooms, one very large heirloom diced up small and cooked in said olive oil, garlic, red onion, and butter concoction for about an hour,

Sep 11, 2007
mrspvr in Home Cooking

What did you make for dinner tonight?

damn, that sounds tasty.

Sep 11, 2007
mrspvr in Home Cooking

Pizza Stone question

Can you tell me if you lay your dough on the stone raw, with your sauce/unsauce and toppings and cook altogether, or do you parcook your dough first?

I am thinking that parcooking is NOT the way to go? Am I correct?

Sep 11, 2007
mrspvr in Home Cooking

Last night at Taberna del Alabardero

Forgive me, but some of these remarks may come off a bit condescending? "They probably keep it on the menu for those not familiar with Spanish cuisine." ------------"If you judge it with an American palate, you may have a different view than that of Spaniards looking for a taste of home,"

While I don't consider myself an afficianado of Spansih cuisine, I don't believe the usage of "American palate" was included in your post without some measure of pseudo-culinarian snobbery? I am proud of my "American palate"; ready to accept the flavors of all cultures for what they truly should be.

And if the remark about keeping paella on a menu is meant to say that Americans need their food to be dumbed down in order for us to appreciate it, than I must say that I take issue with that as well. Even if I'm ordering something that may seem decidedly pedestrian to others, I believe it should still be done with integrity reflecting the beauty in the spices and culinary applications of the culture that it represents.

I sincerely wish that in my response I haven't bordered on insulting you, but I believe that I may have misrepresented myself in my original post based on yours and wanted to specify my point.

Last night at Taberna del Alabardero

Interesting... I don't believe that dessert is on the menu anymore. I'm sure would have noticed it as the word "carpaccio" makes my eyes bug out involuntarily.

I definately would have tried that as I love the two ingredients you remember as the mainstays of the dish.

Last night at Taberna del Alabardero

Thank you.

Last night at Taberna del Alabardero

Thanks for the feedback! You've all shed a little light on the experience for me. Although I am in the dark with MMRuth.... What is PQR?

Last night at Taberna del Alabardero

The best Spanish in the country comment was not made on Chowhound. I've also learned to read all things having to do with restaurants with a large grain of Fleur de Sel but the remark I was referring to was in an article that I believed to be trustworthy. Good info on the tapas/happy hour though, thank you!

Last night at Taberna del Alabardero

Husband's birthday

The good:
-Service was friendly
-Appetizers: A fried sort of crepe with crab, asparagus and spinach. This was the definate highlight of the food. The other app was a Cheese dish with a tasty goat of some kind (although when I asked the server what it was it because I couldn't remember what the menu said, he came back about 20 minutes later with the answer, "It's goat cheese." ) It was covered with roasted crushed peanuts and warm. Also on the plate was a tempora battered Tittia.
-The rice in the Paella. It was cooked and seasoned perfectly.
-The decor. Not as intimate as it looked by the pictures on the internet but still an attractively decorated space.
-The wine. Had a delicious Mencia.
-They did the thing where they write "Happy Birthday So and So" on the dessert plate in chocolate sauce for my husband.
-Less expensive than I thought it would be. 2 apps, entree for two (that's how they handle the paella) 2 desserts, 2 glasses of Cava, 1 glass of port, 1 $65 bottle of wine (that I'm sure retails for about $20 or $25), still water, Check was just over $200. with the tax in that number.

The bad:
-Service. The word my husband came up with works best..."Discombobulated". No one knew what the last person who was at our table had done. There was no communication between staff. The staff was also not educated well enough to answer some of the simplest questions. It was 8:30pm and our main server had no idea what the fish of the day was, the aforementioned goat cheese conversation, etc.. Also when we sat down we received two nice little dishes. One had 2 Spanish sausage pieces for us to each try one and another had some olives. I'd had one olive and the server whisked the dish away because he needed to fit something else on the table. It went like that for the night. I felt like things were being picked up just a little bit before they should be and no one gave you chance to protest.
-The meats in the Paella. There was chicken, duck and rabbit in ours. They were tough and completely tasteless. This meant that my dinner entree consisted basically of really well done Spanish rice.
-The desserts. One was just okay; the drunken bannana. The other was not okay. We tried the Cabrales Ice Cream. I ate more of it than my husband did trying to understand it better and find something I liked about it. He was not in the mood to keep trying and decided immediately that Cabrales ice cream was a very bad idea and they probably shouldn't have it on the menu. Theory=good, Actual product=Bad...very bad.

Not exactly a glowing report, eh? We had a good time but for all the reviews and accolades I've read/heard about this place I can't say I'm impressed. I even read something that claimed this was named the best Spanish restaurant in the country.

Definately the most forgettable high end dining experience I've had since moving to Washington two years ago.

Loose Red Clover Tea?

Don't let me down, Chowpals!! A friend is in need of loose red clover tea. She needs it to be metro accessable if possible. Do you know of a specific place in Chinatown she could try or one of the markets in NOVA? She's trying to help a sick friend and is flying to Florida on Saturday.

The only place I know of on the East coast to try is in Princeton, NJ and that isn't helping her.

What do you think?

Where To Buy Zucchini Blossoms

I am Squash blossom obsessed...
I have only been able to find them at the Farmer's Market. I go to the Dupont Circle one on Sundays and there is ONE vendor who carries them. I forget the name of the stand, but it's on the lower arm of the market on the blacktop. Same side as the Blue Ridge Dairy people, opposite side from the yarn/garlic ladies. You have to look with a detailed eye... They pack them six to a bag. All spaced out evenly in a thick, flat, square, clear plastic bag that is open on one end.

I've also gotten them at the Mt. Pleasant farmer's market (Mt. Pleasant Rd and and Lamont St.) Smaller market, same clear bag....

Have fun!

Choose my night out with my favorite relatives.

Man, I got so stressed out after I read your post. I definately have Komi lust and we haven't been there in almost two years!!! I just called and got a reservation for the 11th. Part of this whole thing is that it's during Restaurant Week and I was afraid of issues because of that. Komi doesn't do Restaurant Week apparently and had only a few reservations left. I snagged one and feel like I just got the last Cabbage Patch Doll that was on the shelf during Christmas Eve circa 1983.

Choose my night out with my favorite relatives.

Excellent! So glad you liked it. I love hearing great things about restaurants that are our favorites.

Choose my night out with my favorite relatives.

I'm just not a fan. Not interested in trashing it, it's just not on my list for this particular event. Will most likely give it a 2nd go. I figured there were plenty of other options on my mind but brought it up in the original post because I figured with an invitation for add-ons Central (and thank you for yanking its name off the tip of my tongue) would most assuredly come up.

cookbooks: hidden gems?

I have the ultimate answer to this question. I haven't even read the other responses yet but I'm positive my response isn't already here.

There is a book that you simple must track down. It's called Clementine in the Kitchen. The author is Samuel Chamberlain. It's actually not a cookbook but contains some really amazing recipes. Watch out for the escargot recipe in the beginning of the book. It will not only teach an amazing method for cooking snails, but will have you in stitches of laughter.

It's a cookbook that reads like a novel. This is a true story of an American family during the WWII era and their charming French housekeeper Clementine.

Jul 27, 2007
mrspvr in Home Cooking

Please recommend a protein for me to make

If I'm understanding "melon water" correctly, then how about a fancy glass with a scoop of cinnamin or vanilla ice cream in it as a melon water float? Top with a mint leaf or two?

Or maybe served as a cold dessert soup with muddled mint, and a creme freche dollop that was whipped with a bit of powdered sugar?

Jul 27, 2007
mrspvr in Home Cooking