News to Digest
There's a lot of food to be excited about this week. Chocolate-lovers can embrace the return of decadence -- or at least its cooler cousin -- at the Ritz-Carlton, while several places are cooking up magical treats for Harry Potter parties. Cockroaches, anyone? Meanwhile, score free fries and draft beer at a local Belgian spot for Belgium's Independence Day and tacos have replaced smoothies at the Arlington Whole Foods.
Decadence Finds a Cousin
For those left in mourning when the Ritz-Carlton ended its Chocolate Decadence program, get hungry. Starting this Friday, the lounge becomes Chilled Chocolate, a weekly ice cream social. Pastry chef Jerome Girardot plans to offer four rotating flavors of house-made chocolate "dream creams" with an array of toppings and garnishes.
The event will be offered every Friday from 7 to 10 p.m. through Aug. 31. Reservations are recommended, though not required.
In honor of the release of the final installment of the "Harry Potter" series (yeah, I hadn't heard of it, either), the Dairy Godmother is whipping up a creamy tribute. This Friday and Saturday, the flavor-of-the-day will be Dementor's Kiss, a midnight blue custard with moon and star sprinkles. The shop will also have pumpkin juice ice lollies and lightning bolt cookies. Anybody who's enchanted enough to sport a costume can nab a cookie for free. The shop will stay open until 11 p.m., when the employees will go buy copies of the book for themselves. In case you're looking for a quiet place to read on Sunday, owner Liz Davis has designated the Godmother a spoiler-free spot. Any talk of the book will be "cause for banishment."
Any sweet tooth who plans to get into the action at A Likely Story should stop into Kingsbury Chocolates. The store will offer chocolate frogs, chocolate owls, chocolate hogs (for Hogwarts, obviously) and some golden snitch truffle balls in milk, white and dark chocolate.
Nearby, the Sugar Cube is hosting a foam ball version of quidditch with chocolate stars as prizes. There will be a themed Harry Potter table with Bertie Bott's Every Flavor Beans, Slytherin gummy snakes and bags of custom-colored M&Ms for each of the four Hogwarts houses.
If you plan to party at Politics and Prose, Modern Times Coffeehouse will get into the action with plenty of themed treats. The last party featured the ever-popular butterbeer, but the shop plans to go even wilder with cockroaches, toads and all sorts of edible fare for the daring magical set.
Belga Goes Wild
With Bastille Day safely behind us, it's time to turn our attention to Belgium's Independence Day. This Saturday, Belga Cafe celebrates by opening the bar and patio at 4 p.m. with free fries and beer specials until 6. At 11 p.m., the restaurant will host a party with free draft beer and a DJ. Meanwhile, the restaurant is serving a special four-course tasting menu -- including a lobster soup, ravioli with foie gras, Chilean sea bass, sweet breads, mussels and chocolate with vegetables -- through Sunday for $59.
New Around Town
The latest participant in the area's taqueria mania lives within the Whole Foods in Clarendon. Taqueria Natural opened in the former Jamba Juice spot. The offerings are fairly simple: Tacos cost $2.29 each or 3 for $5.99, while burritos are $5.99. Fillings include carne asada, chicken asada, chipotle fish, salsa-marinated tofu and carnitas. A side of guacamole rings in at $1.99 or can top a taco for $.50.
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