The new Dupont Circle restaurant Agora (1527 17th Street, NW), which opened in May 2010, is working on being green from the ground up.
Most of the restaurant’s materials are recycled or reclaimed and the cement flooring and exposed brick walls are natural conductors of heat and cold.
Agora’s Mediterranean organic and biodynamic wines are kept in a naturally controlled temperature wine room with recycled wood racks and are even served in glassware made from recycled cork and glass.
Other eco-friendly elements:
– An in-house water filtration provides still or sparkling water.
– All bottles, paper, and plastic are recycled.
– Recycled paper is used for the printed menus
– The kitchen’s cooking oil is donated to be repurposed as biodiesel fuel
– Environmentally friendly hand dyers in the bathroom
– Natural light is used as much and for as long as possible
Agora, which means “gathering place” in Greek brings authentic Turkish cuisine to the heart of Dupont with a variety of Mediterranean mezes. The bar also offers six different types of anise-flavored raki, as well as cocktails that highlight Turkish ingredients, such as one that uses Turkish figs.
Dine deliciously and celebrate Earth Day with special events, menus, and offers from local area restaurants:
Sustainable Dinner at Tallula Tallula will celebrate Earth Day with a special four-course dinner showcasing locally grown produce, humanely raised meats, and sustainable seafood.
Bev Eggleston, founder of EcoFriendly Foods and leading proponent of ethical farming, as well as Drew Koslow, biologist, clean water advocate, and brother of Executive Chef Barry Koslow, will also attend the dinner. The dinner will start at 7PM on Thursday, April 22nd in the restaurant’s intimate wine shop.
Priced at $85 per person including wine pairings (excluding tax and gratuity) the Earth Day dinner will feature dishes such as Bison Carpaccio, sourced from New Frontier Bison in Madison, VA, and a Pork Trio from EcoFriendly Farms. The dinner will also include dishes using local, sustainable seafood, such as Virginia Clams and Striped Bass and local Virginia wines.
Eco-Friendly Cocktails at JW Marriott
As an extension of Earth Day’s celebration, the JW Marriott Washington is creating a special menu of refreshing eco-cocktails and organic summer white wines by the glass to help raise awareness for preserving the rainforests.
The special beverage menu will be available at Bar 1331 beginning on Monday, April 19 and served throughout the summer. Cocktails, including “Strawberry Fields” (muddled fresh strawberries, basil leaves, simple syrup), are $12.00 and organic wines by the glass start at $9.00. Thirty percent of the proceeds from the new beverages will be donated toward the protection and preservation of 1.4 million acres of endangered rainforest in the Amazon, called the Juma Sustainable Development Reserve.
Sweetlife Festival Sweetgreen‘s free outdoor music festival, Saturday, April 24 from 3–9 PM (behind its Dupont Circle location), will raise money for Farm To School, an organization committed to connecting schools with local farms. Live performances will feature Hot Chip performing a DJ set, U.S. Royalty, The Love Language, Phil Ade, Will Eastman, DJ Grant Shapiro and more. Limited complementary tickets are available via the Sweetgreen beginning on April 9, with donations requested.
Mixt Greens Offers Tote with Green Goodies
The first 150 customers who visit one of Mixt Greens three DC locations on Thursday, April 22nd, will receive a complimentary tote bag filled with goodies including recipes from Chef/Co-Founder Andrew Swallow’s upcoming cookbook, Mixt Salads, and packets of herb seeds to plant at home.
The official Earth Day 2010 Sustainable Feast DC initiative encourages restaurants across the DC area to highlight the responsible decisions they make when buying and serving local or organic, sustainable foods. Participating restaurants include Bread & Brew, Pitango Gelato, Busboys & Poets, and more.
Earth Day Menu at Restaurant Nora
Restaurant Nora will be featuring an Earth Day tasting menu that includes seasonal spring vegetables such as artichokes, asparagus, and spinach as well as seasonal cocktails. On April 20th and 21st, the restaurant will be donate $1 from each seasonal cocktail to Earth Day Network.
We love the idea of supporting local restaurants that offer tasty sustainable cuisine and cheap happy hour deals. Here are our top picks:
It’s bloody cold out. Shake off the icicles and get yourself over to the happy hour (4-7) at CommonWealth which includes a selection of local beer, 1/2 price selections of wine, and 1/2 off grassfed burgers (Wednesdays) that are out of this world. For a complete rundown of what’s available, check out the review written by our friends over at Sustainable in the City.
A menu planned around weekly finds at the Dupont Farmer’s Market and meats and seafood from all natural and sustainable sources. Those are just a few reasons to love Dino in Cleveland Park. Want more? How about an amazing happy hour from 5:30-7 (Sunday-Fridays) featuring free antipasti and 25% off drinks. Oh, and bartender Scott is a master mixologist and will help you find the perfect glass to accompany your meal.
We’ve written about Poste’s sustainable practices before. This time, we’re all about the deal. Next time you find yourself killing time before an event at the Verizon Center, stop by from 4 to 7 (Monday-Friday) and enjoy $5 glasses of red and white wine, $5 beer, and truffled frites for just $5.
This Mount Pleasant eatery was recently bought by former Poste Brasserie employees Todd and Nicole Wiss. Although they still serve pizza, the menu now focuses on local and organic ingredients and more upscale fare. Happy hour is 5-7 and on Wednesdays you get a free bottle of vino with the purchase of a large pizza and appetizer or two entrees and an appetizer.
Tucked away in Bethesda Row, Redwood serves a seasonal menu that showcases the best mid-Atlantic ingredients. Meats, cheeses, produce, and seafood are naturally-raised, organic, or sustainable whenever possible and are sourced from local growers. A thoughtful wine list features some organic wines and small production vintners who practice sustainable viticulture. Belly up to the 75-seat white-marble bar and treat yourself to $4-$5 food and drink specials Monday – Friday from 4 to 7:00pm.
What did we miss? Feel free to post your favorite sustainable happy hour spots in the comments section.
In San Francisco or New York, there are organic restaurants and cafes everywhere. In DC, not so much. Like everything else worthwhile in this town, you have to work to find them. Well, not to worry. I’ve done the heavy lifting for you. In no particular order, here are some places (from casual to upscale) where you can chow down and know that you are eating food that’s good for you and for the planet:
1. Java Green Cafe. In bustling Farragut North, JGC is a vegetarian/vegan oasis among the steak houses and chain sandwich joints. Belly up to the counter to order vegetarian fare with a Korean twist such as Udon noodle soup, Boolgogi and Kimchi, plus assorted salad and sandwiches featuring “faux” turkey, chicken, and tuna. Be forewarned: If you go during the lunch-time rush, there’s usually a long line and limited seating.
2. Chix. Newly opened in Shaw, the poultry-centric cafe uses earth-friendly materials in all of its packaging, paper products, cleaning products, and even in its construction materials and interior decor. All of the chicken is 100% natural, free-range, hormone-free, antibiotic- free, and slow roasted over natural charcoal and wood. Many of the sides are organic too including basmati rice and hummus.
3. Hook. In the heart of Georgetown, local celeb-u-chef Barton Seaver cooks up responsibly sourced seafood and local products. Selections from the menu include Yellowfin Tuna with roasted sweet potato, chorizo vinaigrette, citrus, thyme and Wahoo
quinoa cake, pine nut puree, and marinated onions.
4. Vegetate. Located in the Historic Shaw neighborhood, Vegetate “believes in using the best possible ingredients from local and regional farms, purveyors and businesses.” On the menu you’ll find braised cabbage nori rolls, root vegetable noodles, and house made grilled seitan. Half priced wine by the glass every Sunday.
5. Restaurant Nora. You want fancy and organic? This is the place. Founded by internationally renowned chef Nora Pouillon, RN was the first certified organic restaurant in the country and one of the first vegetarian restaurants in DC. The seasonal menu features organic new-American cuisine such as pan-roasted Amish chicken breast stuffed with pistachio pilaf and grassfed beef tenderloin roast with truffled potato gratin. There’s a $66 tasting menu and a $56 vegetarian tasting menu.
When I first heard about SmartKarts from one of On the Fly’s founders late one night at a dive bar on U Street, I was intrigued. Here’s the deal: SmartKarts are funky looking, zero-emission electric trucks where you can buy locally sourced food (to cut back on those nasty carbon emissions). The company says they also try to stick to organically farmed, chemical-free food whenever possible.
The first SmartKart debuted in November at 8th and H, NW selling empanadas and other Mexican fare. And just a few weeks ago, another appeared at Street NW between 7th and 8th Streets selling barbecue fare from Rocklands BBQ along with healthy prepackaged sandwiches, soups, salads and more from On The Fly’s Washington D.C. based kitchen. Will Columbia Heights be next? I say bring on the Karts!
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