September 6, 2012 at 12:45 pm EDT | by Jonathan Howard
Tastes of fall

The cooler weather is arriving and the summer weekends on the beach in Rehoboth are coming to an end. It’s a great time to check out some new restaurants, chefs and foodie eventsl And don’t worry — you have six months to fit into your speedos again.

Masa 14 (1825 14th Street NW) announced a new executive Chef, Adam Goldman, on Aug. 22. Goldman has served as sous chef at Masa 14 for the past two years and he’s the one who created the opening menu for the new rooftop deck at Masa 14. A new chef and a new roof deck make Masa 14 an excellent fall escape option.

On Aug. 28, Lime Fresh Mexican Grill opened in Columbia Heights. Lime Fresh is famous for its fresh blend of Mexican-inspired dishes fused with the food conscious culture of South Beach. I recommend trying out Lime Fresh as an alternative to the mediocre food and service at Tortilla Coast.

Jose Andres of Zaytinya (701 9th Street NW) has a special two-week promotion celebrating the iconic ingredient of Mediterranean food — the grape — from Sept. 3-16. Zaytinya head chef Michael Costa will offer grape-inspired dishes during “The Grape Festival.”

On Thursday, Uptown Ethiopian Fusion Cuisine (1608 7th Street NW) was scheduled to open in Shaw. This restaurant will feature traditional Ethiopian Food as well as fusions of other ethnic cuisine.

On Sept. 20, Jeff Black is debuting his new Old Black Salts and Black Pearl Oysters at the one-year anniversary of Pearl Dive Oyster Palace (1612 14th Street NW). Tickets are $175 per person and include unlimited fresh seafood and an open bar. Guests will also be the first to try these two new exclusive oysters. Proceeds raised at this event will be donated to Food & Friends.

If that isn’t enough seafood, The Blue Crab Summit will be hosted at Johnny’s Half Shell (400 N. Capitol Street NW) on Sept. 21-22. For $60 per person, Chef Ann Cashion will prepare guests five large Maryland Blue Crabs in the East Texas tradition “Sartin Style.”

The Park Hyatt Washington and Blue Duck Tavern (1201 24th Street NW) will host the Master’s of Food and Wine on Sept. 22. The Autumn Mushroom Chef’s Table Dinner will feature recently foraged chanterelle and field mushrooms prepared by Chef Archambault, Chef Melfi and Bryan Irwin.

On Sept. 23, celebrity chef Mike Isabella, of Bandolero and Graffiato, will be signing his first cookbook, “Mike Isabella’s Crazy Good Italian” at Graffiato.

Taste of D.C. 2012 is taking place on Pennsylvania Avenue Oct. 6-8. It features tastings and dishes from about 80 of D.C.’s best restaurants, eateries and food trucks.  This will provide an excellent opportunity to try out some restaurants you have been meaning to try out all year.

Gay Chef and restaurateur Art Smith (currently competing on Bravo’s “Top Chef Masters”) is bringing you Election Night at Art & Soul (415 New Jersey Ave NW) on Nov. 6, and Swing State Cocktails from Oct. 1 until Jan. 31. On election night guests will be able to watch results roll in on large televisions and enjoy happy hour prices until a decision is made. Swing State Cocktails include drinks like The Colorado Orchid, The Cardinal Cooler (Virginia), The Cheese Head (Wisconsin) and The Patriot (New Hampshire).

In late fall, the Matchbox Food Group will be opening the region’s fourth Matchbox (1907 14th Street NW). Matchbox is known for its pizza and sliders. Matchbox Food Group will also be bringing Ted’s Bulletin to 14th Street in the upcoming year. Ted’s is famous for its homemade pop tarts and will add a delicious brunch option to 14th

Pearl Dive Oyster Palace celebrates its anniversary Sept. 20 with two new varities. (Blade photo by Jonathan Ellis)

and Swann Street.

A new personal favorite for the fall is Taco El Chilango (1119 V Street NW). You can enjoy tacos like Al Pastor (beef tongue, pinapple and onion) and Mixto (chicken and pork sausage) and they have habanero salsa. These tacos are so good you may see Anastasia Beaverhausen chowing down in the corner — don’t make eye contact, just know she’s there.

With many more restaurants and events slated for the weeks and months to come there will always be a new bite that needs to be tried, a foodie’s dream.

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