best day ever pt 2 // kinship + left door


Hi, old friend.

Life’s been busy and so this little corner has been sitting here, collecting dust. But 2016 RESOLUTIONS are a thing and maybe I’ll stick with this finally. Maybe.

Anyway. A story:

When Gavin and I first started dating, he accidentally took me to CityZen for my birthday. The first months of our relationship involved lots of eating delicious food (Toki Underground, Bayou Bakery), getting drunk off too much whiskey and cocktails (Bar PilarLast Exit, Montserrat House), and me heading to work after four hours of sleep trying to act like a normal human. Get home, crash, wake up, rinse, repeat.

Oh, to be young.

Compared to our hipster food adventures, my experience at CityZen was a dreamy blur. Mostly I remember some dude telling Gavin he was improper for not standing when I got up to visit the ladies’ room. There were also beautiful plates we asked the server where we could get, delicious food I barely understood, and enough wine to give me ~feelings~ when the dessert plate arrived featuring a “HAPPY BIRTHDAY” message in some sort of chocolate sauce.

Don’t get me wrong — I love good food. I have always loved good food. It’s just that I was kind of a kid still, not ready to fully appreciate something so nice.

Fast forward to now, when just last week we had the chance to dine at Eric Ziebold’s beautiful new restaurant, Kinship. From the gorgeous, candlelit space to the warm, kind staff, there isn’t a single detail there that doesn’t scream “hygge” (albeit a very calm, cool, and collected scream). The front room/library/cozy-seating-plus-fireplace-mecca is the stuff of my nerdy teen girl dreams.

As for dinner itself, the bed of lentils beneath the Tumeric Braised Celtuce had me literally wiping the plate clean with fresh pieces of crusty bread, and the pillowy Parmigiano Reggiano Agnolotti was a creamy + salty dream. The Kinship Stroganoff was a happy accident — We’d originally ordered something else, but, as they say, NO RAGRETS — The crispy veal sweetbreads were, simply, on point.

Sommelier Kerstin Mikalbrown is another treasure in that magical place. We’d met her last year, when she served us at Rose’s Luxury on my birthday and was all smiles and sweet charm. At Kinship, she stopped by our table several times to recommend an amazing wine (the 2014 Folk Machine Valdiguie – a grape varietal she called a “California Gamay”), to chat, and to generally be awesome.

From there we Ubered on over to Mick Perrigo + Tom Brown’s new spot, Left Door, where we had some posh drinks and sparkles served in beautiful, antique glassware while we chatted with Mick about the DC drink scene. The space is decked out in swanky vintage goods (including an emerald and brass bathroom counter that is TO DIE for). Knowing such a cozy space now exists a block away from work is going to be terrible for my whole plan to be better about money in 2016. But New Year Resolutions are meant to be broken, right?

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