A Brief Review of Recent Events (2 cents)

Let’s see. Where to start?

Food, of course.

Two meals at the new Cafe of India, next to Le Chat Noir on Wisconsin Avenue. The first was a carry out; the second, last night, at the restaurant. Look at their website, and you will see how varied and unique their restaurant the menu is. Last night, we had a lamb patty appetizer, a mixed grill appetizer (chicken, lamb and vegetable), a tandoori trout, vegetable korma (sweet, made with coconut milk), cauliflower and potatoes and a chick pea dish. At home, we had the korma, a vegetable briyani, and a black bean daal. Could not do better.

Dinner in Havre de Grace at the Laurrapin Grill. We were on a day long road trip and needed something to eat. Very pleasantly surprised. I just had a big chicken and gorgonzola salad; the rest of the table had fresh fish. We’d stop there again.

Lunch at Jade Billows in the Cabin John Shopping Center on Tuckerman in Bethesda. I had Black Pepper Chicken. I thought it was a bit heavy – a lot of dark sauce. But I am not sure it was a good test of this well reviewed, and very comfortable restaurant.

Jade Billows sits next to Pomegranite Bistro, probably the area’s best kosher restaurant, where we ate at a private party a week or so ago. The food was good (it was vegetarian, although the restaurant is a meat restaurant), the service excellent, and the owners very personable.

Next, the exhibits at the National Gallery.

I saw three of the current exhibits over the past several days. Briefly:

1. The exhibit of the Hendrik Averkamp 16th century Dutch genre paintings was a small exhibit, with a number of Averkamp’s paintings of the citizens of Holland enjoying winter on the ice. Painted during what is known as the Little Ice Age, the paintings show a bit of outdoor winter Dutch society, but I am not sure that I would classify Averkamp as a master. It was worth seeing, especially as I had the advantage of seeing it with a museum docent; the exhibit is now ended.

2. An exhibit of American modernist paintings from the Shein Collection – examples of many well known artists, but to my eyes not their best work. If you miss this, I don’t think you are missing much.

3. The portrait photographs of Allen Ginsburg. I expected little from this exhibit – the photographs were mainly simple snapshots, enlarged. But I was surprised to find this a fascinating (and extensive) set of photographs of Ginsburg and his many writer friends, made even more interesting by his extensive descriptions of each picture. This is one I suggest you make an effort to see.

The baseball? It’s not easy to sit at Nationals Park in the heat and watch the team lose. Do you remember Glen Hanlon (the losing Capitals coach, who was replaced by Bruce Boudreau, who started winning games without changing the team)? I ask you. Is Jim Riggleman really Glen Hanlon?

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