A La Carte

Beard Papa's Choux à la Crème

February 10, 2016

Nobuko Pierce filling choux pastry (Photo by: Judith Beermann) Nobuko Pierce filling choux pastry

Close your eyes and you'll think you're biting into classic creme-filled French puff pastry. But it's Beard Papa's, a new Japanese bakery that opened a couple of weeks ago on Wisconsin Avenue at Dumbarton Street. The franchise's first DC location is a welcome addition to the neighborhood.

General manager and owner, Nobuko Pierce was busy inserting creme into her choux when The Georgetown Dish stopped by. Each one individually filled, and all light, delicate and delicious.

(Photo by: Judith Beermann)

There's also Paris-Brest on the menu though inexplicably spelled 'Breast.' Perhaps a bit of humor or a translation thing, similar to the company's mascot which draws inspiration from Santa Claus as "a symbol of happiness and delight" and all the more charming than the obvious Papa's Beard.

Perfect for a decadent breakfast-on-the-run or light dessert any time.

Beard Papa's is located at 1332 Wisconsin Avenue in Georgetown. Tel: 202.410.3140

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Georgetown: Blizzard 2016

January 24, 2016

I'd say we aced this storm.

(Photo by: Judith Beermann)

By Sunday morning, what contractors hadn't shoveled, residents had.

(Photo by: Judith Beermann)

Streets were filled with sweater-clad canines and kids with sleds.

Billy Martin's Tavern (Photo by: Judith Beermann) Billy Martin's Tavern

Martin's was open for brunch, and il Canale was packed all afternoon.

(Photo by: Judith Beermann)

Ok, some cars were hard to recognize.

Washington Harbour (Photo by: Judith Beermann) Washington Harbour

The waterfront saw snow plows.

Fiola Mare (Photo by: Judith Beermann) Fiola Mare

Birds huddled together in the middle of the Potomac River.

Birds on the Potomac (Photo by: Judith Beermann) Birds on the Potomac

Icy fringe laced storefronts.

Dean & Deluca (Photo by: Judith Beermann) Dean & Deluca

And gold-domed banks.

PNC Bank at Wisconsin & M Streets (Photo by: Judith Beermann) PNC Bank at Wisconsin & M Streets

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Crushing on 'Crush'

January 13, 2016

In Crush, Cathy Alter and Dave Singleton ask a distinguished group of literary contributors the eternal question lyrically posed by Bo Didley: “Who do you love?”

To be clear, youthful, wide-eyed, the celebrity crush kind of love. And if you’re under 20, you won’t be waxing nostalgic twenty years from now over unrequited fan mail or waiting a week and fighting with siblings for an hour alone with your favorite TV star. Anticipation and longing ain’t what they used to be.

Cathy Alter and Dave Singleton (Photo by: Ben Carrdus) Cathy Alter and Dave Singleton

Full disclosure: Cathy Alter is a friend and neighbor as is contributor Karin Tanabe. And having the honor of knowing them and their fine work gives this reader a deeper understanding of these talented women through their early fantasies.

Poignant and funny, their crushes made me cry. Well, Karin’s made me laugh more than cry. Especially the part where she talks about Bruno, her real life Corsican mobster lover a few years post a 10-year old's declaration of love for Vincenzo Corleone. Plus, Andy Garcia IS really hot.

Cathy’s six-year old crush on “Puppy Love” crooning Donny Osmond (one of two in the book) is as much a sweet homage to an encouraging mother who served as spell checker and cheerleader helping her determined daughter pen an oh so brief, to the point message: “Dear Donny, I Love you, Love, Cathy” many, many times.

For co-author Dave Singleton, discovering David Cassidy in The Partridge Family at nine and sharing his TV crush, helped him bridge the growing divide between his conservative family and his awakening sexuality.

Sometimes, when celebrities do write back, you learn more about those penning the letters than the celebrities. For Caroline Kepnes, an abiding affection for Brian Austin Green turned into a lengthy correspondence with a protective stage mom and an exaggeration-prone teenage fan. The good news: Brian’s ‘girlfriend’ turned out to be Robin Thicke.

From film icons Bette Davis, Paul Newman and Kim Novak to TV characters Mary Richards and basketball phenom Kareem Abdul-JabbarCrush is a charming, Polaroid look back at our collective pop dreams.

Out April 5, pre-order now here.

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