“You don’t have to cook fancy or complicated masterpieces — just good food from fresh ingredients.” Julia Child
Some of you might know that, had Julia Child been alive today, she would have turned 100 years old. As it is, she lasted into her 90s, a vivacious, spirited, inspiring woman until the end. I admit, I’m a bit too young to have really grown up with her classic cooking shows, but whenever I do catch a snippet of an episode, or read about her disastrous mishaps in the kitchen, I’m reminded how awesome she is, and how much influence she’s had on chefs all over the world.
Although Julia has quite the repertoire of great one-liners, I particularly connect with the above quote. I would never have turned down the decadence of Julia’s French cooking, but when I’m deciding what to sit down and eat everyday, I gravitate towards fresh, whole foods–perfect in their simplicity. Which leads me to a place that I choose to sit down and eat at pretty regularly. I was even lucky enough to stage the photo shoot for this blog there: the Blind Dog Cafe.
Blind Dog popped up earlier this year, sharing space with Darnell’s, and from the start, the solid management team prioritized great food, a community-oriented spirit and being gosh darn friendly. Jonas, Cullen and Greer welcomed me on a very steamy DC Saturday morning to do a casual photoshoot to add some personality to my blog. I hated the thought of being a faceless blogger, and knew I wanted to showcase a great local place in my photos. Blind Dog has it all—a bar area with exposed brick and squishy couches that are right out of your proper-gone-senile great-grandmother’s parlour, a stretching row of window seats, and herbs growing in planters outside for the home-made pesto (talk about fresh ingredients!).
This is the kind of place you spend hours sitting, talking, studying (GRE prep, anyone?) – and of course eating and drinking. The friendly, open vibe of this place is ideal for discussing dietary restrictions, and these are the kind of people that know exactly what’s gone into the food preparation. Although their menu doesn’t necessarily cater to those with dietary restrictions, a frank talk would be all you would need to determine whether a modified dish would be acceptable. I want to thank the fantastic group at Blind Dog for their hospitality and flexibility, and I encourage you all to amble over to this coffeeshop for one of their signature (and massive) chocolate chip cookies. Unless you’re gluten-free, of course (try the beet salad with turkey instead).
Blind Dog Cafe at Darnell’s | 944 Florida Avenue NW, Washington, DC 20001
I’m a fan of Julia’s. My PBS station ran repeats of her shows up until last year. They repeated one with her and Martha Stewart several times. Martha was ecstatic to be on Julia’s show – it was evident in her expression. The best was Julia and Jacques though. They were a great team – funny too!