Rob Schneider at DC Improv

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DC Improv is one of my favorite venues for live entertainment. The atmosphere is very intimate, so it just seems like you are hanging out with your buddy, who just happens to be a famous comedic actor. At the Improv, if you get 8PM show tickets, seating is first come first serve, so the earlier you get there, the better. We got there right at 630 when doors opened and we were seated right next to the stage. I could see up his nose, and he made eye contact and talked to our group!
His opening act was a guy named Herbie Gill. The majority of the audience, if not all (besides us) were caucasian, DC yuppy types. I’m not being judgmental, I promise, I just wanted to describe you the audience type. I found Herbie’s jokes hilarious, and he was a DC native, young and struggling. I felt like he didn’t get as much laughs with this crowd.
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I’ve never seen Rob Schneider’s stand up before. I just know he is in funny movies and I enjoy his characters. When he first came out, he scanned the crowd. I guess getting a feel for the audience. He started off not tickling my funny bones. He made very political jokes to start…very republican, Obama negative. I’m just don’t one to discuss politics so I sat quietly while everyone else laughed. Then he got to the racial jokes (why are these so funny to me?) where he told us about growing up filipino and the antic from his childhood. He moved on to marriage, and life and thats when he got really funny.
It was a rough start but I thoroughly enjoyed it. I would see him again. He is getting old though! Since we were up close and personal, I could see the wrinkles and age spots. His eyes are a beautiful blue though! Afterwards, that weekend we watched a bunch of Rob Schneider movies. Did you know his mom makes a cameo in 3 of his movies? The Animal, Hot Chick and Deuce Bigalow: European Gigoglo. Can you spot her?

 

Kwhat?Kwho? KNISH!!!

I’ve never had a knish before, nor heard of it. Does that me sound super uncultured? Oh well. I had one the other day, and it was amazeballs. I mean seriously, I love a whole meal that I can eat in one hand. Okay, well I guess it wasn’t meant to be a whole meal, but that much meat and potatoes gets a girl full.

In case you didn’t know (like me) a knish is a pastry with meat and a potatoes inside, generally. I got a bacon cheddar one, and one of my girl friends got the short rib one, and we split so we could each taste one. The bacon cheddar one was just what I needed. We skipped breakfast and only had coffee, so by noon it definitely hit the spot. It came with a sour cream, chive dipping sauce and it was perfect. I need to know how to make that, and this. Super convenient. The short rib one was okay, a little salty and came with a bbq sauce type thing.

We got ours from Buffalo & Bergen at Union Market. Definitely going to have to try to make this myself!

 

 

Smashburger

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I love burgers. But you probably already know that from my other posts. Guess what? There’s a new place to satiate my hunger for juicy burgers and fries… Smashburger. Lucky me, I got to go try them out before they opened. And yes, they won me over. I got to meet the founder Tom Ryan, and he even took me into the back to teach me the secrets of how they get their burgers so juicy..oh yeah and I got to smash one myself!

But first, lets talk about food. Let’s talk about 100% angus beef, fresh not frozen, that gets bowl cut (meaning chopped into tiny pieces instead of run through a grinder) and then smashed and seasoned on the grill. Oh and butter? Butter is always better. Their patties get hand rolled into perfect 5 oz meatballs (for the regular sized burger) and then smashed into their signature smash patty shape. If you aren’t a fan of burgers, there’s chicken. Their chicken is smashed and then grilled, or battered and fried like chicken fried steak. Take your pick. I had the BBQ, BACON, Cheddar burger with added garlic mushrooms, with a side of Beefy chili, fried pickles, smashfries, and sweet potato smash fries, and downed it all with their signature mixed teas.

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They have 3 teas, which will probably be different at other Smashburger places (I heard there was a sweet tea and a mango tea somewhere out there) the ones are this location are called, citrus smash, passion punch, and classic crush. You can mix and match to your taste. I personally like the citrus smash. Light and refreshing! Tom found these guys (Teako Teas) at a farmer’s market and loved their display and their handcrafted flavors that Smashburgers became their first national client.

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Everything was amazing. I didn’t even need to break out the ketchup bottle. Yes I did use the Smash sauce (I’ll share the secret, mustard, mayo, relish and lemon juice). The fried pickles were crispy from the batter and puckering awesome. Both types of smashfries were seasoned with olive oil, rosemary and garlic came out crisp on the outside and perfect in the middle. Not a fan of meat? There is something for everyone…

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This right here is their Spicy Baja Black bean burger. Aka the veggie burger. You can have that or create your own with their multitude of sauces, buns, cheese and toppings. These are also made fresh in house.

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(Tom Ryan, Founder & Chief Concept officer)

Now I know what you are thinking, “Ugh, another CHAIN burger place?”. Okay stop right there, yes there are over a 100 locations and its the fastest growing “better burger” places out there, but founder Tom Ryan strives to make it unique. With each region the Smashburger is located at, he creates some regional menu items. He’s even traveling, and conducting beer pairings with local breweries for each region. Pretty awesome right?

Tom had a vision. He wanted to bring the burger place back. When he was telling me his vision for what Smashburger is, it made me think of the fabulous ’50s, a time of sock hops and poodle skirts. Back when taking your date for a milkshake and a burger was cool. Here you can suck down some haagen daz shakes or a soda float, have a beer with your buddies and just hang out. The food is great, the vibe is fun, and could be the perfect start to your girl’s/guy’s night out.

Key things I learned:

  • The burger stays juicy because its chopped into tiny pieces not run through a grinder
  • The smashing on the grill seals in the juiciness and fat
  • Buttered buns keeps it from soaking in the burger’s juice and getting soggy
  • I am a terrible at flipping burgers in a fast food situation

Hope you guys get a chance to enjoy it! I almost went back the next day (if it wasn’t rush hour, it would have happened…even after the gym).

 

Rockin’ that new year

My first New Year’s Eve, out in the city… and it was exactly like this picture. A happy, glittery blur. I got to spend it with people I love and it was the most dancing I’ve done all year. It might have to do with the no dress code policy at Rock n Roll Hotel. Red chucks and a red dress guaranteed booty shaking and heel toeing all night.¬† Continue reading