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A few months ago, we wrote about one of our consistent favorites in Penn Quarter, PS 7’s.  We praised Chef Peter Smith’s approach to his menu and his commitment to using the best ingredients available to make inventive dishes with satisfying, complex flavors.  We mentioned Gina Chersevani’s cocktails in passing, but we largely focused on the meal.

For a lot of guests at PS 7’s, that’s the way they experience the menu.  But it doesn’t have to be that way.  A few of our fellow bloggers (as well as the not-long-for-DC Daily Candy) have written about a way to have your cake and eat it too, in a manner of speaking.  If you know to order it, you can actually enjoy a seven-course tasting menu that comes paired with seven of Gina’s amazing cocktails in the lounge.

Don’t expect to see a menu (they abandoned the mysterious wax-sealed menus that the guys at the Scofflaw’s Den experienced), but do come prepared to eat and drink well.

How well?  Find out after the jump. (more…)

Looking for a Penn Quarter destination with creative cocktails and a bar menu to match?  Eager for a sit-down dinner that impresses with its ingredients as well as its execution?  Okay…there are actually several places in that part of town that fit the bill.  But there are few that have consistently impressed us the way PS7’s has.

Your experience at Peter Smith’s restaurant is entirely up to you.  Upon arriving at the host stand, you can choose to turn left and enter the dining room.  If you do so, a menu that reflects PS7’s commitment to freshness and seasonal fare awaits.  But turn right, and you’ll enter the realm of “Mixtress” Gina Chersevani, whose inventive beverages have lured us from Poste to Rasika to EatBar and now back to Penn Quarter.  Pair those drinks up with some killer appetizers and sandwiches, and you’ve got a bar that more than holds its own.

Our most recent visit to PS7’s came after this month’s Food Blogger Happy Hour, so we were primed for a great dining experience.  As it turns out, we were visiting during their extended Restaurant Week offering – fitting, as our first visit was during another Restaurant Week a few years ago.

Three courses on your left, cocktails and bar food on your right; you can find both after the jump. (more…)

bread-pudding-afterTwo weeks ago, Melissa McCart of Counter Intelligence launched a new feature called “Favorite Five.”  In it, she asks local chefs about their – you guessed it – five favorite ingredients and then attempts to use them all in a single meal.  She also invites fellow food writers to join her in the challenge; the different takes help to illustrate the versatility of the chef’s favorites.  Last time, Melissa and Missy Frederick of the Washington Business Journal took on Chef Gillian Clark’s favorite five.

This week, Melissa invited us to join her in using five ingredients chosen by Chef/Owner Peter Smith of PS7’s.  Never ones to back down from a challenge, we agreed to work up a menu that included:

1.  Mushrooms (specifically lobster mushrooms and/or morels)
2. Pork (any part of the pig, but Smith particularly likes the versatility of the shoulder)
3. Leeks
4. Yuzu
5. Coriander seed

Care to guess which one gave us a hard time?

You can find Melissa’s menu here.  Our effort – complete with all the fun that went into finding yuzu, never mind using it – after the jump. (more…)