Day: August 1, 2016

From the Bay to the Blue Ridge, National Harbor

National Harbor

By Lani Gering I can’t believe it is now 6 years that I have lived here in National Harbor. The landscape has really changed in this relatively short time and there have been many wild and crazy events in those years as well but August is always a quiet month. Maybe because of the heat. You can tell by the calendar of events that there really isn’t anything major going on other than the Crab & Beer Fest. However, the heat and slower pace hasn’t put a damper on the latest Pokemon Go craze!! It has taken several different people in several different age ranges to try to explain just how this whole “game’ works since I really have no idea who the original Pokemon “people” are. In the past month or so I cannot believe the number of human people – pretty much from all age ranges – I have seen roaming around Old Town Alexandria and Southern Maryland where our sailboat is docked with heads down and at a zombies pace. When I was hoping that maybe National Harbor had dodged the Pokemon Go bullet since I haven’t really seen many roaming around I found out that there are seriously “Pokemon Go Specials” taking place enticing the Pokemon geeks to my neighborhood! After thinking about it for a minute or so, I guess if a business is going to have people wandering in looking for one of the creatures or whatever they are called they might as well try to make a buck. Here is what I ran across: AC Hotel and Lounge is offering a special Trainer Cocktail in the AC Lounge for $5. Evidently AC is located right by a Pokestop and has plenty of places to charge your phone. The Capital Wheel is offering a$10…

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Personality Profile

Bill Ross – Boat Captain, Restaurateur, Friend

By Bob Tagert Bill Ross – Boat Captain, Restaurateur, Friend This will be fun. I have known Bill Ross since the mid 1980’s and we have spent many days on sailboats both large and small. He has been an integral part of the fabric of Alexandria in business, volunteering and charity work for the last thirty years. He has also been my friend. Born in Baltimore on August 24, 1950, Bill  spent his formative years in Baltimore graduating from Brooklyn Park High School, which closed its doors in 1990. In 1969 Bill enlisted in the U. S. Navy reaching the rank of Petty Officer before being discharged 4 years later. Returning to Maryland, Ross attended the University of Maryland where he graduated in 1976 with a degree in Advertising Design. His first job was in 1976 as an intern at WTTG, a local television station. Back in those days cable was in its infancy and there were only four television stations in the Washington D.C. market. In two years Ross was made Art Director of the station. In the 1970’s, WTTG was one of the leading independent stations in the country, running a broad lineup of cartoons, off-network sitcoms, first-run syndicated shows, older movies, local newscasts and locally produced programs. The most popular show, Panorama, was one of the first afternoon talk shows on TV. The show was hosted by John Willis, Maury Povich, and later by Ross’s friend Jackson Bain. Today, WTTG is one of Rupert Murdocks Fox stations. After leaving WTTG, Ross worked as general manager of various graphic companies in the Alexandria area. It was during this time that Ross met Bill Harris, founder and owner of Letter Com, one of Alexandria’s largest mail houses and printing businesses. Letter Com had no in house graphics production, and…

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Dining Out

Bond 45 – “Bringing the feeling of old New York to the shores of the Potomac”

By Lani Gering Bond 45 – “Bringing the feeling of old New York to the shores of the Potomac” Bond 45 is located in the heart of National Harbor and is one of the first white table cloth eateries to open after the resort itself finally came in to fruition. The original Bond 45 is a landmark located in the theater district in New York City and while we haven’t had the privilege to frequent the original, the National Harbor version is one of our favorite places in the Harbor. From the cool neon sign on the exterior to the rich, warm interior this restaurant exudes class. In addition to our favorite place to drink and dine – the extensive bar and front dining room – Bond has five private dining rooms that can host anywhere between 8 and 250 guests. There are also two balconies with outside seating that provide a great view of the Plaza, the Capital Wheel, the Potomac River and the Old Town Alexandria skyline. Steaks, pasta and seafood all reign supreme at Bond. For those readers who have already had the Bond 45 experience, I am sure that you have your favorite go-to steak cut and pasta. While the original menu was all inclusive and included a wide array of choices in all categories, it was a little overwhelming for me. The new menu that was just rolled out in mid-July is a nice change. There are still plenty of choices in all areas – 7 steaks, 12 house-made pastas, 7 seafood selections and 4 Italian classics the likes of Eggplant and Chicken Parmigiana, Chicken Marsala, Mamma Perla’s Chicken and a Veal Chop Parmigiana. The appetizers and salads are plentiful and the house-made meatballs are still a staple. They have a new Summer Chopped Salad…

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Business Profile

Meet Me At the Junction!

By Bob Tagert Meet Me At the Junction! Junction Bakery & Bistro    Last month the long awaited Junction Bistro & Bakery opened in the space formerly occupied by Mancini’s on Mount Vernon Avenue in the Del Ray area of Alexandria. Noe Landini was looking to open a bakery to supply fresh breads to their restaurants, Landini’s and the Fish Market in Old Town as well as their new project, Bar Deco, in D.C.’s Chinatown. The idea began to take form when Noe was introduced to Nathan Hatfield, a very good friend of Landini bartender Tami Hatridge. Hatfield had previously worked for Le Diplomate, Society Fair and Restaurant Eve. The more the three talked, the more Junction took shape and the Bistro/Bakery was opened in mid-July with Hatfield as chef and head baker and Hatridge resigned her position at Landini’s to take over general manager responsibilities at Junction.     For the first month Junction worked on a soft opening and was only open from 7 am to 3 pm. The bistro/café was busy from day one and the bakery began their operation at 3am in order to make the breads and pastries for their restaurants. Hatfield has standing orders from other restaurants as soon as they can get the operation working smoothly and they can handle the increased load. By that time the bakery will be operating around the clock. Hatfield is also the chef for the kitchen and is assisted by his wife Margaret, who is also a chef as well as an instructor at the Academy de Cuisine in Gaithersburg, Maryland. As I write this piece, the Bistro is serving their first dinners to family and friends, and by the time you read this Junction will be open from 7 am to 10 pm serving breakfast, lunch, dinner…

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From the Bay to the Blue Ridge, National Harbor

National Harbor August Events

National Harbor August Events By Lani Gering Saturdays & Sundays Through October Farmers Market American Way 10am – 5 pm Miller Farms Farmer’s Market returns to National Harbor with their wide array of fresh fruits and vegetables, baked goods, beautiful flowers and plants, and much more. Tuesdays thru September Turbo Kick/Cardio Kickboxing On the Plaza 7-8 pm FREE! Compliments of No Excuse Workout. Wednesdays thru September Family Fitness Class On the Plaza 10-10:30 am FREE! Compliments of No Excuse Workout. Hip Hop Zumba Class On the Plaza 7-8pm FREE! Compliments of No Excuse Workout. Saturdays thru September Yoga On the Plaza 9-10 am FREE! Compliments of No Excuse Workout. Summer Fridays thru September On the Plaza 4 – 8:30 pm New this season! Join your friends for one of the many lawn games the likes of bocce ball, corn hole, yahzee, tic-tac-toe and jenga! Games start at 4 pm. From 6-7 pm Bobby McKey’s Dueling Piano Boom Box will be on hand. The evening rounds out with a DJ and dancers handing out give-aways! FREE! Saturdays thru September Salute the Sunset Concert Series On the Plaza 7 pm FREE! World-class performances by bands from the nation’s Armed Forces at National Harbor will stir the hearts and souls of civilians and military personnel alike, while their tuneful stylings in a variety of genres please music lovers of all ages. 6th – US 257th Army Band – 1 pm USAF Singing Sergeants – 7 pm 13th – USAF Airmen of Note 20th – USAF Concert Band 27th – USAF Airmen of Note Movies On the Potomac On the Plaza FREE! Nothing says summer like an evening under the stars—and there’s no better way to enjoy the season than a “Date Night” at National Harbor. Join us on the Plaza every Thursday night…

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Pets, Places, & Things, Road Trip

Berryville Virginia and the Waypoint House

By Bob Tagert Berryville Virginia and the Waypoint House         With all of this July heat beating down on us, we decided to take a road trip to the Shenandoah Valley and visit the town of Berryville. We are familiar with Berryville since we have been distributing the Old Town Crier there for a number of years. Getting to Berryville is quite easy and makes for an enjoyable drive. Route 7 out of Leesburg, Virginia is a straight and easy drive, however we opted for the more picturesque drive on Route 50, through Middleburg, Upperville and Paris, across the Shenandoah River, through the town of Millwood and on to Berryville. The drive is very pleasant and there are many fine places to stop for refreshment along the way. Founded by European Americans and surveyed by George Washington in 1750, Berryville today serves as the county seat of Clarke County. According to legend, Col. Daniel Morgan, who had distinguished himself in the American Revolution, would engage in combat with young toughs at the intersection of Winchester Turnpike and Charlestown Road, having piled large stones nearby to use as ammunition in case of need. Because of this story, and a rowdy tavern nearby, the area was first given the informal name of “Battle Town”. Today the Battle Town Inn (unfortunately no longer open for business) stands on that spot.       While in Berryville we stayed at the Waypoint House Bed and Breakfast. Waypoint is a very clever name because a waypoint is a reference point that one puts in their GPS and marks the location for a return trip. In sailing, waypoints are the norm for marking places that are worth a return trip, and the Waypoint House is certainly worth a trip. Owned and operated by former Alexandrians Rachael and Jonathan…

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On the Road, Pets, Places, & Things

On the Road

David and Linda Allin, Grand Junction, Colorado residents and long-time subscribers and friends of the Crier, took to the road with the OTC in the northern Rocky Mountains to take in the some of the sights preserved by the National Park Service. Happy 100thNPS!

Product of the Month

Product of the Month

As a new addition to the Health and Beauty Section, we are going to feature a new product. We receive many, many samples from PR firms from all over the country and have decided to publish results on some of those we have tested. While not everything does what they say they do, we will feature ones that we have found that live up to the hype.   DHC Tokyo Collection Quick Film Smoother 0.88 oz. Net wt. $27.50   WHAT IT IS   Instant wrinkle-smoother and lightweight moisturizer.   WHAT IT DOES Works immediately to plump and soften the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles as well as provide refreshing, weightless moisture to any area of concern. WHY IT’S DIFFERENT This gel cream relies on EMS peptides and seaweed extract to instantly firm the appearance of skin and support collagen, while cross-linked sodium hyaluronate protects the skin’s natural moisture mantle. And soybean protein complex works over time to protect skin’s natural elasticity. This product and others in the DHC line are available at Urban Outfitters as well as online at

From the Bay, From the Bay to the Blue Ridge

The Joys of Overnight Racing

The Joys of Overnight Racing by Molly Winans   “The darkness and uncertainty of your surroundings add to the sailing experience.” There are three types of big boat racing sailors on the Bay: those who have not yet tried overnight racing; those who have done it once and checked it off their bucket lists; and those who have tried it and gotten addicted. The been-there, got-the-T-shirt types remember a cold, stormy, windless night or a sleepless, slow, thankless night or a combination of such. Sailors who compete regularly in such races overlook the discomfort and relish in the challenge. Solomons sailor John Edwards, who used to sail his Farr 30 Rhumb Punch in a couple of overnight Bay races per year says, “The darkness and uncertainty of your surroundings add to the sailing experience… and keep me awake all night. A part of it is fear, but the lure is mostly the challenge. By 3 or 4 a.m., I would pay to know where the other guys in my class are on the course. But, I don’t know, and every stern light has to be passed. If you have some percentage of that passion and are not willing to accept that you are going fast enough, then the benefit of racing at night is greater than the discomfort of dampness and the fear of thunderstorms. Bruce Gardner, who has sailed his Beneteau 10M L’Outrage in the Solomons Island Invitational and the Governor’s Cup Yacht Race, says, “It’s a different challenge than daytime windward-leeward races. You prepare for wind conditions and currents and work the boat hard all night, staying focused on COG [course over ground] and SOG [speed over ground] in hopes others are not and are tiring.” Concepts that may seem too daunting for some sailors, such as dodging…

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Master's of Cuisine, Wining & Dining

Chef Jeffery Lewis

By Chester Simpson   Chef Jeffery Lewis Chart House Restaurant One Cameron Street Old Town Alexandria 703-684-5080       When did you first become interested in cooking? Why did you decide to pursue a culinary career? I was 14 or so. Got my first job and I was hooked. I really enjoyed it. When I was younger it was about the food, all the interesting people you work with and serve. However, the older I get the more I have realized that all of that is very important, but serving others is why I do it. Nothing is more satisfying then a happy guest. Who have been the biggest inspirations for your career? Julia Childs for giving me and interest as a child on TV; Ferdinand Point he stuck to his principals and demonstrated service to others. There are many and not just food oriented. What dish on the menu are you most curious to see how it’s received by guest? Our Banh Mi. Having pork belly on our menu is something out of what we do, but our guests really seem to love it. It is delicious. What do you do to ensure that the quality of the food going out to customers is of a high standard? Mise en place (pronounced MEEZ ahn plahs, means is to have all your ingredients prepared and ready to go before you start cooking), training, retraining. Systems that remind you to check before, during, and after dining. Keep reminding your employees what the standard is. Passion is great, but remember what drives you, find out what drives others and we can all be driven to ensure the quality and the experience that our guests have. If any chef in the world could prepare you a meal, who would it, be?…

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