Living in The District

Badass B*tches Only: A #MuseumHack Experience

After three months of silence on the blog, I'm back!

These first 90 days of 2017 have been quite the adventure, and I'll get to that a little later, but first - I'd like to share with you all an amazing museum visit I had last month at the National Gallery of Art. 

Living in The Nation's Capitol, I'm blessed with the opportunity to have unlimited access to an abundance of museums, monuments and overall rich history and culture. In honor of Women's History Month, the good folks at Museum Hack invited me to experience the Badass B*tches Tour. 

Without hesitation, I confirmed my attendance immediately not only because of the genius novelty of the title - but because I had never toured the National Gallery of Art and I wanted to see how this concept could be brought to life. 

Also, when it comes to art history (and many other sectors) I could only imagine that women are (more often than not) the real MVPs. 

I arrived to NGA and was greeted by my friendly guide Hannah, as well as the other amazing women that I'd be sharing the tour with on the cold, sunny afternoon. If you've ever been to the National Gallery of Art or any of the Smithsonian museums, then you know to wear comfortable shoes because you will be walking - A LOT. 

Hannah shared a TON of stats with us about the representation women within the art world, but the most alarming fact that stood out to me was that less than four percent of the exhibits in the National Gallery of Art featured women artists. And because of that, she enthusiastically equipped us with sunglasses that had the words "#artbitch" on the temple to block the "shade" from the lack of women represented throughout the museum. 

 Hey, works for me. 

Hey, works for me. 

As our tour guide, it was Hannah's job to educate about the women whose work did exist in the museum, and empower us to ask for more women artists to be spotlighted at NGA. 

Over the course of the two in a half hour tour, we learned a great deal about some very fearless women who used their platforms, resources and voices to change the world. And although they were often ridiculed for their bold ideas, thoughtful war strategies, and even their beauty, they still persisted. 

I think the most enjoyable part of this entire #MuseumHack experience was reenacting one of the largest paintings in the museum:

I also got to emulate one of my favorite pieces in the Edgar Degan ballerina exhibit:

Overall, I thoroughly enjoyed my Museum Hack experience and thought it was a pretty kick ass way to celebrate Women's History Month and to learn something new. 

To learn more about how you can have your own Museum Hack experience, click here. 

Talk soon!

Chasity 

Wine Around Town: ENO Wine Bar

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Happy Wine Wednesday! A few weeks ago, I took a trip to a wine bar that has quickly become a new favorite.

ENO Wine Bar, located on the corner of 28th Street and Pennsylvania Avenue NW and right next to the Four Seasons Washington in Georgetown, looks cute and quaint upon first glance. But after stepping inside, you're greeted by a comfortable fusion of old world wine country and modern design (they've got a beautiful cellar and super chic tasting room in the basement!) I first learned of ENO via Twitter, when they extended an invitation for me to come visit. We all know that taking a trip to Georgetown can sometimes be a feat, but I was determined to give this wine tasting room a try. 

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And I wasn't disappointed! Their happy hour was fairly reasonable, with glasses of their house white, red and rosé priced at $5 a glass. What makes ENO super special is that they have wine available on tap. Yes, you read that correctly - they've got wine on tap. From my table, I could see about five taps that pour various wines. (Trust me, if I had enough time, trust - I would've tried them all.)  They also have a variety of nibbles that pair nicely with their wines, something I will definitely have to try upon my next visit.

As a first timer to the tasting room, I decided to first try their rosé. It was waaay too hot outside for a heavy red, and I wasn't in the mood for a very sweet white wine, so the rosé seemed to be a happy medium.

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Crisp and light upon first taste, this Rosé Grenache was definitely a great choice - but I eventually moved on to try their red wine on tap. For a while, I was wary of rosé wine because I thought it was too fragrant and sweet. But my love for dry red and white wine has allowed my taste buds to be more adventurous and explore the berry delightful and smooth taste of rosé.

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If ever you're ever visiting Georgetown around happy hour, I highly recommend stopping by ENO wine tasting room for a supreme experience. Be sure to check out their website and follow them on Twitter  and Instagram for updates.

Cheers!

Chasity

Wine Around Town: Wardman Wines

Happy Wine Wednesday, folks! On a recent stroll through the Brookland neighborhood, I decided to visit a gem that's cozily tucked between a Chipotle and the Barnes and Noble bookstore. Wardman Wines, which opened in December 2015 has quickly become a staple in the up-and-coming northeast neighborhood.

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It wasn't my first time visiting Wardman, for I actually made my first visit during their opening week just a short six months ago. It was the dead of winter, so of course I was looking for a hearty red wine that would be great for snuggling up with on the couch. I can't recall what type of wine I purchase, but I know I wasn't disappointed.

As soon as I walked in on this spring day, however, I was immediately greeted by one of Wardman's assistant manager's Eric, who was extremely kind enough to take me on a tour of the store.

When you walk into Wardman's open yet very rustic space, directly to your right you'll find a shelf of wines (both red and white) all under $15. From light and fruity to full bodied and bold, Eric reassured me that all of the wines are unique and very  delicious. "This section is very telling of the tastes of our customers," Eric told me. "So we always make sure to keep these shelves stocked with things we know are going to be well received."

Continuing the tour, Eric described to me how the wine was organized (by region and from least expensive on the bottom to most expensive on the top) but what I found the most intriguing was the entire wall dedicated to cavas and champagne.

(Just recently, I've become super fascinated with bubbly, but more on that in another post.)

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Another feature that struck me was the beautiful half-moon bar situated right in the middle of the store. This is where they host their many tastings which happen almost every day of the week. In the back of the store, there is also a small classroom space where they hold introductory classes to wine tasting.

What makes Wardman such a gem is the fact that their staff's background is so eclectic. With its owner, Hiram, a "recovering attorney", the general manager  Nick, who is a "chef turned wine wizard," Aisha who is a kick-ass spirits mixologist and Eric (my tour guide) a beer aficionado, you can't possibly walk out of the door empty handed. The expertise is amazing, and the passion for great customer service and quality wine shines through.  During this visit, I left with two bottles: one Carmenere-Syrah blend (on the heavier side of the reds) and another Pinor Noir (on the lighter side.)

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"Wardman Wines is a place where they want everyone - no matter what their taste in wine may be - to be able to find  something that they are going to pick up, taste and enjoy," Eric says. "Because honestly? ALL of the wine is good."

To learn more about Wardman Wines, visit their website, follow them on Twitter or stop in for a visit!

Cheers!

Wine Around Town: Grand Cata, Latino Wine Company

Happy National Wine Day, everyone! As you all know, I love wine. Living in the Nation's Capitol over the last five years, I have found a plethora of very cute wine bars and stores that have tickled my fancy, and left me even more curious to satisfy my infatuation with fermented grapes.

With the summer just around the corner, I’ve made it my mission to visit the many amazing wine bars and stores that The District has to offer. I've titled this new excursion "Wine Around Town," and will be sharing a new spot once a month.

Now, on to the wine!

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Earlier last week during a (rare) sunny day, I decided to take a stroll from my office in Thomas Circle to a new wine store that just opened in the Shaw neighborhood. Looking at the website, the wine shop appeared to be very spacious and inviting, with the walls lined with a variety of wines from Latin America. And because I have a love for wine that is specifically from this region AND they were already having a daily tasting from 5-7 p.m., I knew that Grand Cata was exactly what I was looking for.

catar - Spanish verb for "to taste"

Upon entering the store, I was greeted by its owners Pedro Rodriguez and Julio Robledo. I expressed my excitement for tweeting them earlier, and they of course were super pleased to see my stop by so soon.

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The two wine enthusiasts, both Puerto Rican and Chilean respectively, shared with me the inspiration behind the inception of Grand Cata, and their excitement for the grand opening (which took place on May 18th.) As Julio pour me the #DailyCata, Pedro prepared to take me on a tour of the store.

I was completely taken away by the beautiful rustic yet modern feel of Grand Cata. As Pedro walked me around the store, he shared how the wines were categorized by region (old and new world, too) along the two main walls of the store. They also had a very impressive collection of tequilas sherrys, and beers that were arranged wonderfully behind the register. Pedro also mentioned that Grand Cata would soon be starting a wine club where subscribers would receive 2 bottles per month a a few other cool perks. You can learn more about that here.

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And because I never leave a wine store empty handed, I walked out with a bottle of the #DailyCata, which was a 2014 Southern Italian Primitivo by Mottura Le Giuse. I haven't cracked it open yet, but it was quite a steal for $11! Overall, I love the vibe of Grand Cata, and how hospitable both Pedro and Julio were during my visit. I look forward to stopping by next time I'm roaming around in Shaw.

For more information on Grand Cata, be sure to visit their website and follow them on Instagram and Twitter!

 

 

As soon as I walked it, I felt as though I had

MOAM Presents: #SummerSocial

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It's that time again! 

Join me next Thursday, July 16th at BlackFinn AmeriPub for the second installment of #SummerSocial, a networking event that dedicated to connecting and empowering young professionals who are eager to make change in their communities.

This month, I'm excited to have MOAM Jeff Tribble, Executive Director of The MusicanShip, join us to share how he has been able to travel the world and thrive professionally.

One question I want you to think about for next week:

If you could craft your dream career, what would it be? Is there anything holding you back from fully pursing it?

You can RSVP by clicking here, and please spread the word as far and wide as possible!

Any questions or concerns? Tweet me or leave a comment below.

See you there!

-C