Dining spots favored by celebs and the political ruling class took the top prizes at last night’s 32nd Annual RAMMY Awards, hosted by the Restaurant Association of Metropolitan Washington.
Fiola, on Pennsylvania Avenue, was named “Formal Fine Dining Restaurant of the Year.”
“We’re very popular for fundraisers in the spring because of the rooftop,” explained Maria Trabocchi, who runs Fiola with her husband, Fabio.
Queen Rania of Jordan, House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi of California and Sen. Mark Warner of Virginia are recent diners, and cash raisers.
Just last week rocker Dave Grohl, of Foo Fighters and Nirvana fame, was in ChurchKey, a 14th street watering hole whose cocktail menu was named “Beer Program of the Year” at the RAMMYs.
Mintwood Place in Adams Morgan, where President Barack Obama held one of his campaign’s “Dinners with Barack” in 2012, was named best “Upscale Casual Brunch” place.
First Lady Michelle Obama and administration senior adviser Valerie Jarrett are said to be fans of the shrimp burgers at Proof, on G Street. Proof’s top cook, Haidor Karoum, was named “Chef of the Year.” Oprah Winfrey has also dined at Proof in the past.
Blue Duck Tavern in the West End was saluted as having the “Service Program of the Year.” If this place rings a bell, it’s because it was the choice for the first couple for their wedding anniversary dinner in 2009.
In 2012, the President took German Chancellor Angela Merkel to the very elegant 1789 restaurant in Georgetown, which was also honored, as was the far more casual Hank’s Oyster Bar, a reliable hangout for politicians at its Capitol Hill location.
House Speaker John Boehner of Ohio is a regular.
When actress turned cancer lobbyist Fran Drescher is in D.C., she always stops by Ripple in Cleveland Park, this year’s winner in the “Wine Program of the Year” category.
Nominations are open to the public every January on the Restaurant Association of Metropolitan Washington website. The finalists are announced in March, and then an anonymous committee decides the winner of the 20 categories.