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by BethesdaNow.com — December 7, 2012 at 3:15 pm 807 0

Bethesda Row and the Chabad of Bethesda are taking their Channukah celebration to another level this year with a “balloon” menorah lighting this Sunday on Bethesda Lane.

Renown balloon artist Katie Balloons (she changed her name) will put on a Channukah-themed balloon show at the event, set for 5:30 p.m. to celebrate the second night of the eight-night Jewish holiday.

The Chabad will provide traditional favorites — potato latkes, chocolate coins and Chanukah music — while Ballons (featured in TLC’s “The Unpoppables” reality show) makes twisted balloon gifts for the kids.

The 5th Annual Chanukah Family Spectacular is free and open to everyone.

For more information, visit the Chabad’s website.

Flickr photo by ehpien

by BethesdaNow.com — December 7, 2012 at 2:10 pm 1,182 0

Editor’s Note: This new weekly sponsored column is written by the staff of Georgetown Square Wine and Beer (10400 Old Georgetown Road).

I’m sure many beer drinkers have seen an array of Christmas and winter seasonal beers on your local store’s shelves already. There are tons of them, more than ever. I can barely keep up. Before this craze of new winter seasonal beers there was a more traditional winter beer style that people enjoyed during the cold months: Stouts.

Stouts are dark beers that use either roasted malts or roasted barley in the brewing process. The most famous and best selling is the dry Irish stout Guiness, which can be consumed at any time of the year thanks in part to its low alcohol content.

Inspired by Guiness and our Irish and English ancestors, American brewers have come up with some impressive delicious stout libations. Complimenting the roasted flavors of the stout style, American brewers have smartly added additional flavors such as more hops, ground coffee, chocolate and sometimes age the brew in bourbon or whiskey barrels. Some of these brews, like Brooklyn Black Ops and Goose Island Bourbon County Stout, are so sought after they’re almost impossible to get.

Coffee Stouts

Out of all the different American stouts, coffee stouts seem to be the most-brewed style in the winter months. With the roasted dark malts and barley adding coffee to the brew makes a perfect compliment to the stout’s dark taste and structure. Great for any after dinner drink or on a warm night coffee stouts have terrific flavor plus give us a little caffeine fix at the same time.

As of now we have an overflow of coffee stouts in stockFlying Dog’s Kujo Imperial Coffee Stout is a local favorite out of Frederick, MD. Lagunitas makes a great Cappuccino stout. Old Dominion makes an espresso stout named Morning Glory. Schlafly out of St. Louis is on fire with their seasonal offerings and continue that trend with their coffee stout. My personal favorite is the New Belgium Imperial Coffee Stout, which adds some chocolate to the brew that makes it delicious.

Chocolate Stouts

Chocolate stouts were originally called chocolate not because of chocolate added, but because of the dark chocolate color and the chocolate malt used. American brewers thought: why not add some chocolate to the brew making it more appealing to the American palate?

One of the few American chocolate stouts that does not add chocolate flavor that we carry is Brooklyn Chocolate Stout.  Brooklyn brewery uses 3 different types of dark malts to derive a nice chocolate flavor in this beer. We also just got in Southern Tier Choklat Stout, which is brewed with chocolate and is a favorite of many.

Oatmeal Stouts

American brewers have gone back to the old English ways of brewing stouts with oatmeal added. Originally oatmeal stouts out of England would use over 30% oats in the brewing process. This would turn the beer almost into porridge.  More recently though in the 20th century brewers would use a less amount of oats into the process making it a rich complex and balanced type of stout. As of now we have Southern Tier Oatmeal Stout, Mendocino Oatmeal Stout and one of the originals (not brewed in the U.S.A) Samuel Smith Oatmeal Stout. 

The views and opinions expressed in the column are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of BethesdaNow.com.

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by BethesdaNow.com — December 7, 2012 at 1:15 pm 970 0

A meeting of the nonprofit Montgomery County Renters Alliance is set for Monday in Bethesda and will reportedly include Maryland Attorney General Doug Gansler (D).

The Alliance, which was created in 2011 to address affordability issues and landlord problems cited in a county report, is inviting renters to attend its meeting Monday from 7 p.m. to 9 p.m. at the Bethesda-Chevy Chase Regional Services Center.

The group will discuss those issues and others with Gansler, who is expected to answer questions according to a report in The Gazette, County Councilmembers, State Sen. Jamie Raskin (D-Takoma Park) and Delegates Sheila Hixson and Tom Hucker, both from Silver Spring.

The event is free and refreshments will be provided, but there is limited space. RSVP here.

Image via Montgomery County Renters Alliance, Inc.

by BethesdaNow.com — December 7, 2012 at 12:25 pm 877 0

Since Montgomery County halted controversial parking meter installation on Chevy Chase Drive and Offut Lane, residents there have been navigating a time-consuming process for getting parking permits.

Debrah Shaver, who is on the board of the Bradley House Condominium Association, says the county requires a petition with signatures from two-thirds of the residents on Chevy Chase Drive and Offut Lane in order to grant residential parking permits. Many in the neighborhood feel they shouldn’t have to collect those signatures at all.

“We kind of feel this was being forced upon us, so why do we have to go get a petition,” Shaver said. “We are fine with the way it is right now. Why should we have to go get it changed?”

The county Department of Transportation says commuters who live outside the neighborhood use the spaces for free parking. That’s why officials included the installation of 28 parking meters on Chevy Chase Drive and 17 on Offut Lane in their fiscal year 2013 budget.

But when that installation began in mid-October, residents cried foul.

“It just doesn’t even make sense,” said Emily Struck, president of the Chevy Chase Condominium Board. “You can put your zoned [residential] parking in fine and raise your money just fine.”

Others disputed the county’s assessment that commuters even park on the street during the day, contending that it is too far outside Bethesda’s downtown area.

After a back-and-forth between the DOT and Bethesda Councilmember Roger Berliner’s office, the installation was cancelled. That began the process of creating a residential permitting system.

Shaver said DOT officials have since conducted another survey in which they found a number of cars parked on the street during the day that were registered to people with addresses far from the neighborhood. But Shaver said she’d like to see a fuller study to prove those people are using the spots to avoid paying public parking fees in downtown Bethesda.

Meanwhile, the Bethesda-Chevy Chase Regional Services Center has told Shaver it is putting together a meeting on the topic.

by BethesdaNow.com — December 7, 2012 at 11:15 am 667 0

Chef Robert Wiedmaier’s Mussel Bar & Grille (7262 Woodmont Ave.) is partnering up with its location in Atlantic City, N.J., to provide holiday toys for some of the hardest hit by Hurricane Sandy in October.

Those who drop off an unwrapped toy in the motorcycle-paper covered box at the restaurant on Wednesday, Dec. 12 can receive a free desert, Mussel Bar’s triple chocolate gateau.

Wiedmaier is teaming up with other D.C. chefs to collect toys on behalf of his employees at his Atlantic City restaurant in the Revel Casino. Atlantic City was one of many New Jersey shore areas that saw the worst of Sandy, which caused upwards of $36 billion of damage to the state.

David Guas’ Bayou Bakery, Coffee Bar & Eatery in Arlington and R.J. Cooper’s Rogue 24 in D.C. are also participating in the toy drive, which coincides with the 12-12-12 Sandy Relief Concert in New York. Wiedmaier will be showing the concert at the bar.

by BethesdaNow.com — December 7, 2012 at 10:37 am 956 0

 

A small fire broke out in a ceiling fan of the Starbucks at 4520 East-West Highway this morning, causing the evacuation of the office building above.

The fire was called in around 10:15 a.m. in the bathroom of the coffee shop. Workers in the office building at the corner of East-West Highway and Waverly Street streamed out into the plaza below.

Montgomery County Fire and Rescue put out the fire shorty after arriving and workers were headed back into the building around 10:30 a.m.

 

by BethesdaNow.com — December 7, 2012 at 9:05 am 677 1 Comment

Lot 31 Blasting Could Last Two Months — In an update to our post yesterday, a representative from developer StonebridgeCarras says blasting at the old Lot 31 site will be confined to between 10 a.m. and 2 p.m. and that neighboring apartment complexes and businesses were advised. [BethesdaNow.com]

Bethesda Billionaire Giving Library of Congress $1.5 Million — Bethesda philanthropist David Rubenstein, co-founder of the private equity firm Carlyle Group, is giving the Library of Congress the donation to fund three awards, including the David M. Rubenstein prize to honor contributions in advancing literacy. [Associated Press via Washington Post]

Celine de Paris Lingerie Shop Moving Into Lionsgate — Celine de Paris lingerie, not to be confused with Chevy Chase’s Sylene lingerie store, is moving into ground floor retail space at the Lionsgate condominiums on Woodmont Avenue. [Robert Dyer @ Bethesda Row]

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