Sunday, August 26, 2012


September: The end of summer is near. Our days become shorter. Many of us get our hopes up for the 'Skins to represent. Pumpkin food and drink pops up all over the place. Kids make new friends in school.

There is a lot going on in the neighborhood this month.  Go out and meet your neighbors. Support your local venues and establishments.  Here is a list with many opportunities to do so:

August 29 – Real Madrid vs FC Barcelona (Spanish Supercup Final)
Showing on the big screen at The Fillmore
Doors 4:30/Game 5:30, Free event

September 1, 15, 29 – Fenton Street Market
Crafts, antiques, arts, jewelry, apparel, international goods, books
10am - 4pm, Fenton St & Ellsworth Dr

September 4-9 – Fall Free Class Week
Willow Street Yoga
Arrive early: free classes fill. Priority given to new students and those bringing friends new to WSYC. Please check their website for schedule of classes for the DTSS location

September 5 - NFL Kickoff - Cowboys (Boooo) at Giants
Firestation-1 (8131 Georgia Avenue) and McGinty's (911 Ellsworth Drive) are great places to watch the games. Redskins play that following Sunday. Full schedule on the NFL website.

September 5 - Planning 101: How (Real-Estate) Development Projects Happen
Join representatives from the Maryland National Park & Planning staff go through the process from start to finish. More info on the Silver Spring Speaks blog.
7pm, Civic Building

September 7 – Raiders of the Lost Ark: The IMAX Experience (Re-release)
Regal Majestic Cinema on Ellsworth
One-week limited showing 9/7 – 9/13. Scoop up your tickets now through Fandango.

September 8 - Silver Spring Jazz Festival
Grammy Award winning Sergio Mendes will be performing
4:30 - 10pm, Veteran's Plaza at the Civic Building
Parking garages are free on weekends and there are several within walking distance. (Don't plan on doing your grocery shopping at Wholefoods this Saturday...)

September 9 – SSTCi Upscale Yardsale
Support the Silver Spring Town Center and donate your goods to their yard sale. Check out the list on their site for items they are seeking.
12pm - 7pm, Veteran's Plaza

September 14 - November 16, 2012 - Free For all Fridays
FREE theatre classes on Friday afternoon from 4:30-5:30pm for Pre-K to 12th grade
Round House Theatre Education Center
925 Wayne Avenue

September 15 - Master Gardeners in Downtown Silver Spring
If you have gardening questions, this would be a good time to stop by and get some advice to get your green thumb ready for fall. Check out their calendar for details.
9am, on Ellsworth - Fresh Farm Farmer's Market

September 20 - October 10 - AFI Latin American Film Festival
As per their website, this festival "showcases the best filmmaking from Latin America and, with the inclusion of films from Spain and Portugal, celebrates Ibero-American cultural connections."

September 21, 27 & 28; October 4 & 5 - Weekly Happy Hour (during the Latin American festival at AFI)
Stop by the AFI Silver Cafe every Thursday and Friday during the festival from 5:30 to 7:00 p.m. for Happy Hour. The Happy Hours will feature complimentary snacks courtesy of Nando's Peri Peri, Latin American drink specials and music. NOTE: Happy Hour specials are valid only for AFI Latin American Film Festival pass holders and ticket holders to films playing on the given dates.

September 22 – PANAFEST,  3rd Annual Pan African Cultural Festival
Showcasing the cultures and heritages of Africa
Veteran's Plaza at the Civic Building

September 22 - Tony Hawk Sound Track Show & Reggae Rock Show (School of Rock) 5pm, Tony Hawk Sound Track
7pm, Reggae Rock Show
Silver Spring Plaza, at the fountain

September 25 - National Museum Science Cafe from the National Museum of Health and Medicine
"Send for the Doctor: Researching the Life and Times of Dr. Edward Stonestreet, 19th Century Physician and Civil War Surgeon"
Free and open to the public. No RSVP required.
6pm - 7pm, Civic Building - Fenton Room

September 27 - October 20, 2012 - Forum Theatre presents Holly Down in Heaven
Round House Theatre Silver Spring
8641 Colesville Road
Tickets going on sale soon

September 29th – 6th Annual South Silver Spring Fest
Street fest celebrating the people, artists, musicians and establishments in the community.
12pm - 6pm, 8040 Kennett Street

Not in DTSS but worth noting:

September 9 - Takoma Park Folk Festival
Music and dance from around the world on 7 stages. Children's activities include: interactive musical games and dancing, and storytelling.
10:30am - 6:30pm, Takoma Park Middle School, 7611 Piney Branch Rd. (one block north of Route 410)

In regards to the Scion opening, as per one of the owners, looks like they don't have a specific launch date at this time.  They are currently awaiting construction and are very much looking forward to joining the neighborhood.

I also noticed that the H&M site hasn't even posted for jobs/hiring. From my retail days, hiring for sales staff is usually something that comes a 3-4 weeks prior to opening. So - not sure if this means we might possibly be looking at middle/end of October.

If you have questions regarding the events posted, please reach out to them directly. If there's something I missed, please shoot me an email or tweet to me at MyLineIsRed

Saturday, August 18, 2012

My Line is Red Wine. It's also Liquor and Beer.

"Homer no function beer well without." -Homer Simpson

Where can I get cold beer? Where can I get a hard to find bottle of vintage Port? Where can I get beer or wine past 9pm? Where else within walking distance other than the government controlled store can I get liquor? I'm in a hurry and I need to find parking right away. I just need one more can of beer for my beer pong game, where can I get just one can? Where can I get a seasonal pumpkin ale?

If any of these aforementioned thoughts have crossed your mind and you reside or work in the DTSS area, then this blog post might be a good one for you to keep handy.

Below I've included a variety of places you can get beer, wine, or liquor in the Downtown Silver Spring area. I've included my own opinion on what makes the place a good option in addition to what the downside might be. All of these locations are within walking distance to the Silver Spring metro stop. May your thirst be forever quenched.

Adega Wine Cellars

8519 Fenton Street
Focus on boutique wines and new wine regions, also features craft beer, restaurant
If you're running in to grab a bottle of wine, you can grab a sandwich or fish tacos while you’re at it. Possibly the only shop in the area with an intentionally curated sweet red wine section. If you’re eating there and you don’t like their wine selection on the menu, you can grab a bottle from the shelf with no corking fee. Employees have strong product knowledge. Locally owned and dedicated to be a part of DTSS. About 25% of the beer is cold. Open until 10pm Monday-Thursday, 11pm on Friday and Saturday, and 9pm on Sunday.
No wine/beer outside while you eat lunch. Although they have cold beer, from what I've seen it's not usually the top of the line craft beer that's stored in the fridge. Parking can be hit or miss.
To note: This wouldn't be a place to pick up a 6 pack of Miller Lite or bottle of Yellowtail.

Addisu Gebeya International Super Market
8107 Fenton Street
Supermarket featuring Ethiopian goods, wine, and beer

Sell both beer and wine to include Ethiopian beers. Open until 10pm every day except Sunday. Large selection of cold beer. Coors, Yuengling, Fat Tire, Corona to name a few. They sell forties if you need 'em.
Crowded parking lot – tough to get a spot, not an overly large selection of wine and beer.
Adissa Gebeya 

The neat and organized wine aisle in Adissa Gebeya

Fenwick Beer and Wine
1327 Fenwick Lane
Craft beer and wine store

Possibly the best selection in DTSS for both beer and wine. Over 600 kinds of beer. Friday tastings from 4:30pm - 7:30pm. Ample free parking. Gluten-free beer, kosher wines, selection from local wineries as well as renowned international wineries. Locally owned. They donate and support local causes.
They close at 9pm Monday - Saturday (Sunday 7pm). So if you run out of something in the middle of a party, you’re SOL. No cold beer. You need deep pockets - six packs are about $10 on average but you can easily spend a lot more than that.

Fenwick Beer & Wine
La Fonda Paisa
7914 Georgia Avenue
Mini Market, wine and beer shop, restaurant, all in one

Cold beer with your staples (domestic, imported). If you need 1 more beer for that last game of beer pong, you can grab it here. Modelo, Corona, Heineken. You can get a legit authentic lunch while you're at it and eat indoors or outside.
Smallest wine selection of all. I saw only 4 different wines available the last couple times I was in (maybe they were waiting for a shipment on both separate occasions?). Ordering food could be a challenge if you don't speak Spanish but this shouldn't apply to just grabbing your beer and paying. 

La Fonda Paisa. Although the sign says "Beer and Wine", it should probably say "Beer and 4 Bottles of Wine" 

Lenox Beer and Wine 
1400 East West Highway
Mini-Market wine and beer shop

Very good selection of beer and wine. Possibly the best selection of cold beer in DTSS. Open until 10pm Monday - Saturday (8pm Sunday). Small, tight quarters.
No parking unless you live there. Wine selection is minimal.

Montgomery County Department of Liquor Control
Aka Liquor-Wine or iquor-Wine when the bulb goes out
8715 Colesville Road

Liquor, wine, beer
Unfortunately, they are the only place you can get liquor in DTSS. Helpful and friendly staff. They will drop some knowledge on you and there's nothing they can't answer. Free parking out back.
Why is the government going all Cuba on us holding a monopoly on the sale of liquor and spirits? Why do they get to be the only authorized seller? Also, they have no cold beer. 

At the mercy of big brother

Silver Spring Deli, Beer, Wine
8746 Georgia Avenue
Deli, beer, wine

You can grab lunch (inside seating or limited outside) while doing a beer or wine run. They sell forties if you need 'em. You can buy just 1 beer if you need it. They have a fridge with domestic cold beer selection. Decent selection of wine considering how small the shop is. Family owned and operated. Serving the community since 1976.
Beer prices are a little high, no parking, they close early.

Since 1976
Veridian Market & Wine
8010 Blair Mill Way
Mini-Mart wine and beer shop

Friendly staff, pet friendly, good wine selection especially for such a small shop, micro-brews and local beers, one stop shop. Open until 11pm Friday and Saturday.
Lack of parking unless you live here.

Not in DTSS but worth a mention and can still be accessed walking from the Silver Spring metro stop:

Morris Miller Wine and Liquor
7804 Alaska Avenue, NW, DC
Liquor, wine, and beer 

They are located just a block over the MD/DC border. Free 30 minute parking, wine tastings on Fridays (4-7) and Saturdays (2 – 6pm). Nice, friendly, and knowledgeable staff. This is the only other place outside of the government controlled spot in DTSS within walking distance from the Silver Spring metro stop that offers beer, wine, and liquor. They have a large fridge with cold beer. ATM inside. They are under new management and they rebuilding and working on improving selection (although I found the Malbecs and Port wine sections to be plentiful).
They are only open Monday - Saturday 9am - 9pm (closed Sunday). They are in the "rebuilding" process so the stock and selection isn't where it needs to be. 
To Note: I saw a note on their website that said "Pickup and Delivery info coming soon." What are the chances they'd ever be able to deliver over state lines? (Isn't that how NASCAR started...)

 A good alternative to the MoCo Liquor Store

Some empty shelves while they rebuild

Snider's Super Foods
1936 Seminary Road
Grocery store to include beer and wine

How revolutionary. Grab your groceries at the same place you get your wine and beer. Cold beer readily available.  Family owned and operated since 1946.
Beer selection is not the best. Monday - Friday they are open until 9pm, Saturday until 7pm, and Sunday until 6pm. Parking can be a cluster on weekends or when the weather channel announces 50% chance of rain.

What did I miss? Is there something you think should be on here? Did I feature your business and you'd like me to add to what I may have mentioned? Email me here.

Sunday, August 5, 2012

Welcome to My Underground Lair

Not too long ago I was standing outside of Pacci's after dinner chatting with a friend and we heard a passerby say in conversation to whoever he was talking to on the phone, "we're headed to QHT." QHT?! Is that what the kids are calling it these days? Did I miss the memo? Isn't just "Quarry" 1 syllable shorter for language efficiency? Isn't that the point of Acronyms, after all?

I do love Quarry House Tavern. Love the vibe, the tater tots, the Captain & Coke, and the people. Last I was there was about a month or so ago and my friend Laura and I posted up at the bar for a few drinks and to catch up on life. Within minutes, we became best friends with those around us. The party really got started when Laura strolled over to the area's best jukebox and picked a Gogol Bordello song. If I'm not mistaken, it was "Suddenly...". Then things got straight up cray. Next thing we know, our arms were twisted to go sample a new Captain Morgan rum over at PT (only if I was cool and hip) and well, the rest of that story is for a different blog...

Arguably the best juke box in the DC Metro area (with Ben's Chili Bowl a close 2nd?)

I was really happy to see Quarry House getting some love from Jarred Walker over at WAMU who wrote up an article regarding DC Dives. He chatted up locals and bar employees and got a few words from Jackie Greenbaum, who also owns Jackie's and Sidebar down the street, in addition to her most recent venture, El Chucho Cocina Superior, a delicious and creative Mexican spot in Columbia Heights.

Stealth entrance to Quarry House

The underground lair

While we're on the same topic of bars (although not a dive bar), just a reminder that McGinty's will be continue to broadcast the Olympics through the closing ceremonies on August 12. It's a spacious place to watch them and if you go on the weekend, you can hit up their Saturday and Sunday brunch from 10am - 4pm. Menu here.