a teatray in the sky


Posted in 30D, Downtown, Food, Photography, Washington, DC by firthefirst on April 30, 2010

doing it Againn … for the very first time.  before eating here, Tina and I debated what, pray tell, the term “gastropub” really means.  I mean, yeah, I get that its supposed to be pub food that actually makes your stomach murmur and smile, as opposed to standard, mindless, greasy pub fare that’s really barely a rung above venerable ol’ Mickey D’s.  but that’s like Hyundai building a car that doesn’t look like an alien with a birth defect … wait what

so on our way to the Russell Peters show on Tuesday night, we stopped in at AGAINN (despite the fact that its name is in ALL CAPITALS) to decipher it for ourselves.

I didn’t have the 5D Mk II on hand so out it was with the trusty/rusty 30D and EF-S 60mm Macro USM.  I realized I’d still rather lug this puppy around instead of the G9.  DSLRs are just more fun, period.  even when the viewfinder isn’t the size of Kansas like it is on the 5DII.  I will say this, shooting with the 30D + 60mm Macro makes me doubly appreciative of how buttah-smooth the 5DII + 100mm Macro L combination is.  it’s like driving around a Subaru Impreza and then getting behind the wheel of a full WRX rally-spec version.  it will leave your pants around your ankles.

anyway, enough about the photography.  how’s the food?  I thought you’d never ask.

in a word, absolutelyfreakingdelicious.  turns out, the trick to a gastropub isn’t a trick at all.  unless you’re the chef.  then it’s damn tricky.  the food has to be outwardly simple.  but harbor delicate complexity in its flavors.  yet be accessible and direct.  but still remain subtle, deftly cooked, in a way that makes you wonder, what was really in that?

I mean, is this food we’re talking about here, or did this turn into an a-school pin-up session?

for real, yoda couldn’t cook like this.  it wouldn’t make sense to his little green brain.

bottom line is, Tina was goshdarn pleased, and so was I.

two little notes about Againn, one good one bad. 

the bad: the wait staff seem fairly young and inexperienced.  not to the point where they’ll really botch anything, but you feel like they’re on the verge of tripping over someone’s foot and putting a dozen oysters into your lap. 

the good: the wine and beer selection is fantastic.  you’re left with the difficult problem of which drink to drink.

for a relaxing time, make it a suntory time.  not.  make it a wells bombadier dammit.

7 Responses

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  1. womo531 said, on April 30, 2010 at 11:28 pm

    You just made me really hungry….

  2. stephen yang said, on May 1, 2010 at 1:38 am

    dude that first picture is _outstanding_.

    i try to include a little bit of the shoulders with portraits like that one of tina–cutting them off at the head makes them look a little.. eh.. disembodied

    • stephen yang said, on May 1, 2010 at 1:39 am

      er, neck.. cutting off at the neck

      • firthefirst said, on May 1, 2010 at 8:10 am

        good point. I realized how tight the 60mm is when you’re shooting in close quarters; I think even a 50mm would have worked for shooting in a booth as it is here.

        glad you like that first picture. I think its an excellent way to get people’s appetite going

  3. Tina said, on May 2, 2010 at 12:59 am

    ahhhh… Glad I was there for this. Definitely need to go again. Love the composition of the initial photo. How did you catch me in mid-satisfaction-smirk? I love how I wasn’t left in a food coma state afterwards, even with dessert!! Also good to see the car references coming back (even tho I don’t really get them but I catch the gist of it I think) 🙂

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