kelly magyarics

washington, d.c.-based wine, spirits, travel & lifestyle writer / wine educator


The Source for great food and drinks

Last week I spent an evening at The Source's first floor bar and lounge. This DC-outpost of Wolfgang Puck is connected to the recently launched Newseum. The more formal restaurant is upstairs, but the lounge is also a destination in itself--complete with its own great menu of bar munchies.

The drinks menu is broken down into Classics (Negroni, Sidecar, etc.) as well as specialty (more modern libations). I started with the Cucumber Martini, created with Hendricks gin, muddled cucumber and fresh lime juice, and topped with several thin cucumber slices. Although I always describe cucumber-based drinks as refreshing, and I feel it's becoming a bit cliched, this drink certainly was, with just the right kick of gin.

Next was the classic Aviation, made with Plymouth gin, Maraschino Liqueur and fresh sour mix, garnished with cherries. It was a tad floral, and a tad fruity, and very well made.

The large and well-conceived bar menu has something for everyone. The Kobe beef sliders had great brioche buns, and a sweet-smoky onion marmalade. Spicy tuna tartare was served in a sesame miso cone--definitely finger food. Pork belly dumplings were substantial, yet the dumpling wrappers weren't at all tough as is often the case with dumplings. Four of Puck's signature pizzas appear on the menu: we opted for the pesto marinated shrimp with sun dried tomatoes and rapini. The thin crust was topped with delicious seasoned shrimp.

If you can't get a reservation upstairs, don't worry. The restaurant menu is available in the bar. The bar clientele is very diverse--the night I was there, a group of middle-aged politicos sipped martinis, while a bunch of well-dressed ladies sipped Cosmos (if I had to venture a guess, I would have said they had just seen the Sex and the City movie...)