The stars are aligned in Washington, DC this week, as Fabio Trabocchi (Fiola), Nobu Yamazaki (Sushi Taro), and Eric Ziebold come together at Kinship, owned by Ziebold and his wife Celia Laurent, for a Michelin All-Star dinner. Below, the chefs dish on breakfast, where to buy produce, and how they spend their precious free time.
On 24 hours in Washington, DC:
EZ: Breakfast at Bread Furst by Mark Furstenberg, the petit plateau for lunch on the patio at Fiola Mare, an afternoon cappuccino at La Colombe in Blagden Alley, a glass of RdV Vineyards “Lost Mountain” on the Mall, and dinner at Sushi Taro.
NY: I would go to Chima Brazilian Steakhouse and order a piece of meat every 20 minutes for five hours and [enjoy a few] bottles of red wine.
On enjoying free time in DC:
FB: With four restaurants and a fifth in progress, we don’t have much free time, but we set aside every Sunday as a family day; we go for walks on Roosevelt Island and try out new restaurants in the city. Some of our favorite dining experiences lately have included Joselito on Capitol Hill and The Dabney in Blagden Alley. We like to go to Union Market and sit at the counter at Rappahannock Oyster Bar, or do a cheese tasting at Righteous Cheese. We like to pop over to the National Gallery of Art, which is right across the street from our restaurant Fiola. We celebrate special occasions at the Inn at Little Washington.
NY: Going around to museums and then taking a rest by the Potomac River.
EZ: Antique shopping and produce markets.
On shopping for ingredients in DC:
FB: You'll find our family at the Dupont Circle FreshFarm Market on Sundays. Our chefs at Fiola, Casa Luca, Sfoglina and Fiola Mare are often at FreshFarm’s other locations during the week, including those in Penn Quarter, Van Ness, City Center and Georgetown.
NY: I love going to the farmers’ market in Dupont Circle on Sunday mornings.
EZ: Huntsman Specialty Game for meats, our own L’Abeille Garden at RdV Vineyards for the freshest herbs, and Great Wall for Asian ingredients.
On where to eat what DC’s known for—Ethiopian food and the half-smoke (a smoked half-pork, half-beef sausage):
FB: I have the inside scoop from our corporate chauffeur, Elias, who is from Ethiopia. The only place he recommends as much as his own house is Dukem Restaurant in the U Street corridor.
NY: [I like] Ben's Chili Bowl for a half-smoke.
EZ: I would rather have a Maryland crabcake at Woodward Table by Jeff Buben.
On dinner with one Washingtonian, living or dead:
FB: It would have to be my favorite Washingtonian, my wife, Maria. Ideally we’d enjoy some sea urchin and rosé in our backyard, but for the ultimate experience we’d have dinner at Eric Ziebold’s Metier or at the Inn at Little Washington.
NY: John F. Kennedy, and we’d go to the [now-closed] Jockey Club.
EZ: I would want to be with Jack Kent Cooke, former owner of the Washington Redskins. I would cook a tailgate party for a Redskins-Cowboys game. That would be amazing!
FB: Double espresso, no milk or sugar. We serve Illy in all of our restaurants and I have a Francis Francis machine at home.
NY: I drink more green tea straight [than coffee].
EZ: La Colombe espresso blend for espressos, cappuccinos, and macchiatos, [but] it depends on the time of the day: Espresso in the morning, cappuccino after lunch, [and] macchiato before service at 5pm.
FB: If I'm really lucky, my wife Maria will make her Spanish tortilla. It's so good we're putting it on the menu at our new Spanish seafood restaurant Del Mar, opening in October. But usually, first thing in the morning before I’ve eaten anything, I wake my body up by drinking a 12 oz. glass of warm water with a spoonful of powdered or fresh ginger and a spoonful of apple cider vinegar.
NY: A bowl of rice, miso soup, some eggs and vegetables, and fruit juice.
EZ: Espresso only.
On where to drink a Gin Rickey, invented in Washington, DC:
EZ: The Columbia Room.