East Side News

Attendees of Wunder Garten’s Winter Wunderland Kick Off Party enjoyed the warm weather, chatting outside before the rain started.

What a Wunderful World

It was the last day of November, but people were in short sleeves.

NoMa’s biergarten, Wunder Garten, hosted its Winter Wunderland Kick Off Party on Wednesday, Nov. 30, and the temperature was in the 60s. People from all around the DC area assembled to try beers, chat with friends, and enjoy a nice meal. The crowd had the option of getting a taco or a mustard-and-cheese-covered soft pretzel from Tamales Pachuca, a restaurant located just a block away. Wunder Garten provided pretzels, falafel balls, and other snacks for its customers.

According to manager Dave Shamz, the beer selections at Wunder Garten are inspired by the traditional German biergarten. “In Germany, when you go to a biergarten, the beers are from that town. And that’s what we wanted to do here.” While Wunder Garten always features several German beers on its menu, local breweries such as Port City, Atlas Brew Works, and DC Brau also make appearances. “We wanted to make sure we have the good local beers available to keep the traditional biergarten spirit,” Shamz added.

The party celebrated the opening of the heated tent, which covers about a fourth of the lot on which Wunder Garten sits. When temperatures drop, the tent will be heated, but on the 30th its main purpose was to give shelter from the rain. “We were enjoying our beers outside in this great weather when it just got crazy,” said NoMa resident Kyle, drinking a Port City porter and referring to a sudden downpour that drove everyone into the tent around 7 p.m. “But no amount of rain can make this beer taste bad!”

The party featured a DJ as well as a projection screen showing The Peanuts Gang. The customers weren’t all local. “I live in south Arlington,” said Meghan, who was enjoying a German Oktoberfest beer. “I come here all the time; it’s one of my favorite biergartens in the city,” she added.

Wunder Garten now has one of the largest Christmas tree lots in the city and is selling trees to benefit local charities including N Street Village.

Wunder Garten is located at the intersection of First and L streets NE and online at wundergartendc.com.

Triangle Squared

The National Building Museum opened a new exhibit on Nov. 19 chronicling the streets of several DC neighborhoods. Bill Barrett, Chris Earnshaw, and Joseph Mills assembled the exhibit, “District II.” The trio assembled a series of photographs of each area: Bully Luck’s Downtown (Earnshaw), Inner City (Mills), and Mt. Vernon Squared (Barrett).

The Mt. Vernon Squared portion, made up of 14 pictures taken in the 1960s, is part of the DC Historical Society’s Kiplinger Washington Collection. The pictures were taken on the streets that surround and lead up to the square, including Massachusetts Avenue, K Street, New York Avenue, and Seventh and Ninth streets NW. The exhibit looks at social change in the focal areas during the 1960s, 70s, and 80s. A follow-up to Earnshaw’s earlier exhibit at the Building Museum, “District II” will remain open through Feb. 12. Admission is free for museum and Historical Society members and children under two; $10 for adults; and $7 for children under 17, students, and seniors (60 and over).

The National Building Museum is located at 401 F St. NW and online at www.nbm.org.

Neighborhood Notes: SafeTrack

WMATA’s latest Metro SafeTrack project, which most recently shut down the Red Line between the NoMa/Gallaudet University and Fort Totten stations for nearly a month, was completed on Nov. 22. Full service has been restored, and two-way traffic has been resumed on the blocks of N Street, between First and Second streets, and Second Street, between N Street and Florida Avenue. SafeTrack’s repairs are affecting the Virginia portion of the Orange and Silver Lines.

Neighborhood Notes: Christmas Tree Lot

Sixth Engine is hosting its fourth annual Mount Vernon Triangle Tree Lot to raise money for the DC Firefighter Burn Care Foundation. Fraser and Douglas firs are being sold until supplies run out, as well as accessories such as stands and wreaths. The lot is at Sixth Engine, 438 Massachusetts Ave. NW, and is open Monday-Friday, 4-9 p.m., and Saturday and Sunday,10 a.m. to 9 p.m. Tree prices range from $50 to $200 based on size, and Sixth Engine offers delivery for an additional $20.

Neighborhood Notes: MVT Welcomes Santa

Mount Vernon Triangle will host the annual MVT CID Santa Celebration on Saturday, Dec. 10, from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m., at the intersection of Fifth and K streets NW. Santa will meet and greet parents and kids alike. The event will feature hot chocolate provided by Le Pain Quotidien, popcorn from Fifth Street Ace Hardware, and more snacks. Central Union Mission’s Operation Christmas Miracle will be accepting toy donations at the event.

Neighborhood Notes: Holiday Specials

Local restaurants and businesses will be offering deals and events over the coming weeks, including tastings at Eye Street Cellars, an Alta Strada Happy Hour, fitness classes, and holiday meals. For a list of Mount Vernon Triangle businesses offering deals visit www.mvtcid.org/content/2016-retailer-and-restaurant-holiday-specials.

Neighborhood Notes: New Board

The Mt. Vernon Triangle Community Improvement District (CID) held elections for its FY2017 board of directors last month. Most of the board remained from last year, with outgoing Chairman Rev. Dr. Joseph Evans of Mount Carmel Baptist Church, as well as Steve Boyle, May Chan, and Gerry Widdicombe departing. Incoming CID Chairman Beck Shervin, president of The Wilkes Company, praised his predecessor. “Dr. Evans led the MVT CID during periods of monumental change, always with a steady, calm hand. He was instrumental in helping to define what the Mount Vernon Triangle neighborhood has become today – a vibrant, welcoming community with an authentic sense of place.” Evans’ departure will come as he relocates to Atlanta, Ga.

Max Moline is a communications specialist living in DC. He frequents Nationals Park and enjoys writing about food as much as he does eating it. He’s always looking for new places to try. Rooftops and cigar lounges are a plus! Get in touch: molinecommunications@gmail.com; @MaxMoline425.