Mark's Blog

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The Hospitality Business

October 3, 2017

People in the restaurant business here in Washington nearly all of whom read the weekly “chat” of Tom Sietsema, the Post’s restaurant critic, have been abuzz with an exchange from last Wednesday’s “Ask Tom.” A woman (I presume) wrote to Sietsema as follows: Q: Pineapple & Pearls – Cancellation Policy – They REALLY mean it!  Hi […]

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June 4, 2017

My grandmother was in love with the English language. She abhorred pretension and embraced simplicity. She respected English too much to use many modifiers in speech or writing. Good language didn’t need them. I adored my grandmother and adopted her attention to language. These days it is all I can do to contain myself when […]

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Guest Rant

May 19, 2017

My friend David Hagedorn is a food expert.  He talks about it, writes about it, cooks it, even eats it.  He was a pioneer in the city, the chef-owner of Trumpets, a Nineties restaurant and nightclub near Dupont Circle.  Now he writes. He is co-author of several books, one of which is the Rasika cookbook […]

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The Subjectivity of Praise

May 11, 2017

Tom Sietsema’s spring dining guide, an annual restaurant listing of the Washington Post, appeared when some of us at Bread Furst were still in Chicago for the awards of the James Beard Foundation. Those honors are conferred in the first weekend of May each year in an extravaganza, a weekend of parties and restaurant dinners followed […]

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It’s Not Nice to Defy Mother Nature

April 28, 2017

Eating locally and seasonally is important to me.   I believe it is good for the environment but I also think it’s more fun to eat seasonally than to eat un-seasonally. I know that lots of people like to eat corn on the cob in December. Why not? If they like it there it is – […]

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Dining at the Heights

April 18, 2017

I have been thinking about the jambon beurre at Mirabelle, the wonderful looking new restaurant near Lafayette Square where the Christian Science church used to be. Frank Ruta is a friend whose meticulous food I love. You may recall he cooked dinners at Bread Furst after his restaurant Palena closed and before he went to […]

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Cookie Roberts

March 19, 2017

             I don’t write these little essays as advertisements for Bread Furst. I rarely beat the drums in this blog for our breads or tell you about new foods on the shelves. But this time I can’t resist telling about our new Cookie Roberts. When I was young and in college […]

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Aliens in the Kitchen

March 10, 2017

Remember, remember always that all of us, and you and I especially, are descended from immigrants and revolutionists.                                          Franklin Roosevelt, 1938   We used to call ourselves a nation of immigrants.   We still are that […]

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Cleveland Park Woes

November 10, 2016

I have been reading on the Cleveland Park neighborhood listserv an interesting discussion. It began this time with the news that 7-Eleven has rented the space that used to be Dino’s Restaurant, Connecticut Avenue and Ordway Street, and will now open a store one block from the store it closed several years ago. I say […]

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Staff Sadness

September 29, 2016

We talk a lot at Bread Furst about ways of increasing the wages we pay to staff. It’s complicated. Bread Furst’s starting wage for sales help is $12 an hour; that is 50 cents higher than the minimum wage in Washington but it’s hardly worth boasting about. We’ll increase our minimum wage again at the […]

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