In a night that included open bars, specialty cocktails, numerous stations with decadent meals choices, and awards highlighting native meals and beverage companies, the forty first RAMMYs on July 9 celebrated the progressive work and extraordinary resilience of the DMV’s eating business.
The Restaurant Affiliation of Metropolitan Washington’s (RAMW) annual occasion served as a reminder that whereas companies struggled throughout the peak of the COVID-19 pandemic, many native institutions made changes that allowed them to not solely stay open, however thrive.
Basic Supervisor of Circa at Foggy Backside Brittany Dye, who was named this yr’s Supervisor of the 12 months, emphasised the previous few years have been difficult, however mentioned inner help is what led to the restaurant’s continued success.
“It does take a little bit little bit of thick pores and skin, nevertheless it’s help, on the finish of the day – understanding I can go to my bosses, my employees can come to me — that’s what’s gotten us by means of all the things. Via the pandemic, by means of the masks mandates, charges all the things,” Dye advised The Informer. “It’s been a problem, however being there for one another is what put us on prime.
Although that is the primary RAMMYs beneath his management, Shawn Townsend, who was named president and CEO of RAMW in December 2022, reminded the a number of hundred filling the Walter E. Washington Conference Middle of his long-standing relationship with the meals service business. He spoke about his mother and father and the way his father is a restaurateur and mom labored as a waitress to pay her manner by means of nursing faculty.
“Like many individuals, the business has been an vital a part of my life,” Townsend mentioned. “I’m humbled by the chance to guide this group at such a transformative second.”
RAMW continues its dedication to serving to the business to maintain native institutions. In opening remarks for the awards occasion, it was introduced that greater than 80 new eating places opened within the metro space.
“The restaurant scene has gone into overdrive,” mentioned Jummy Olabanji, NBC Washington anchor and one of many hosts for the night. “As we return to a brand new regular, persons are eating out, they’ve a brand new ardour, and eating places are thriving.”
There have been three classes for particular achievement and 20 awards classes.
Particular honors got within the title of giants within the D.C. space’s meals service business. The John G. Laytham Distinctive Management and Affect Award was given to Michael F. Curtin Jr., chief government officer of DC Central Kitchen, for his vital contribution to the area’s meals service business and for giving again to the neighborhood. The Duke Zeibert Capital Achievement Award was given to Ris Lacoste, chef and proprietor of RIS Restaurant, for her excellence and neighborhood management.
In recognition of being in enterprise for a number of a long time within the metro D.C. space, 9 eating places got the 2023 Honorary Milestone RAMMY Award: Filomena Ristorante (40 years), The Grill From Ipanema (30 years), Outdated Europe (75 years), Cafe Milano (30 years), Jaleo (30 Years), Nationwide Democratic Membership (70 years), Artie’s (45 years), 4 Sisters (30 years), and Annie’s Paramount Steakhouse (75 years).
Restaurateur of the 12 months was awarded to Rose Previte with No White Plates, a meals and beverage collective that features the eating places Compass Rose, Maydan, and Kirby Membership. Kevin Tien, the chief chef at Moon Rabbit, a Vietnamese restaurant that closed in Might, received Chief of the 12 months. Worker of the 12 months was given to Nabil Moussa, from Le Diplomate. Pastry Chef of the 12 months, a brand new class, was awarded to Teresa Velazquez at Baked and Wired, A Baked Joint.
Accepting the award for Favourite Gathering Place, the staff behind Tiki on 18th/ The Sport Sports activities Pub got here to the stage with a full-size Filipino flag. With tears, their spokesperson gave a shoutout to different Filipino meals and beverage companies within the space.
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After successful Supervisor of the 12 months, Dye advised The Informer she was experiencing many nice feelings.
“I simply received Supervisor of the 12 months and it’s fairly overwhelming. It’s an honor and I’m extremely pleased and honored to be right here,” mentioned Dye, who has labored at Circa at Foggy Backside on and off for greater than 5 years.
Dye underscored the significance of teamwork as the important thing to non-public achievement as a supervisor and contributing to the success of the restaurant general.
“Even pre-pandemic, [then] popping out of the shutdowns, navigating this, navigating that– it was nearly being there for the staff,” Dye mentioned. “Everyone was going by means of one thing, everyone was coping with one thing, however all of us caught with one another and we seemed out for one another, and we took care of one another.”
Kamal Azzouz, co-owner of “City Roast,” additionally shared an emotional story when accepting the award for Finest Brunch. He spoke about what it took for he and his brothers, Anthony and Joseph Azzouz, to open their restaurant on June 1, 2020, within the thick of all the things shutting down. The entrepreneur careworn that household, buddies and laborious work allowed them to outlive.
“We knew we’d by no means hand over,” mentioned Kamal Azzouz. “Quick Ahead to a few years later. We have now 100,000-plus followers on social media and over 2,000 reservations lined per week.
For extra info and the complete listing of all RAMMY winners, go to ramw.org.