Test-driving a Great Evening Out

This weekend, we took our own medicine and took Great Evening Out #4 in the Dupont Circle & 14th Street area from Just the Ticket: An Insider’s Guide to Great Evenings Out in Washington, DC to the test.

We had family visiting from out of town and, after a trip to the National Zoo, we had a big sushi lunch at Tono Sushi. We skipped the dinner recommendation, but we went on to see Picasso at the Lapin Agile at Keegan Theatre on Saturday evening, followed by drinks and small plates afterwards at Duke’s Grocery. On Sunday morning, a stop at Le Diplomate for drinks at the bar filled in the last part of this remixed Great Evening Out.

Picasso at the Lapin Agile is a lot of fun. As expected, the actors, especially those in the key roles of Einstein (Bradley Foster Smith, in the picture above, opposite Amanda Forstrom) and Picasso, are gripping. There are clever projections that enliven the set with illustrations for some of the dialog about art and physics. Though we’d seen the play once before, we had forgotten how full-on funny the script is. It also gives you some interesting things to think about: Do individuals, or groups and movements, have more significant long-term impact? What were the major themes of the twentieth century? Is art more moving than science? A lot of laughs with something to talk about after make for a worthwhile play any night.

Duke’s took great care of us. Imaginative cocktails, a sparkly crowd around us, good food for members of our party who had suddenly remembered skipping dinner, and it wasn’t hard to get a table. Several of our group were theatre makers themselves, so the production got chewed over along with the meal.

“Le Dip” was pleasantly abustle with brunch eaters when we wandered in around 11 am on Sunday. Our party of eight held a corner of the bar and sipped hot chocolate, wine, and cocktails while planning the rest of the day in this amazing neighborhood. Seeing, and smelling, other people’s meals as they were delivered by the super-competent wait-staff reassured us that the kitchen remains excellent.

We were glad to discover that even in our mixed-up order, these three events went well together for locals and visitors alike. Anybody else out there mixing these Great Evenings Out in different ways?


Picasso at the Lapin Agile performs Thursdays-Saturdays, Jan 16 – Feb 13. Top ticket price is $40. 1742 Church Street, NW Washington, DC 20036. Box Office: 202-265-3767. Theater web site

Le Diplomate, 1601 14th St NW, Washington, DC 20009 202-332-3333 lediplomatedc.com

Duke’s Grocery, 1513 17th St NW, Washington, DC 20036

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