Thursday, February 23, 2012

Francophiles are out there....

by columnist Wendy Gordon
Photo credit: Daniel Swartz

Thursday evening was among the most busy in the event annals of DC.  But there could be no more alluring potential than the promise of champagne and hors d’oeuvres at one of Adams Morgan’s favorite haunts, Napoleon Bistro and Metropolitan Lounge, to honor its fifth anniversary.  

Napoleon Bistro & Lounge owners Zubair Popal and Omar Popal

Although there was none of the actually promised champagne or hors d’oeuvres apparent except at the cash bar or by the menu, who could not love the mime greeting visitors at the entrance?  

OK..maybe not to those of us who are a little scared of clowns of any sort, but to some of those sturdy and staid Francophiles out there, charming. 
A packed house left little room to move either upstairs or down as the invitees enjoyed the sounds of live music at the main entrance bar and the spinning of the DJs below. 

In the half decade it has been open, Napoleon has offered area dwellers and visitors an array of champagnes and French Bistro fare bringing its neighborhood a little piece of Imperialism.  

From Petit Plats to full on entrees, the standard menu has maintained an air of the Franco-authentic with a touch of American brocade and velvet club- over-the-top.  
Oui oui, Washington, the evening brought out a diverse array of the unusual party goer.  The not quite so standard crowd celebrated—dancing ensuing downstairs; dining and sloshing above; cameras flashing like we were all outside the Ivy in LA.  

Let’s face it, people, in a climate of hospitality venue comings and goings, for any venue to be able to remain a mainstay for five years or more is quite the achievement.   Félicitations and a votre santé, Napoleon, looks like you won’t meet your Waterloo in this town any time soon.