Mother Russia has put out her welcome mat this year, but not everything is centered around Sochi. There was a rally for the Russians right here in DC Tuesday night as the city’s out and about showed up to celebrate Mari Vanna DC‘s One Year Anniversary. The three-level restaurant, which opened in January of last year, serves up authentic, home-style Russian cuisine in a “tea party-meets-grandma’s house ambiance.”
Among those who enjoyed vodka alongside traditional Russian bites like pelmeni, khachapuri, blinis and pirozhkis — and more vodka… and more vodka — were ABC 7’s Scott Thuman, NBC’s Danielle Leigh, WPGC 95.5’s Sunni (and The City), DC Senator Paul Strauss, and the newly appointed DC Office of Motion Picture and TV Development Director Pierre Bagley.
An in-house accordionist kept the atmosphere authentic until resident DJ, DJ Freddy, turned up his tunes.
Mari Vanna representatives tells us that in its first 365 days, the DC location has already spotted such celebs as Paula Abdul, Matt Bomer, Marlon Wayans, Omar Epps, Taraji P. Henson, Evgeni Malkin and Richard Schiff.
And in case you’re worried about any possible slight to Sochi… Mari Vanna plays tribute to the 2014 Winter Olympic games by adding three traditional Sochi dishes to their menu and kicking off the games with a happy hour on 2/7 from 6 – 9pm which offers all sports fans a complimentary vodka shot and free bites from a pirozhki tasting station!
*All images credit Joy Asico