1220 19th Street NW, Washington, DC 20036 | (202) 835-0459

Iconic Women’s Menu at Dinner with Joan Wages

As a woman entrepreneur, I want to give my customers opportunities to learn more about the significance of women in our culture. Joan Wages, the President and CEO of the National Women’s History Museum, has passionately raised awareness about women’s roles in history for almost 20 years. In December 2014, her tireless efforts moved Congress to create a Congressional Commission to study the creation of a National Women’s History Museum which the president approved.  Find out more about the museum  We are very pleased to welcome her this Thursday at 7 pm to talk about how food preparation has influenced women throughout history at our Dinner with Joan Wages: Women’s History with Food. We are also donating $10 of everyone’s $69 entrance fee to help build the museum!

The menu we will serve was custom designed to highlight women who have had a marked influence on American restaurant culture.  In 1938, during the Great Depression, newly widowed Hattie Moseley Austin opened Hattie’s Chicken Shack in Saratoga Springs, NY, investing only $33. She fed people from every class and was known for feeding even those who couldn’t pay. She would say, “Whenever anybody comes to the door, give ’em something to eat. They may be Jesus.” Although Hattie sold the original restaurant in 1993, Hattie’s Chicken Shack is still operational serving her original recipes, notably her famous fried chicken and biscuits. Read more

It was my great honor to meet Ruth Fertel before her passing in 2002. She has been an inspiration to me and countless others. In 1965, as a divorced, single mother of 2, she mortgaged her home to buy the failing Chris’ Steak House in New Orleans. She had no restaurant experience and knew nothing about steak, but she was determined to make it work.  The community supported her making Ruth’s Chris Steak House an unprecedented success. In an effort to achieve a better life for her children and herself, Ruth transformed a difficult situation into an inspirational story: she became the quintessential female, risk-assuming entrepreneur.  Read more about her

Ella Brennan is, without a doubt, the mother of American restaurants. She put New Orleans on the map as the centerpiece of the whole American food movement. In the 1940s she was pushed into the business by her brother when she was very young and inexperienced. When he died suddenly, she was forced to learn all she could as quickly as possible in order to carry on. That was the beginning of the Brennan culinary empire.  Today she is the matriarch of an extended family of restaurateurs that employ nearly 1400 people. At her flagship, Commander’s Palace, she has mentored numerous talents including celebrity chefs Paul Prudhomme and Emeril Lagasse.  Learn more  Her documentary “Ella Brennan: Commanding the Table” was released last month on Netflix.

Want to taste dishes created by these historic women? See the menu, and get your tickets now!

Get Tickets Now for Exclusive Annual Cena Bianca (White Dinner)!

Picture the scene: Everything decked in white from linens to plates under the stars and twinkling lights on a warm Summer evening. Everyone attending is dressed in white also, and there may even be a white dog along for the fun! We are anticipating a great time together at our Annual Cena Bianca or White Dinner coming soon on June 21 at 6:30 pm.

A typical White Dinner would actually be more secretive than ours.  In France, those who receive an invite array themselves in white, bring picnic baskets, chairs and champagne or wine along as they board buses to take them to the unknown location.  When they arrive, they set up the dinner and share their food and drink with those around them. They clean everything up and head home after the festivities.  This unique event began in 1988 when a Frenchman returned from a trip abroad and invited a few friends to the park for dinner.  To find each other, they all had to dress in white.  Each year more people were invited, and now over 10,000 people attend.  The White Dinner or Party now happens around the world in places like Singapore and Melbourne.  Read more

Consider yourself invited to this special event that will usher in the Summer Solstice in a classy, beautiful setting (as you can see in the picture from last year).  Get your tickets now!

Take Mom to Tuscany for Mother’s Day

As Mother’s Day approaches, we all reminisce about our mothers. Every year I find myself fantasizing about what it would be like to still have my mother with me. The poignant, Neapolitan song “Mamma” beautifully sung by Luciano Pavarotti, speaks about how most of us feel: “Mamma, my most beautiful song is you; you are my life.” In honor of the one who gave us life, we want to celebrate her by providing a special way for your family to dine together on Mother’s Day.

In Italy, family meals crafted lovingly by Mamma are times for rich family connections to take place and generations to

come together. At our little trattoria in Cercina, Mother’s Day is one of the busiest days of the year. Whole families make the drive up to our place in the country for a multi-course lunch followed by relaxing strolls through the olive and cypress trees – many times stopping to pick wild asparagus or fill up cisterns with local spring water. Treat your mother to an old world, Tuscan feast, and rediscover the delight of “family-style” dining at our Tuscan Mother’s Day Family-Style Dinner, this Friday-Saturday, May 12-13 from 5:30-10 pm.

Our four-course meal for $64 per person includes antipasto and pasta: Tortelloni, Penne Strascicate, Taglierini al limone -Ricotta & chard stuffed tortelloni, Penne with slow simmered meat ragu, Taglierini with lemon and parmesan cream. She will also indulge in roasted pork loin, stuffed veal shoulder, turkey breast and Tuscan fried “spider web” chicken, finishing in grand style with Florentine “dolci.” See the menu Make your reservations now by calling (202) 835-0459.

Celebrating the Impact of Women at i Ricchi in March

March is Women’s History Month, and we are celebrating amazing women who tirelessly give of themselves for their families, workplaces and communities. Take time right now to consider the women in your life who have had the greatest impact, and plan to take them out to lunch or dinner at i Ricchi as we celebrate the influence of women all month from March 8-31! While here, take a picture of yourself with your special women guests, post it on our Facebook page, show your server and receive a complimentary dessert!

Choose to support all women-owned, small businesses this Wednesday, March 8 for International Women’s Day. On this date, five years ago, I launched i Ricchi’s Women’s Club to encourage women to come together to do business, network and support each other. (Join the club by entering your information on the right!) This Wednesday we will once again offer the option of communal tables to enable women to sit together and more easily dialogue alongside each other.

As a woman restaurant business owner, I try to use my position to bring people together to break bread and to facilitate communication and understanding – especially among women locally and internationally. Read my story Through the influence of my daughter who, while working at the State Department, introduced me to phenomenally strong and accomplished women from the Middle East and the example of Vital Voices, a global organization that identifies and helps women leaders around the world, I have learned that as women we have far more in common than not. It gives me enormous pleasure to host a luncheon this week for the past and present Vital Voices Awardees. It is a unique opportunity to bring these women, who are effecting huge change in their countries, together to share insights and learn from each other.

We want everyone, men and women, to have the opportunity to meet and dine with Melanne Verveer, co-founder with Hillary Clinton, of Vital Voices. Melanne has devoted her career to helping women most recently as Ambassador to the White House on Women’s Global Issues and currently as Executive Director of the Georgetown Institute for Women, Peace and Security. Join us for Dinner with Melanne Verveer as she talks about her latest book: Fast Forward: How Women Can Achieve Power & Purpose, Thursday, March 23 at 7 pm.  Get tickets

Other informative AND fun events this month include Women & Whiskey Tasting, Wednesday, March 15 and our Women & Wine Tasting, Thursday, March 30. See Events page for more details

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