food platter

My Top 3 Places to Eat in Washington DC

While Washington DC is perhaps best known for its monuments and museums, you don’t want to miss out on some fabulous restaurants when in this city! Before you plan your next trip to DC, or if you live in the city and want to try a new restaurant this weekend, check out my top three places to eat in Washington DC.

1. Founding Farmers Restaurant

classy founding farmers restaurant in dc

What I love about the Founding Farmers Restaurant is that they are a co-op, meaning that the farmers who supply their food supplies are majority owners of the restaurant itself! The food is always fresh while the atmosphere is simple and rustic yet cozy and enjoyable. For a home cooked meal away from home, I highly recommend the Founding Farmers Restaurant.

2. The Iron Gate Restaurant

local dc brunch spot

The Iron Gate Restaurant specializes in tasty Mediterranean cuisine, with fresh dishes and tasting menus for those who want to sample a bit of everything! Their offerings are simple and limited but the courtyard seating allows you some fresh air and a casual environment that creates a relaxing atmosphere you’re sure to love.

3. The Old Ebbitt Grill

The Old Ebbitt Grill is as historic and classic as the city itself! Everything on the menu is prepared fresh, from the smoked salmon and clams casino to the thick corned beef sandwiches. The restaurant offers a bit of everything, from meatloaf to hanger steak and a nice selection of pasta. When you want something hearty and all-American, the Old Ebbitt Grill is the place to go!

old ebbitt grill in downtown dc

I hope these suggestions give you an idea of where to enjoy your next lunch or dinner when in my beloved Washington DC. Each restaurant has its own personality and atmosphere but they’re all a great spot for friends and family or for enjoying a night out on your own!

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music notes

A Special Thank-You to Bethesda Piano Tuning by PianoCraft

I want to take a step back from my usual blog writing to offer a special thank-you to the crew at Bethesda Piano Tuning by PianoCraft. Their team has been an absolute lifesaver when it comes to my family’s beloved baby grand, which I can finally enjoying playing again! Let me share my story with you.

Our Beloved Baby Grand

I started taking piano lessons as a child but today I play only for a bit of relaxation. However, my beloved Steinway has been in the family for decades! It was bought by my grandparents and given to my mother some years back, and she eventually gifted it to me.

For the first few years of piano ownership, I foolishly hired cheap piano tuning companies, thinking that all piano tuners were alike! After each visit, however, my piano still sounded a bit tinny and high-pitched. I kept scheduling piano tunings, assuming the instrument was simply wearing down due to age. No matter the company I called, my Steinway always sounded a bit “off,” and I was getting very frustrated!

Enter the Experts at Bethesda Piano Tuning by PianoCraft

One day at the office, I told my coworker the problems I was having with my piano and poor-quality tunings. She immediately recommended the team at Bethesda Piano Tuning by PianoCraft. I was hesitant at first, thinking that maybe my piano was just beyond proper tuning. She then told me that she went through the same thing I did when trying to find an expert piano tuning company!

I gave Bethesda Piano Tuning by PianoCraft a call, although I admit I was still skeptical. My skepticism didn’t go away when the tuner they sent seemed to be taking far too long under the piano’s lid! I then realized that he was listening intently to every note rather than rushing through the job.

Once he was finished, I tried a few keys and heard an instant improvement over anything any other tuner had accomplished. Despite that, I still wasn’t hearing the sound I expected, and he noticed my disappointed expression. When I told him what I wanted from the piano, he said that it needed voicing as well as tuning!

Being a mere hobbyist, I had no idea what he meant by voicing. He then explained that piano voicing is the process of adjusting the piano’s wires and other moving parts to slightly alter the sound produced. Voicing might create a fuller, deeper tone or it might allow for better quality from the piano’s higher notes.

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piano music notes

How to Choose a Quality Piano Tuner in McLean VA

Not every piano tuner in McLean has the skills and expertise needed to ensure your beloved instrument offers crisp, rich sound with every note! An unskilled and inexperienced tuner might tighten a few strings under a piano lid and improve its sound somewhat, but will typically fail to ensure that every note is true and clear.

After hiring some not-so-skilled tuners and then finally finding a piano expert whom I can trust, I’d like to share with you some of my insider tips for finding the best piano tuning company in your neighborhood. Remember these tips when your instrument starts to get out of tune and it’s time to call in a professional for a proper piano tuning in McLean Virginia!

A Quality Piano Tuner in McLean VA Does Nothing Else!

child playing piano in McLean

A quality piano tuner in McLean VA should specialize in piano tuning, piano repairs and restoration, and other services for a piano, but nothing else! Be careful of hiring a piano tuner who also does general repairs on other musical instruments, who manages a music store that sells pianos, and so on.

The skill needed to tune a piano properly takes years to learn and master, and those skills are not something a person can learn in their spare time. Spending all day behind the counter of a music store is also no substitute for proper training on piano tuning and repairs!

Tuning a piano is also much more complicated than tuning a guitar or violin, as pianos have hundreds of parts under their lids. A skilled piano tuning expert will need to know how its hammers, pins, soundboard, dampers, and all other parts affect a piano’s sound! High-quality piano tuning is a much more specialized skill than tuning any other instrument, even stringed instruments, so choose a piano tuner in McLean VA who works on pianos alone.

Be Wary of Low Prices and Promises of Fast Service

I learned the hard way that an amateur musician with a store-bought tuner and a few hand tools might charge very little for piano tuning, but their work is typically negligible or downright shoddy. Your piano still might not sound its best and you’ll probably need to schedule another tuning sooner than if you invested in the services of a skilled piano tuning professional.

Remember that a highly skilled and well-trained piano tuner, especially in an affluent area like McLean, knows their worth and isn’t likely to lowball their pricing just to get more business. If you’re quoted an extremely low price for piano tuning, beware!

It’s also good to be wary of a piano tuner promising to finish quickly. While pianos in good condition might require no more than an hour for tuning, an experienced tuner knows that he or she can’t determine the time needed to complete a job until they lift the lid and start working! A trustworthy piano tuning expert will also take their time to evaluate your piano thoroughly and ensure the job is done properly, no matter how painstaking the process.

A Quality Piano Tuner in McLean Has Years of Experience

piano tuner in mclean va

A skilled piano tuner learns their craft over time, listening to the sound produced by various instruments while perfecting their technique for adjusting wires and other parts. As each instrument falls out of tune for various reasons, it takes years to learn how to tune a piano properly and ensure it produces nothing but crisp, clear, rich notes.

When shopping for a piano tuner near you, narrow down your choices to those with years if not even decades of proven experience. The longer they’ve been in the business, the better! Their experience will help ensure your piano produces the best sound possible after a tuning.

I hope these tips have helped and that you are able to find a skilled and qualified piano tuner in McLean for all the piano repair work you need to have done!

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Welcome Friends of the Washington Flyer!

Thank you so much for visiting my humble little blog. I look forward to sharing valuable content and spreading the good word in Washington and beyond! I always had a knack for picking out the best businesses and things to do wherever I was, so please feel free to take my advice on any of my best recommendations coming soon! If you would like to learn more about my journey please visit my about page.

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