President Barack Obama's bipartisan powwow with Senate Republicans this evening will happen far away from the watchful eyes of diners at Plume, the restaurant at the Jefferson Hotel, where the group is convening.
In fact, the meal won’t even be in the super-private wine room, which, according to Plume’s website, “ensures complete privacy for visiting VIPs” and features a “functional dumbwaiter” that “makes a prime talking point.”
Rather, the dinner will take place in a private room elsewhere in the hotel, said hotel marketing manager Alicia Rodriguez. Many other “high-profile individuals” have held meetings in the same space, she said.
The group will still order from a “reduced version” of Plume's menu, she said, adding that the restaurant’s online menu, which features Foie Gras Terrine, a take on the classic Lobster “Thermidor” and an artisanal cheese selection, is a “good representation” of the options Obama and his guests will choose from.
Rodriguez added that she wasn't certain of the drink menu they'd have, or if there even was one.
Plume Executive Chef Chris Jakubiec, who is preparing the group's dinner tonight, is no stranger to DC diplomacy — he's a member of the State Department's American Chef Corps, part of an initiative to "elevate the role of culinary engagement in America's formal and public diplomacy efforts."
As Obama and his Republican adversaries break bread in private, it'll be dinner as usual in Plume's dining room. Rodriguez says that while people have been calling today for last-minute reservations, they're "pretty much set."