I had a great time at Sunday's Lamb Jam 2018 and found a few of my personal favorites. First off is East Boston Oysters "Caviar on an Oyster." As per its name-sake, the company is based in Boston but they travel around and do "secret" oyster tastings. Sign up on their website for their next pop-up because this was the best oyster I have had in the D.C. area: https://www.eastbostonoysters.com/.
Another favorite from Lamb Jam was very unexpected. Zaytinya presented a phenomenally tasty "Braised Lamb Shoulder, Turkish Egg Noodle, Sundried Tomato and Grated Walnut," and I never would have guessed Zaytinya would do something so fun because I'm not much of a Zaytinya restaurant-goer. As you would imagine with lamb, the meat itself was filling but Zaytinya presented it in such as way as to be light -- and the flavoring contrast with the sundried tomato, grated walnut and the thick Turkish Egg Noodle made it terrific. I ate my sample, walked around to all the stations and then immediately went back!
But, overall, my absolute favorite dish was from Maketto's Chef Erik Bruner-Yang's imagination. This is the "Panes Rellenos El Salvadorian Sandwich" infused with so much flavor, color and texture, I actually stood back in-line after the first bite so that I was eating while queueing!! Nothing says you like a dish more than eating it while waiting in line for another one. If you haven't had a chance to check out Maketto in person be sure to hop-over there.
I ended up leaving before the result were announced, and I am not even sure the results are still out, but in my opinion Zaytinya and Maketto definitely were the big winners! Be sure to check out all the Lamb Jam events here: https://www.americanlambjam.com/.