One of the greatest things about summer in the District is the return of old traditions, especially when there's food involved. Art and Soul (415 New Jersey Ave. NW) is bringing back the restaurant's popular Wednesday patio parties with weekly pig and oyster roasts. Starting this week, executive chef Wes Morton will be cooking up heritage pork in a Caja China roasting box along with Rappahannock Oyster Co. oysters. There will also be a new snack board starter with old favorites like pork rings, pimento cheese and refreshing house-made creamsicles for dessert. The Art and Soul bar will offer a seasonal punch every week that will be available by the pitcher. Wednesday night's Southern-style surf and turf will kick off at 5:30 p.m. Dinner will cost $35 per person.


Introducing Steak & Ice to sister restaurant Taylor Gourmet's clientele will involve some fun this week, with pop-up cheesesteak and Italian water ice specials for one day only -- Wednesday at Dupont Circle (1200 19th St. NW), Thursday at 14th Street (1908 14th St. NW) and Friday at City Vista (485 K St. NW). Beginning at 11 a.m. each day, 50 cheesesteaks will be available for order (first come, first served). Be prepared to order as this opportunity will pass in the blink of an eye. Your options include original rib-eye cheesesteak or chicken breast, "wit" or "wit out" (with onions or without onions), and choice of original whiz, house-made white whiz, provolone or American cheese. Each of the lucky 50 customers will receive a small Italian water ice for free with their cheesesteak purchase. Also, as D.C. heats up this summer, anytime the temperature goes above 90 degrees, Steak & Ice (1320 H St. NE) will cool customers off with a free Italian water ice (with purchase of any cheesesteak or salad, of course).


Helix Lounge (1430 Rhode Island Ave. NW) recently introduced a Local Beer Night every Tuesday night, but it isn't just the beer that will keep us coming back. Helix is bringing back the popular Backyard Bash every Wednesday night through Labor Day, starting at 5 p.m. For just $8 you can enjoy a variety of specialty burgers hot off the grill on the outdoor patio. There will also be plenty of toppings located at the Helix Burger Bar, ranging from handmade guacamole and Maryland crab dip to caramelized onions and house-made bacon jam. And what's a summertime grill without your classic bag of potato chips and macaroni salad? The lounge's regular happy hour specials will also be available with $4 cocktails, $3 Yuengling and Miller Light drafts and $6 glasses of wine.