While the national news media will still try to tell you that the 2012 presidential election is all about blue states and red states, insiders in the District will tell you that it’s really all about blue plates and red plates.

This year, the hot trend at a number of D.C.-area restaurants and bars is offering consumers a choice between blue and red dishes or drinks, and allowing the official numbers of which outsells the other to tell the tale of how the town really feels about the election and the candidates.

Here’s a collection of offerings that you’ll find in and around Washington which will allow you to voice your political views as you chow down. The only question is, do you order the side that represents your vote, or do you order the one that’s simply the most delicious?

* The Park Hyatt Washington in Georgetown is serving up a collection of all-American presidential cheeses at its lounge. Created by onsite cheese specialist Lisa Hviding, two teams of cheese are going head to head to capture the favor of diners. On the blue side, you’ll find Ewe’s Blue and Barick Obama; on the red side, patrons sample Red Hawk and Lincoln Log. The side with the most votes get a 35-pound presidential cheese wheel named in its honor on election day. The blue party has a slight current edge.

* California Tortilla is running a presidential burrito contest, offering diners the choice between Obama’s Chicken Teriyaki Luau Bowl and Romney’s Mexican Mitt-Loaf Bowl. The promotion is also being mentioned on an episode of “How the States Got Their Shapes” on the H2 channel.

* Legal Sea Foods is dangling its “fishing poll” with a blue plate special featuring macadamia and coconut crusted mahi-mahi served with roasted Brussels sprouts in butter sauce going up against the red plate of pan seared cod with steamed spaghetti squash in bourbon lobster cream sauce.

* Lincoln Restaurant is taking a cocktail voter poll, pitting the Elephant, a rhubarb-infused white whiskey, strawberry liqueur and lemon beverage against the Donkey, a blueberry-infused gin, Earl Grey and mint syrup libation. An updated tally of orders is kept on the restaurant’s blackboard.

* 1331 Bar & Lounge at the JW Marriott on Pennsylvania Avenue has always been known for its politically themed cocktails, and is upping the ante for the upcoming election. Now it’s serving left wings, Hawaiian-glazed chicken wings with pineapple spears, and right wings, honey-glazed wings with Boston baked beans. A foursome of specialty cocktails has also been prepared for the candidates, and will be served at discount prices during the televised debates.

* BLT Steak is offering a presidential burger ballot at lunch. Obama, Biden, Romney and Ryan all have their own burger specialties up for grabs. For example, the Obama is a Kobe beef burger with roasted pineapple and speck. The winning ticket will be tallied up and announced in October. Other burger joints offering political beef battles includes Good Stuff Eatery and BGR.

This article was first published by Jake Emen on Yahoo News, September 30, 2012.