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Restaurant Eve, Old Town Alexandria - Chef Cathal Armstrong and GM Todd Thrasher

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#751 ladi kai lemoni

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Posted 25 November 2012 - 12:46 PM

As it should be, one will find the ladies that dine with us take the time look spectacular and dress in fine garments for dinner. (emphasis added)


That particular bit of diction makes me chuckle (as does much of the website); it reminds me of a description of some Silk Road-era market: "Merchants selling fine garments of the supple silk, and elsewhere, traders hawking the most mysterious of spices! Oh, and down the road, a young man was dying of cholera. And around the corner, a chemist selling antiscorbutics for sailors passing through!"

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#752 DonRocks

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Posted 25 November 2012 - 12:54 PM

And around the corner, a chemist selling antiscorbutics for sailors passing through!"


I'm not cheating! Is this scurvy? And if so, isn't it just a vitamin C deficiency?

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#753 DonRocks

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Posted 25 November 2012 - 12:58 PM

I'm not cheating! Is this scurvy? And if so, isn't it just a vitamin C deficiency?


Okay, now I am cheating - I just verified on Wikipedia.

"How did I know?" you ask.

Around ten years ago, a publication (and it may have been The Washington Post) published a piece called something like "Man Cannot Live By Bread Alone (Or Can He?)" and it was about what would happen if someone only ate bread (and water, of course). According to the article, the dieter would eventually contract scurvy (from having no Vitamin C) and die from it, so the conclusion was that, no, man cannot live by bread alone.

Paula Broadwell = Mistress-slav Rostropovich thought I'd get that in

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#754 ladi kai lemoni

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Posted 25 November 2012 - 11:25 PM

I'm not cheating! Is this scurvy? And if so, isn't it just a vitamin C deficiency?


I hope the Armstrongs provide some lemons or oranges for their richly attired ladies and gents. :-)

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#755 B.A.R.

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Posted 09 January 2013 - 01:18 PM

According to Tom S. , the restaurant will be closed on Mondays to afford the staff more time off. Considering they are already closed on Sundays, that's pretty amazing. Kudos to them, as two days off straight is the holy grail of the restaurant biz, and now all of the staff will get it.


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#756 darkstar965

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Posted 26 March 2013 - 05:08 PM

Perfect reason to bump this thread given some of the posts from last year just above and the fact that there hasn't been a post about any meal at Eve (excepting lunch at the bar) in more than two years. Without addressing the policy change discussed last year, will say it seems clear Restaurant Eve hasn't gotten the attention of some newer spots in the past two years.  I've always thought Cathal Armstrong was one of our area's greatest talents.  And Eve was one of the few restaurants in the area with a serious coffee program long before others started thinking along similar lines (they serve Ceremony).

 

This is a great promotion...if you were lucky enough to be born under the right star (as approximately 57 of us here were according to this).  And Animal Welfare League of Alexandria is a great organization. Now where did I put that fake-ID maker since I assume everyone gets carded for this? :)

 

Restaurant Eve is turning nine and would like to share her birthday gift! 

 

Eve Armstrong, the namesake of Restaurant Eve, had an idea that spurred Restaurant Eve's April Birthday Bash: Anyone celebrating a birthday in April will receive the gift of a five-course dinner in the Chef's Tasting Room. 

 

Both Restaurant Eve and Eve herself celebrate spring birthdays. Eve opted that, in lieu of birthday presents, she would ask her friends and family
to give to the Animal Welfare of Alexandria. (The young Armstrong hopes to be a veterinarian.)

 

Touched by their daughter's philanthropy, the Armstrongs and the team behind Restaurant Eve celebrated her request and are taking it one step further to benefit not only the animals but the people of Alexandria for the second year in a row. 
 
Here's how it works:
  • The Gift is not valid Friday or Saturday. 
     
  • Call 703-706-0450 for reservations and inform them of your “Birthday Bash.”
     
  • Reservations must be called in - Reservations made online can not be honored.
     
  • ONE Gift per table.
     
  • Gratuity on our gift still needs to be shared.
     
  • ABC law does not permit us to include alcohol.
     
  • Valid in the Chef's Tasting Room only as Eve likes her birthday to be swanky! 
  • Please bring a gift or check for animals of the Animal Welfare League of Alexandria. 

Click here for the Animal Welfare League of Alexandria's Wish List



#757 DonRocks

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Posted 26 March 2013 - 05:21 PM

This is a great promotion...if you were lucky enough to be born under the right star (as approximately 57 of us here were according to this).  And Animal Welfare League of Alexandria is a great organization. Now where did I put that fake-ID maker since I assume everyone gets carded for this? :)

 

There are other restrictions too, so be careful to read them all:

 

Here's how it works:
  • The Gift is not valid Friday or Saturday. 
  • Call 703-706-0450 for reservations and inform them of your „Birthday Bash.‰
  • Reservations must be called in - Reservations made online can not be honored.
  • ONE Gift per table.
  • Gratuity on our gift still needs to be shared.
  • ABC law does not permit us to include alcohol.
  • Valid in the Chef's Tasting Room only as Eve likes her birthday to be swanky! 

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#758 darkstar965

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Posted 26 March 2013 - 05:26 PM

Was wondering why Don reposted the requirements.  Really strange invision thing?  When I pasted in the promo, it had all the restrictions and requirements.  Even now in edit mode, I can see that they're all there. But when out of edit mode, the quote only has two that appear.  Haven't a clue why that would happen?



#759 Pat

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Posted 27 March 2013 - 08:29 AM

Was wondering why Don reposted the requirements.  Really strange invision thing?  When I pasted in the promo, it had all the restrictions and requirements.  Even now in edit mode, I can see that they're all there. But when out of edit mode, the quote only has two that appear.  Haven't a clue why that would happen?

 

It may have something to do with the formatting of the bullet points.  Try editing the bullets out and see if that fixes it.  (I don't know why the bullet points might remain for Don and not for you, but that could be a browser issue.  It could also be the hyperlink in the last bullet point did something.  Don doesn't have that one in his post.)



#760 darkstar965

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Posted 25 September 2013 - 07:29 AM

I was just perusing the website and sample menus in anticipation of a belated birthday dinner next Saturday night in the Bistro, when I came across this statement:

** Friday and Saturday evenings - Bistro: Please expect a prix-fixe three course menu with choices for $65 per person exclusively.

Does this mean that there is no a la carte menu option in the Bistro on Saturday nights? i'm trying to decide how I feel about that. Although I know the food is splendid, I kind of like having the option to share an extra appetizer on the front end, in lieu of a sweet dessert at the end (I'm not a real sweets fiend).

Edited to add: I just looked at the verbiage about attire, and now I don't think I have anything suitable to wear to the Bistro. I don't dress up as a rule, but I've found that my style of dress (clean chino slacks and a blouse) has been fine for lots of nice restaurants downtown. It doesn't sound as if that will fit the bill in the Bistro, however.

I've been looking forward to this dinner for a long time, and now I'm having cold feet.

 

According to Tom S. , the restaurant will be closed on Mondays to afford the staff more time off. Considering they are already closed on Sundays, that's pretty amazing. Kudos to them, as two days off straight is the holy grail of the restaurant biz, and now all of the staff will get it.

 

And now, this latest bit from Tom breaks this news which might seem to build on the above. Summarizing:

 

- Restaurant Eve will be just one restaurant come Oct 21st to rationalize an unwieldy menu

- Chef Armstrong will be back in the kitchen six nights each week when Chef de Cuisine Jeremy Hoffman leaves "this winter"

- The restaurant "quietly resurrected" Monday service last week

 

RE's website and facebook page do not reflect these changes so no additional information seems to yet be public.

 

One BIG question that popped straightaway into my mind and was unanswered in Tom's piece (and also asked by a commenter in the questions there):  Does this mean the famed Lickety Split lunch will be no more?!?!

 

I won't speculate on any of this since I know nothing more than what Tom wrote but I'd imagine I'm not alone in being interested in any story behind this seemingly ongoing story. Restaurants and other purveyors face all kinds of challenges.  Usually best just to communicate clearly and comprehensively. That comment isn't just directed at RE.  It's also for journalists (TS in this case).  Why not get a fuller story to better inform and reconcile previous change explanations? Or, if not feasible, let readers know that the attempt was made and, etc., etc.?

 

Restaurant Eve was a vanguard of truly Great Food Made Well here in DC long before so many others appeared on the scene.  And, it still is a leader in so many movements (i.e., fine dining, local sourcing, sustainability, exceptional technique and attention to detail).  I hope these latest changes--especially the menu and restaurant consolidation/simplification--will enhance the experience. Will they? And, if so, why and how?


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#761 B.A.R.

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Posted 25 September 2013 - 09:05 AM


Restaurant Eve was a vanguard of truly Good Food Made Well here in DC long before so many others appeared on the scene.  And, it still is a leader in so many movements (i.e., fine dining, local sourcing, sustainability, exceptional technique and attention to detail).  I hope these latest changes will enhance the experience. Will they? And, if so, why and how?

 

Cathal in the kitchen a definite positive. Having a more traditional menu arrangement, with an optional tasting menu seems also a positive. In short, IMHO, all of their strengths are enhanced with this.


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#762 jandres374

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Posted 25 September 2013 - 09:34 AM

Looks like the Lickety Split is staying per Eater.

 

"The Lickity Split stays or there would be a riot!" joked co-owner Meshelle Armstrong to Eater, calling the two-course, $14.98 deal "the best introduction to Eve for those who have never been." 


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#763 weezy

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Posted 04 December 2013 - 05:07 PM

Hit the Lickety Split lunch today.  As ever, wonderful service.  I got the tempura monkfish sandwich, which was a fine sandwich, but the soup -- a cabbage/coconut milk/lemongrass veloute -- was stellar!  I wish I had waited to order my second course after the first bowl of soup because I would have ordered another as my second.


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#764 lotus125

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Posted 14 April 2014 - 09:35 PM

Has anyone been to Restaurant Eve since it revamped?  I have a friend coming to town, who I've taken to Komi before, and I'm trying to think up another DC gem to try.  Is Eve going strong again?



#765 DonRocks

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Posted 16 April 2014 - 06:13 AM

Has anyone been to Restaurant Eve since it revamped?  I have a friend coming to town, who I've taken to Komi before, and I'm trying to think up another DC gem to try.  Is Eve going strong again?

 

Eve is still going strong (which is a stronger statement than saying it's "going strong again.") While I went to a great deal of trouble before to split the posts into "Bistro" and "Tasting Room," this is no longer accurate, since you can get both the a la carte and tasting menus in both places - as well as at the bar. So in essence, it's one menu now (with a separate bar menu, of course).

 

As much as it kills me to undo the work I did, the proper thing is now to merge the two threads into one. I'm *glad* I took the "bold step" of upgrading Eve Bistro to Bold a few years back because that meant the entire restaurant was in Bold; not just the Tasting Room.

 

Let me grieve my loss of work for a short while - then, I will merge the threads if no one has any objection. It's either "merge" them into one "Restaurant Eve" thread, or consider both Bistro and The Tasting Room "Closed" while starting a brand new, third thread - I like the former idea much better because it reflects the truth: two concepts have been rolled into one, and spread throughout the entire restaurant.


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#766 jca76

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Posted 17 April 2014 - 12:34 PM

Eve is still going strong (which is a stronger statement than saying it's "going strong again.") 

 

How do you (or anyone else) think it compares to Komi?  Do you prefer one to the other?  I love Komi -- we go a few times a year -- but I never ate in Eve's Tasting Room (and wasn't blown away by the one meal I had in the Bistro years ago).  



#767 JimCo

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Posted 17 April 2014 - 05:52 PM

The Tasting Room at Eve is gone. I ate in the Tasting Room a couple of times and have eaten at Komi a few times. Komi was the clear winner in the challenge of the tasting menus. Eve was very good but not spectacular. Komi always takes things to another level. That said, the bistro menu at Restaurant Eve (which I've eaten at in the past few months) is fantastic. If you want a 'holy crap!" eight course tasting menu, go to Komi. If you want to order a phenomenal appetizer, entree and dessert, you can't go wrong at Eve.

#768 DonRocks

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Posted 18 April 2014 - 02:11 PM

The Tasting Room at Eve is gone. I ate in the Tasting Room a couple of times and have eaten at Komi a few times. Komi was the clear winner in the challenge of the tasting menus. Eve was very good but not spectacular. Komi always takes things to another level. That said, the bistro menu at Restaurant Eve (which I've eaten at in the past few months) is fantastic. If you want a 'holy crap!" eight course tasting menu, go to Komi. If you want to order a phenomenal appetizer, entree and dessert, you can't go wrong at Eve.

 

Obviously, I love both restaurants since I have them in Bold, but their cuisines are so completely different that I didn't have a good answer for jca76's question (and, given that this was a very thoughtful first post, I really wanted to answer). jca76, allow me to take this moment to say "Welcome!" and to thank you for joining the community and posting.

 

The nuance in Komi's cuisine speaks for itself, but one less obvious thing I want to point out is the counterintuitive ordering strategy to employ at Restaurant Eve: Cathal Armstrong's kitchen is at it's strongest when the diner "orders heavy." Game meats, foie gras, house made terrines - all these things at Eve are magical and, surprisingly, elegant. Many people want to "lighten" Cathal's cooking by ordering light: fish, vegetables, preparations that "read" delicate on the menu, but the best way to lighten his cooking is to order the heaviest-sounding things there are. In my opinion, this is his single biggest strength as a chef: the ability to make normally heavy dishes light and elegant.

 

And, once and for all: is "house made" one word or two? What about "homemade?" Is it ever proper to use "homemade" in a restaurant setting as opposed to "house made?" I have about a dozen writing-oriented "things" that torment me, and this is one of them.


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#769 DCA

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Posted 22 September 2014 - 08:09 AM

Restaurant Eve's customer service is admirable. Earlier this month, my husband and daughter brought me to Eve for my birthday, which is always a delight. We've gone only for special occasions and know that we'll have a wonderful dinner each time. When we got home this time, I was disappointed when I realized I hadn’t received a bag of scone mix, as I had in the past. I first checked this forum to find out if the practice continued and found out it did. The next day, I called the restaurant to verify if they still had scone mix, and the woman on the telephone couldn't have been nicer. She apologized, took my address, and mailed me a bag. I was willing to drop by sometime and was surprised that she'd send it. (This also made up for an unusual mixup with our cocktails at dinner. They had not arrived by the time our first course was served, and when I asked our waiter if they were coming, he was mortified. He found out that they had been delivered to another table, and the people there had not said anything. By that time I wanted wine instead of a cocktail. Oh well, I’ll have to try the gingery cocktail another time.)



#770 darkstar965

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Posted 01 February 2015 - 01:04 AM

The alleged Filipino menu drew us in.

Booked a week or two ago hoping to do this as a pre-theater dinner so in two hours or a bit longer. And, yes, I know that'll seem positively blasphemous to some. For those compadres, I have no defense. So putting that aside...

What a great and interesting thing for RE to do. The Washingtonian has it a bit wrong. It's not all Filipino. Rather, there are Filipino dishes along with others inspired by other Asian cuisines such as two kinds of housemade (house made? homemade? Aaaarrrggghh!) kimchi (Korea) and at least one Thai dish.

The menu isn't written down so I'll do my best here by memory. Three courses (sort of) served "family style." Sort of because only the main course has shared dishes. Anyway, we had:

Amuse

Or, "gifts from the kitchen," as one of our three or so excellent servers put it.

- a long dish with wonderful rabbit liver pate, a quail egg on some kind of housemade (dammit!) wafer...Because Everything is homemade here of course. Oh, and some pretty decadent mini gougeres. The latter worked out quite well for me as my +1 avoids gluten.

- a veloute made from celeriac with toasted walnuts and something else I don't recall. Really good but Cathal Armstrong is kind of famous for veloutes, which I don't think are Filipino but no matter.

The best Gluten-Free Bread in town which, along with the always-just-baked-in-small-batches regular bread and that KerryGold butter, just isn't fair in competition with 99% of other restaurant bread services.

First Course

This was served on an approximately 5x7, roof-worthy, slate.

- Some very serious "Filipino BBQ" pork belly. Ah, uber-talented chef understatement. This was great.
- An impossibly cute fried quail egg atop a nickle-sized two-inch high cylinder of rice that seemed as though each grain had been carefully placed with tweezers.
- a really hot (home made Sriracha)--and really good--diced tuna tartare completed the culinary hat trick

Main Course

Sides included four house-made dipping sauces we never tried, an excellent refried lentil dish redolent of cumin, two kinds of home-made kimchi (radish and cabbage) and that lovely (maybe jasmine?) rice. Four shared dishes on a round platter surrounding the rice.

- a really lovely panang curry with exceptionally silky cubes of tofu
- an excellent (my fave of the four) shellfish stew with fried monkfish, rockfish and a large prawn
- some kind of very tasty stew made with beef (or maybe pork?) and clams
- another stew with a name that begins with a "D" incorporating blood sausage and ribeye trim. This was really the only miss of the night for us as both the sausage and beef were pretty dry

Dessert Course

- rice pudding served warm in a hot ceramic bowl and topped with a quenelle of what we both agreed was one of the very best coconut ice creams we'd ever had

Knowing they have a high-quality coffee and espresso program, we ordered an espresso for her and a cortado for me. Surprisingly, noone knew how to make a cortado but I enjoyed the "light foam cappuccino" I was served.

At $60 pp for the tasting menu, this is great value for both the quality and quantity served. I've always thought Cathal Armstrong one of the very best chefs in the area and it's great to see him extending like this. The menu changes some from week to week but may go on into February or beyond depending on demand. I'm guessing probable since we saw many other tables in a packed house tonight ordering it.

Just a delightful dinner and they had us out in 2:15 without ever making us feel rushed.


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#771 MsDiPesto

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Posted 01 February 2015 - 03:56 PM

- another stew with a name that begins with a "D" incorporating blood sausage and ribeye trim. This was really the only miss of the night for us as both the sausage and beef were pretty dry

 
Likely a daube.

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#772 DonRocks

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Posted 01 February 2015 - 03:58 PM

The alleged Filipino menu drew us in.

 

I believe Meshe Armstrong is half-Filipina, so this was probably more than just "pretend-Filipino."


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#773 darkstar965

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Posted 01 February 2015 - 11:12 PM

I believe Meshe Armstrong is half-Filipina, so this was probably more than just "pretend-Filipino."


Just for clarity, I'm a huge and longtime fan of both Armstrongs and didn't use the word "pretend." I used the word "alleged" in reference to the menu as Washingtonian got that wrong by not indicating it is a mix of Filipino dishes and others inspired by other Asian cuisines.
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#774 ktmoomau

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Posted 02 February 2015 - 01:09 PM

Darkstar,

 

Did this menu end at the end of January?


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#775 darkstar965

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Posted 02 February 2015 - 04:10 PM

Darkstar,
 
Did this menu end at the end of January?


Don't believe so but call to be sure. We were told they were thinking of extending it past the original January plan dependent on demand. And, Saturday, there was a good bit of demand judging from all the tables with the distinctive Asian dishes on them. Definitely recommend this. MIT was excelent and just a nice bit of discovery for those already familiar with Cathal Armstrong's cooking.





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