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  1. Sounds like part of Ardeo+Bardeo will be re-vamped into Bindaas, an Indian street food restaurant with Vikram Sunderam overseeing the food: "Rasika Chef Vikran Sunderam to Oversee Upcoming Indian Street-Food Restaurant" by Becky Krystal on washingtonpost.com At 50 seats, I'm assuming the smaller side space that used to be Bardeo will become Bindaas. Targeted opening early August, but you know how that goes. According to the article, Ardeo+Bardeo will continue with a dining room and the upstairs patio.
  2. I went with a friend to Ardeo a few nights ago. When we sat down and took a once over of the menu my friend asked if we should go to Indique. We both paused for a moment and then decided to stay. Big mistake. We started with the soft shell crab appetizer and the goat cheese and white asparagus salad. I should have known better. Asparagus season was over a few months ago. But it sounded good and refreshing, which was what I wanted. At first glance it looked like a mound of arugula. After some digging I found a few spears of what turned out to be pretty good white asparagus with a disk of goat cheese on one side and the marinated wild mushrooms on the other. Not bad, not great. The soft shell appetizer was a tempura fried soft shell crab served on a corn risotto. My friend ordered the dish for the corn risotto, breaking the first rule of ordering: don't order for the accoutrement. The tempura fried soft shell was small but fine. Nicely fried but nothing to write home about. The corn risotto was more of a corn pilaf. It was served with some sort of sauce around the plate but I don't remember what. At the end of the appetizers my friend had two comments: 1) the apps sounded great, were good, but I wouldn't order them again and 2) this reminds me of good dinner theater food. Our mains went downhill. My linguine with English peas and prosciutto in a cream sauce was okay. Again, I should have known better since peas aren't in season. While eating it I kept thinking that I should be down the street checking out Dino's new meat slicer. When we traded plates my friend didn't even realize that it was prosciutto in the dish. Our other main was vegetable lasagna with beet and basil essence. We checked before ordering and found out that the pasta was house made. We had a little hope. It ended up being two layers of decent pasta with the most pathetic vegetables I have seen in a while. Cauliflower, broccoli, beets, snow peas and broccoli rabe. Not a bad combination except it is the height of vegetable season and only one of those is good right now. Oh, and cherry tomatoes. The cherry tomatoes were the worst looking tomatoes I have seen lately, especially considering we are in tomato season. The dish was just sad. There was greatness to be had, but failure reigned. We went down the street and apologized to our palates with a glass of wine and a cheese plate at Dino. Next time we'll go straight for the cheese. It's been a few years since I was last at Ardeo and I am sad to say that it is yet another restaurant that has let itself go downhill.
  3. Tried out the newish Duke's Grocery today for lunch over in Dupont on 17th street. First a few odd things: 1) it is not much of a grocery - they have a few baskets of produce for sale, but it is really a restaurant, 2) its menu consists solely of sandwiches, a few sides and a bar menu - but for now they do not offer carry out sandwiches (concerns about too long of a wait when they have a tiny open kitchen and basically one (maybe 2 sometimes cooks), 3) it looks like it'd be a place for counter service, but they have bartenders and waiter?/food runners so it is unclear whether tipping is expected. I sat at the bar where you order on the ground floor when you enter - but they have an upstairs with tables and some other ledges and stools around on the first floor too. Overall, I think they are still trying to figure out what their concept really is. Nevertheless, the bar is nice and 2 young bartenders were very friendly and nice explaining the menu and chatting. Now onto the food. So the price/value is great here. All of the amply portioned sandwiches are just under $10 with tax included and despite my gluttony of finishing my whole Brick Lane Salt Beef monster, it easily could be shared by 2 people. The other couple of sandwiches I saw come out were equally well-made, fresh in the kitchen using mostly homemade ingredients in small batches and likewise large. The sandwiches come on a variety of breads from Lyon Bakery including rye, ciabatta, etc. I've never been to the UK nor had Salt Beef but it was described as less salty corned beef. It had thick cut soft white bread that was good and then piled high large chunks of tender beef (not melt in your mouth, but soft). The sandwich is slathered with sinus-cleansing Colman Mustard (think horseradish or chinese spicy mustard without the heat) and house made dill pickles with bit of onion laced within. I said next time I'd get the sandwich with less mustard and more of the good pickles. The sandwich was good and definitely well made with quality ingredients - but I think the mustard overwhelmed the somewhat lightly seasoned meat. Probably go back and get something else or maybe the salt beef on rye with sauerkraut and dilled mustard (Ruby on Rye). Besides these 2 options there are several pork ones, a chicken salad, and a vegetarian aubergine/eggplant sandwich - but check/call before you go if you want something particular as most of the menu changes according to the staff.
  4. I went to Spices last night for the second time and it was just as loud as the first time. They could definitely use some acoustic tiles or something to dampen the noise. My wife could only hear me across the table when I shouted. As to the food, after our first visit where we found the food to be lackluster we didn't plan on returning despite it being reasonably priced (most entrees $9-12) and so convenient. However, our second visit was the result of the closing of Spices's upscale sister a few doors down. I had heard and its true that some of Yanyu's best dishes are available now at Spices. I wanted to let you all know that the Big Duck (peking-style) is available and just as good at Spices. I got the half-duck ($15, whole duck is $30) which is presented to each diner before it is carved. The staff even goes to the trouble of making all of the pancakes for you with scallions and cucumber as well as the meat. It is downright delicious and wonderful meal for one (1/2 duck= 5 pancakes). The Big Duck and the other Yanyu holdovers are listed as Jessie Yan's specialties on a separate menu on each table. Other items are two different sea basses, a crab wonton, garlic shrimp (which sounded great), and one or two others I can't remember. So despite the noise, I'd recommend Spices - if only for the specials menu. What are others thoughts on Spices? Specials menu and regular menu?
  5. Per PopVille, the restaurant space formerly known as Chipotle and Cereal Bowl will become Tino's Pizzeria. Not a lot of information available yet, not even on their website. From what I can glean from their Instagram account, they are using flour from Hayden Flour Mills, also used by Pizzeria Bianco. They will also have an octopus pizza.
  6. Can't believe you people didn't got going on Palena yet. The cafe menu continues to grow and amaze as always. From the latest, bisque with mussels, touch of rice and spinach flan; stuffed Pennsylvania lamb with piquillo bread sauce; and hen gallantine sexed up with pistachios and foie gras have blown my mind. The menu is so familiar and well-loved by now that ordering became a struggle, although not entirely un-looked-forward to. Should I have something new? Or should I get the best burger in NW? Of course, last night I figured had to have my burger fix before taking off for two weeks of caviar therapy. I said it first...Jeff is very dreamy and extremely dexterous with beverages of all sorts.
  7. How's about Indique (Connecticut Ave., Cleveland Park metro)? Didn't find a thread for it on this board. Spent a really fun HH there last Friday. A couple of lovely cocktails that went down WAY too easy (sparkling wine w/ lychee juice; tamarind "martini") They have a page of Indian small plates that are reasonably priced and tasty, and the people-watching from the bar tables at the large window is quite entertaining.
  8. Dean: Would you care to share your thoughts on the service-lane controversy currently raging on the Cleveland-Park Yahoo group/mailing list (and presumably in the wider world)?
  9. how Tom S. could give Opera two stars is beyond me. The food was pretty bad as I remember and we were quite limited as the table next to us steered us away from the pasta dishes. Best U street meal has been at Coppies Organic.
  10. What are you supposed to order from Mr. Chen's organic in Woodley Park? I have heard nothing but great things about this place. We FINALLY ordered from there the other night and were just, well, whelmed. I feel like I'm missing something. BF had string beans with pork, which was supposed to be spicy. Not only was it not spicy, but it was really sparse on both pork and flavor. I had beef teriyaki. While the dry spices on the beef were really great (kind of aromatic), the veggies it came with were overcooked and flavorless. With health-conscious options and organic meats and veggies, I want to like this place, I really do. Has anyone been there? Can you recommend something that is great? Many thanks!
  11. I was walking past the old Sorriso space in Cleveland Park and saw that it was open for business. I popped my head in to see what was up - Dolan Uyghur Restaurant Things looked to be bare bones with no decor. I saw several plates of fat noodles with stir fried stuff on top going by. If I hadn't just picked up a bunch of Thai food I would have stuck around and ordered something to go. But the menu looked pretty extensive so I'll have to return with some neighbors to order a bunch of stuff. i've never had Uyghur food before but looking forward to trying it out.
  12. I've been to Fat Pete's twice in the past month. It's not far from one of the office buildings I work at, and I wanted to give it a try. You don't have to, because I did. Obligatory catering truck is usually parked across the street from the 18th St location, which is located almost next door to Taberna del Alabardero. From its splash page: "We are not Texas and not North Carolina nor Memphis or Atlanta, we are 'life is short, so we make it the best you possibly can so you never forget it' kind of BBQ." Yes, you can never forget it. But "best" it is definitely not. I have had the pulled pork (tasteless and dry), the ribs (chewy and forgettable), and the brisket (tough and dry). What look to be homemade sauces in squeeze bottles are only somewhat of a palliative, or at least they add some moisture and flavor. The sides are at least edible, with the vinegar cole slaw and the collard greens standing out. The cucumber salad is watery. No alcohol, which makes matters even worse. Enjoy your Pepsi products with the District's most mediocre BBQ.
  13. My sister-in-law, a denizen of Cleveland Park, asked me if I had heard anything about a new place called Ripple in the old Aroma space in Cleveland Park. She said the posted menu looks interesting. Metrocurean has the scoop. A bit surprised that this seems to have gone unnoticed on dr.com given the pedigrees of the team behind it. Anybody go on a scouting trip this past weekend? [ETA: oops--looks like the tag line got cut off in the title of the thread; should be "from our back yard." I assume Don will change the title of the thread anyway. ]
  14. Dr. Randy Kim was my friend before he was my dentist. We met at a tailgate for a Pitt football game. We ended up moving to the DC area at about the same time. My mutual friend told me to go to Randy, but I was hesitant to see a friend in a professional role. The first dentist I went to in DC was pretty good, but the wait was long, and he didn't seem up to date. The second one I went to was in Del Ray. His hygienist did everything, and he came in for 5 minutes to discuss an acute problem, and he said he couldn't handle it, I'd need surgery, and referred me to a subspecialist. Also, they don't deal with insurance, but will help you file a claim. The visit was over $400. So, I finally went to see Randy, as a patient. He evaluated my films, and said, yeah he could take care of my problem (he's a general dentist, not a subspecialist). And, he did a great job, saving me from a trip to oral surgery and general anesthesia. He runs on-time, he's friendly and funny, he doesn't talk too much (dentists always talk too much, and you can't respond !!). His hygienist helps, but you are still being treated by him. He's an excellent dentist and a good friend. Go see him! His office is in Upper NW, and phone number is (202) 362-5596 Simul Parikh
  15. I'm not sure how often Nanny's used to have music, but they generally have live music on Saturday nights these days.
  16. Here is a press release describing Dino which will open in July in the old Yanyu space. Presently there are signs in the window advertising that they're hiring for all positions.
  17. A friend's son is ill and I volunteered to deliver a meal tomorrow in Clevland Park. Fat Pete's look about right and then I see many choices for delivery. grubhub, Doordash and one whose name escapes me. Anyone use any of these?
  18. Cross posted on eG: gnatharobed and I planned to dine off the cafe menu tonight at Palena. We looked forward to trying the Monday night menu and comparing dishes together. We both left work, excited to enjoy the food and ready for some great dessert. BUT IT WAS CLOSED TONIGHT! Ai ya, I shoulda called before I drove all the way from Montgomery County to NW. We were *so* disappointed! It was a bitter way to end a Monday - no Palena! And we had been planning this for 2 weeks! No burger, no chicken, no lime tartlet... <mock sob> Sidebar: We ended up at Sorrio's across the street. Overall, substandard food. We had the pizza, homemade pasta with wild mushrooms, seafood stew and creme brulee. The pizza with wild mushrooms, spinach and onions was solidly decent - they could've caramelized the onions prior to adding them, used a lighter hand with the cheese and made the crust crisper. The base for the seafood stew lacked the essence of seafood - the broth was mostly tomatoes. I'm waiting for the mussels to kick in - let's see if Bourdain was right about Monday and seafood. The homemade pasta could've been stellar had they actually used wild mushrooms, less herbs, made a sauce and added more pasta. (For $17, the portion shouldn't be something that's as small as my fist. Note: my fist of fury not that big.) The kicker was the creme brulee. 'Twas more like creme anglaise. Who knew creme brulee could run? Run, creme brulee, run... Yes we ate it (hey, we don't waste food!), no we didn't complain 'cause it wasn't horribly bad, just not great enough for us to come back.
  19. We have now been twice to this neighborhood spot in Cleveland Park (Connecticut and Ordway, next to Dino's, at the site of the old Park Bench, and after that Sabores) and are thrilled with this addition to our neighborhood! St. Arnold's Mussel Bar serves moules frites, sandwiches, Belgian and Belgian-inspired beer, and brunch. The Cleveland Park location is the second for this enterprise--the first, which I haven't been to, is at 1827 Jefferson Place in south Dupont. For those who remember when this was the Park Bench, the interior space has been spruced up and scrubbed up, but the bar is still in the same spot. The back wall has small tables and benches; the window side has long communal tables with bar stools, effectively extending the sitting-at-the-bar feel across a much greater portion of the space. The huge windows facing onto Ordway are still there and this promises still to be a very pretty spot for daytime or late summer evening excursions. On our first visit we tried the Mussels St. Arnold's and the Mussels & Shrimp. The Mussels St. Arnold's come in a wonderfully satisfying creamy broth with (I'm guessing) caramelized onion, mushroom, wine (or maybe brandy) and garlic flavors. (I'm wrong. I just checked the menu which says "beer sauce." But what I wrote is what it tasted like to me. ) Mussels and shrimp, eh, I didn't love as much. The shrimp was a little overcooked and the sauce flavors didn't meld quite so much together. Second time around we went with the St. Arnold's again, and also with the Eastern Shore Mussels (Budweiser, Old Bay Corn and Red Potatoes, per the menu, and they also have sausage, which our server noted was a more recent addition by the chef). These were also very good and a nice local flavor combination. Not, however, as good as the St. Arnold's. All the mussel pots are served with bread, fries, ketchup and mayo, and run $18 a pot except Mondays when they are $10. We also split a waffle for dessert, and I think next time I might save that for a brunch visit; it was just a little too much extra heavy food on top of the fries and bread. Service was extremely warm and friendly on both visits. We went with our preschooler and were a little nervous about whether this was more of a bar or a restaurant (which is why we picked a quiet Monday for our first visit), but he was welcomed with crayons and coloring books. On our second visit, our server suggested that if we wanted, she had a soup to-go cup to contain the ample leftovers of the St. Arnold's broth, and recommended tossing it with pasta to make use of the leftovers.
  20. I've always had a food-snob disdain for Cleveland Park Bar & Grill. But on this Sunday, the chicken wings were pretty darn good. Nice and meaty, good crisp outer crust, appropriate Buffalo-style hot sauce. Celery and carrot sticks. The dressing was either really bland blue cheese or chunky ranch, so that needs to be fixed(ie: better blue cheese). 8 wings $10. The beer list could be better, I'd like to see a stronger line-up of local beers. But a Devil's Back Bone IPA worked out alright. The upstairs deck is probably an under-appreciated spot. Bonus points for them showing Euro 2016 on a majority of their many TVs, with the sound over the PA speaker system. And this was during a Nats game. So, I'm just going to say it: for grabbing a beer, eating a plate of wings, and watching a game on a weekend afternoon...you could do worse. Seriously.
  21. For a posh Francophile and serious foodie who prefers European cuisine. (Friend of a friend so that's all the info I have). Et Voila and Mari Vanna were all I could come up with. And Mari Vanna was a shot in the dark. Any suggestions? Geo range is Dupont to Friendship Heights, though MacArthur Blvd was seen as in range.
  22. Uptown Tap House opened last night in the old 4P's space in Cleveland Park. The decor is pretty much the same as the 4P's. It isn't clear they really did much work other than install a few fans and replace the signage. UTH is owned by McFaddens/Sign of Whale people. The restaurant held a neighborhood night last night offering a "3-Course Tasting Menu" and free Champagne. I'm pretty confident the champagne had never seen France, but i'm happy to take free alcohol. Not surprisingly, the restaurant staff was overwhelmed, and sadlythe kitchen ran out of many of the food items by our reservation time, so our tasting menu of the house specialties was severely limited. (I was eyeing those big ribeyes that were going out, but never got one.) Items we had: - Fried chicken salad - A few pieces of chicken fingers on top of some iceberg lettuce. - Spinach and Artichoke dip - They ran out of chips, so a quick trip to CVS alleviated the issue. Tasted like the spinach and artichoke dip that ever bar in town serves. - Crab cakes - Easily the best item of the evening - I found them to be rather good - lots of crab, not too much filler. Really pretty tasty and a good size. - Seared salmon - Sad overcooked piece of salmon on top of some overcooked spinach. - Lots of cheesecake Overall, pretty much uninspired bar fare. It will be interesting to see what the owners plan to do with the space and food, but as of now, you can't really compare the food to that offered at many of the neighboring bars on the Cleveland Park strip.
  23. New tapas restaurant in old Tackle Box space in Cleveland Park. http://www.pulpodc.com/ http://www.washingto...veland-park.php
  24. Two friends and I went to Lavandou last night for their Bastille Day (week) special. Frankly, I was a little disappointed. The night seemed like a mediocre experience during Restaurant Week. Service was fine, the food was cooked as ordered (steaks arrived as medium and medium rare), but there seemed to be something lacking. It seemed as if the kitchen was in a mass production mentality for the week (although the restaurant was far from full last night). Having dined there several times in the past and very much enjoyed the food and the experience, I felt more of an effort was put into the regular menu offerings than that to the Bastille Week specials. We dined on vichyssoise soup, steak frites, salmon paillard with grilled vegetables, and Feuillete of Blueberries and Strawberries with Cream. The entrees were cooked well - nothing overcooked or undercooked. The dishes just seemed to lack any "oomph" (for lack of a better word). Is anyone going tonight?
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