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Corduroy, Fine Dining at the Convention Center - Chef Tom Power's Magnificent Cooking

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Happy New Year.

out.

Sad to hear Ferhat; you were a fixture at Corduroy. But I have been on that exact same road before and it is truly very hard to say goodbye. We’ll see you later and best wishes!

Yesterday on New Year’s Eve, I finally found an appropriate time to open the Philipponnat Brut Réserve Rosée Champagne you lovingly gave me awhile back that I saved for a special occasion. We toasted to a bright New Year and to you! Cheers!

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I had the $30 bar deal last Wednesday. It is a steal. Get the Kabocha soup if it's still on the menu.

We had a lovely meal at the bar last night...I don't know of a better deal than the $30 for three courses...even with restaurant week coming up soon, this will probably be better food at a better price than almost anywhere else.

The first course offered a choice between two soups (kabocha squash or cauliflower), a few salads and something else I don't recall...so, a nice array of choices. I had the cauliflower soup and just loved it. This is the first Chef Power soup I've tried, and all the acclaim is clearly justified. A round wafer-thin parmesan chip with a big hole in the middle came out in the bowl, and the soup was poured through the hole, leaving the chip floating just on top of the soup. The soup itself had a creamy but not thick texture and had a clarity to the cauliflower flavor that was really impressive. Coupled with the parmesan chip, the dish really came together. I tried one spoonful of the squash soup and wowed by its complexity...squash, fois gras, prosciutto together, silky texture...never tasted anything like it before.

I had the fish of the day for the second course. It was a pan seared sea bass resting atop sushi rice with a little bit of seaweed in between the two. Toasted sesame oil and black sesame seeds around and on top of everything. Tasted great. The fish was simply prepared, crispy skin, rice had just enough vinegary bite...a nice dish all-around. My dining companion had the mushroom fettuccine, and she enjoyed it very much. The earthy mushroom flavors, fresh pasta properly cooked...what's not to like, really? The portion was bigger than I expected. I was a bit jealous because it looked so hearty and satisfying when it came out.

The desserts were good but not great. I had the flourless chocolate cake...it wasn't as rich, dense, chocolatey as I was hoping for. It was a bit too...well...cakey and dry for my taste. The vanilla bean ice cream though was superb. I tasted the pistachio bread pudding, which was also good but I learned that I prefer my bread pudding a little more homestyle. It was also like a cake and not as custardy as I like it. I tasted the sorbets too...they were apple, banana and coconut (separately) and I liked them a lot, especially the banana.

The food and the really fantastic, relaxed bar service made this meal such a great value. We walked out talking about how much we enjoyed our meal and when we could come back again.

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I went back to Corduroy, one of my favorite restaurants in DC. I ordered their signature dish, the scallops with mushrooms in sauce over delicate mashed potatoes. To my disapointment, they have removed this wonderful dish from the menu and instead serve the scallops over a "rice porridge". While it was good, it was not even close to their previous preparation. Please bring it back.

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A creature of habit I always start my dinner at Chef Power's with the spring rolls and the great Duck egg/Duck leg salad.

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A creature of habit I always start my dinner at Chef Power's with the spring rolls and the great Duck egg/Duck leg salad.

You made a mistake this time because there is a new soup on the menu: Grouper Chowder. This is, of course, the most refined seafood chowder in existence. So rich, so delicious.

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You made a mistake this time because there is a new soup on the menu: Grouper Chowder. This is, of course, the most refined seafood chowder in existence. So rich, so delicious.

Maybe Volnay (as an aside, great wines) has a thing for Ron Jeremy.

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Has anyone had the three-course menu in the bar recently? Do they still do this?

Yes, indeed they do. Dame Edna and I were there on Friday and got the bar menu. The chowder was on offer, along with cauliflower soup, several salads; and lumpia--which DE ordered. He also got the faux ribeye steak, cooked a perfect medium-rare, and I got the pork belly. I wound up taking about half of that home for lunch on Saturday. The fish-of-the-day was the big eye tuna with sushi rice. For dessert, he had the pistachio bread pudding and I had some truly wonderful mango sorbet. We were there during happy hour when the wines by the glass were $7, so we each had two glasses. :lol: This is such a good deal, I couldn't understand why the bar was mostly empty while we were there. Admittedly, people might have been scared off by the preparations for the Nuclear Summit at the convention center.

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Can you make a reservation at the bar? Thanks.

Not that I know of, but you should find a seat easily.

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Yes, indeed they do. Dame Edna and I were there on Friday and got the bar menu. The chowder was on offer, along with cauliflower soup, several salads; and lumpia--which DE ordered. He also got the faux ribeye steak, cooked a perfect medium-rare, and I got the pork belly. I wound up taking about half of that home for lunch on Saturday. The fish-of-the-day was the big eye tuna with sushi rice. For dessert, he had the pistachio bread pudding and I had some truly wonderful mango sorbet. We were there during happy hour when the wines by the glass were $7, so we each had two glasses. :lol: This is such a good deal, I couldn't understand why the bar was mostly empty while we were there. Admittedly, people might have been scared off by the preparations for the Nuclear Summit at the convention center.

The bar menu is one of the best deals in town, especially when you arrive during happy hour for those $7 glasses of wine. We haven't been in a while so we're due for another trip.

And to answer Joni, no, the bar does not take reservations but you can usually get a seat with no trouble.

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And to answer Joni, no, the bar does not take reservations but you can usually get a seat with no trouble.

This is entirely dependent on whether or not the private spaces upstairs are booked. If they are, then you will find the bar crowded with people waiting for the festivities to begin. However, if you get there between 5:30 and 6 or so, you shouldn't have any problem at all.

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Made my way over for the three-course bar menu tonight, and I was impressed, but not blown away. This is, however, entirely my fault.

First course was the Filipino spring rolls. Loved them, cooked perfectly, and the sauce was great, too. It didn't hurt that I haven't had a decent spring roll in forever, so this really satisfied a craving as well.

Main course was easily my least favorite, the duck leg confit. This is where it becomes my fault. While it was maybe a little less crispy than I'd have hoped, there was really nothing wrong with this dish. The problem is that, by and large, I don't enjoy duck dishes, and I keep ordering them in some sort of stubborn attempt to suddenly turn the corner on duck. One of these days, I'll learn.

Good thing that dessert was probably my favorite bread pudding I've had in a long, long, long time. Too often bread pudding isn't custardy enough, and the interior ends up being horribly dry. No such problems with the pistachio bread pudding I had tonight, and with the addition of my favorite nut to boot. If I wasn't so curious to try other options on the dessert menu, I would say for certain that I'd order this each time I went.

I don't need to mention that this is a steal for $30, but......at $30, this is a steal (assuming you're not an idiot like me and order something you know you won't enjoy). Service at the bar was fantastic, and I was the only person sitting at the bar by 7.

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Continuing the day of indulgence, we dined at the bar at Corduroy tonihgt on the late side. After throwing a couple of fellow Rockwellians out of the bar and down the stairs so we could take over their seats, we enjoyed the following:

Sublime

Cold Burdock Soup - etherially smooth with just a touch of earthiness int he finish.

Pistachio Bread Pudding - Kay's favorite. Very rich and elegant version. Best part was the scoop of vanilla bean gelato on the side perched atop a hidden crispy thingie.

Asparagus with cervil - delightful, simple

Burrata with baby arugula - a large baby arugula salad, a slice of burrata, simplicity in itself.

Danflou Armagnac "Exceptionalle" I always forget how wonderful Danflou cognacs are until I am drinking one!

We also had the soft shell and the shiso salad which were not in the category as above.

But what a delightful meal and a nice chat with Tom P.

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Wonderful dinner last night in the elegant dining room. Highlights for me: the lamb salad special (some lightly braised spinach adorned with 2 slices of perfectly cooked loin and 2 slices of lamb sausage I could eat every day), the lobster salad (yummy lobster carpaccio beside a mound of sublime lobster salad that could be part of the best lobster roll in the city if Chef Power so chose), and a perfectly cooked crispy red snapper that I inhaled. Speaking of inhaling, Chef Karoum and i had polished off the stunning 05 Usseglio Deux Freres CDP I brought before the lamb salad was done so we ordered a delicious bottle of the 01 Remelluri Rioja from Corduroy's sensational wine list (this wine list has to be one of the best in DC, and it is incredibly well priced at every level). It was their first night back after a 2 week August break and the dining room was humming with guests and an energetic and gracious staff. I adore this place and Chef Power's work.

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Wonderful dinner last night in the elegant dining room. Highlights for me: the lamb salad special (some lightly braised spinach adorned with 2 slices of perfectly cooked loin and 2 slices of lamb sausage I could eat every day)

I had the same Lamb Salad special last night - so tasty! For a main course I got the BigEye Tuna with Sushi Rice, and that too was simply delicious. My husband had lots of crab - Crab Blinz with Chayote Slaw, as an appetizer, and Crispy Soft Shell Crab for his main course. Loved it all. Beyond the fabulous food, I was struck again about what a lovely restaurant space this is. It's just so calm and inviting!

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It has been a week since Thanksgiving, and for some reason there has been no love thrown Corduroy's way for the holiday menu that they presented - was I the only one that went?

The service was up to the standards that I have come to expect from Corduroy, the only hiccup being caused by the individual that updated the website and indicated that both the Thanksgiving and regular menus would be on offer - the latter was not (my mother was hoping for the roast chicken, as she is always hoping for roast chicken no matter the restaurant).

A bottle of Aubry was ordered and it matched quite well with everyone's appetizers. I decided to go with the ultra-traditional and went with the lobster carpaccio and Atlantic Salmon with Thai Curry Sauce. The lobster is one of the best crustacean dishes I have ever had, with sweet meat and a wonderful buttery sauce that brought an extra level of decadence to the plate. The salmon was good as was the accompanying baby bok choy, however, the sauce presented the classic turmeric color of curry, but none of the flavor.

My father raved over his squash soup, declaring it one of the best he has ever had - getting a taste of soup from him is almost as easy as getting an dead antelope from a male lion. While not as effusive about his main of Lamb Loin with lentils, he was still quite positive about it. The taste that I managed to wrestle from him was indeed quite good.

My wife went with the scallops with sunchoke puree, a combination that proves every bit as delicious as the usual scallops with pureed potatoes. Her steak was cooked perfectly, unfortunately the flavor combination of turnip and potato side that came with her entree was not well received at our table.

In the end, being denied her roast chicken did not sully my mother's meal. She started with the beet salad (sans goat cheese - she was raised on a dairy farm and just has not been able to abide goat's milk) the beets were the right balance of between sweet and earthy allowing the vegetable to stand on its own without the cheese. She opted for the traditional turkey meal, and was presented with an overflowing plate of goodness. The turkey was far and away the best turkey anyone at the table had ever eaten, the dark meat was almost silken in texture, while the white meat had surprising amount of flavor (I am sure this was a heritage bird, but I have never had one this good). The potato puree was delicious, if not quite the right amount of body for this plate, and the root vegetable puree succeeded where my wife's turnip side did not. The one let down was the dressing, it was served at a tepid temperature, and was on the dry side, both problems would have been easily fix with a dash of hot gravy if it had been offered. As a bonus there was so much turkey on her plate that even after we all had a try and she had eaten to her fill, there was enough left for my father to have as a turkey sandwich for lunch the next day.

The meal was truly a delight, and I would not hesitate to go back to Corduroy to celebrate another holiday.

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It has been a week since Thanksgiving, and for some reason there has been no love thrown Corduroy's way for the holiday menu that they presented - was I the only one that went?

Say hi next time. smile.gif

My sister and I went for a late afternoon Thanksgiving dinner, and since we both had the traditional turkey meal, I won't add much to what Shtitch wrote, except that the potato puree seemed to be a mix of turnip and potato, and the root vegetable puree reminded us both of our mother's escalloped carrots we loved in our childhood. And that was part of what made the meal such a delight for us--it was exquisitely prepared but retained the sense and flavor of home cooking. We got a good taste of Tom Powers's creative side in the appetizers (I had the scallops with sunchoke puree, sis had the special crab blintz with jicama slaw which, from the bite I had, was yummy), but still were able to enjoy a meal that took us back to family times. What a gift!

Desserts--pumpkin tart and Michel's chocolate bar--were almost afterthoughts given what preceded them. And my sister loved her pomegranite manhattan. We also had a gracious but friendly server, and the spacious atmosphere was just right. This is the first I had visited Corduroy since they moved; I need to persuade Bob that it's time to try it again.

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Opting for a spontaneous pre-Valentine Day's dinner to avoid next week's crush, we had a lovely dinner at the bar. We were thankful that we had avoided a crazy crowd, but the pendulum swung waay too far the other way, as we were the only ones upstairs for much of the night. Not sure what is up with that.

We did the bar menu. We both wanted soup, but decided to order and split the Filipino Spring Rolls to begin. It paired very well with my Cherry Sling, but the FSR proved to be our undoing as the three-course $30 bar menu is plenty of food on its own. The squash soup and seafood bisque, sensational. Me: tuna over sushi rice and hijiki; Her: faux ribeye. Both: killer.

For dessert, I should have continued my asian angle with a banana or pineapple sorbet. Instead, anticipating that she would suffer the Winner's Curse by selecting the bread pudding, I ordered the flourless chocolate cake with the intent to share. It was dense yet not cloying, but I was yearning for something lighter, and she lacked the capacity to help me out. Oh well.

We walked outside to the newly powder-sugared cars outside. Our bartender had mentioned the weather, and hoped that we lived nearby, but that sort of weather won't keep me from visiting the next time. Great food, relaxed setting, tremendous value.

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That was a charming review of Corduroy, one of my favorite places. I must ask you, did they have the scallops over the mashed potatoes? It was changed on the menu last year, and was prepared with rice. I loved ,loved the mashed potato version and vowed not to return til it also returned.

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Thank you susan. I only glanced at the dinner menu, but I don't recall seeing that scallop dish. But you should break your vow!!

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That was a charming review of Corduroy, one of my favorite places. I must ask you, did they have the scallops over the mashed potatoes? It was changed on the menu last year, and was prepared with rice. I loved ,loved the mashed potato version and vowed not to return til it also returned.

Sorry Susan. I have to change the menu sometimes because critics complain if I do not change my menu . I am still serving scallops (so maybe it is not viewed as a menu change to some) but the rice preparation that you mentioned has been replaced with jerusalem artichoke sauce and maitake mushrooms. I am sorry that you missed the return of the scallops on mashed potatoes and other old favorites, like the baby chicken, that I brought back in the fall in celebration of Corduroy's 10 year anniversary. I will try to do something similar for our 15th.

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Me: tuna over sushi rice and hijiki... Both: killer.

We must have just missed one another, as I was there until about 6:40. I really liked the tuna dish, but felt that it needed a citrus component to take it over the top, I don't mean juice (though a touch more acid would improve the dish), but a hit of finally grated rind - yuzu or lime would have hit the mark.

As for the scallop dish, my wife had the scallops with sunchokes at Chirstmas and said it was the best scallop dish she had ever eaten.

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We must have just missed one another, as I was there until about 6:40. I really liked the tuna dish, but felt that it needed a citrus component to take it over the top, I don't mean juice (though a touch more acid would improve the dish), but a hit of finally grated rind - yuzu or lime would have hit the mark.

As for the scallop dish, my wife had the scallops with sunchokes at Chirstmas and said it was the best scallop dish she had ever eaten.

We want to do the bar menu on Saturday evening at 5:30 as a pre-theater dinner. Will we have to wait to find a stool or table? We need to be out of there by 7:00.

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