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Clyde's, a Georgetown-Based Chain - Giant American Restaurants in Numerous Area Locations


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I love Clyde's, at least in part because I know how much attention to detail and resources are devoted to decorating each restaurant -- and also partly because the Clyde's happy hours are among the best deals in town. I had lunch with a friend at Gallery Place today, and the Babe Ruth mural inside the front door is the most spectacular eye candy of any restaurant in the DC metropolitan area (for me).

Lunch today was merely OK. I was excited to order the soft shell crab, and for $16.99, it seemed like a good deal. But what arrived was a scant little crab on a spare bed of watercress salad. Everything was delicious and went together quite well, but it was a kiddie portion. Nonetheless, I will return again and again to enjoy the baseball-themed art gallery, probably at happy hour.

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A Clyde’s regular gets a final honor from those who knew her best, by John Kelly, October 31, 2018, on washingtonpost.com.

At this point I'm happy to go to Tower Oaks for my m-i-l's sake, but I'd be happy to never eat there again, too.  Case in point, read the first line under "Brunch Starters":

To our server last night at the Gallery Place Clyde's: Don't tell me that I'm a fool for ordering a Jim Beam and Coke because you think that your ridiculous house cocktails (with ingredients like Pi

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28 minutes ago, Kibbee Nayee said:

 

Lunch today was merely OK. I was excited to order the soft shell crab, and for $16.99, it seemed like a good deal. But what arrived was a scant little crab on a spare bed of watercress salad. Everything was delicious and went together quite well, but it was a kiddie portion. Nonetheless, I will return again and again to enjoy the baseball-themed art gallery, probably at happy hour.

My experience over the last couple of years is that soft shell crabs are far more expensive earlier in the season (i.e. now) than later in the season.   They can also come in small at this time of year.

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2 minutes ago, DaveO said:

My experience over the last couple of years is that soft shell crabs are far more expensive earlier in the season (i.e. now) than later in the season.   They can also come in small at this time of year.

That's reassuring, because I love soft shell crabs and crab cakes, so your words are reassuring. I will remain steadfast in my search for this delicacy.

And Dave, I'm honored to dedicate my 2000th post to responding to you!

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1 hour ago, DaveO said:

..and the deal closed Link

Good luck to the new LOCAL owners and well done to both the buyer and seller in keeping the news close to vest 

Your link hits a pay wall. It's Graham Holdings, who sold the Washington Post to Jeff Bezos. I think this will be a good move for Clyde's.

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5 hours ago, Kibbee Nayee said:

Your link hits a pay wall. It's Graham Holdings, who sold the Washington Post to Jeff Bezos. I think this will be a good move for Clyde's.

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The D.C. restaurant group that owns local institutions including Old Ebbitt Grill, annually one of the highest-grossing restaurants in America, has a new owner.

Clyde’s Restaurant Group finalized a sale to Graham Holdings Co., the new owner announced today. The Graham family, which owned and operated the Washington Post before selling it to Amazon billionaire Jeff Bezos, runs the publicly traded company based in Arlington, Virginia.

Washington Business Journal and Restaurant Business Online reported the previously-announced deal. The purchase diversifies Graham Holdings’ investment portfolio, which largely plays in the education (Kaplan), healthcare, and media spaces.

The 56-year-old restaurant group owns eight locations of Clyde’s, its flagship American grill that started in Georgetown, and standbys such as the Hamilton downtown, 1789 steakhouse, and the Tombs bar. All in all, Clyde’s owns and manages 13 restaurants in the D.C. area. Old Ebbitt Grill, a D.C. classic founded in 1856, reported nearly $34 million in in 2017 according to Restaurant Business Online, landing it the No. 5 spot on the outlet’s 2018 list of the 100 highest-grossing independent restaurants.

“Graham Holdings Co. is well suited to be the new steward of the Clyde’s brands in that we share the same values and dedication to the region,” Clyde’s president Tom Meyer says in a statement announcing the deal. “We are excited to join such a well-respected company and equally excited about the future.”

At this point, assuming Graham Holdings are pretty hands off and allow the experts to run Clydes...its a great move as it keeps Clyde's in Well Meaning Local Hands.  (I am biased toward the Graham's).

On the sale of the Post to Amazon...I say thank goodness for that.  Under Bezos the Post has revived itself.  Another great local occurrence imho.

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Our last meal at a Clyde's group restaurant was at TOwer Oaks Lodge.  The oysters were top notch is terms of flavor and freshness, so-so to good in terms of shucking quality. We also ordered a cheese plate {good, small portions of cheese, dencent selection w/horrid black raspberry imposters, an ok jam and a third accompaniment I forgot plus good bread crisps} and a god awful caesar that tasted as if it came premixed from Sysco.  The bread was OK, the butter falvorless, the oyster crackers good but served in stingy portions.  The clams were pretty funky but I think that is a seasonal issue rather than freshness.  The beer selection had a few nice picks among the boring dross.  I mean evolution #3 IPA is decent enough stuff but its been their IPA choice for years and years. I would go for oyster Hpappy Hour more if their beer selection varied more than it does.

Great service.

This encapsulates my experiences at Clydes et al: Oyster Bar is good, the menu moves from forgettable to memorably mediocre.  No wonder they rake in the millions.

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I'm sure restaurants are challenged in the current environment to offer steep discounts given the lack of volume to make up for reduced prices.  That being said, one of Clyde's DC Restaurant Week 'deals' is a 6oz filet mignon (menu price $31.99), salad (menu price $9.99) and peach cobbler (menu price $8.99)... all for $55.

Same set ups as the individual menu listing: 31.99+9.99+8.99=$50.97, so you're paying $4.03 MORE by ordering restaurant week.  I'm not sure that's what RAMW had in mind... (ordering the double crab cake RW instead saves you $0.97)

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13 hours ago, genericeric said:

I'm sure restaurants are challenged in the current environment to offer steep discounts given the lack of volume to make up for reduced prices.  That being said, one of Clyde's DC Restaurant Week 'deals' is a 6oz filet mignon (menu price $31.99), salad (menu price $9.99) and peach cobbler (menu price $8.99)... all for $55.

Same set ups as the individual menu listing: 31.99+9.99+8.99=$50.97, so you're paying $4.03 MORE by ordering restaurant week.  I'm not sure that's what RAMW had in mind... (ordering the double crab cake RW instead saves you $0.97)

Maybe they are making up for it with smaller portions.

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