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In little Putnam CT there is a neat modern restaurant that oddly seems out of place in the town called 85 Main. Never thought I could get fresh oysters in the middle of nowhere cow country CT. The tiling in the bar was so cool, small blue and white tiles, although an eclectic painting of topless mermaids seemed a bit odd for a fine dining experience.

This phenomenon has always been a curiosity of mine. Is it just easier to use the location name than create one anew? Or is it so Washingtonians can find their way to the restaurant and don't miss it? I know, silly, of course, but it seems to be a national trend as well.

Thoughts? Comments?

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I don't know where the trend started, but to me it's always been reminiscent of people who get vanity plates that describe the make or model of their car. I mean, does one really need a plate saying "99 BENZ" to tell one that he or she is in fact approaching their car?

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I have never once thought about the name of a place I am going to have dinner in. I always think about the experience I am going to have. Is the food going to be good, is the service going to be good, is the wine going to be at the correct tempature? A name is a name just a name...

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21 Club, the oldest restaurant in New York, is named for its address.

Yeah, but that's 21 W. 52nd St.... 2941 Fairview Park Drive, Falls Church? 2941 is, I think, the most unfortunate example of this practice in the Washington area. If it weren't such a terrific restaurant, who would care? But geez, couldn't they come up with something better than that?

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Well, the website you link to claims only that 21 is the oldest restaurant in NYC named for its address, not that it's the oldest restaurant in the city AND is named for its address, as you wrote above. Not that it matters, and not that I have any idea what the oldest restaurant in NYC is, named for its address or not. What I said is still true: 2941 is a feeble name for a fine restaurant.

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Yeah, but that's 21 W. 52nd St.... 2941 Fairview Park Drive, Falls Church? 2941 is, I think, the most unfortunate example of this practice in the Washington area. If it weren't such a terrific restaurant, who would care? But geez, couldn't they come up with something better than that?

It's not like you're creeping down Fairview Park Drive at 5 mph, squinting to see the house numbers as you try not to sidescrape the parked cars. :)

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It's not like you're creeping down Fairview Park Drive at 5 mph, squinting to see the house numbers as you try not to sidescrape the parked cars. :)

I dunno. Apart from the house numbers part, it sounds like a pretty accurate description of a few of your getaways, dude. :angry:

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Hunan Number One

Two Quail

Lucky Three

Four Sisters

Five Guys

Bob's Noodle Sixty Six

Pier Seven

Jordan's 8

Butterfield 9

Ten Penh

Eleventh Street Lounge

Lot 12 Public House (*)

Restaurant Two Thirteen (*)

14K

15 RIA

Local 16

17th Street Bar and Grill

18th Street Lounge

Croc's 19th Street Bistro (*)

Four and Twenty Blackbirds

Twenty-One Federal

Twenty-two minutes of my life wasted.

(*) Day trip

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Hunan Number One

Two Quail

Lucky Three

Four Sisters

Five Guys

Bob's Noodle Sixty Six

Pier Seven

Jordan's 8

Butterfield 9

Ten Penh

Eleventh Street Lounge

Lot 12 Public House (*)

Restaurant Two Thirteen (*)

14K

15 RIA

Local 16

17th Street Bar and Grill

18th Street Lounge

Croc's 19th Street Bistro (*)

Four and Twenty Blackbirds

Twenty-One Federal

Twenty-two minutes of my life wasted.

(*) Day trip

Don, you missed one! "219" on King Street

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Butterfield 9's name has always been somewhat of a mystery. The classic movie, the address - no one seems to know.

The restaurant was actually built in the old Garfinkle's dept. store space (the men's shirt and underwear dept. to be exact), and when Garfinkle's was built, phone systems still operated on an exchange system. Some of DC's exchange ports included Charlie 4 and Butterfield 9. To call into the Garfinkle's space, one had to dial the operator and request a transfer into Butterfield 9 - hence the name.

Garfinkle's was a DC hot spot back in the day - the restaurant tries to keep hints of that era around.

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