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701, 7th St and Pennsylvania Ave, Penn Quarter - Chef Christopher Lambert Replaces Lucas Sousa - Closed Dec 31, 2018


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Although I've had many a late night drink/dessert here while listening to live piano jazz over the past few years, the food was never something to come here for.

Well, gotta say that may be changing.

I joined a group of 4 friends which chose 701 for dinner on Friday night. We were pleasantly surprised with our meals [we were sampling each others all night].

Seems that 701 has a new Chef Bobby Verua [sp?] who started this past Restaurant Week [whatta time to start lol]. Think he hails from NY, and brings subtle Asian influence to the dishes [but not in what I call the normal retread way].

For starters, we tried the Beef Carpaccio w/ Arugula, shaved Parmesan, & Mustard Vinaigrette, Ribbons of Tuna [Crushed Avocado, Rice Crisps, and a creamy Garlic sauce ... great contrast w/ the rice crisps and the tuna!], Fried Calamari [perfectly fried lightly w/ a light coating ... but the accompanying sauce really kicks it up], and Asian Pear/Romaine/Bleu Cheese salad, and a small plate of Pumpkin Raviolis [glazed Chestnuts w/ Truffle-Sage brown butter sauce, lightly sweet]. Very good beginning to our meal.

For mains, we tried the Horseradish-Crusted Veal Chop w/ Quail Egg, Potato Dauphin, & a Sweet-Soy Bordelaise [hunk a scoop of everything in one bite, great], Glazed Pork Belly w/ Sweet Potato Puree & Pickled Cherries [tasty fatty goodness, another place for me to get my Pork Belly fill lol], Stuffed Saddle of Lamb w/ Braised Tomatoes, Crisped Potato Confit, and Pear Demi [quite good but didn't love], Dry-Aged Sirlion Steak w/ Ancho-Soy Glaze, Gingered Shiitakes and Truffled Potatoes [nicely done], and Roasted Mahi-Mahi w/ Sweet Potato Ravioli, Malayasian Chili Sauce & Basil Oil [liked but also didn't love]. Perhaps my tastes of the Veal Chop & Pork Belly tainted the rest of my tasting, dunno but the flavors of those 2 were excellent.

As for desserts, not so much. We were cautioned by the server that the desserts aren't there yet, the Chef hasn't focused yet on them [putting his stamp on the 1st/2nds] but will be very soon. Thankful for that information [and not particularly attracted to the dessert list], we still shared a couple w/ coffee. Lemon cheesecake [eh], and honestly an Apple-something else which was cold [i.e. not fully cooked, not easy to cut through] that underwhelmed me. Our thoughts were that warm desserts would have gone over well with the cold weather, perhaps something lightened like a warm ricotta cheesecake, else a bread pudding or sorts. There are lots of choices if the Chef peruses the competition, looking forward to trying his versions once ready [just based on what we saw with the other courses].

As for service, it's fine as it's always been for me. He had a good sense of humor, chatted us up, and nicely prefaced our expectations about the desserts [so as not to ruin or lessen our experience much] smile.gif

We were mentioned how happy we were with the meals to the server, that the Chef stopped by to thank us. He's young, looks to be only in his early 30s perhaps? Very gracious. Server mentioned how liked he was so far, & has the kitchen's respect already. [guess plugging away at 200 meals during a RW night on your 1st week can do that heh].

Now I have an excuse to actually try meals at 701! Maybe take advantage of their Pre-Theater menu for less than $30.

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Bobby Varua is doing good work at 701, but based on tonight's experience, I only see it on the main menu.

A Chilled Jumbo Lump Crab Salad ($13), with lemonade 'pickled' melons and cilantro cream, was a deep-bowl version of a coctel de mariscos, topped with some shaved, crispy platanos, the whole thing worked forked-up together as a rich-man's taco salad, with everything melding together. The several mini-balls of melon were fascinating on their own, but integrated well with the rest of the dish.

Asparagus Ravioli ($11 for a half-order) was plated with two small pancetta-wrapped tidbits of rabbit loin, some firm English peas, and something of a 'puttanesca' accenting the creamy sauce at the bottom. This was the second great dish ordered off the main menu.

Equally fascinating, at least in terms of reading the menu, was the Beef-Tongue Empanadas ($10), with cilantro, melted manchego, and lime. But this was on the bar menu, and like the other bar-menu items I saw coming out, it was, at best, elevated finger food. Four two-bite empanadas, all very good, but not anything particularly special.

The way to order at 701 appears to be small courses off the regular restaurant menu, foregoing the often-tempting bar menu (on which you'll see such temptations as lox and bagels, the lox being Finlandia Vodka-smoked salmon).

In all, a good showing by 701 - a fine little three-course dinner for $34, with the first two courses much more interesting than the third.

Cheers,

Rocks.

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My wife and I had drinks and an appetizer in 701's "wine lounge" Friday night. The "torchon" of foie gras was a grey and lifeless little disk of what looked like the real thing but was utterly devoid of flavor. It was as though the chef had marinated the foie in water--a complete waste of calories and cholesterol for 16 bucks. My wife's Mohito was good but my martini arrived with a raft of ice chips on top. The scene was not helped by a loud woman at the bar who barked and clapped like a seal and a man in an Hawaiian shirt at the table next to us who resolutely kept his hat on, the better to hide what looked like a rug Bob Ehrlich might envy. Overall a very unpleasant experience.

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My wife and I had drinks and an appetizer in 701's "wine lounge" Friday night. The "torchon" of foie gras was a grey and lifeless little disk of what looked like the real thing but was utterly devoid of flavor. It was as though the chef had marinated the foie in water--a complete waste of calories and cholesterol for 16 bucks. My wife's Mohito was good but my martini arrived with a raft of ice chips on top. The scene was not helped by a loud woman at the bar who barked and clapped like a seal and a man in an Hawaiian shirt at the table next to us who resolutely kept his hat on, the better to hide what looked like a rug Bob Ehrlich might envy. Overall a very unpleasant experience.
Our last experience at the bar was exactly the opposite - we ordered off the bar menu (the mini burgers and the tostadas) and the food was delicious. I had wine but my companions who had martinis and Manhattans were quite pleased with their cocktails. The ambiance was very nice and the bar patrons were well behaved. I guess we got lucky!
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It's been a good week for me eating out :lol:

Joined a friend for drinks and small plates at the bar this week. Chatted up Mo the bartender [still affable & accommodating], nice live piano playing that night. Looks like Chef Bobby has been improving the bar menu since I last ate at the bar. For small plates we enjoyed sharing the Denver Lamb Spareribs [sweet chili-garlic glaze, sweet potato pommes frites] and Sea Bass Tostadas [tobiko caviar, tomato, avocado, sour cream].

Considered getting Dessert, but in review of what they had it didn't seem much different than when Bobby originally took over as Chef [and they weren't anything to write home about back then]. I supposed quality has improved, anyone try their desserts lately?

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Randomness As A Variable In Satanic Ritual

Two weeks ago, I had dinner at Thai Basil in Chantilly and randomly sat next to Bobby Varua of 701.

Last night, in a completely unrelated incident, I had dinner at 701 and randomly sat at the table next to Nongkran Daks of Thai Basil.

There is evil in the air, a mojo being perpetuated, and a voodoo-infected amulet applying forces against the sun.

Cheers,

Rocks.

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Went to dinner with a bunch of folks on Friday.

The space is definitely more spiffed-up. Still nice to have the jazz while conversing over pre-dinner drinks.

The food coming from Chef Longworth is something to explore. There's definitely an emphasis on seafood on the menu and for good reason. Some menu items folks enjoyed included the Seared Alaskan Halibut [w/ jasmine rice, carrot puree, tamarind, coconut], the Grilled Bronzino [w/ Spanish olives, potato confit, garlic aioli, Serrano ham, chardonnay vinegar], and most of all the appetizer special for the night the Grilled Octopus, good soft texture & flavor . The Octopus was plated with orzo w/ spanish green olives & grilled red onions, rice & red wine vinegar, potato confit dollop of green olive cream cheese. This was a highlight dish for many folks that tried it.

For myself I had their Seared Duck Breast [w/ Duck Confit, sweet potato, cranberry, sauteed spinach, orange-balsamic reduction] and LOVED it. Working off the calories today lol.

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Another highlight for our group last night was our server [Lorien?]. She was fantastic, really knew the menu & her suggestions were appreciated. I had some friends in the group who are picky about server quality and made efforts to comment how pleased they were with her.

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Dinner at 701 Sat night with my wife. (To fully disclose, we chose this restaurant only because my wife received a gift certificate for her birthday from some thoughtful colleagues. Without that to prompt us, we would likely have chosen somewhere else as this place hasnt been on our radar screen. That would have been a shame, as you'll read below, because the meal was nicely done from start to finish.)

Started with drinks at the bar as we arrived a tad early for our 8pm reservation. We both noted that the dining room and bar seemed empty for prime time on Saturday. My Bombay martini was as it should be - dry, cold, refreshing. The olives seemed a bit wan though, not the sizable, fully flavored versions most bars serve these days. My wife tried something called a Blackberry Sidecar from the cocktail menu - brandy, Cointreau, lemon juice, and blackberry puree served up in a martini glass with sugared rim. My wife liked it and I was curious so I tried it too and found it tasty but the blackberry puree pretty much overpowered any resemblance to a Sidecar. I would probably just bill it as brandy & blackberry to avoid the confusion.

We were seated at a nice table near the windows and soon zeroed in on a flight of sparkling wines offered on the wine list. We ordered the flight to accompany my grilled octopus appetizer and my wife's seared scallops. We were pleased with all of our choices. The flight of wines included a pinot noir, a reisling, and a malbec. They were all outstanding and frankly eye-opening for us as to how nuanced and different sparkling wines can taste to a non-oenophile's palate. The octopus was simple but delicious as well. Served with orzo and green olives, the smoky grilled octopus was dressed lightly with a smoked red vinegar that played up the smoky grill flavor perfectly. A fantastic dish. My wife's scallops were two perfectly cooked specimens accompanied by diced apples, cranberries, and a balsamic dressing. Both dishes were simple but perfectly executed.

My wife chose the seared halibut as her entree and I went with the spaghetti with manila clams & prawns. The halibut was served with jasmine rice and I think what was a carrot puree. My wife's assessment was that the seafood was again perfectly cooked and the dish worked well as a whole. She didn't offer me any so it must have been good. My pasta dish was fantastic as well. Al dente spaghetti noodles served with bite-sized clams and tender prawns bathed in a sauce redolent, but not overwhelmed by, garlic with the subtle kick of chili flakes in the background. There was nary a bite left when I was done. It was just that good.

We rounded out the evening with the ubiquitous chocolate cake dessert, accompanied by a flight of ice wines. We both learned that a) we really like chocolate cake, especially when it's served with coffee ice cream, and :lol: we hate ice wine. Waaaay too sweet, all three selections. No fault of the restaurant, just an excursion off the beaten path for us that went awry. The situation was quickly rectified by two fine glasses of Madeira. No harm, no foul.

Service was pleasant, courteous, and welcoming across the board (bartender, manager, waiter). The setting is kinda cool, urban-chic, and the piano player was a nice feature that we don't get to enjoy very much.

So, in summary: good service, nice setting, great drinks, and fantastic food. So why was this place half empty on a Saturday night? I don't know but our experience last Saturday suggests that it shouldn't be.

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Stopped in for a quick post-work bite this evening. I have been jonesing to give this place a new look after hearing all the hype about how it has been rejuvenated. This may not be entirely fair, as I only got a couple of bar menu items fairly late on a Monday evening, but I am sorry to report that what I experienced was double plus un-good.

Ordered a Vodka Gibson and got something seemingly completely devoid of anything but vodka, except for the puny, shriveled, sad looking cocktail onions giving up their wilted layers into my drink.

Asked the bartender for recommendations and he steered me to the Crisp Calamari. When it was my first impression was "Wow, what is that smell?" After the first bite my brain somehow connected the smell and taste to bacon. It all tasted like bacon. I wondered if they fried it in bacon somehow. Turns out it had smoked paprika in/on/around it. A lot of it. After 3 or 4 bites it became really overwhelming and started to emphasize the fact that it was fried in a rather unpleasant way. After 6-7 bites I was done (and I wish I had stopped earlier.)

I thought perhaps a cheese plate. That couldn't be screwed up could it? Four slices of what might have been good bread once, but was sadly quite dry and well on the road to full-on stale. Five cheeses (fairly pedestrian selections) served way way WAY too cold. Cheese plate. Screwed up.

Total cost (with tip) for this enlightening expedition - $58. It will take a whole lot more hype before I duck in here again.

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I'm sorry that I don't have specifics (forgot to report at the time), but want to report that I had a lovely meal here a couple of months ago. Everything was delicious, except for one item (risotto) that I just didn't like -- I couldn't give a specific reason, like oversaltiness or otherwise, I just did not like it, and the waitress picked up on that and replaced it, no charge, with another dish. Which was delicious.

It was far improved from the last time I ate here, a couple of years ago.

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DurwoodX,

This is Ed Witt, the new chef of 701 Restaurant. I'm sorry to hear about your experience and would like to invite you as my guest to come back and try some new additions to our bar menu. I have just added on a pulled pork sandwich on onion brioche, a great Red Apron charcuterie plate with pickled vegetables, and our rabbit rillettes.

I hope to meet you the next time you stop by 701.

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DurwoodX,

This is Ed Witt, the new chef of 701 Restaurant. I'm sorry to hear about your experience and would like to invite you as my guest to come back and try some new additions to our bar menu. I have just added on a pulled pork sandwich on onion brioche, a great Red Apron charcuterie plate with pickled vegetables, and our rabbit rillettes.

I hope to meet you the next time you stop by 701.

I just googled Ed Witt, and he has a very impressive set of culinary credentials. I just have two questions--why did Adam leave and why did Ed decide to move to 701?

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I just googled Ed Witt, and he has a very impressive set of culinary credentials. I just have two questions--why did Adam leave and why did Ed decide to move to 701?

Interesting. Bobby now Adam in relatively short timeframes.

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And?

I had a full dinner at 701 last week for the first time under new chef Ed Witt. This is the first time I've ever had his cooking (I never made it to Morso Express under his brief tenure), and I was extremely impressed with the meal. Note also that Rachel Sergi has taken over as bar manager from the legendary "Mo," who is now down at The Caucus Room.

One dish that evening was so unusual that I decided to go back last night and try it again. It was a Monday night before Restaurant Week, so the place was pretty dead, and I suspect the chef took a coveted night off before the storm begins.

Nevertheless, other than how it was presented on the plate, the dish was just as intriguing as it was last time. Vegans, listen up:

Market Cauliflower ($19) with almond milk, Swiss chard, and crispy caper berries is one of the best vegan platings I've had in a long time. Make no mistake about it - a restaurant has to have guts to charge nineteen dollars for an entree-sized portion of cauliflower, but I would happily get this again, a third time, next time I go. It really is that good, and it bears mention that the second-least expensive entree at 701 is $24, so they need to meet a price point (this does not include the fine pastas available by the full and half portion).

Last weekend I was spotted (I'm convinced that Ashok Bajaj is a quintuplet); last night, I'm not entirely sure, although it wouldn't have mattered if I had been. If there was one inconsistency between the two platings (other than presentation), it would be that the cauliflower was a touch saltier last night, which seemed extraneous since the magnificent caper berries really provide most of the salt this dish needs (plus, the caper berries are a diner-controlled item).

If you can tolerate the thought of spending this much money for a cauliflower-based entree, I urge every vegan in town to go try this dish. There are also 1-2 other vegan items on the menu from what I can see. Props to my bartender, Victor, for thoughtfully asking me if I ate pork when he brought the bread basket - there is a bit of pork in one of the rolls, and he wanted to warn me just in case.

Last weekend, I raised 701 way up in the Dining Guide; last night did nothing to change its placement.

Cheers,

Rocks

P.S. It was ironic that at the precise moment Ed was posting here, I was battling my way across town to reach 701 (remember, that day was the day of Rain-o-rama, Part Two, and it took forever - I was cursing myself for not taking the Metro).

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Had a delicious RW meal here the other night. Not a bad dish was served. The standouts were the rabbit rillettes, the halibut, and the pork loin. In fact, the latter was perhaps the best pork dish I’ve ever eaten, tasting just like a well seasoned/cooked steak. Of course, I’m Jewish, so what do I know from pork? ;P I shouldn’t forget to mention the perfectly crafted Manhattan, also one of the best I’ve ever had. Lastly, I noticed they have a lounge-area special that is (iirc) 2 courses and 2 glasses of wine for $35, which is a great deal if you look at the a la carte pricing. Given the quality of the meal, I'm surprised this place doesn't get more action.

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Had lunch with a business companion today, and we both ordered the steak and arugula salad, medium rare. The steak was fanned out and definitely medium rare, tasted like quality steak, and accompanied by a mound of fresh arugula with fennel and slight vinaigrette. There was absolutely nothing wrong with this dish at all, and as far as lunch goes, this was an excellent dish.

The lunch menu had me very tempted all over the place. The rockfish tartare, the smoked trout, the squid ink pasta and few others will have to be tried on future visits.

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I had the best duck confit in a long, long time! The way I really, really like it: fat well rendered, not greasy, fork tender but not dried out, and best of all…carefully cooked super, super crispy skin (similar to the texture of real crispy pork belly skin) sitting on a bed of cannellini beans, rose gold potatoes and plum compote. I had it for lunch, then dinner in the same day, no kidding!

Also, it is hearty, feed-the-soul soup season time. Autumn squash with goat cheese was the soup du jour for lunch and celery root with Parmesan was offered for dinner.

Long, long ago during my Corduroy days, a regular guest would come to the restaurant and every time he visited he would repeatedly say to Chef Tom Power, “You should write a book on just soups and title it ‘Power Soups’!” Power’s soups are my benchmark for thick, pureed soups: luscious, smooth, creamy, balanced flavors with just the perfect body (not too thick, not too thin), texture and seasoning. Well, I think I found your soup match Tom Power! :(

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I had the best duck confit in a long, long time! The way I really, really like it: fat well rendered, not greasy, fork tender but not dried out, and best of all…carefully cooked super, super crispy skin (similar to the texture of real crispy pork belly skin) sitting on a bed of cannellini beans, rose gold potatoes and plum compote. I had it for lunch, then dinner in the same day, no kidding!

I wholeheartedly agree. I had the duck confit as part of the pre-theater/early bird menu this past Saturday and it was really good! It is a nice size portion - but I was happy to help my dining companion finish hers :) Also really good was the salmon crudo appetizer. 3 small slices of porcini dusted salmon with some marinated slivers of apple on top. Kind of small - but hit the spot, especially in combo with the filling duck confit. For dessert, I had the sweet potato tart with praline ice cream and sesame wafer cookie. The tart was filling and only so so - I was expecting something lighter, but it was basically a dense mini-sweet potato pie. What made it really enjoyable though was the excellent ice cream. The ice cream did better than the sorbets that the others ordered - 3 big scoops of sorbet - date, banana, and cranberry. Date was the weakest - lots of it melted on diners plates , but the cranberry and banana were very good. I tried them all and concurred (and I really like dates). Overall a very nice meal with good service. This dinner was a special family birthday celebration in 701 small private room that can sit up to 12, i think. Great spot for this type of event.

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Finally got to 701 today for the first time ever.

Rockfish tartare...just simply a bangin' dish. Perfect levels of acidity, balance and texture. Green "gazpacho", jalapeno/prosecco granite. It's a perfect plate.

Garganelli with braised rabbit (half order, thanks)--served tossed with carrots and maitake mushrooms. Perfect pasta dish on a cold night like tonight. (The pasta itself made the dish--expertly made. Just enough chew and the red wine sauce adhered to it very well without being sticky like a lot of "red wine sauces" can be. It remained brothy and inviting.)

Sunflower seed crusted scallops--scallops cooked a perfect medium-rare and the dish was light in texture yet filling--in a good way. (I'm spacing on the accompaniments but I know sunchokes were smartly involved.)

Warm, inviting staff certainly contributed to a nice meal out. Cheers, 701! Job well done!

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Can I just say that if you wanted a reservation on January 23 you could get a reservation almost anywhere. We choose 701 for a "Christmas Eve Eve" Dinner with my Mom and BIL. It was absolutely awesome. The renovation looks great. The music made it a really nice ambiance for the evening and we had a great table. We had a bottle of Jordan which everyone enjoyed. Wine service was just as it should be. Our waiter was so professional and very thoughtful.

Now onto the food. I started with the Escarole and Beet Salad. They were really nice yellow beets thinly sliced on the bottom topped with escarole and them moody blue cheese sauce poured over top. It was rich, but had a nice balance from all the flavors. I really enjoyed it, but my husband won this course. He had the proscuitto wrapped quail, which came as a sausage over grits and collards. Mmmmmmm. I had one bite, I wanted the whole dish. It was so good. I loved it. It was the clear winner of starters.

For an entree I had the red snapper over saffron risotto. The snapper was perfectly seared and cooked. It was prepared so well. The risotto was very good too. My Mom gave me a bite of her rabbit ragu that went over her pasta and it was rich and homey in a wonderful way. Hubby had the pork loin and was happy with it, I didn't taste it but it seemed to go pretty quick.

The only complaint was from the deconstructed desserts. The problem was they just weren't as good as what the non-deconstructed dessert itself would be. I had the best one the chocolate terrine, nothing new, but it was good. This is the one area I think they could work on though. Mom didn't think her bread pudding was as good as it would be if the pralines were in the pudding and more prominent, it also wasn't very sweet. Hubby was very sad the lemon pie wasn't really pie.

But overall it was really excellent. And it was a great night with just the right atmosphere.

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Please join us in celebrating our 20th anniversary this month with a $20 three course lunch & anniversary cake at dinner.

701 Restaurant

Sounds great! Your website has links for a $15 lunch at the bar, a $30 prix fixe theater menu and a $35 prix fixe lounge menu. What are the options for the 3 course Anniversary menu for lunch?

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Sounds great! Your website has links for a $15 lunch at the bar, a $30 prix fixe theater menu and a $35 prix fixe lounge menu. What are the options for the 3 course Anniversary menu for lunch?

20th Anniversary Lunch Menu

Appetizer

Chestnut & Mushroom Soup, Quince & Tarragon

House-made Pork & Cheddar Sausage, Beer Braised Cabbage

Red Wine Poached Pear & Frisee Salad,

Medjool Dates, Goat Cheese, Maple Candied Walnuts

Entrée

Crispy Duck Confit, Cannellini Beans, Potato, Plum Compote

Grilled Shrimp & Anson Mill Grits, Spiced Tomato Sauce, Escarole

Spiced Apple Linguine, Oyster Mushrooms, Grated Midnight Moon

Desserts

Seasonal Sorbet & Winter Fruit Medley

Pecan Bourbon Bread Pudding, Vanilla Bean Ice Cream, Caramel Tuile

701 20th Birthday Cake, Triple Layer Chocolate Cake, Orange Ginger Mousse

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Disappointing dinner at 701 Saturday night. I had fond memories of our initial visit here about a year ago so my expectations were high. For the most part, they were not met.

I started with a Hendricks martini, which was beautifully chilled and bone dry.

To start the meal, I ordered a salad of pea shoots, fava beans, something called marissa cheese, and tiny croutons. The salad was pleasant - the pea shoots tasted of spring, the favas were nice texturally, and I really liked the cheese - but the dressing lacked punch and the whole dish suffered for it. A more assertive dressing with more lemon or acid of some sort would have made a nice salad into a really good one.

My entree red snapper served over "saffron risotto" with peekytoe crab and meyer lemon. I put quotes around the saffrom risotto because, while there was clearly rice under the fish, calling the runny mess a risotto seemed inappropriate. The rice was undercooked, it was not creamy in the least, and it tasted nothing of the promised saffron. In fact, I found no hint of peekytoe crab either. The meyer lemon flavor was so dominant that it drowned out all the other flavors. On paper, this seemed like a great dish but the execution was rather poor and made me wonder what happened between my last visit here and now.

The service was pleasant, prompt, and professional. The ambiance was nice, especially with the piano player. The lack of finesse and general poor execution of the dishes I ordered will make me reconsider a future visit, however.

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I hadn't been to 701 since they'd remodeled. And though I've got to say I preferred its previous design incarnation, I decided to bet on it for a pre-theater meal* with a friend.

Assessment? Push.

The bar was quite loud because there was an office party in the area behind the beaded curtains. No biggie--in fact we both observed that this would be a great place for an office cocktail party. The bartender seemed to be serving for the whole restaurant, including the party, but still managed to be really friendly, though very slow--it took a lot of time for us to get drink refills.

I started with the bourbon apple salad, which was FABULOUS. After my first couple of bites, I made my companion, who didn't order a starter, tell me a story so I could stuff my mouth continuously without needing to speak--the apples were saturated in butter and sugar, and were beautifully balanced by the earthy greens and pomegranate seeds.

But then came the next course. My vegetarian companion ordered three of the veggie sides; there wasn't much for her on the menu aside from the pasta, which she wasn't in the mood for, but she was totally happy with just the sides--"these are going to be my entree, so can I just get them all served on one plate?" Sure. Except, well, of course not. They brought out three bowls of vegetables, each served on a large plate with its own serving spoon. And then they left her to stack the plates and spoons and juggle the bowls in the small bar space--no recognition of the situation or offer to assist. For my second, I got the corn and crab chowder, which was served to me with a bowl of stuff in which the server poured the liquid.** The thick liquid tasted almost entirely of uncooked flour. After a couple of bites, I pushed it aside, where it sat for quite some time, until I asked the bartender to take it away. "You don't like it?" (Busy bar, not wanting to announce it to all my neighbors): "No, it doesn't taste right," to which I got a look of confusion. "I don't think the roux was totally cooked because it tastes of flour." "So you don't like it?" "Well, no... but it's not just me--" Soup whisked away. The veggies were all tasty, which I know because my friend offered me tastes when I had nothing else to eat... because the busy bartender never mentioned the soup, offered me any replacement or menu or suggestion for something else to eat.

The soup wasn't on the bill, so kudos to them for that, but what a 'feh' night. I'm giving the place an 'okay' overall because the salad was so good, and I really want the place to work, but there were some systemic-seeming things here that annoyed me, perhaps multiplied since I took someone new to town who is trusting me on restaurant recommendations. Push.

*I don't usually do the fixed price deals because I generally don't want dessert.

** Listen, I totally understand why they do this, but I still find it kind of twee for my taste. Doesn't the menu tell me what's in the soup?

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I started with the bourbon apple salad, which was FABULOUS. After my first couple of bites, I made my companion, who didn't order a starter, tell me a story so I could stuff my mouth continuously without needing to speak--the apples were saturated in butter and sugar, and were beautifully balanced by the earthy greens and pomegranate seeds.

Based on both your description and the menu's description, I didn't quite know what to expect from the Bourbon Caramel Apple Salad ($10) with red mustard greens and pomegranate - in particular, I wasn't sure about either the thickness of the caramel or the temperature of the dish. First and foremost, it is (indeed) a salad, and a great one. There were so many different ways that this could have been wrong - too sweet, out of balance, insufficient seasoning, thick saucing - but for my tastes, this was executed to perfection. A light dish, with plenty of acidity and the occasional thrill of salt to balance the apples, this beautiful plate (and the plate itself was beautiful) gained an added dimension when I accepted my bartender's offer of some fresh ground pepper (lightly milled around the periphery - that's how I like to do it).

Cheers,

Rocks

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Had lunch at 701 yesterday, ordered badly and therefore didn't get much to eat. The "Small Plates" were really, truly small, especially compared to "small plates" I've had elsewhere. I got one small plate and shared a small plate with a friend, who had gotten the seafood chopped salad. (the website doesn't show small plates, only apps, but I know the menu said small plates - it's possible I had one app and shared a small plate). I often get two appetizers instead of a main dish (they're so often more tempting and I would rather eat smaller portions - just not this small) so I thought an app and half a small plate (or 1 1/2 small plates, since I can't recall) would be enough. I wish the waitress had advised me that that wouldn't be much food (I did tell her we planned to share the mushrooms).

The funny thing is that the plate the mushrooms were on was massive -- huge expanses of white encircling some very tasty mushrooms (maybe 8 or 9 of them? I had 4 or 5), little red beans ("red peas" were on the menu, these were bean-like but I've never had red peas before) and a nice sauce. Then I had the Bee Gee shrimp (app on the online menu, I thought I recalled small plate), which was delectable -- two largish shrimp, pineapple vinaigrette that was sparkling with the pineapple flavor (on the less acidic side, or maybe it seemed that way when tasted with the shrimp), ginger sabayon. The flavors were in perfect balance and I made sure I got every last bit of it. But next time I would get this appetizer and either get an entree or share an entree. My friend said her seafood chopped salad was very good, though the taste of it I had didn't excite me.

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Then I had the Bee Gee shrimp (app on the online menu, I thought I recalled small plate), which was delectable -- two largish shrimp, pineapple vinaigrette that was sparkling with the pineapple flavor (on the less acidic side, or maybe it seemed that way when tasted with the shrimp), ginger sabayon.

What did the Bee Gee shrimp do after being narrowly missed by a trawl net?

He swam away (rolling its arms and wiggling its butt) and started singing "Stayin' Alive."

Ashok was the one in the boat.

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This restaurant really seems to fly under the radar, but it shouldn't. My family is a difficult bunch to find a restaurant that will please all, and yet on Thanksgiving, no less, everyone came away delighted and satisfied with our meals. I was a little unsure if my FIL would think it not "simple" enough food, but he thoroughly enjoyed it.

3 course meal for $48, plus a tray of sides for $12; I wish I had printed out the menu because I did not take notes. I really wish I had as my meal was out of this world good. I have a dislike for tarragon, but the item on the menu that appealed to me and that I could eat without any alteration for my allergies was prepared with tarragon. For two reasons I went ahead and ordered it. First, because I would be able to eat a dish prepared as the chef intended, and second, because I have eaten at 701 before and know the caliber of the food here. I figured in the hands of a chef who knows what he is doing, it was worth the risk. And ohhhh, was it ever.

Now my SIL, who has a real dislike for tarragon as well, followed my lead and also ordered the same dish. And I am relieved to say she also was pleasantly surprised and loved her meal. The dish was red snapper, with a puree of turnips, I think, with a sauce that tasted of brown butter. There were small dollops of the taragon puree. My MIL also ordered the same and all three of us had plates that were licked clean.

FIL orderd the Turkey dinner, Mr. S ordered the squash ravioli, Nephew ordered steak, and I really can't recall the rest of the orders...the service was attentive without being obtrusive. Live music added to the festive atmosphere. I will add to my post if my memory fills in more, but I can say it was a fantastic choice for dining out on Thanksgiving, and a fantastic place to dine out anytime.

I hope to see more posts about this place as it really does deserve the attention.

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This restaurant really seems to fly under the radar, but it shouldn't. My family is a difficult bunch to find a restaurant that will please all, and yet on Thanksgiving, no less, everyone came away delighted and satisfied with our meals. I was a little unsure if my FIL would think it not "simple" enough food, but he thoroughly enjoyed it.

3 course meal for $48, plus a tray of sides for $12; I wish I had printed out the menu because I did not take notes. I really wish I had as my meal was out of this world good. I have a dislike for tarragon, but the item on the menu that appealed to me and that I could eat without any alteration for my allergies was prepared with tarragon. For two reasons I went ahead and ordered it. First, because I would be able to eat a dish prepared as the chef intended, and second, because I have eaten at 701 before and know the caliber of the food here. I figured in the hands of a chef who knows what he is doing, it was worth the risk. And ohhhh, was it ever.

Now my SIL, who has a real dislike for tarragon as well, followed my lead and also ordered the same dish. And I am relieved to say she also was pleasantly surprised and loved her meal. The dish was red snapper, with a puree of turnips, I think, with a sauce that tasted of brown butter. There were small dollops of the taragon puree. My MIL also ordered the same and all three of us had plates that were licked clean.

FIL orderd the Turkey dinner, Mr. S ordered the squash ravioli, Nephew ordered steak, and I really can't recall the rest of the orders...the service was attentive without being obtrusive. Live music added to the festive atmosphere. I will add to my post if my memory fills in more, but I can say it was a fantastic choice for dining out on Thanksgiving, and a fantastic place to dine out anytime.

I hope to see more posts about this place as it really does deserve the attention.

Read this, please.

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I took my office to lunch at 701 to celebrate a tough year.  All I can say is that it was excellent.  They permitted me to bring three bottles of wine from my cellar (the normal limit is two per table) because there were eight of us.  The table was waiting for us with sufficient stemware and decanters at the side (very good Riedels).  I brought  three Pinot Noirs, a 2015 Peay Savoy Vineyard, a 2012 Loring Russell Family Vineyard, and a 2009 Patricia Green Marine Sedimentary Ribbon Ridge (opened in reverse order of listing)

Appetizers included Spanish Octopus with fresh anise, citrus, caper vinaigrette, and salsify puree; Lamb Meatballs with charred poblano remoulade and paprika, and: a very good mixed baby greens salad.  Several of them enjoyed the Wagyu sliders, and three were  delighted with the Rockfish with gnocchi, mussel jus, Spanish chorizo, rouille, and tomato confit.  Desserts were an excellent panna cotta and a trio of sorbets (strawberry, cranberry and passion fruit.)  (I just had three scoops of the passion fruit)  A couple of us ended the meal with coffee sherry. 

I can't say enough about the service we received.  We were there for a couple of hours, never felt rushed, and everything was like a well oiled machine.  Plates disappeared when they were empty, but not before;  silverware was replaced quietly and efficiently; water glasses were always full and the bread basket was never empty.   Now I remember why I enjoy this place so much every time I eat there.  I guess there is a reason they have lasted for 28 years and counting.

 

 

 

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Did the $17 lunch at the bar here today.  The salmon burger was fantastic.  It took all my restraint to eat only one mini muffin and one roll (plus butter) from the bread service before my entree arrived. OMG, their bread is good. I'm not prepared to say it's as good as Rose's, but it is really good and that's the comparison that came to mind. The burger came with house made potato chips, which I ate too many of. I tried to atone for all the bread by leaving the last 1/3 of the burger bun, for whatever good that did.

The salmon burger was quite substantial and was the size of the bun. When I talked to the bartender about how much I enjoyed it, she mentioned that they used shrimp for the filler rather than some kind of bread.  That was interesting information that I would not have known otherwise.  I'm fine with shrimp, but it might be an unpleasant surprise to others. The fact there is shellfish in this is not noted on the menu description, while the items that are included on the sandwich (pickled onion, etc.) are.  Since some people who are allergic to shellfish can eat fish, and shrimp isn't isn't an obvious or stated ingredient, they should fix this on the menu.  It's a great sandwich.  I'm skipping dinner:ph34r:.

Service was wonderful, as it has been every time I've been here.

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3 hours ago, Keithstg said:

Wow. What a run 701 had. Great, under the radar spot. Had always had solid meals there - and 701 was a trailblazer in that neighborhood.

I was thinking the same.  In 1989 and for some years there was no Penn Qtr and little attractive or compelling North of the complex that has housed 701.  Meals were excellent and it was a fun place to dine drink or meet at.  

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I have very fond memories of the bar at 701 from my days in DC.  Situated as it is, right on top of the Navy Memorial metro, it was an easy ride to or from home from me, living on the green line.  The piano player was always engaging, and it was the perfect place for a Manhattan to begin or end and evening on the town.

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Truth be told, I preferred this over Fiola for jury duty lunch. I usually indulge myself when I'm there for a day. I'm sure I'd take a different approach for a long-term service. like bringing my own food. 😟

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2 hours ago, Pat said:

Truth be told, I preferred this over Fiola for jury duty lunch. I usually indulge myself when I'm there for a day. I'm sure I'd take a different approach for a long-term service. like bringing my own food. 😟

I had a jury duty lunch there a few years ago. As is typical in all of Mr. Bajaj's restaurants, all the food was in front of me in under 10 minutes. 

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we had our first meal at 701 in october, and based on that experience, it would likely have been our last regardless of the closure.  i always enjoy reading when this community has fond memories of a restaurant over the years.  sounds like 701 filled an important niche in its time, but at our dinner it felt like a restaurant past its prime.  nothing horrendous, but an unexciting, unmemorable meal on all levels -- food, service, and decor.  but it's a rare, impressive feat to have stayed in business for this long in an ever-evolving restaurant scene.  

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