I approached our trip to D.C. this past weekend with a new attitude. The new attitude went something like this: “Let’s not obsess about our meals; researching and investigating potential dining destinations. Let’s go with the flow and just have fun.” And for the most part that’s what we did. I even forfeited a reservation at Cafe Atlantico (which, after reading much about it, is difficult to appraise in terms of its D.C. dining status: I know Jose Andreas owns it, I know minibar upstairs is a huge draw, but Tom Sietsema in his D.C. dining guide says the food at Cafe Atlantico is past its prime). Instead we ate tapas on the roof of Talbac, which allowed for a view of the Washington monument and the Capitol. Otherwise, my favorite meal consumed was at Teaism.
All the factors that make for a pleasant dining experience–location, food, atmosphere, service–came together beautifully the morning we went to Teaism (with the possible exception of service since Teaism is basically self-service.) Both Craig and I had cilantro scrambled eggs with tea smoked salmon (both very well made) and we washed it down with the signature Chai Tea. Craig declared, “This is the best Chai Tea I’ve ever had.” Unlike the usual chemical compound served from a box at Starbucks, everything about the Teaism Chai Tea is fresh, bright and pleasantly elusive. “Is that cinnamon?” you might ask yourself. “Star Anise?” Teaism Chai Tea is a beautiful mystery.
Otherwise, I’m embarrassed to say, we ate pretty shamefully on the Mall. But by all accounts that’s what you must do when in such a touristy area. It’s funny how excited people get at the existence of a McDonalds. I heard one group of tourists tell another group of tourists: “There’s a McDonald’s behind the Air & Space museum.” “Oh good!” said the other group, delighted.
Craig, who got hungry after several hours of museum going, had a sudden hankering for a Quarter Pounder. “This is going on my website,” I chastised him. He posed defiantly:
I watched him eat his burger, snacking on a few of his fries, and then I finally caved and asked for a bite. You know what? Snobbery aside, it tasted pretty good. In fact I made the comment (and I may eat crow for this one): “It tastes a little like the Shake Shack burger.” Craig, surprisingly, agreed.
On Sunday morning for brunch, Lauren led us to Busboys and Poets, a really fun, really interesting spot in the slowly-getting-gentrified U Street Corridor. My eggs benedict was quite tasty and I liked browsing the book shop at the end.
And that, my friends, is essentially what we ate in D.C.