Scrolling through my pictures today, I realized that I never wrote my review of District Commons in DC back in September! What a travesty. As a food blogger I’m slipping a little. But the fine people at DC shouldn’t fret. I’m at least 8 posts behind, and that’s just the food blog. The Homes blog [...]
Scrolling through my pictures today, I realized that I never wrote my review of District Commons in DC back in September! What a travesty. As a food blogger I’m slipping a little. But the fine people at DC shouldn’t fret. I’m at least 8 posts behind, and that’s just the food blog. The Homes blog and the Marketing blog are in a serious state of abandon right now. But I digress because if you are still reading this, you are interested in the food.
District Commons was actually our second choice on the morning. We were looking for a good brunch place, and the one we wanted to go to (the name escapes me) was packed. But being the resourceful foodies with iPhones that we are, we found our way to District Commons.
The large, incredibly well-lit restaurant took up the bottom floor of a DC office building…the type of space I feel is usually reserved for a bank or a lobby. It was uncrowded on a Sunday afternoon, and we were shown to our booth; with a convenient view of the Skins game for Aunt Sue.
We started the morning with some drinks…bloody Mary for me, beers for everyone else, and then turned our attention to the interesting looking pretzel baguette. It was as if a German baker and French baker decided to combine expertise and produce this hybrid Germench bread with the crispness and saltiness of a pretzel on the outside and the soft fluffiness of a baguette on the inside. Of course we know the French bakers would never do something like combine with the Germans, but hey, it’s nice to think.
While powering through the second loaf, my hash arrived. What can I say…I’m a sucker for a good hash. And this was a good hash. Instead of the usual corned beef, it was melt in your mouth tender braised beef shortribs, with some creamy Yukon gold potatoes and a couple of sunnyside up eggs that made a nice little sauce when the yolks were broken and flowed out onto the plate. It was a hearty, savory meal with the only thing missing being a bit more red pepper and onion to give it a touch of that sweetness that I think would have brought it all together (I like a 50/50 pepper and onion to potato in my hash).
Before leaving, we had to take a look at the dessert menu, and what should catch my eye, but Boston Cream Pie. I know I wasn’t in Boston, and I know I really shouldn’t have, but I couldn’t help myself. And I’m glad a didn’t. The cake was light and fluffy. The cream not too sweet and not too heavy. And the chocolate provided a perfect balance that wasn’t too much for me but still satisfied the chocolate craving of those that sampled a bite or two.
We thoroughly enjoyed the meal, from the quality of the food to the openness of the room. For a last minute find, District Commons definitely delivered the goods, and has convinced me that any restaurant that has “common” in the name is worth trying (see also Clyde Common in Portland).
Final Verdict – 4.25 Stars
Back on May 11, I noticed in my Twitter feed that I had received a mention from @13CoinsSeattle. It simply said, we would love to have you in sometime. I’m not sure if they stumbled across one of my posts that wound up in UrbanSpoon, or if we follow the same people or what it [...]
Back on May 11, I noticed in my Twitter feed that I had received a mention from @13CoinsSeattle. It simply said, we would love to have you in sometime. I’m not sure if they stumbled across one of my posts that wound up in UrbanSpoon, or if we follow the same people or what it was. But I responded and had a little Twitter conversation as I tried to figure out a good time to go. I wasn’t about to say no to someone that reached out to me, especially an institution like 13 Coins. It took almost a month, but I finally found a time before a Mariner’s game when I was in town and could make it over, accompanied by Josh (appearing in his 3rd post), Ty (2nd appearance), and Pat (a DeckOnFood newcomer).
For those of you reading that live in Seattle, I’m sure you know about 13 Coins. For those of you not from Seattle and may be reading this, let me tell you. Quite simply, 13 coins is a staple of late night/early morning dining in Seattle. It features a 24 hour menu of excellent dining options in a relaxed, lounge type environment. It’s the type of place that you head to after a night out in Belltown or Queen Anne when you aren’t quite ready to go home, or you realize that you haven’t eaten all day. And even though I had never been to 13 Coins, I was well aware of it. And yes, I received a fair amount of shit from my friends for having lived in Seattle for 7 years and never making a visit. So I was definitely excited to be making my first trip while at the same time offering my friend’s their own first; the first time they have been to 13 Coins at 11 A.M., with the sun high in the sky.
When we walked in, we were greeted by a very friendly hostess who offered us patio seating…another thing that my friends had never experienced (who eats on the patio at 2 a.m.?). But, as I was a 13 Coins virgin, I was informed that I needed to receive the booth experience, and we were shown down a fairly narrow walkway to one of the famous high-back booths. And when I say high-back, I don’t mean that the booth was a little higher than normal, I mean the leather booth went all the way to the ceiling. When you sit in your booth, you are definitely isolated in your own little world, though you do have a view of the long open kitchen. This is apparently another appeal of the late night visits…a bustling kitchen right there in front of you. On this day, at this time, it was pretty quiet though.
After we sat down, we placed our drink order…13 Coins also has a full-on old school lounge; the type that has me wanting to go back on evening, order a scotch and listen to Sinatra. 3 of us went for the Bloody Mary’s, and Ty, being the odd one out, decided to get something with vodka. When our server, Chris, left, we went back to perusing the menu. I decided fairly quickly that I was just going to ask what he recommended, given the over abundance of options.
When Chris returned with the drinks we were ready. I started by asking what he recommended and without hesitation he said the eggs benedict. I think he actually said that before I actually completed the question. He then went on to tell us that the Hollandaise was always fresh because it was made hourly, and that they were just fantastic. You have to appreciate when someone doesn’t hesitate, doesn’t ask questions, and flat out tells you what they think is the best thing on the menu. That sold most of us as we ordered the Dungeness crab eggs benedict. One of us (guess who….) decided to order the steak and eggs. Apparently he’s on a low carb diet. Actually it was a “I want to get my carbs in beer only” diet, but we still had to give him a hard time.
Once we had placed our order and settled into conversation, I started on my drink. As I’ve said in the blog before, I don’t write a lot about drinks, but I thought that this was a good Bloody Mary. It was definitely more mild than most that I’ve had, and seemed a little lighter in the alcohol department. If I was hungover, that would have been a little disappointing. But let’s be honest, I wasn’t there for the drinks. I was there for the food, and when the plate landed in front of me, I was ready to dig in.
Quite simply, the eggs benedict were just very well done. The eggs were perfectly poached so that when I cut into them, the yolk ran out and combined with the other ingredients perfectly. The Hollandaise was obviously fresh; nice and creamy though not overly heavy which is impressive. Then there was the crab. They didn’t mess with it; just picked it and left it alone to shine the way Dungeness crab does. If you’ve never had the succulent, sweet Dungeness crab, you are absolutely missing out. One of my favorite things in Seattle. And all of this sat on top of an English muffin that was cooked so perfectly that it was easy to cut through yet still added a little textural crunch. It only took me about a half dozen bites to dispose of the first benny.
Before starting on the second of my two eggs, I took a few bites of the hashbrowns. They were ok. I mean, there isn’t a ton you can do with shredded potatoes. They had a nice crunch to them, but they were a little bland. I would have preferred maybe some sort of seasoned home fries to round it out. But I used them to pick up the extra Hollandaise, and with a little bit of Tobasco, they were just fine. And fortunately I still had one egg which I made pretty short work of.
When we finished our meals and headed to the game, everyone was feeling good. The consensus was that it was nicely filling, though not so much so that we would rather go nap than go to the game. Ty also commented that his steak was perfectly cooked which was great to hear especially given how difficult it is to find a place in Seattle that knows how to properly cook a steak. It was actually a great way to pre-funk for the ball game, with one exception. During the 3rd inning I received a Twitter message saying that I should be sure to ask for the industry card when I made it in. that discount could have bought us like one extra stadium beer!! Oh well. Now that I know, I will assuredly ask for it on my next trip as I fully intend on there being a next trip. Probably a pre-airport stop given how much I am traveling. Nothing like fueling up properly in the morning!