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Swanky Old-time Fav in Old Town

Adorned on the walls in the newly reopened The Majestic, historically known as the Majestic Cafe, are old photographs of the original layout of the restaurant and some of the employees from long ago. Some date back to 1932. The new owners, chef Cathal Armstrong, his wife, Meshelle, and the couple’s business partner, sommelier, Todd Thrasher have successfully taken over and revived the old Majestic Cafe and the menu. Rumor has it that four years ago, chef Cathal Armstrong and his wife, Meshelle, came up with the idea for their Restaurant Eve over a bottle of wine at the old Majestic Cafe and of course when they got wind that the landmark was closing, they decided to step in and come up with a plan to save it. Todd Thrasher’s wife, Maria Chicas serves as the Majestic’s general manager.
This is the fourth establishment in their reign over Old Town. Their first restaurant to open in the area was Restaurant Eve, which has recently been remarked as being as good as DC’s most highly ranked establishments, Citronelle and City Zen, which were ranked number 1 and number two on the Washingtonian’s 100 Very Best Restaurant List in 2007. Restaurant Eve, ranked number 6 in 2007, was named after Cathal and Meshelle’s daughter has become one of the most talked about restauarants in the DC area, not just by area diners, but also by DC’s top Chefs. The group has since opened Eamonn’s, a Dublin chipper, named after Cathal and Meshelle’s son, and Px, their upstairs swanky speakeasy lounge.
I have visited all but the Px. These folks really have their eye on the ball. Last night, my non-foodie husband, Ben and I visited The Majestic. It was both of ours first time ever dining there. I made a reservation using Opentable.com, as I do with most of my dining out visits. Even though we arrived on time and told the hostess that we had a reservation, we waited 10 minutes to sit down because she said that they were out of menus. I thought it was rather peculiar for a Saturday night.
Once we were sat at our table, we got a bread basket. Service to say the least, was a bit lacking. There was waiting for everything. Uneventful until the entrees came. Ben’s fish was overcooked and I felt responsible because I picked the place and raved about it because it was Cathal’s! I’m not sure if I will go back. I might … maybe it was just an Off-night.


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