Restaurant Week Recap

So Restaurant Week is long gone … but not forgotten. This time around, I had the pleasure of dining at PS 7’s, Penn Quarter’s Zaytinya, and Olives for lunch. My first dinner of the week was on a Tuesday night. My good friend Shabobe, (pronounced Sha-Bob-Ee) and I had dinner at PS 7’s. I had to do a little research to find out how it got its name. Apparently, PS 7’s is a combination of the Executive Chef/Owner’s name, Peter Smith and the address 777 I Street. The restaurant is located in the Chinatown/Penn Quarter neighborhoods of Washington, DC, which is conveniently just one block away from the Verizon Center and two blocks from the Gallery Place Metro Station. Any place that is accessible by metro, in my opinion is bound to do well. PS 7’s is no exception. The restaurant’s dining room is very modern, yet cozy. Some of the tables are a bit close to each other, which could be considered cozy or intrusive, depending on who you ask. PS 7’s restaurant week menu was, how do I say it, almost barren (unfruitful, lacking). There was not enough appetizers to choose from, and if you don’t like fish, well you’d leave hungry. For my first course, I ordered the “house-made” Black Pepper Parmesean and Lemon Gnochi, served with duck confit, haricot verts, pearl onions and watercress in a sage and vermouth broth. I thought that the gnochi was decent, but it was so peppery, that I coughed with almost every bite. For my second course, I opted for the Cornmeal Crusted Rainbow Trout, described as served with roasted yellow corn, watermelon and cilantro relish and baby spinach. Shabobe said that he had ordered the trout before and recalled it being very good, so I decided to give it a go. I wish I hadn’t. I wasn’t in the slightest bit impressed. I don’t even think that I finished it. The fish was dry and with every bite, I wished I had more cilantro relish. I will say that I thought that offering Beingnets as a dessert was quite unique. I haven’t had them since Nawlins, going on 8 years ago. They were delicious and I hope that they offer them all year round on their dessert menu.
A day or so later, I attended a meeting out of my office and found myself standing outside the restaurant Olives at located at 1600 K Street, NW. I sat at the bar and was pleasantly surprised by their restaurant week lunch menu. For my first course, I had melon and procuttio. I ate every single bite, although I think that the procuttio should have been wrapped more around the melon pieces. It was plated nicely, in terms of presentation, but it was rather difficult to eat. For the second course, I ordered what I thought would be a very simple boring chicken breast, but boy was I wrong. This chicken was the best chicken breast that I have ever had in my entire life. The meat was extremely tender and unbelievably juicy. It definitely had a mediterranean flavor and the ingredients were almost unidentifiable. I learned by researching the owner and chef, Todd English that he is not only, breathtakingly handsome, but very well known for his “rustic mediterranean cuisine”. He owns several restaurants all over the US, including Bonfire, Kingfish Hall, Figs, and several locations of his restaurant Olives. I’d like to come back. Great place for a cool and chic happy hour.

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