Tom Sietsema visits the white-hot Rose's Luxury and likes just about everything (though he isn't into the already-popular popcorn soup).
Almost everything that follows the freebies gives us the sense that Washington is gaining another dining sensation along the lines of such personal statements as Etto in Logan Circle and Little Serow in Dupont Circle. The pork dish, in particular, is one of those combinations I expect to see on future Best of 2013 lists. The bowl brings together crumbled country ham sausage, juicy litchis, coconut milk, red onion and a bouquet of tropical herbs that together initiate that joy ride the waiter promised.
Sietsema has a great waiter and a great brisket while he's there. "A neon sign on a scarred wall pretty much sums up an admittedly early visit to Rose's Luxury. 'Awesome,' it reads." [WaPo]
The critic also talks about three places which didn't make the cut for the Dining Guide: The Source (2.5 stars), Montmarte (2 stars) and Jackie's (2 stars), calling them good, but not great. Of the Source, he says, "My affection for the one-time three-star destination has lessened. A racy base of chilies and tomato and a sprightly crown of julienned vegetables do their best to prop up an otherwise dull and mushy crab cake. Even the signature lacquered duck lacks luster." [WaPo]
The $20 Diner checks out the revamped (and revamped again) Hawk 'N' Dove and finds a confused place. "Would you make a trip to the Hawk & Dove based on the food alone, without a game to pair it with? Yeah, I don't think I would either. It just doesn't have the same magnetism as the old spot." [WaPo]
Todd Kliman's review of Casa Luca is now online, and he questions just how casual the place is. "The latest expression of the new casual is Casa Luca, an Italian restaurant from chef Fabio Trabocchi, where dishes are garnished with flower petals and a pork chop goes for $30." But that said, the food is what counts, and the critic likes the meats and the desserts. [Washingtonian]
Kliman also adds three new places to his list of spots he's enjoying now, including Vermillion, Khan Kabob and Yi Ya's Kitchen. Of the first, he says, "New chef, same supremely assured restaurant. William Morris has risen to the top spot with the departure of Tony Chittum, and is a chef to watch." [Washingtonian]
Don Rockwell posts several reviews, including those of Chipotle, Woodberry Kitchen and Northside Social. He calls Woodberry "my favorite restaurant in Baltimore, and one of the very best restaurants in the Baltimore-Washington area. It is truly great, even though it fell something short of superlative, and is worthy of a special trip from DC to experience." [DR]
Bethesda Magazine gets a first taste of House of Milae, and considers it a simple and reasonably-priced place. The bibimbap was "a pleasant mélange definitely enhanced with the accompanying chili pepper sauce." [BM]