Palette 22 opened last month in Shirlington. The art-themed restaurant was designed by Bechmann Architestcs and pieces from local artists adorn the walls. The 206-seat space is meant to look like a studio, and artists create works on site at the restaurant. There's an open kitchen and a patio on the way.
The vast menu of international street foods includes over 30 different plates by chef Graham Duncan(the corporate chef from Alexandria Restaurant Partners, which owns Palette 22). Dishes range from tacos to grilled halloumi and watermelon to Japanese takoyaki. The drink menu offers an extensive selection of wine, beer, and cocktails.
The restaurant already has 51 Yelp reviews with an overall rating or four and a half stars. Read on for the early word on Palette 22:
The Industrial Artist's Studio Vibe News: Blogger Cocktail Amateur writes, "I found Palette 22 welcoming and comfortable, with a huge and broad bar with outlets and foot rests (important for those of us under six feet tall!), tons of sunlight, and massive amounts of space." Blogger DC on Heels says, "The restaurant looks unfinished – polished concrete floors, a cement block bar with a dark wood top, unfinished plywood walls, metal pipes, and a black open ceiling. It’s supposed to remind diners of an industrial artist’s studio." [Cocktail Amateur, DC on Heels]
The Kinks in the Reservation System News: Some customers have encountered some issues making reservations. One OpenTable poster writes, "I made my reservation through OpenTable for 6pm...Got to the restaurant and they told me my reservation was at 6:30. I physically showed them my confirmation email that it was at 6. They acted like it was some mysterious issue, never apologized, but was able to seat me at 6." OpenTable poster wendfish writes, "We had to wait 20+ minutes for our reservation..., but the manager bought us a round of drinks, so that was nice." [OT]
The On the Loud Side News: Tripadvisor poster Karen B. says the restaurant is "crowded, loud and dark." One OpenTable poster writes, "I just couldn't get past how ridiculously and obnoxiously loud this place was." Yelper Andie C. writes, " Atmosphere was trendy and a little on the loud side but nothing abnormal for a Friday night." [TA, Yelp]
The Interesting and Fun Cocktails News: Blogger Cocktail Amateur writes, "it was such a joy sipping the simple but great drinks at Palette 22." His favorite drink was the Jamaican Daiquiri with Appleton rum, coconut, hibiscus and allspice syrup, and lime juice. Yelper Margaret C. says, "We started with cocktails which were interesting and fun." [Cocktail Amateur, Yelp]
The Delicious Fish Tacos News: OpenTable poster Hope writes, "the food was delicious (don't miss the fish tacos)." The dish was also a favorite of Tripadvisor poster CityCoupleLovesParks. Yelper Trent H. calls them "outstanding." [OT, TA, Yelp]
The Transportive Bulgogi News: One OpenTable poster writes, "I strongly suggest the Bulgogi as it took me back to Korea with its perfect spice and beef cooked to perfection." Foursquare user Chris Bamberger calls it "outstanding," and Instagram user @trendypalatedc writes "sweet + savory + spicy = delicious." [OT, FS, Instagram]
The Tasty but Inauthentic Vietnamese Shrimp News: OpenTable poster wendfish says, "My favorite was the shrimp skewered on sugarcane stalks - REALLY spicy!" Yelper Kimberly S. writes, "Instead of grinding up the shrimp and making a patty, they grill a piece of shrimp on sugar cane and place in on top a lettuce wrap with fish sauce and other spices... Authentic it is not, but all of the flavor was there. It was light and tasty and just really opened up my taste buds from all of the heavy winter food I've been pushing down my throat as of late." [OT, Yelp]
The Elegant Cauliflower News: Tripadvisor poster trippinnow writes, "The best dish of the evening by far was the cauliflower! Roasted, beautifully charred with almonds, raisins and Harissa, it was perfectly simplistic, elegant and light! " Yelper Kristyn R. calls it "yummy." [TA, Yelp]
The Bomb Dot Com Ceviche News: Yelper Clinton L. writes, "Wow was this dish made to perfection. A must order if you like seafood. Really well balanced dish with the acidity from the fresh lime juice, and a sweet red sauce. The chips served with the ceviche are fried sweet potato and plantains (root chips). BOMB.COM." Tripadvsior poster trippinnow writes, "The ceviche was an interesting departure from traditional ceviche, as they used chip ok in adobo. But, the spice left no room to taste the seafood." [Yelp, TA]
The Divisive Churros News: Facebook user Ginger Harden loved the churros and an OpenTable poster says they're "surprisingly good." But Yelper Keisha D. wasn't as taken with them. She writes, "We ended with churros for dessert and they were very greasy and heavy." [FB, Yelp]