Hot & Juicy Crawfish

How have I not written about this place before? I’ve gone here a couple times already, to quickly satiate my cravings for crawfish, when my brother can’t whip me up a pot “real quick”. Out of the two places in the area that I’ve been to for crawfish, this place is only second best to my family’s boil.

I took my little there for her birthday the other weekend. It was her first time EVER having crawfish. But being the adventurous eater she is, she opened them like a pro. She even sucked the head for the sweet brains, and loved it. I was a super proud big. They also have crab legs, clams, blue crabs, oysters, calamari…basically its a down and dirty seafood joint.

They take their spices really seriously there, so their “mild” is spicy enough for me. So tread carefully when you are ordering your spice levels. My favorite is their Juicy Cajun flavor for the crawfish. Since it’s not like Ai Toy’s crawfish, I have to dip the meat back in the sauce…but at least it doesn’t taste like pond water!

Hotel Amour

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Amour, Amor, Amore…that’s love. For our farewell dinner, we decided to go to Hotel Amour. We saw the cute garden seating and decided it would be a nice place to say good bye. The restaurant was part of the hotel. The hotel itself was themed around love and sex. Pictures of nude ladies, as well has a well endowed Mickey Mouse decorate the inside. The garden seating is a courtyard where the walls are covered in ivy and little birds harass your feet.

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The staff were all attractive young women, who all could speak English. The courtyard was green and lush. And of course completely booked. We were so hungry we didn’t mind eating inside. But one of the ladies said she had one table and not to tell anyone *wink*. So we got to eat outside. Like most of the restaurants in France it was a prix fixe menu. I chose to start with the artichokes with mimolette, and for my entree, the roast chicken.

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The starter was raw artichokes, celery leaves, mimolette cheese all lightly seasoned with olive oil, salt and pepper. Simple, but the combination worked to create a savory starter. The chicken was served with a side of haricots verts. It tasted like it was marinated in italian dressing with orange zest and hazelnuts. The chicken was served with an au jus underneath. Perfectly juicy inside, and the skin was soooo crisp. I wish I could roast a chicken like that. It was half a chicken, so I couldn’t finish, and they don’t let you take it home. So I ate all the skin and as much chicken as I could before I had to walk away from that plate!

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Lucky its within walking distance, so Cece could go there whenever she wanted to for dinner. She got a burger and fries, and I LOVED the fries. Yes, they gave her ketchup. I was trying to research more information to share on the artist that owns this hotel (who has also opened one in NYC) but I couldn’t find any. But from what I am told, he is a street artist name Andre who’s known work is his love graffiti. So this hotel makes sense, because it goes with that theme. You can also rent the rooms by the hour, if you and your mistress need a place to shack up. I didn’t get to check it out, but it makes sense considering the decor inside.

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So next time you are in Paris, try the chicken at Hotel Amour! They speak English.

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Walker’s Grille for Brunch

Photo & Video Sharing by SmugMug On one of his evening runs, the honey discovered this place. So one Saturday morning, we got up and headed over for brunch. It was a lot nicer than I expected. They have outdoor seating, a bar, booths, this place was legit. AND! They have eggs benedict. Yes I know I should probably get tired of them soon. Maybe I should just learn how to poach an egg…. Photo & Video Sharing by SmugMug

Anywhoo. The verdict? Great selection. I’d go back to try something else. I don’t know if it is me, or if everyone is using the vinegar trick but all the eggs taste vinegary, 2 out of the 4 places I’ve had poached eggs. But his breakfast tasted amazing, yes I took some of his breakfast too. The hashbrowns are nommy, and the bacon are thick applewood style. SO GOOD. However they shaved their ham so thin it was like prosciutto and I wasn’t a fan. Also their english muffins we’re toasted at all/or enough. Fail. Maybe next time I’ll get eggs florentine with a side of bacon. Love that fresh fruit comes as a side :D.

Evening Star for Brunch

I am back with another brunch recap! Saturday mornings, I wake up and immediately google brunches nearby. This time I landed on Evening Star in Del Ray. Super cute neighborhood, and they have a parking lot in the back. Love the decor and how the tiny space was set up.

I ordered the eggs benedict of course, and it came with a plate of vinegary greens. I also got a side of bacon, because that is just what I do.

The hash browns were awesome. The bacon was a little thin for my tastes, and the eggs benedict were cooked just right. My belly had a good time. Not to mention, stellar service. I was impressed that one of the guys there noticed our table was uneven and fixed it without us prompting him to.

I’d go back. But I would probably try something else. The vinegary greens made everything I taste like vinegar. Even a bite of his chicken and waffles!

The Cajun Experience

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…not really. Out of all the cajun restaurants I’ve been to in DC, looking for a taste of home, this was my first disappointment. After coming down from my personal mardi gras 2012 party, I was having high hopes for a professionally done Mardi Gras dinner. I was looking for the Cajun Experience, pun intended.

Lets start off with the food, because that, to me, is always where we should start! I love food. Instead of offering their regular menu tonight (which is what I was hoping for), everyone was getting the buffet. The place was set up nicely, and had a great, fun zydeco band with a tiny dance space available if you wanted to get down. I did enjoy the vibe and I like the space.

Abita beer was unlimited that night, which was awesome considering the $45 price tag. The food however was sub-par. I really expected better, but I won’t be too harsh, since it was massed produced for the crowd. There was a variety of traditional cajun entrees, gumbo, jambalaya, etouffee..and mac and cheese and hushpuppies. The jambalaya tasted like tomato sauce from a jar with sausages thrown in. There was no hit of cajun spices. The  etouffee was good, I prefer my cajun dishes a lot spicier, but I understand that’s not everyone’s cup of tea. However there were no spices on the table to help it out. You were confined to your styrofoam divider plate and your plastic cups.

Needless to say, I only had one plate, and spent the night enjoying the music, and my company and $45+ worth of delicious abita beer. I also felt overlooked as a customer. Our server was very sweet, could be a little more attentive, but nothing blatantly wrong with the service. The guy who might have been to the manager seemed to talk to every table and dropping off goodies such as masks, and  drink cozies, and didn’t even make eye contact or attempt to say hello to our table… but made a point to say hello to the surrounding tables. Make note that I wasn’t even in a corner table. And no, I wasn’t a quiet mousey, no eye contact patron either. I joked with the table next to us, clapped and cheered to the live band and was trying to make it a good experience. Overall it was not.

I will give it another shot on a regular day, their brunch menu sounds awesome. But I won’t be attending their Mardi Gras party again in the future.