So… I’ve wanted to check Russia House out for a while (I’m sure you can guess why ). A few weeks ago they had a Groupon, and a friend of mine picked one up. We ended up meeting for an early dinner after work about a fortnight ago.
I rarely go to DuPont Circle, since I work in SW, and try to stick to the Orange line because I have heard horror stories about Red Line, during rush hour. But this wasn’t a bad trip…. so maybe I’ll be making some return trips.
When I say early dinner, it really was early…we had a 5:30 reservation. The place was dead (I think there was only one other diner when we arrived). When you walk in there is 2 small bars on the main level. then you can go upstairs or downstairs where the dining rooms are. (There is also another bar on the top floor). As the evening wore on, more and more people did arrive for dinner.
Anyway, we were seated downstairs. The waitress was friendly and explained the menu, and made several suggestions. Which was good since I’ve never had Russian food.
First decision…. what to drink….. The obvious answer was Russian Beer….I went with the Baltika Wheat (#8) Russia – An unfiltered lager beer produced from a recipe using a wheat malt. Baltika 8 Wheat beer has all the qualities of this beer variety: a thick dense head, as well as a mild, fruity aroma with notes of spices and a mild sweetness.
Next up what to eat…
My friend wanted to try the Borsch, and the waitress indicated that it was a large serving, but that we could have it split into 2 bowls. I was a bit nervous, as I’ve only had beets one other time in my life… and purple food makes me nervous. (Maybe I secretly think I’m eating Barney??).
But I decided to suck it up, so we ordered the Moscow Borsch — A Rich Russian Style Beet Soup with Oxtail, Brisket, Caraway and Sour-Cream. And I’m so glad I did. It was very good.
Then we decided to do some small plates.
Potato Mushroom Cocotte –
Potatoes and Wild Mushrooms, Apple-Wood Bacon, Cherries and Savoie Cheese, with Truffled Cream and Baguette — This was good, though I wished the bread was a bit toasted.
Duck Rillette — Slow cooked Duck Leg Flaked atop an Arugula-Red Onion Salad on Goat Cheese- Potato Puree with a Balsamic Duck Glace — The duck was good, as was the Potato Puree, thoough I wished the puree had been a little hotter.
All in all… a good meal… and I would go back.
And in fact… I did go back this past Saturday, after the Caps won game 5, but not to eat, only for drinks. I can report that on Saturday at around 10pm, its definitely more crowded… a nice place to grab some drinks at one of the bars.
I need to go back again and try some Vodka… and the Vanilla Bean Crème Brulee!