Having traveled the last few weekends in a row, and simply turned off to the idea of going out to dinner for Valentine’s Day along with the rest of the world, Rachel and I postponed our plans until two days after the Hallmark holiday.
It could not have worked out better.
With Groupon in hand (by far one of the better deals the website has offered), we made our way to Foggy Bottom, but not before partaking in some Happy Hour first. Kinkead’s kicked off their bar specials earlier this week, so the timing was perfect.
And how could one not resist half-priced oysters? Certainly not us. With Bass drafts for $5, a glass of their wine of the day for $8, and not to mention a very friendly bartender, it was a shame we only had a short time to enjoy it since happy hour only lasts till 6:30.
After we paid our tab, our reservation was ready and we made our way to the upstairs dining room. We started our meal off with their fresh bread basket which included some very warm and delicious pieces of cornbread, soda bread, and whole wheat.
For the first course, Rachel ordered the lobster medallions, served in an asparagus stew with a lobster “knuckle” sandwich and crispy Vidalia onion rings. While the presentation was gorgeous, it was the medallions that really stole the show. Flavorful and tender, it was hard to ration the lobster given how large the medallions were.
In fact, it might have been the dish’s only downfall as the medallions were too difficult to cut away at as we eventually wound up eating them too quickly. It might have been better if the soup was served in a shallow bowl so that one could cut the lobster instead of it being served in a deeper, smaller bowl.
The “knuckle” sandwich was a nice touch and felt like a seafood takeoff on grilled cheese and tomato soup. Rachel also had the great idea of throwing the onion rings into the broth which gave it a subtle, crunchy texture.
I went with the shrimp bisque, but had we known beforehand that Rachel’s appetizer was also primarily a soup (we overlooked that when reading the menu), I probably would have ordered something else. That’s not to say the bisque wasn’t good. In fact, it was fantastic! Hearty but not too rich, it was the perfect dish for a winter’s eve. We just did not realize the texture of both soups would be so similar.
For our main course, I ordered the sesame seared rare tuna, served with seaweed salad, soba noodles, wasabi, and a soy dipping sauce. It turned out to be a generous portion as the tuna was perfectly cooked while the seaweed salad and noodles were fitting sides for the Asian-inspired entree. The sauce was very salty, of course, but at least it was served on the side so I could add just the right amount onto the fish.
Rachel decided to try the skate since it’s a fish she has never had before, and the crispy wing balanced out well with a lemon sabayon, grapefruit segments, and jumbo grilled asparagus. It was a beautiful presentation and she enjoyed the dish, but I could tell that she was eyeing mine more than her own. I think the sauce was a little too overpowering, and while she debated ordering the skate versus the whole black bass, the latter may have been the better choice. At least now she knows what skate tastes like.
Overall, we had a great meal, and combined with the $50 discount from Groupon, it was an even better value. Kinkead’s might be part of the “old guard” in DC, but as evidenced on Wednesday night, it has held up rather well throughout the years.
Kinkeads is located on 2000 Pennsylvania Ave NW in the Foggy Bottom neighborhood of Washington, DC.