Sunday, May 28, 2017

Tredici Enoteca Food Review

Fettuccine at Tredici Enoteca

The St. Gregory Hotel reinvented itself last year with a four-month refurbishment. The results are downright impressive. The crown jewel of said refurb is Tredici Enoteca, a restaurant that specializes in Mediterranean cuisine with a nod to the familiar... only (a lot) more exciting and flavorful. With dinners this good, why plan a weekend getaway out of town? Move over tourists, the locals are coming.

DC has no shortage of fine hotels, but The St. Gregory's new lobby induced an audible, "wow" from yours truly, upon seeing it for the first time. Tredici Enoteca is tucked away to the right, a seamless extension of sexiness and sophistication. Granted, it was late (for me) around 8 PM, and cozy-dark with the kind of music you want to listen to, while sitting next to someone special. As luck would have it, I was dining solo; but for a (relatively) open area, it's very romantic.

Moroccan Spice Ribs

Marble white tables were candlelit, paired with comfy leather club chairs, and protected by a majestic ceiling-to-floor fireplace that elegantly dominates the front of house. Behind me, open shelves, illuminated with books and various knick-knacks. Below, sleek hardwood floors; and just around the corner, a gorgeous bar that screams The Great Gatsby, minus the partygoers/riff-raff. All-in-all, quite stunning.

Diavolo Flat Bread

Service was stellar and attentive. Check-ins were frequent but unobtrusive, and I appreciated a hearty recommendation for the to-die-for Moroccan Spice Ribs (more on those later.) The kitchen and staff were in perfect harmony (dishes were delivered at precise intervals) and I felt so comfortable there, I could have sat (and ate) for hours.

And with good reason. All three dishes were delicious. I started with the aforementioned Moroccan Spice Ribs ($14 with grilled scallions.) Expect plenty of meat with sweetness, then bite. The latter kicks in after a few seconds, and caught me by (pleasant) surprise. It's a "small plate" big enough for for two, but eagerly/easily devoured by one. Some of the best ribs I've ever had. Great start.

Cranberry Juice (lots of crushed ice!)

I had my eyes on a Butternut Squash Ravioli pasta dish; but alas, it wasn't on the menu (only online.) No worries, as I switched to an even better (or so I imagine) Pork Ragu Fettuccine with Grana Padano cheese. There was a lot of cheese, but truth be told, I couldn't see it at the time. Only later, when I examined my photo (with flash.) Normally, I'd shy away from so much, but it tasted incredible. Who knows, maybe I'm starting to like cheese in my hot meals (wouldn't that be something?) The ragu was divine, and the portion size... ideal. Nice & hot too. It's a tad pricey ($18) but worth it.

Don't ask how, but I somehow found room for one of four available flat breads. My server gushed over The Stache (pistachio pesto, mozzarella & parmesan cheeses with a dash of lemon vinaigrette) but I opted to keep it simple with the $15 Diavolo, which sports crushed tomatoes, mozzarella cheese and thin strips of sopressata, atop an incredible thin & tender crust with a light char on the bottom. At 12", it's generously sized, and I could go on for days about that crust. Needless to say, my plate pizza peel was empty in a few minutes. Three dishes, three home runs.

Brunch looks tempting (but expensive) and I can't wait to review the hotel itself. Were it not for a trio of chatty medical salesman at the table next to me, this could have been a perfect dinner. Even the bathroom across the lobby is super nice (Sloan fixtures, stainless steel accessories.) What's not to love?