Before reading this post, please read my more recent entries about Komi. This post is seriously out of date. Komi is now my #1 restaurant to eat at. If you read my more recent posts, you'll understand why.
After reading the Post's review of Komi, Amy was so intrigued that we called that same weekend to make a reservation. "No available reservations." Gee, what a surprise -- the Post's featured restaurant was booked all weekend.
The next weekend, we decided to try again with my friend from work, Mike and his girlfriend Jen. This time, however, Amy called on Wedneday and made a reservation for not the coming weekend, but the following Saturday.
We shared a cab over to the restaurant on 17th St. NW. The cabby tried to rip us off with the fare -- typical. When will DC to go a damn meter system? Anyway. That's something for a whole other blog.
When we walked in, there was not much of an entry. We were 20 minutes early, but luckily the table was ready. The restaurant had a modern, sleek look. Long and narrow, with nothing on the walls, and a big stone oven in the rear. We all swore we were in some swanky Manhattan bistro. We were all dressed to go barhopping later and we fit right in.
Once we sat down, the server quickly introduced herself and gave us menus. Throughout the night there were three different servers that gave us food and drinks. The only bad thing about the service that I noticed was the waitstaff had a tendency to let our drinks get empty and stay that way -- much to our sober annoyance. We had heard that the wine list was one of the better in the city, but we opted for the mojitos. Not too uncommon, but worth noting, is the fact that Komi does not have a full bar. Mike ordered a Manhatten and they could not make it.
There were many different choices on the menu that interested us -- Veal, Quail, Lamb, Rabbit...Wood-Fired Pizza? The appetizers were interesting, but fairly typical for this type of trendy restaurant. We started with the roasted pear, walnut and gorgonzola salad and a very interesting beet salad. I ordered the veal and Amy ordered the Buffalo strip steak.
Once you order, another waitperson comes over with fresh homemade bread (foccacia and sourdough), and then another comes by with a little teacup filled with something green. "Roasted cauliflower and apple is our soup today," said the waitress. We all tasted a little bit of curry as well. Yum. All over the restaurant you saw diners tipping their heads waaaaay back to get every drop of soup from the cup.
When the servers brought the salads, they looked very "pretty." The food looked as if an artist had put every leaf of lettuce on the plate. It was good, but it left me wishing I was having the Little Fountain Café's version of this salad.
Mike's first comment about the quail he ordered was, "That's a tiny little bird, isn't it?" Don't get me wrong, the food tasted excellent, but there was not much of it. My veal was he most tender cut of meat I have probably ever had, but there were only three tiny pieces of meat on my plate. The helpings were the perfect size for my better half, who actually cleared her plate. Amazing!
The small servings meant...ta-da! We all had plenty of room for dessert. We all ordered the homemade cinnamon donuts and Mexican hot chocolate. In retrospect, we probably didn't need to all have our own order, but given the size of the entrees, I expected to see another very small serving. None of us were going to risk leaving this place still hungry. As it turned out, however, each serving had two donuts and their holes. Heads turned to stare at our table: Wow. Pigs. But who cares? The donuts were fantastic.
The hot chocolate was more for dipping than drinking. It was as thick as the soup they had brought out earlier. As the servers brought out our donuts, one waitress commented, "We mix in a little corn starch to thicken it, so feel free to eat it with a spoon." Amy was feeling a bit sleepy from all the food and ordered coffee...which, as a nice touch, comes in a French press that they leave at your table. After a pot of that, she was bouncing off the walls. Caffeeeeinnnneee!
Overall, I was pretty happy with our trip to Komi. The only thing I would have changed was the serving size and the amount of alcohol I consumed. But quite honestly, I probably don't need either, so it was for the best.
Out total bill for the four of use came to a little over $200 before tip with an average of one and a half drinks each, four salads, four entrees, four desserts and a coffee.
1509 17th St NW
Washington, DC 20036