Sunday, April 22, 2012

Matchbox

This vintage wood-fire pizza bistro is conveniently located in Chinatown and features trendy appetizers and cocktails. The restaurant tends to get super busy, so I recommend putting your name on the list and grabbing a drink at the bar while you wait. A second location along Barracks Row in Capitol Hill location seems much larger than the Chinatown spot with two dining levels, plus a larger bar area. In the summer months, outdoor dining is available under umbrellas along the sidewalk in front. Closest Metro is Chinatown/Gallery Place or Eastern Market.

April 2009: Although the restaurant tries to be a little fancier by serving steak and scallops, the pizza is classically well seasoned and averagely priced – about $15 for 10” - six slices and $20 for 14” - eight slices. I gave average marks for service since the waiters tend to disappear on busy nights. However, my food was always hot and tasty! Great spot for larger groups - I have gone with a party of 6 and we were served without a problem.

February 2010: Went for Sunday Brunch at the Capitol Hill location and although we had to wait for a table for the 4 of us, we got a nice table outside to enjoy the weather. The food was pretty good and there were several other items on the Brunch menu that looked interesting. You can also order any of their pizzas through out the day.

August 2011: Returned to the Capitol Hill location with seven of my co-workers and although it was already packed with patrons, we only waited a couple minutes for a large table to be cleared. Oddly, reservations are not taken before 11am. Our server was very friendly, pushing the wine list and offering lunch specials. Menu items chosen among the group included pizzas, sliders, sandwiches, and one nicely portioned scallop entree. Everyone was very satisfied with the quality of their food and the overall meal. When it came time to pay the bill, we asked for separate checks - to which they obliged - however, this was more time consuming as our lunch break was already running long. Nevertheless, Matchbox Capitol Hill is a great location for the "destination" office lunch - just be cautioned to buffer extra time for the metro ride, waiting for a table, and then paying your bill. Make easy reservations to Matchbox on CityEats.

April 2012: Returned to Capitol Hill's Matchbox for brunch on this raining morning.  It was packed inside, just as suspected. But we were seated after waiting about 20 minutes.  We ordered the cinnamon rolls to share, but I found them to be slightly under cooked. My fruit waffle was delicious though - a great portion and not overly sweet.  Keith's steak and eggs were cooked well and overall satisfying.  Service is still lacking - I understand it is busy, but the staff should accommodate by picking it up a bit: bring water and refill often; check in on the table every now and then; bring the check quickly in order to keep the turnovers high.

Total Rating: 3.9
Food: 4, Price: 4, Service: 3, Ambience: 4, Accessibility: 4

What I ate:
Cast Iron Baked Cinnamon Rolls
with cream cheese icing

Fresh Fruit Waffle
blueberries, strawberries, raspberries, bananas,
with warm berry sauce and maple syrup


Marinated Chicken Muffaletta Sandwich
olive tapenade, provolone, spinach, serrano,
sundried tomato spread served with bistro chips

Cream of Crab Soup
with jumbo lump crab and sherry

Beet Salad
with arugula, goat cheese, candied walnuts and grilled ciabatta

Stuffed French Toast
cinnamon french toast stuffed with honey cream cheese
served with maple butter and fruit salad

Sweet & Tangy Calamari Salad
crispy calamari, field greens, banana peppers, roasted red peppers,
kalamata olives, balsamic vinaigrette

Mini Trio
2 pan seared scallops, 2 mini crabcakes, 2 mini burgers

Prosciutto White Pizza
prosciutto, kalamata olives, fresh garlic, ricotta cheese,
extra virgin olive oil, mozzarella

Sausage and Onion Pizza
sweet Italian sausage, sweet onion, roasted red pepper,
zesty tomato sauce, mozzarella

Serrano Spanish Ham and Pecorino Romano Pizza
with roasted garlic, ricotta, buffalo mozzarella, oven dried tomatoes

Q Special Pizza
grilled herb marinated chicken, portabella mushrooms,
roasted red peppers, zesty tomato sauce, mozzarella


Chicken Pesto Pizza
herb roasted chicken, mozzarella, pesto

Plus Keith ate:

Cast Iron Steak and Eggs
brunch potatoes, fresh herbs, grilled ciabatta with garlic butter

Braised Steak Omelette Special
omelette with braised steak, spinach, cremini mushrooms, and a cheese sauce.
Served with home fries.

3.6.9 Mini Burgers
hand-pattied angus beef, toasted brioche, pickles,
onion straws, with gorganzola cheese (extra)

Spicy Meatball Pizza
house-made spicy meatballs, crispy bacon, crushed red pepper
fresh garlic, zesty tomato sauce, mozzarella

Sweet Sopresatta and Wild Mushroom Pizza
with fresh herbs, mozzarella and zesty tomato sauce

Italian Salami Pizza
deli pepperoni, fennel salami, arugula, mortadella
mozzarella, marinated tomatoes, zesty tomato sauce


  Matchbox Chinatown on Urbanspoon Matchbox Capitol Hill on Urbanspoon

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