Thursday, June 12, 2014

The Front Page

*Sponsored Post
Almost a quarter of a century old, The Front Page in Dupont Circle has witnessed and weathered through many ups and downs. Voted DC’s Best Happy Hour, food and drink specials are offered Monday - Friday from 4-8pm. All-you-can-eat-Brunch is also offered every Saturday and Sunday. Closest Metro is Dupont Circle.

Keith was familiar with The Front Page, as it was a popular bar to hang out during his college days.  He even had his 10 year college reunion here.  Tonight, we were invited to the restaurant as they were looking to increase their online presence.  Flattered, I agreed to come by and dine.  When we arrived, there was a bit of confusion, as there are two different entrances and there was a college event and a World Cup event going on.  Coupled with regular happy hour, to say there were mass crowds is a slight understatement.  Keith remarked that the ambience had not changed since he was in college.  Perhaps that is a good thing, showing the Front Page's popularity over the years.

We sat in a side room of booths, and were attended to by Valerie.  She was very professional and courteous the entire evening, not letting the ruckus of the crowd phase her.  We were also greeted by Kristi Lee, the staff member who originally reached out to me, and she recommended we start off with an appetizer of Vine Ripened Bruschetta.  Sliced baguette was topped with freshly diced tomatoes, red onions, basil, olive oil, salt, pepper, mozzarella, and parmesan cheese.  The onions were a tad overpowering for me, but the mozzarella and basil was a nice touch.

We also shared the Crab Cake appetizer with Sriracha mayonnaise and corn relish.  The crab cakes were very tasty and the Sriracha mayo had quite a kick.  I enjoyed the crunchy corn relish that gave an extra hint of sweetness to the crab.  Keith commented that these crab cakes were well-made with lots of meat as opposed to filler, and tasted better than others he's had.

For my entree, I chose the Goat Cheese Polenta Scallops.  Pan seared sea scallops were presented over a disc of crispy polenta and sautéed spinach in a roasted tomato sauce and topped with fried leeks.  While I liked the scallops, I did not taste any goat cheese in the polenta cake, which would have been a nice contrast.  The spinach and tomatoes gave a light vegetable base to round out the meal.

Keith ordered the Steak Frites - a 14 oz flame grilled NY Strip steak with house-cut fries, sautéed vegetables, and onion rings, served with a house made steak sauce.  It was not the typical steak frites you would get at a French/Belgium place but was a decent value. His steak was cooked exactly as ordered and had good flavor, but he found the plating style to be dated.  The accompanying gravy was a nice touch and he used it to dip the fries in.

Overall, despite the chaos at the entrance, we had great service from Valerie.  She offered us dessert, but we were too full and had to decline.  The food menu itself is a mix of classic options one would find at any other American sports bar - burgers, flatbreads, salads, pastas, steak, fish.  It seems the bar area and happy hour specials are most appealing for the local crowd.

Total Rating: 3.43
Food: 3.5, Price: 3, Service: 4, Ambience: 2.5, Accessibility: 5

What I ate:
Vine Ripened Bruschetta
freshly diced tomatoes, basil, olive oil, salt, pepper, mozzarella, and parmesan cheese  

Crab Cake
with Sriracha mayonnaise and corn relish

Goat Cheese Polenta Scallops
pan seared sea scallops, over crispy polenta and sautéed spinach
in a roasted tomato sauce and topped with fried leeks
Plus Keith ate:
Steak Frites
14 oz flame grilled NY Strip steak with house-cut fries, sautéed vegetables,
onion rings and house made steak sauce

Front Page on Urbanspoon

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