Neighborhood: Cleveland Park
I had long promised a steak dinner to Official Friend of DCWD Rajistan upon his graduation from medical school; and I'd long promised Official Friend of DCWD Swizzle that we'd one day follow our BLT Steak outing with a visit to the steakhouse in her neighborhood, Medium Rare. So we combined the two, added Official Friend of DCWD EZ, and headed off to Cleveland Park.
Medium Rare is a steak frites restaurant from the same people who brought you BGR. The inside draws from an upscale brasserie theme: exposed brick, low ceilings, wooden floors, with granite-topped metal tables filling the sizable space. The lighting shifts with the time; during the daytime, light streams in the large windows, but at night it gets real dim. It's clean and simple, with a little elegant flair in between.
There is only one option for dinner at Medium Rare: a prix fixe for $20, which varies only in how you'd like your meat cooked. Your orders are marked by china pencil on the butcher
paper that covers the table. First up is bread and a mixed green salad with a light vinaigrette. For a plate that's essentially lettuce and tomatoes, this is actually a pretty solid house salad, with buttery greens and a blessedly light hand on the dressing.
The main course is a culotte steak with fries, brought in two
portions to keep everything warm. For a one dish restaurant, that one dish better be good. Luckily for Medium Rare, the steaks they serve are in a word, delicious. Juicy slices of steak sing, especially when covered with the restaurant's secret sauce, a wonderful savory combo of mustard and cream notes.
Perhaps not something you would do everyday, but an enjoyable stop for great steak at a great price.
Food Rating: **** (out of 5)
Date Rating: 3 Hearts (out of 5)
Dress Code: Casual
Bar Rating: Quiet Drinks
Vibe: Chatty to Energetic
Cost: $$ (out of 5) ($25-$50 for two)
Pairing: With the weather taking a temporary respite from being crazy hot, head down to the National Zoo. Brew in the Zoo is on July 12th for those of you who love beer.