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Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Petworth Citizen

Plaudits: None
Neighborhood: Petworth

The Setup

Loathe as we are to visit too many places that Tom Sietsema pans, Official Friend of DCWD Jeremy swore up and down that Petworth's newest eponymous addition was delicious. So Official Wife of DCWD Texas and I ventured up to sit down for some snacks and suds at Petworth Citizen.

The Vibe

Low-key and no-frills are hyphenated adjectives that were invented for a place like Petworth Citizen, which takes the typical bar structure of yore (think large booths with posts that run to the ceiling, a mish-mosh of half booths and bar tables, and a few seats by a bar), adds a bit of metal and mirror to it and paints it with dull yellows and ochers and rust green. It's nondescript in that there isn't any apparent visual or decorative flourish to set it apart; you could ostensibly achieve the same design effect with a square room and some leftover supplies from Community Forklift. I haven't decided whether or not this makes it perfect for Petworth; put another way, whether in some weird way, it's utter lack of character (vis-a-vis say, Red Derby) gives the place a certain carefree charm. For now, I'm going with no.

The Food

Still, the challenge was about the food, and unfortunately or not, we left with basically the same quandary that we started with. On the plus side was a simple pork belly and grits bowl, a moderately-sized and fairly-priced mix of crispy strips of belly atop some reasonably wonderful grits. The true wonder came from a soft boiled egg atop the dish, which mashed together like so many good eggy breakfasts into one sumptuous gooey bite.

On the meh side was a mac and cheese that was passable but came in the wake of a similarly even mac-and-cheese at Right Proper Brewing. Though neither sang, this one felt a hair drabber and less cheesy. It's something you finish and then forget about. Texas's falafel pita felt similar: a cinch dry and with a kohlrabi slaw that wanted to add more but doesn't. In truth, the eggplant chutney we 86'd for allergy reasons might have perked it all up, but it was more than disappointing that this was the only truly vegetarian option on the menu that night.

The Verdict

At times a good bite, but in the end, we may have to agree with the Post - Petworth deserves slightly better food.

Food Rating: ** (out of 5)
Date Rating: 2 Hearts (out of 5)
Dress Code:
Bar Rating:
Quiet Drinks to Hipster Hangout
(out of 5) (less than $25 for two)
Pairing: Three Little Pigs offers some fun (albeit expensive) charcuterie classes. Sign up for a sausage or bacon-making one.

Petworth Citizen on Urbanspoon

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