Thursday, June 24, 2010

chesapeake room

After much anticipation, a new sister restaurant to our favorite Lola's and Molly Malone's opened up on Barracks Row. We waited months to try out the Chesapeake Room, lured by wingback chairs on a large patio and promises of summertime Chesapeake Bay fare. After trying it out for dinner last night -- all I can say is: Hm.

It wasn't BAD...but it wasn' to say, worth the $90? To start, after seeing several tables open on the patio when we walked up -- we were told we'd have a 30-45 minute wait. Not a huge deal, but sort of confusing. To continue on that theme, the menu is baffling. Straight up weird. Fried oysters AND wild boar bolognese with pappardelle AND sea food salad and...a bison burger? It's completely strange. ...But it all looks good.

Our waiter recommended the roast chicken and the pork chop, the latter which we've heard rave reviews about but opted out of last night. I ended up splitting some fried oysters with Mr. Tank, while I enjoyed a disappointingly watery cocktail called "Like The Chef" which is lemonade and sweet tea vodka. He ordered the roast chicken breast (which, frankly, looked more like roast breast of game hen), and I had a salad. My salad was great -- but again, puzzling: greens, fennel, duck confit, smoked chicken?, haricot verts, tomatoes, and dried cherries.

All of this is not to deter you, my six readers, from trying out this patio next time you're on Barracks Row. I recommend going late, for drinks on the patio -- and don't miss the fried oysters, they were really delicious. But don't expect to find any crab cakes. Why would they serve crab cakes at a place called the Chesapeake Room, anyway?

High points: Cocktail menu, patio
Low points: Strange food menu, odd decor indoors (think: sailboat meets Red Lobster)

I'll go again, but probably not for dinner. The cost of mediocrity is disappointment, after all.

Grade: C- (Food is only ok, pricey. Go for the oysters and the outdoors and that's it.)