Thursday, January 21, 2010

Catching Up on Restaurant Openings

Only in this neighborhood can you blink for a couple of weeks and get behind in passing along the news of new restaurant openings in the neighborhood.

Near the corner of 14th and U Streets, dance hall and Caribbean restaurant/lounge Patty Boom Boom opened a few weeks ago, and the early reviews have been largely positive. If you don't know the name, you probably know the building: it's the beige and black building just one space up from the corner of 14th and U Streets.



The menu at Patty features--what else--Jamaican patties (which feature such fillings as spicy beef and jerked goat). Perhaps even better for the neighborhood (or, at least for those of you clamoring for some late-night eats) the "patty bar" will remain open until 4 AM.

Upstairs, it's a bit of a different story: speakers out the wazoo pumping dancehall, reggae and house tunes at such a volume that patrons have reported drinks being shaken off of the bar downstairs. Considering that lately I prefer to do my drinking in the quiet solitude of my bedroom closet, I'm not certain the second floor of Patty Boom Boom will become my home away from home. But Patty, which is owned by the Eighteenth Street Lounge/Marvin/Thievery Corporation team, will offer up an attractive new going-out option in the neighborhood.

Approximately a block west on U, a slightly quieter establishment has opened, as the former Axis Bar and Grille recently became Cafe La Bonne. Cafe La Bonne presents U Street and its denizens with the corridor's first French bistro.























Chef Daniel Labonne, who hails from the Caribbean island of Martinique, presents a menu of classic French fare (you know, French onion soup, quiche lorraine, beef bourguinogne, etc.) in a "classic bistro setting". The Cafe will also offer a late night menu, brunch on Saturday and Sunday, and a selection of French wines (with most bottles priced in the $30-$50 range).

The 14thandyous are used to having to trek up to Napoleon to satisfy our French cravings, so we're very much looking forward to having them in the 'hood.

If you've had the opportunity to visit either of these establishments, please share your thoughts in the comments section below and let us know how things went.

*****

A quick note, also on the topic of food: Mr. 14thandyou happened to stroll by the recently opened Homemade Pizza Co. at 14th and Church on Wednesday night, and halfway considered giving it a go--until he tried a complimentary slice of the cheese pizza that was being handed out in front of the store. I'm not certain that I've ever felt the need to describe a pizza as "listless" before, but I feel the word choice might be accurate here. Now, maybe the cheese pizza isn't their best offering, and maybe getting a slice from their outdoor pizza oven isn't the best way to try it...but I'm not getting it. Especially at the price at which their pies are sold.

In addition to the pizza itself, the line out the door was ridiculous (opening night problems, perhaps). So, perhaps I'll come back around and give it another go. But, man, that was one unimpressive slice of pizza.

19 comments:

Sara said...

I did a review on Paddy Boom Boom a couple of weeks ago here: phhh.wordpress.com/2010/01/10/weekend-roundup/ ...I would recommend it. Haven't tried the french joint yet but can't wait to check it out!

Gtmcleod said...

In all fairness, the line at Homemade Pizza was for a free pizza and salad. Worth it? Eh. It was fine but agreed at the prices for something you still bake yourself? And for $3 delivery, we'll stick with Pete's A Pizza by Target. Tho they do have a nice special M-F that my 3yo will love: 9 1/2" pepp for $3.

Anonymous said...

I have to admit as a gay person living around 14th and U, I have a hard time supporting anything that celebrates the culture of Jamaica or any gay-hating nation.

Anonymous said...

I went by last night and got a pizza, also agree that it was listless. The pizza wasn't great, and I am not sold on the idea anyway. It would be amazing it a small Pete's A Pizza went in that location!

Elizabeth said...

I have to agree about Homemade Pizza Co! I thought the line was short when I got there, but still ended up spending 45 minutes or an hour waiting for my free pizza. Glad I did it, though, so that I don't go back to spend money on it! "Listless" is the perfect word choice... I probably just would've said bland.

Anonymous said...

Ah, I loved Axis! The Spicy Chicken Penne was great. And what's up with that ugly awning?

gsh said...

So sad Axis is gone.
That was my favorite place to just grab a drink and some good eats.

Anonymous said...

I think the awning looks like a typical no frills bistro awning you would see in France. For that reason I really like it.

Mr. 14th & You said...

The Mrs. and I dined at Cafe La Bonne last night, and found the food to be very good. She enjoyed the roast duck, whereas I had a steak with bearnaise sauce along with some french onion soup. I don't know that I would call it exceptional, but I would rate it very highly. Service was a bit spotty--my soup arrived with my entree, and one of the servers accidentally knocked over a glass and broke it on the adjoining table--and it got somewhat loud at times. But nothing major, and I suspect we'll be back.

Anonymous said...

The line on Wednesday was long becasue they were giving away free pizzas and salads. "listless seems awfully harsh. My sausage and carmelized onions was actually very good and fairly high quality. I know there are those who like wet chewy pizza crusts around here, but I am glad for the option of something less collegiate

Mr. 14th & You said...

I suppose at the price they are charging I expect something more than fairly high quality (which I don't believe is a grade I would have given the cheese slice that I had). Maybe other varieties are better, but I think DiGiorno's is better than the slice I had.

Anonymous said...

Huh -- surprised to the reaction to Homemade Pizza Co. I've actually been going to the Spring Valley location for a while and we've always loved the pizzas and salads and thought them to be terrific quality. We never do just plain cheese, though, and have only ever gotten the whole wheat crust...

Anonymous said...

Totally agree about the Homemade Pizza place. I got the BBQ chicken pizza with the whole wheat crust and even that was boring. For that price I could get a frozen pizza from Flatbread at the Whole Foods or get delivery from Pete's. The oatmeal cookie was similarly unimpressive. I did have an Asian salad that was delicious though.

Anonymous said...

Is patty boom boom actually open? I have walked by at lunch for the last week and its closed up tight. what are the hours?

Anonymous said...

I had the bbq chicken with red onions on whole wheat crust and loved it! I baked mine at home didn't get it at the grand opening. The price point is a bit much but thought the quality of the pizza was great. I will definitely have it again. Give Homemaade Pizza Co. another try. I loved it!

Anonymous said...

Just a correction - Labonne is not a block west on U. It is across the Street - 3 doors down to the east.

Mr. 14th & You said...

Labonne is about a block west of Patty Boom Boom...not a full block, but west of 14th street and across the street.

leon said...

Why do businesses think it's useful or attractive to put their phone numbers on their awnings?

Why doesnt Patty Boom Boom put its name on the building?

hannah said...

i heard alot of good reviews about Patty Boom Boom and i want to go.

Is the club 18+ or 21+

im not yet 21