Classic Virginian elegance at Restaurant Eve
I really like taking people out to dinner for their birthday. It’s probably because a nice meal for me means more than pretty much any material gift (unless someone gives me plane tickets, but those don’t count since technically they are e-tickets anyway). Thus, I clearly just impose my views on what I like on other people, but I think most people appreciate the gesture nonetheless. For my mom’s birthday, I decided we would go to the well-known Restaurant Eve, one of the most famous DC-area restaurants, located in an adorable little alleyway in Old Town Alexandria.
This is a great special occasion restaurant. It has a kind of timeless old-world charm and Southern elegance that many restaurants lack these days. The service was impeccable and they even gave my mom a little birthday goodie bag with a scone mix at the end of meal. It’s a very white tablecloth, crumb clearing, attentive waiter sort of place. The food is very focused on local produce and it was quite a delightful contrast from any meals I’ve had in Southeast Asia!
This is seared wahoo, this amazing tuna-like fish, with a tomato tapenade under it and these incredible little yukon gold potato gnocchi…you can’t really see it in the photo but they were so tiny yet packed an amazing little punch of flavor.
Despite our waiter’s urging to get a side of risotto, we decided to be good and get roasted green beans, which was a fantastic decision since they went perfectly with the mains. They were perfectly done with just the right amount of lemon and garlic.
Our decision to not get appetizers was clutch, as we then had room for two desserts. They added a lovely birthday twist to this incredible baked chocolate mousse with almond ice cream. It was like a chocolate cake but better – love the edible flowers too!
This one was the sleeper hit though – a butternut squash cake with five spice ice cream, a maple reduction, and little pieces of candied pumpkin seeds and butternut squash. Being where I am in the world now, autumn is not something I get to experience, so this dessert which is essentially autumn on a plate is just so joyful to me. The cake was more like a souffle – unbelievably light and airy – and most of you know how obsessed I am with butternut squash in all its incarnations, so this dessert was a triumph. (Serious about the butternut squash though – I literally once threw a dinner party with a butternut squash theme where everything was butternut squash related.)
Anyway, if you live in the DC area and are celebrating a special occasion, I’d definitely highly recommend Restaurant Eve – well worth living the city for!