Blue Duck Tavern
I tried the Blue Duck Tavern tonight. Located in the Park Hyatt at 24th & M, the restuarant has been open to the public for just three weeks; there was a two week trial where it was open to just hotel guests.
They offer free valet parking. The restaurant is minimalist with wood floors and furniture (reminds me of Amish country). The adjoining bar is upholstered. Service was friendly and very attentive without being intrusive. Dress is casual [tourists] to business casual [after work crowd].
The wine list is extensive; it features American wines and is very reasonably priced. I saw many bottles that were marked up 50% or less from retail. The menu is a la carte. In the entree section, the protein, carbs, and veg are all chosen (and priced) separately. Each selection easily serves two so order accordingly.
I had the gallantine of duck with stewed cherries for an appetizer. It was very good. For the entree, I had prawns in a rosmenary sauce, glazed carrots, and steak fries. The prawns were nicely done and served with the heads, which were detached. The baby carrots were perfectly cooked but a tad sweet. The thrice-cooked steak fries are not be missed. The third cooking is deep fat frying in duck fat. Delicious.
For a dessert, I ordered stewed rhubarb (I love rhubarb). It is normally served as a small dish of rhubarb (which is tart) so I ordered the tin of sugar cookies to offset the tartness. The chef served a dish of three [!] scoops of ice cream [gratis] with a jar of rhubarb sauce. Wonderful. I took the tin of cookies home to be enjoyed later.
The meal was reasonably priced [$90 before tip] for an app, an entree with two sides, two glasses of wine, two [!] desserts, and coffee. If dining alone, as I was, I would recommend just one side and certainly not two desserts [it makes me sound like such a glutton even if I didn't eat one].
I am guessing Tom Siestma will give it two or two-and one-half stars when he eventually reviews it. I enjoyed it; I would recommend it; I would go back, but I wouldn't rush back. Try it; I think that you will enjoy it as well. Don't miss the steak fries.
Have eaten there twice now, and have really enjoyed it - no misfires at all. Really, everything has been good. Fries, delicious, and surprisingly light. Shortribs rich and lucious, might be a little too "sweet" for some tastes. Sides of roast potatoes, asparagus - delicious. softshelled crab, wonderful. I must say, though, that the hand made ice cream (it's been strawberry both times) made me want to pick up the bowl and lick it clean....and then weep that it was done. Amazing.
I had lunch last weekend. I respect Chef McBride and LOVED The Melrose, but ---- not sure about this one.
We ordered 2 different fish / cant even describe how strangley they were served........not eating friendly.
Grilled leeks were WAY over salted.
The grits were nice.
The ice cream was out of this world (it is hand cranked).
Service was great.
I wont go back unless I read that they were still under trial run! I expected better food from Brian.