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Please better than Bar Pilar

jackcyn Nov 21, 2006 08:18 PM

Once a week my boyfriend and I try a new place in DC. As long as it's metro accessible, we will head anywhere. I found in the express and in the Washington Flyer Bar Pilar in U St. "Great prices, great food, great atmosphere." Well, no. Food was tapas, which is fine, but it was the price of a regular sized plate and it tasted fine. The atmosphere was horrible. A crappy tavern turned into a yuppy cramped wine bar?! We were smooshed against the wall and people were standing literally with their rear ends in our face. We couldn't even hear each other. And the waiter seriously smelled SO bad!

So... we're running out of places. We really like just relaxed, local, good food, reasonable prices, places not a lot of people know about.

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  1. c
    cleveland park RE: jackcyn Nov 21, 2006 08:48 PM

    That is definately not the experience i've had at Bar Pilar. Maybe you were there on an off day. I've been there a handful of times and I love how fresh teh food tastes. If you are looking for a restaurant environment, maybe its not the right place for you, but I consistently find the food on point and a great neighborhood bar.

    1. Dennis S RE: jackcyn Nov 21, 2006 08:50 PM

      I've had mediocre food (before the tapas change) and horrible service there, the only two times I went. Wanted to like it, but it just wasn't there. Haven't tried Ex for fear of more of the same.

      1. c
        chickenlover RE: jackcyn Nov 21, 2006 08:57 PM

        I have not been to Pilar since the menu changed. I've had similar experiece with the place being cramped, but I thought the food (old menu) was OK. I had a horrible time with the service at Saint-Ex. You'd think a bar would be able to pour a pint of beer properly-it's really not that hard. I'm looking forward to trying the newly relocated Stoney's on P St.

        1 Reply
        1. re: chickenlover
          cleveland park RE: chickenlover Nov 21, 2006 09:06 PM

          The menu has changed since Josh took over at the kitchen and although i can agree with service and space issues, i really believe the food is excellent

        2. j
          jackcyn RE: jackcyn Nov 21, 2006 09:01 PM

          The old Stoney's used to be our favorite neighborhood bar! We're a little disappointed that they sold out and went big and more upscale. But we were there the other night and had a great time. Same food, same beer, same great bartenders.

          1. j
            jackcyn RE: jackcyn Nov 21, 2006 09:31 PM

            I definitely agree that the food was good. Would I pay those kind of prices? Probably not again. But yes it was good. The problem was it was so small and the menu was so limited, you had to order everything on it to be full. And many of the things on the menu were not my taste. The waiter said it changes everyday though, and that is really encouraging.

            1. a
              alopez RE: jackcyn Nov 21, 2006 09:36 PM

              "relaxed, local, good food, reasonable prices, places not a lot of people know about."

              Sounds exactly like Pyramids.

              1. j
                jskwiot RE: jackcyn Nov 22, 2006 01:11 PM

                Went there just this week. Had 7 plates of food, all but one were standouts. Plus the best goat cheese cheesecake I've ever eaten, for $3! Don't pass this place up.

                1. g
                  gooseterp RE: jackcyn Nov 22, 2006 01:29 PM

                  The pastry chef at both Pilar and St. Ex is a DC secret. I have heard the rave reviews about the cheesecake. As for relaxed atmosphere and good food. You can leave the city and be wowed. Mandalay close to Silver Spring Metro and Joe's Noodle House Twinbrook Metro. These are 2 asian restaurants with great food and friendly staff.

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