Post-Engagement Dinner for 2
I am getting engaged in a few weeks (she helped pick out the ring so I already know the answer) and am planning a weekend of events capped off with an excellent meal. She loves cooking and food in general, and I am trying to figure out where to go for the dinner. I have already ruled out places outside the city (Inn at Little Washington, etc) and am looking for a romantic, fantastic meal where we might be able to see some of the preparation. Ideally, I would like something like the Chef's Table that used to exist in Galileo, but all of the Chef's Table's I've seen are for larger groups. Currently, I am debating between Komi, Taberna Alabardero, Blue Duck Tavern and Citronelle although I am open to suggestions. Since this is a one time only thing, price isn't too much of an option although if Komi is equal to Citronelle and half the price, that's better. The biggest issue is good food in an intimate setting. Thanks.
The only two I'd add to your list to consider would be the tasting room at Restaurant Eve in Alexandria and Marcel's. I've had excellent special occasion dinners at both.
I highly second Marcel's it is romantic, the food is excellent and you can see the kitchen in some locations, very well.
I also suggest thinking about sitting in the booths or the table in the very back of Hook to watch the open kitchen.
I think both would be really nice for this occassion. And early congrats!
Congrats ATDC. From the restaurants on your list, Citronelle is the most intimate and IMO the best food. (I have not be to Taberna but all the others). Citronelle will be around for years to come to remember the special occasion of your engagement.
Outside your list, I had dinner at CityZen after popping the question to my wife and had a wonderful and memorable meal -- followed by a lovely stay at the Madarin Oriental Hotel, which has pretty good local rates. I made arrangements ahead of time and they went out of their way to make it special meal for us.
Congratulations! My fiance and I had our engagement dinner last August in the private room at Blue Duck and were really impressed not only with the food and service but the attention to detail and the individualized service (as a newly engaged couple). We even got a tour of the kitchen and got to meet the chef. I know you said you don't want to go outside DC, but for the future, the chef's table at 2941 in Falls Church is a very memorable experience.
Out of the places I've eaten at on your list (all except Komi) I would recommend Citronelle. The food is excellent and it certainly has a "special occasion" type of feel.
That being said I've heard amazing things about Komi.
If you are not oppossed to heading out to Old Town Alexandria, I would add Restaurant Eve to your list. You can't exactly sit in front of the open kitchen but you can walk by and see what they are cooking up. I stood there for about 10 minutes watching the action and no one seemed to care. You have a good list of restaurants but none of them scream romance. I went to Eve for my anniversary and I found it to be a very intimate environment with delicious food and wine. Old Town also is a very romantic place to walk around after or before dinner.
Komi! My fiance and I were there last year and it was wonderful. The food, service, wine, atmosphere, everything was wonderful, just perfect. We also went to the Tasting Room at Restaurant Eve, it was great but the atmosphere was not as romantic, and the service was touch and go. I have been to Galileo and Citronelle, but my heart is with Komi.
Not sure how doable getting the reservation would be (have to book a month in advance) but what about minibar? Maybe not romantic enough, but certainly an adventure and it's intimate in the sense that it's 3 couples (but you're also in Cafe Atlantico, so eh). I mean, I went there for an anniversary and another couple was there for the same, so it probably just depends on your style.
Thank you all for the suggestions. I chose Restaruant Eve's Tasting room (breaking my embargo against VA) followed by a stay at the Hotel Monaco. I appreciate your help.