Are there any Russian restaurants in the DC metro region? There is Russia House in Dupont but other than vodka, caviar and perogies it does not look very Russian.
in NW DC has been recommended as a Scandinavian / Slavic option.
The Russia House in DuPont does have very Russian food. They have the pre-revolution, French-inspired Russian foods that the elite used to eat. Are you perhaps looking for a place that does communist era food, heavy on the mayo, pickle, and peas? Tough to find nowadays, my friend. :)
I ate at Red Square in Baltimore about three years ago and wasn't terribly impressed with it, but perhaps they have gotten better over time.
I was at Russia House in Dupont for nibbles/light fare a few months ago, and it was excellent. The smoked salmon app had fantastic fish: moist, tender, and not at all tough or chewy. We also ordered another traditional dish, the cocotte and it was nicely done. Creamy, warm, and comforting.
Service was quite smooth and very friendly, the place was empty on the Wed night we were there.
What was disappointing was their infused vodkas. They had all sorts of non-Russian flavors like pineapple mango and chili ginger. How about some buffalo grass, coriander, or a traditional berry? Something that is truly Russian inspired. Pineapple and mango is not Russian!
There's a Russia House in Herndon - I don't think it's related to the DC one:
Serbian Crown in Great Falls.
Lastly, you might want to check one of the Russian Gourmet locations (Herndon and I think Rockville?) - they'll point you in the right direction.
Disclaimer: I know nada about Russian food - I just know of these places.
re: Dennis S
My Russian (born in Moscow) girlfriend and I just got back from dinner at the Russia House Restaurant. We were very happy with dinner there and according to her the food was very authentic. She said that her grandmother would make some of the dishes at home and that is what she at "growing up." I'll take her word on it. All I can say is that for me the food was very good. We had a few glasses of Merlot which was very nice. Not sure what kind. Just what they had by the glass. We started with the Zakuski Platter which is a mix of different Russian appetizers. From memory the appetizers were, beet salad, a slaw of celery root, pickled herring, potato salad, roasted egg plant and a smidgen of cavier. For dinner she had a chicken kiev which was served on a bed of rice with roasted vegetables. The chicken kiev wasn't traditional in the sense that it wasn't a cutlet stuffed with herb butter then breaded and fried. It was a cutlet stuffed with butter and then doused with a gravy of some sort. At any rate it was very tasty. Not a dried out hockey puck of a chicken breast that you get in normal places. I had the Kulebiaka which was puff pastry stuffed with rice, ground lamb and a whole egg. There was a tarragon flavored sauce (looked like American gravy) which was very tasty. It came with scalloped potatoes which was excellent, perfectly cooked and seasoned and roasted vegetables. I liked vegtables because they tasted the way they should and wasn't mushy and over cooked. For dessert we had bilini stuffed with apples. That was kinda meh. The bilinies themselves were fine but the apple stuffing tasted like it came out of a can. We also had tea which was very nice, some sorta indian kind. Each tea came in it's own pot which had a nifty feature that you could lift the tea leaves out of the water once it was done steeping. Never saw anything like that before.
The restaurant was not very busy. We went Sunday night and including us there were maybe 4 tables of diner. One 4 top and three 2 tops. Service was prompt and very friendly. The dining room was a nice departure from the modern trend of sparce and all hard surfaces. They had a rug and curtains on the walls. It was very quite in there. Almost too quite. It was hard not to listen in on conversations going on on the other side of the dining room. Surprisingly enough I'd say that it would be a nice place to have a romantic meal. It is quite there, it had dim lighting, and it had prompt and efficient service. I really hope that they are busier at other times because it would be a shame if they went out of business. The food was really good.
I'm not a huge Vodka hound so I know nothing. But they had a huge list of different flavored vokda's on the menu. Not sure what kind they used but it is worth checking out if you're into vodka.
An interesting aside the chandoliers in the place are the exact same ones as my girlfriend had in her apartment when she was growing up.