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Freddys Lobster and Clams coming to Bethesda soon

d
Doh Feb 21, 2011 08:17 AM

Thought others (Elyssa that means you) might be as interested as I was to learn that the chef at Grapeseed is planning on opening a NE-style lobster/clam shack in the space next to Grapeseed (which I think has had at least 5 different restaurants in the last 10 years-- hope this one is the charm).

Sounds like he'll be offering lobster rolls and whole belly clams, among other things. If this is as good as I'm hoping I'll probably eat there every week in the summer. :)

http://www.bethesdamagazine.com/Blogs...

Now if only York Castle, or some other decent ice cream, would open in Bethesda open in time for summer...

-----
Grapeseed
4865 Cordell Avenue, Bethesda, MD 20814

  1. r
    reiflame Feb 21, 2011 10:26 AM

    Awesome! I just started working right around the corner from there. I can't wait to try it!

    1. m
      mrshoho May 5, 2011 06:53 AM

      soft opening next weekend!

      1 Reply
      1. re: mrshoho
        m
        michael4ny May 9, 2011 11:04 AM

        Belly clams.....OMG. I'm driving down from Baltimore for some.

      2. r
        reiflame May 17, 2011 11:51 AM

        So today's the first day of their regular open and we went for lunch. There were some really nice spots and some room for improvement:

        The good:
        Friendly service
        The best onion rings I've had in a long time
        Good fries
        Hearty portions

        The bad:
        Really, really greasy
        My clams had grit in them

        9 Replies
        1. re: reiflame
          d
          Doh May 17, 2011 12:03 PM

          Did you try the lobster roll? I've heard good preliminary reports.

          1. re: Doh
            r
            reiflame May 17, 2011 12:45 PM

            My fiance had the buttered, hot lobster roll and it was really good. The lobster was cooked perfectly and the butter was well flavored. I will probably try the mayo-based roll next time.

            Forgot to mention; the tartar sauce and slaw are also really good.

            1. re: reiflame
              c
              chicken kabob May 17, 2011 04:38 PM

              LOVED the hot buttered lobster roll, and excellent fries.

              1. re: chicken kabob
                r
                reiflame May 18, 2011 09:23 AM

                The fries definitely didn't have the greasiness problem that the rings had, and were well seasoned. Plus they have vinegar on each table, which makes me happy.

            2. re: Doh
              r
              reiflame Jun 3, 2011 01:56 PM

              I tried the cold lobster roll today and I loved it. Now, I'm not connoisseur by any stretch but I really loved it. Yes, it's $15, but it comes LOADED with giant chunks of tail and claw meat. The mayo is well seasoned and thankfully pretty lightly applied, the lobster is cooked well and the split roll is toasted and not bready.

              Love it!

            3. re: reiflame
              BrightwoodLiving May 20, 2011 12:29 PM

              We went last week, for the clams (I'm from New England). First bummer: they weren't serving steamers (and have since removed them from their menu on their website). We both ordered fried clams. Second bummer: they were served cold. My fries were ice cold, clams, barely warm. The fries are the skinny kind, and pretty tasty (though cold). Their onion rings are all wrong. In NE, clam shacks serve the skinny onion strings, not the big, fat ones that they serve. The atmosphere when we were there was very family oriented (kids running all over the place). If the clams got better, then we'd be willing to be regular customers, but it's not a place we'd linger over drinks (too rowdy, too many kids, just not out scene). Hope they get better, and put steamers back on the menu.

              1. re: BrightwoodLiving
                r
                reiflame May 20, 2011 01:05 PM

                Their actual open was this week Monday, so did you go during their soft opening? If so, I would definitely give them a chance to iron out their kinks before passing judgement.

                Also, fat or skinny those onion rings were very well seasoned.

                1. re: BrightwoodLiving
                  DanielK May 20, 2011 01:26 PM

                  Everything was hot at lunch today. The fried whole belly clams were awesome, fries and rings just ok. The lobster roll was excellent but small.

                  It was reasonably busy but nowhere near full at 12:30 today.

                  1. re: BrightwoodLiving
                    c
                    comestibles May 20, 2011 04:13 PM

                    At late afternoon today, I stopped by and asked about steamers, since I prefer soft shell clams steamed. They said that steamers will be back on the menu next week. I had the WB clam roll and lobster stew. My clam roll was also only warm and too heavily battered. The fries were lukewarm and heavy, like they were fried at too low a temperature. The lobster stew, however, was good with lots of chunks of lobster from the tail.

                2. ClevelandDave Jun 3, 2011 02:44 PM

                  While they may get the bugs out, I think this place is fatally flawed. I'm sorry but I just have a tough time saying very much good about our experience. The food was served cold. The service was fair. The prices, for what we got, was high. As of the end of May there were few items on the menu that wern't fried.

                  The fried food was not done properly- besides being cold it was greasy. What lobster and clam joint dosen't have steamed lobster and clams? No fried or steamed scallops. The atmosphere was kitch, and not in a good way. The fried clams were at best so so. The onion rings were greasy. All told the soup, which had very little complexity or substance to it beyond the lobster meat (which was fine), plus two fried entrees and two soft drinks was over $50.

                  There is no excuse for this from an experienced restaurant owner with a place that does good business next door.

                  If you want a decent version of this kind of food and what this place should be, go to Tackle Box in Georgetown.

                  7 Replies
                  1. re: ClevelandDave
                    c
                    chicken kabob Jun 3, 2011 04:28 PM

                    Unfortuantely, my 2nd visit was not nearly as good as my first. I ordered the same thing (lobster roll and fries.) I also ordered the cole slaw for the first time (good) and the woopie pie (loved it.)
                    I will be back, however, I was disappointed on this visit because my first one was so much better.

                    1. re: ClevelandDave
                      DanielK Jun 3, 2011 10:08 PM

                      Did you send back the cold food?

                      1. re: DanielK
                        ClevelandDave Jun 7, 2011 11:17 AM

                        We did. It came back hot, but by the time it came back we were done with the other stuff which wasn't so great (or so hot) to begin with. And the waitress apologized in the manner of "this isn't the first time..."

                        1. re: ClevelandDave
                          DanielK Jun 7, 2011 07:40 PM

                          That was pretty critical information - that they corrected the mistake - that you neglected in your first review.

                          1. re: DanielK
                            t
                            Teddybear Jun 8, 2011 05:07 AM

                            You are right, of course. But correcting the mistake doesn't really change the fact that an evening can be ruined nonetheless.

                      2. re: ClevelandDave
                        d
                        Doh Jun 4, 2011 07:32 AM

                        I understand that some people have a meal of fried clams and french fries and think it should cost under $10, but I just don't think that is a realistic expectation for quality whole belly clams.

                        I think it would be nice if they had steamed clams and fried scallops (and I think the former were on the menu at one point and may come back), but for what it's worth, I think the objection that there isn't much food that's not fried is like going to Taco Bell and objecting that there isn't much food that's not "Mexican".

                        The lobster rolls we had were very good, but the fries were just ok.

                        1. re: Doh
                          ClevelandDave Jun 7, 2011 11:16 AM

                          With all due respect a lobster and clam house that does not have steamed lobsters and clams is not like going to taco bell and objecting that there isn't much food that's not "Mexican." Besides, my expectations are a lot different of Long John Silvers than Freddies, and the price point is far different (and I kind of like the fried cod at LJS for what it is). Further, they wern't under $10 all in and they weren't good at any price. Lastly, there are other alternatives for good seafood at this price point.

                          -----
                          Long John Silvers
                          7049 Leesburg Pike, Falls Church, VA 22046

                      3. Chocolatechipkt Jun 15, 2011 09:37 AM

                        I did carry out from here last week, lobster rolls and fries. The fries didn't do well sitting for a couple of hours -- but that's our fault, not theirs. The lobster rolls were good, IMO -- and I'm quite familiar with Maine/MA lobster rolls. The prices weren't what I'd spend every day--but they were pretty close to what we've paid in New England (not tourist spots either.)

                        1 Reply
                        1. re: Chocolatechipkt
                          ClevelandDave Jun 15, 2011 12:14 PM

                          Anything sitting out for a couple hours no matter how good to start will suffer.

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