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In love with KOMI but need to give others a chance!

s
soult Nov 8, 2011 09:18 AM

Help, last time my friend and i went here. We fell in love the moment we walked through the door. Best dining experience ever...perfect fine dining with an unpretentious air. Now, it's time again to tickle our taste buds with food innovation and art! Any ideas for the Wash DC area? Greatly appreciate it!

  1. e
    Elyssa Nov 8, 2011 09:28 AM

    Komi is pretty much the best at that level in my opinion. A lot of people suggest Obelisk as an alternative to Komi because it is equally tiny, a pre-fix, and hard to get in to. I was kind of disappointed in my Obelisk meal and found the various courses uneven.

    The Source on the other hand is fantastic! I just celebrated my birthday there and thought the whole experience was excellent from start to finish. Very good service (like Komi---which I think has the best service in DC), excellent, inventive food and a nice wine program. Certainly worth checking out.

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    Komi
    1509 17th St NW Ste 1, Washington, DC 20036

    5 Replies
    1. re: Elyssa
      b
      BookGuy Nov 8, 2011 09:43 AM

      i second The Source. It is extremely expensive with a tasting menu and wine pairing coming to two hundred dollars a head but it is excellent and, of course, they pamper you quite well.

      1. re: Elyssa
        g
        Garlic Guy Nov 8, 2011 02:42 PM

        My experience is kind of, but not really, the opposite. I enjoy going to a wide variety of places. A good friend of mine lives in Connecticut and is very demanding when it comes to food; she and her husband come visit once or twice a year, and are willing to spend one evening on an upscale meal at a relatively pricey restaurant. In preparing for her first trip here, my friend was torn between Obelisk and Komi; we landed reservations at Obelisk, so that's where we went. She loved Obelisk, and has insisted on returning during subsequent visits. I've practically begged her to give Komi a chance during her more recent visits, largely because I want to try it and none of my local friends are interested in going, but she liked Obelisk so much that she simply won't take the risk that Komi won't be as good. So, every time she comes, Obelisk it is.

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        Komi
        1509 17th St NW Ste 1, Washington, DC 20036

        1. re: Garlic Guy
          b
          broodingomnipresence Nov 9, 2011 08:46 AM

          Your friend sounds kind of obnoxious and self-centered.

          1. re: broodingomnipresence
            g
            Garlic Guy Nov 9, 2011 09:30 AM

            She's not, really, but I can see why you'd think that. I'm sure if I really, strongly insisted, she'd give Komi a chance, but she spends an average of three days a year in Washington, and I live here. So, I can go to Komi whenever I want (it's not her fault that none of my local friends are interested), and I don't feel that it's appropriate for me to insist on going to a restaurant that I can go to any time when her availability is so limited.

            Believe me, when I visit them in Connecticut, they take me to a nice mix of amazing restaurants, so it's only fair I accommodate her on this one point.

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            Komi
            1509 17th St NW Ste 1, Washington, DC 20036

            1. re: Garlic Guy
              crackers Nov 11, 2011 03:36 PM

              Obelisk is wonderful. I've been to Komi several times, and have always enjoyed it, but Obelisk was where I recently went to celebrate an "occasion." The prix fixe $70 menu is phenomenal, from the first crunch of bread stick to the last nibble of mignardise. I would agree that service and ambiance are similar to Komi (in the grand scheme of things). Another option would be the Tasting Room at Restaurant Eve and CityZen.

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              Restaurant Eve
              110 South Pitt Street, Alexandria, VA 22314

              CityZen Restaurant
              1330 Maryland Avenue SW, Washington, DC 20024

              Komi
              1509 17th St NW Ste 1, Washington, DC 20036

              Tasting Room
              101 N Market St, Frederick, MD 21701

      2. s
        Steve Nov 8, 2011 12:33 PM

        Citronelle is great, and if you want a more casual vibe, then eat in the Lounge at Citronelle. No reservations, informal, a la carte. Order as much or as little as you want. I sometimes go before a movie or after work on the spur of the moment. It is pretty amazing you can have that level of experience under such casual conditions. Food gets high marks for inventiveness and playfulness.

        www.citronelledc.com

        3 Replies
        1. re: Steve
          s
          soult Nov 9, 2011 11:59 AM

          I have reservations there on Friday; but am a bit afraid that i will expect a Komi experience and will be disappointed because i have read so many things about it being much more "traditional". But you said inventiveness and playfulness---I like that! We would probably do some kind of tasting menu. i love not having to worry about ordering since i love nearly everything; it's hard to go wrong with the chef serving me his masterpiece as he sees fit.

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          Komi
          1509 17th St NW Ste 1, Washington, DC 20036

          1. re: soult
            s
            Steve Nov 9, 2011 01:13 PM

            I have not eaten in the formal dining room. I imagine that it is not at all like Komi.

            "it's hard to go wrong with the chef serving me his masterpiece as he sees fit."

            This is not always the case with a tasting menu. Each portion is reduced, yes, but that's not all. Sometimes chefs will leave out parts of a dish on the 'tasting menu' version, so you are not really getting the full effect of any one dish. If you want his masterpiece, you might do better with the prix fixe, where you can order the lobster begula pasta and the lamb with jalapeno-cumin sauce. Other classics are his virtual risotto, the mosaic, oyster shooters, and the lobster with potato fried rice. These dishes will be less traditional and showcase his playful side.

            Get the 'rubber ducky taking his bath' for dessert, and the chocolate degustation is always a winner.

            1. re: Steve
              j
              J_DC Nov 11, 2011 07:27 AM

              My one experience at Citronelle was the tasting menu, which we all found very disappointing. After spending that much money on a disappointing experience, I have not been in such a rush to go back. It sounds like the prix fixe or a la carte in the Lounge sounds to be the better option.

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              Citronelle
              3000 M Street NW, Washington, DC 20007

        2. h
          hppyheather Nov 9, 2011 04:42 AM

          We've had fabulous culinary experiences at Eola. I would not put it in the same category as Komi (because, honestly, I think Komi is in a class by itself), so it would be a step down. However, tasting menu is only $65, so I think it is a fair trade off. We've found their food to be very inventive, super delicious, and art on a plate. They change their menu often, but I would recommend checking it out!

          1. m
            Marty L. Nov 9, 2011 08:47 AM

            I am very hesitant to write this, because I'd like to be able to snag a table again in the near future, but it's only a matter of time before word gets out . . . . If you loved Komi and are enthused about the prospects of a seven-course, prix fixe ($45) Issan Thai meal, Johnny Monis of Komi just opened Little Serow, downstairs and next door to Komi . . . and it was the best dining experience I've had in recent months. Just please don't tell anyone!

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            Komi
            1509 17th St NW Ste 1, Washington, DC 20036

            3 Replies
            1. re: Marty L.
              s
              soult Nov 9, 2011 11:56 AM

              Hi,
              yes, i heard about that restaurant. I plan on visiting :-). It is walk ins only...the menu looks great and changes weekly.
              Thanks :-)...don't think it will be much of a secret as there is already quite a buzz!

              1. re: soult
                hill food Nov 9, 2011 12:51 PM

                ALL over TS's Post chat today (ok maybe not all over but mentioned once or twice)

              2. re: Marty L.
                e
                Elyssa Nov 10, 2011 08:37 AM

                I just read about this on Tom's WaPo chat. They must have been practically silent about this place opening because I haven't heard anything about it. Looking forward to checking it out.

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