Psst... We're working on the next generation of Chowhound! View >
HOME > Chowhound > Washington DC & Baltimore >
Mar 18, 2014 09:10 AM

Meal at Fiola Mare

We ate there this past Saturday. View is beautiful. There were 3 of us at a window seat.

Sevice is excellent. I got the sardines for an app. not on the menu but server "made it happen" ( $18) ) I love sardines so it was wonderful.
other apps were oyster & caviar ($24) very good with 3 or 4 oysters at bottom of the glass.
Adriatic seafood brodetto $42 had only one scallop and one shrimp dish was tasty but over priced for what you got.
I had the dover sole, 1 lb. $46 really good
Marine lobster ravioli $36 very good with good size lobster in the ravioli
Sparkling water was $5 it was offered with the tap water and I don't mind paying for it but would have liked to know since we were drinking beer and wine and didn't drink the water.
Sauteed spinach & meyer lemon as a side $8

Enjoyed the meal overall hope this helps anyone interested in trying.

  1. Click to Upload a photo (10 MB limit)
  1. I was in G'town running errands and I had been meaning to try it out so I popped in for lunch last Saturday. The brunch menu is abbreviated compared to the dinner menu but it has a decent selection of seafood, which is what I came to eat.

    I started out with geoduck crudo. As far as I know, it's my first time devouring this oblong mollusk. It's slightly crunchy and devoid of its own flavor, however, it combined really well with the citrus dressing and caviar. I loved this dish.

    My second course was the sea urchin buccatini with prawns and esplette AND tomatoes. The sea urchin flavor, if any, was overwhelmed by the tomatoes and red peppers. The prawns were super tender though and I enjoyed sucking the juice of the heads. At this point, I'm ready to give up on sea urchin pasta in DC (I'll try to cook it at home).

    With 3 glasses of sparkling wine and some gelatto, lunch was about $120 with tax and tip for myself. I don't know whether the uniforms came from but they look like Ralph Lauren's purple label so there's a lot of cost to recover.

    3 Replies
    1. re: Worldwide Diner

      I need to remember to take pictures of the food. Thanks for the lunch review.

      1. re: Worldwide Diner

        $120 for lunch for yourself and you couldn't detect any geoduck flavor in the app, or sea urchin flavor in the main?
        And how many prawns? Looks like two in the photo. In retrospect, did you find the meal to be a good value?

        1. re: crackers

          I don't think geoduck has a lot of flavor, but it's definitely there. In contrast, sea urchin is flavorful if there's enough of it. 2 prawns, and no, the meal is not a good value. It's a playground for the affluent.

      2. I posted our meal with prices to give people a good look at the cost. It was a beautiful view but not worth the cost. I was satified with the food, the two men I was with both left still hungrey.

        1. We had a little mini "blowout" at Fiola Mare Sat nite. Wow. This is really amazing food in an amazing setting with amazing service. We ran up quite a bill, and it was worth every penny. Fascinating that on Saturday night, they were the busiest at 9:30 - 10 as we were leaving. I can't think of another place I'd rather dine in Washington right now.

          Starters included pefectly fresh and perfectly shucked and beautifully presented Wild Belon, Rasberry Point and Kumamoto Oysters with a Chardonnay/Thyme Mignonettte (sp) and a Passion Fruit Mignonette that was unique and addictive.

          Also, two must orders: Chocolate Clams w blood orange and shiso that just took us back with flavor. And a wonderfully done Tuna Carpaccio w cucumber, olives and capers. But the best of all the beginnings was Fiola Mare Oysters and Caviar w Prosecco Zabaglione. Oyters and caviar married with ginger and soy in the bottom of a parfait glass with a rich delicious foam on top. On my next visit, i may have two of these. Finally, a salad of Buffalo Burrata w baby artichoke and radish with a pesto vinagrette.

          Then focus on pastas. The Gragnano Spagehetti w little neck clams is the sweetest most lucious thing you've ever eaten with golden coins of garlic. Acquerello Risotto w calamarie was deeply oceany and rich. And the Lobster Ravioli, which I've had many times, must pack at least 1.5 lobsters gently sauteed in butter packd into delicate wrappers with a light sauce that lets the seafood shine through. Amazing.

          Stuffed...we fought on. The Adriatic Seafood Brodetto was full of fish, scallops, shrimp, octopus in another long reduced marine-y tomato-y and a little smoke-y thin sauce. Each piece of seafood cooked perfectly. The Under the Sea composition was my lesser favorite, as I was a bit put off by the dashi broth, but the seafood was every bit as impeccable.

          I'm not much a dessert guy, but all four were well received. A rich dense chocolate torte, a light yummy lemon mouse on shortcake, a wonderful marinated cherry bombe, and boozey strawberries with light as air whipped cream.

          I can't wait to return.

          1. I was in G'town Harbor to catch a cherry blossom cruise this past weekend. It was too late to see the blossoms but I still enjoyed my lunch at Fiola Mare. This time I started with a fruitti de mare ($58), containing West Coast Oysters, Middleneck Clams, Penn Cove Mussels, Maine Lobster,Head-On Prawns, Tuna Tartare, Peekytoe Crab, Catalina Island Sea Urchin, and Jellyfish Salad. My favorite was actually the jellyfish salad - very Chinese in its preparation. All the raw seafood were very fresh. I didn't really get much flavor though from the tuna tartare and the crab meat was actually kind of funky tasting (I don't know what seasoning was used). I'm glad that DC finally has some decent seafood platters (the other good one is at Le Diplomate - wish Rappahannock Oysters and/or Eat the Rich would do a seafood platter, and I haven't tried The Range's platter yet).

            Not shockingly, I had room for more food so I ordered some Italian sausages. With a couple of glasses of sparkling wine, lunch with tax and tip was again $120. Next time I'll try the clam pasta.

            1. Fiola Mare is one of the finest restaurants in town, and it's in G'town, more specifically in Washington Harbor, perhaps the most expensive real estate in DC. So Fiola Mare has been known to be expensive. The forecast was for a nice weekend so I thought a return was in order. Lo and behold, 3 course brunch with bottomless cocktail for only $48? 3 courses of what? Well, for me they were:

              SMOKED SALMON PIADINA - Stracciatella Cheese, Baby Arugula, Taggiasche Olives, Pesto Genovese, Smoked Steelhead Trout Roe (pita/flatbread topped with all those goodies - it was delicious, I was almost full after just one dish).

              TORTILLA ESPANOLA con MARISCOS - Shrimp, Scallop, Calamari, Wild Ramp Aioli (damn good tortilla espanola, slightly overcooked shrimp, but very tender scallop and calamri - I dare not eat the whole tortilla, otherwise I would probably explode after the third course).

              GRAGNANO SPAGHETTI CHITARRA - Littleneck Clams, San Marzano Tomatoes
              Parsley, Controne Chilies (perfectly cooked pasta, close to a dozen clams, and I was stuffed afterwards, couldn't even have a wafer thin mint).

              And I had 3 mimosas....all for $48. Don't go. I don't want demand to drive up the price.

              1 Reply
              1. re: Worldwide Diner

                Nice series of reports on FM, WWD. Thanks.