Thursday, August 19, 2010

Restaurant Week Lunch

I haven't been to Hook in ages. When it opened in 2007, I went a few times. Partially because I appreciated their message of promoting sustainable seafood, and partially because its chef, Barton Seaver, was pretty dreamy. Hook let fish shine, prepared fairly simply, and introduced the idea of crudo (Italian sashimi). The chef also had a thing for champagne and sparkling wine. The decor has bright white walls with oversized photos of the sea in brilliant blues. Other than the hard-sell on starting the meal with a glass of bubbles, I liked it. It just fell off the radar as I started to try other restaurants outside of Georgetown.
It's Restaurant Week again. I used to love RW as a chance to try some of the more expensive restaurants and decide whether it was worthwhile to return and pay full-price. After a few years, I grew less enthralled with the experience as the up-charges started appearing. A last minute decision sent me to lunch at Hook to catch up with a friend. Maybe absence does make the heart grow fonder after all, because it was a very enjoyable experience.
Grilled calamari with a mushroom cappucino, grilled scallions and crispy poached egg. Loved it. The yolk was still runny on the inside, with a crispy deep-fried coating that added an interesting crunch to the poached egg. The grilled calamari were tender and had a nice lightly charred flavor.Seafood Ceviche with pineapple, red onion, citrus and plaintain chip.
Pacific Cod with spring pea risotto, chili oil and mint. The risotto was creamy and very light and an excellent accompaniment for the cod. The fish was nicely prepared and retained a moist and firm texture. Fish Tacos - blackened tilapia with crispy shallots, guacamole, cabbage, carrots, and chipotle sauce. The limp fries on the side really could and should have been left off the plate.
Just Peachy dessert - cardamon panna cotta, peach preserves and pistachio wafer. Soothing, cool with a hint of sweetness. An excellent finish to the meal.

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