Friday, April 2, 2010

A Tree Grows on H Street

Recently, a group my friends decided to spend an evening in the Atlas District, the up-and-coming neighborhood on H Street, NE. We opted to begin with dinner at the newly-opened Liberty Tree and then walking a few blocks for some Dangerously Delicious pie.

Liberty Tree was hard to spot among the construction that has overtaken H St. The only way to know that we were at the restaurant was the neon "Open" sign perched in the window. When we walked in, I was surprised at how small and intimate the space is. We were led to the only open space, a cozy table in the front of the restaurant, where the late afternoon sun was streaming in.

Immediately, I was drawn to the well-edited wine and beer list. Nothing was over $10 a glass or $30 a bottle, which I personally found very reasonable. All four of us were hungry, so we perused the small plates and appetizers and were intrigued by the potato fritters. I was not expecting to enjoy these little bites of perfection as much as I did. We ordered the potato fritters - basically mashed potatoes with bacon that were covered in panko crumbs and then fried - along with some drinks. Yummm. If you go to Liberty Tree, you must try them.

For main dishes, seafood dominated the menu. I chose to have a pizza called the Cape Cod Casino. Generally I never would have ordered a pizza concocted with clams, garlic, bacon and spinach... but it was very good. Am I daydreaming about eating it again? No. But, it was very fresh and creative. And I think Liberty Tree deserves points for that.

My dining companions ordered the lobster roll, knife and fork meatball grinder and the clams. No one was blown away by their meals, but there also weren't any major complaints... expect for our those concerning our waiter, who wouldn't stop hovering. I left that evening feeling as if Liberty Tree needs a bit more time to get into the swing of things, but that it does have the potential to turn into a solid neighborhood hangout.

Note: Dangerously Delicious was closed due to some DC red tape that they were still working out with the city. They should be opening on April 2nd barring any unforeseen circumstances.

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