For dinner last night (January 12, 2017), we went to Succotash restaurant (click here to see their Directory listing) at National Harbor, in Oxon Hill. It was a ridiculously warm evening for mid-January here in the Washington, DC area — it hit 71.4° around 2 yesterday afternoon, and it was about 68° when we got to the restaurant around 7:45 PM. A few cars were driving around with tops down and some folks were dining al fresco at the restaurant, which we considered, but decided against, given it was rather windy out.
This was our first visit to Succotash. Upon entering, we were almost bowled over by the noise level — the place was very busy and to call it energetic would be an understatement; the restaurant also had its lights turned down very low, so it almost felt more like a nightclub than a restaurant. It turned out there was a convention of some sort of medical professionals at the nearby Gaylord National Resort & Convention Center, and we were told all the restaurants in the area were swamped.
Given we were about 15 minutes early for our 8 o’clock reservation, we were asked to wait until 8, as our table wasn’t free yet. So we adjourned to the bar and ordered drinks: Cindy her usual Tanqueray martini, and I my Maker’s Mark Manhattan. They were beautiful to look at, and even better to imbibe — the two women making the drinks were obviously pro mixologists.
After sipping our drinks for a bit, we asked the staff to check on our table. To make a long story short, it wasn’t available, and it looked like the folks sitting there were staying put for awhile. We decided to go ahead and eat at the bar. The manager was very gracious about the whole situation and offered to buy us a round of drinks to compensate us for not getting a table.
We then perused menus to make our choices. For starters, we got an order of their Weisenberger Mills Skillet Cornbread (an unsweetened version, served with sorghum butter) and Deviled Eggs (a favorite of Cindy’s, and one of the reasons I selected this restaurant — there aren’t a lot of places with Deviled Eggs on the menu). We enjoyed both dishes.
For her main course, Cindy chose the Wagon Wheel Ranch Smoked Pork Loin, served medium rare, with caramelized onion bread pudding — she enjoyed the dish (the taste I got of the pork was very good!). I got the Shrimp’n’Grits, served with a sunny-side up egg and red-eye gravy. The grits were coarsely ground, so had a lot of texture (I’d almost bet they were from Weisenberger Mills, too). I’m also happy to say they removed the tails from the shrimp (I hate when they leave the tails on in shrimp & grits!). It was also quite good.
For sides with our main courses, we ordered Hand Cut French Fries and a dish of their Collards, Kimchi and Country Ham. The fries were fine, but the collards were our one disappointment, however minor, of the evening. Given the Chef is Korean-American Edward Lee, we had hoped to get a bit of spicy zing in the dish from the kimchi, but none was apparent — to us it seemed a pretty average dish of collards.
For dessert, we ordered a piece of their Chocolate Bourbon Pecan Pie, which comes with orange-flavored whipped cream. I hope you caught the main ingredients in the dish: chocolate, bourbon, and pecans — in a pie, no less! It doesn’t get much better than that. Perfection might have been achieved had it been served warm with a scoop of vanilla ice cream (or maybe pecan praline ice cream). Then, since it was Cindy’s birthday, they gifted her with a couple of their Butter Pecan Cookies, accompanied by a scoop of whipped cream, with two lit candles (along with a serenade of Happy Birthday from three of the staff).
This meal at Succotash restaurant was a very pleasant contrast to our experience in the National Harbor neighborhood a couple of weeks previous, when we visited Fish restaurant. Here the staff was gracious and professional, and were not making any excuses. The food was enjoyable, too. We definitely plan to go back, though we hope to go on a quieter evening, and perhaps in warm weather, so we can eat outside and bring Angus, our dog along.
To see more pictures of Succotash restaurant , please click on one of the images in the gallery. ♦