RequinDC Pop-Up, Mosaic District, Merrifield, VA

Recently, some friends and I went to RequinDC‘s Pop-up, located in the Mosaic District in Merrifield, VA. The restaurant is run by former Top Chef alumni, Jen Carroll and is in partnership with Mike Isabella’s Concepts. I am so glad that Chef Carroll has come to Washington, D.C. to show off her amazing talents.

The evening did not disappointed. The food which is French Mediterranean-inspired was amazing!

Veggie Platter

We started out with the Veggie Platter. A wonderful array of vegetables which included: Celery Root “Pastrami”; very smoky and savory, Eggplant Tomato Ratatouille; rich and flavorful, Curried Cucumber; presented like “noodles” complimented with a curry sauce and Blistered Shishito Peppers, which were charred and smoky.

RequinDC Veggie Platter

Roasted Root Vegetables Salad

The endives, goat cheese and lemon vinaigrette complimented the three kinds of beets.

RequinDC Roasted Root Vegetable Salad
Legume Salad

The tangy, mustard vinaigrette enhanced the watercress greens and is served with warm, cannellini beans, crunchy, haricot verts and pieces of croutons.

RequinDC Legume Salad
Kabocha Squash

How can you go wrong with anything in a puff pastry? The pastry is layered with this sweet, winter squash and topped with the earthiness of hen of the woods mushrooms. This was my favorite. I could of eaten it by myself!

RequinDC Kaboucha Squash
Braised Pork Shank

The braised pork was moist and fell off the bone. The waiter poured the pork jus all over the dish at the table and was delicious with the creamy, squash risotto and pickled carrots.

RequinDC Braised Pork Shank
Desserts

You need to save room for dessert or at least share with your dinner companions.  The chocolate soufflé is served with hazelnut ice cream. Take the pieces of praline and dump it on the soufflé which make each bite that much more decadent.

RequinDC Chocolate Soufflé

The profiteroles are drizzled with warm scotch caramel, crunchy pistachios, candied kumquats and yummy brown butter ice cream.

RequinDC Profiterole

The spongy pumpkin spice cake is super-moist and served with yogurt ice cream. I especially like the pieces of sweetened roasted pumpkin that is sprinkled on the dish.

RequinDC Pumpkin Cake

Requin is in Mosaic only until April before it moves to its permanent home at the new Wharf development on D.C.’s Waterfront in 2017. Do yourself a favor: don’t wait that long. My advice, Go, now! You will be treated to a worth while dining experience!

Three-Course Dinner and Book Signing with Brian Voltaggio, Family Meal, Ashburn, VA

You may have read in one of my earlier blog posts, Family Meal is one of my favorite restaurants. I love the casual atmosphere and the farm-to-table driven menu. When Family Meal announced that they would host a special three-course meal and book signing with Brian Voltaggio, I had to jump at the chance.

Appetizers

We started out with a sampling of some of Family Meals’ customer-favorite appetizers. My favorite: the Deviled Ham with Eggs. I never order these before but I think I am going to have to start. What makes them special is the deviled ham at the bottom of the whipped egg yolks. Yummy! The Pimento Cheese Hush Puppies were also a favorite with a crispy, crunchy outside and the gooey, peppery, cheese inside.

First Course

We ordered the Collard Greens Caesar Salad with romaine and greens served with a house caesar dressing and crisped, cornflake-coated oysters. And a Tomato and Watermelon Gazpacho with basil oil and a watermelon granita. Refreshing!

Second Course

For the second course, we ordered the spaghetti and meatballs with a pomodoro sauce and mozzarella focaccia. And the roasted sea bass with cranberry sea beans, shiitake mushrooms and lemon butter. The spaghetti and meatballs are only served on the kids’ menu and not on the regular menu. But it just goes to show you that it is a dish that satisfies both adults and kids.

Dessert

Home book and dessert

Dinner ended with these amazing desserts. Caramel Corn Sundae with peanut butter ice cream drizzled with caramel. And the goat cheesecake with blueberry-gin compote and chocolate graham cracker crust. This dessert is not usually on the menu and was a feature for this special dinner. But Family Meal needs to reconsider that. It is one of my favorite dessert that I have ever had at Family Meal. Tangy and creamy.

Highlight of the evening was having Chef Brian Voltaggio come to the table and talk with us. He personalized and signed my book of Home. A great evening and one of my favorite dining experiences!