Thursday, January 1, 2009

Art & Soul: Eh...

I kept on reading good reviews of Art & Soul (415 NJ Ave NW, 202-393-7777) and had been wanting to try it for quite some time.  A good friend of mine went during Appetite Stimulus week (the fake restaurant-esque week sponsored by OpenTable) and said it was not worth my time - but I have a tendency to not listen.  So when my friends and I were picking a restaurant for dinner last Tuesday, I suggested Art & Soul ... so we went; and I should have listened to my friend.

Honestly ... I was disappointed.  The Executive Chef, Art Smith, was previously Oprah's chef, and was a two time James Beard award winner.

I think Tom Sietsema's review, here, said it best, "At its best, Art and Soul is a restaurant that makes you forget you're eating in a hotel." ... everything else is really lackluster.  I personally liked the decor, and the service was okay.  But the food didn't really come across as Southern, the entrees were bland and flavorless.   Though I will say the hoecakes were fairly interesting - and fairly Southern I suppose, but the rest of the meal was downhill.

Overall, I'd maybe give it a star or two ... If you are in the area and want a meal which costs more than it should - stop in, but if you are willing to actually spend good money on food do yourself the favor and walk around the block to Charlie Palmer's Steak.

Tim Shea: 1.5/5

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