Restaurant Week is now very old news, so I’m skipping over a few RW meals here and cutting right to my final lunch of the season. On a rainy Friday, I went over to Georgetown to try America Eats Tavern, the most recently opened José Andrés restaurant in DC.
Andrés, credited with introducing the US to tapas, is Washington’s best-known and best-loved chef. He’s trying something different this time: America Eats Tavern serves recreations of classic American dishes, based on recipes dating from as far back as the 18th century. Upscale comfort food.
This starter of skillet cornbread, with fresh corn, smoked butter, and sorghum syrup, was a wonderful introduction to the restaurant’s culinary aspirations. The cornbread was about the size of a salad plate, so I had half of it boxed for home consumption by my non-existent cat. Cats like baked goods, right?
Over the past few years, homemade pulled pork has become one of my winter mainstays. Except for the messy jobs of shredding and defatting the meat, the crockpot does most of the work overnight, so it’s relatively easy to make.
At America Eats Tavern, the pork was dry-rubbed and smoked. The pickles were house-made, of course, and suitably crunchy.
This just didn’t work for me. I like my ice cream slightly melted—I used to prep ice cream by giving it a quick trip to the microwave before eating—and this shortbread-like lemon sugar cookie and the strawberry ice cream were both hard frozen, because it was meant to be eaten as a finger-food “sandwich”.
A Little More about José Andrés
I’ve cut-and-pasted this blurb directly from the restaurant’s website. Although it doesn’t even begin to convey the range and achievements of Mr Andrés, it will give you some idea of why he has so many passionate admirers.
“Named as one of Time Magazine’s “100 Most Influential People” in both 2012 and 2018, and “Outstanding Chef” and “Humanitarian of the Year” by the James Beard Foundation, Andrés is an internationally-recognized culinary innovator, author, educator, television personality, humanitarian and chef/owner of ThinkFoodGroup. Andrés’ restaurant group includes 31 restaurants, ranging in a variety of culinary experiences from food trucks to his multi-location vegetable-focused fast casual, Beefsteak, and world-class tasting menus like Michelin starred minibar by José Andrés. Andrés is the only chef globally that has both a two-star Michelin restaurant and four Bib Gourmands. As a naturalized citizen, originally from Spain, Andrés has been a tireless advocate for immigration reform. Together with World Central Kitchen and #ChefsForPuertoRico, Andrés has served over 3.5 million meals in Puerto Rico following the devastation of Hurricane Maria in 2017, reaching communities in need across all 78 municipalities through 23 kitchens. Andrés has earned numerous awards including the 2015 National Humanities Medal, one of 12 distinguished recipients of the award from the National Endowment for the Humanities.”