Happy Monday,

I hope you all had a great weekend.  Mine was full of fun, friends, and food!  I swear I’m still stuffed today.  Friday night was Date Night and Mike and I headed to DC to the new SIREN  Restaurant for an early dinner.  This is a group effort with the acclaimed Chef Robert Wiedmaier on the marquis.  It is located in the The Darcy Hotel DC .  1515 Rhode Island Ave. NW Washington, DC.  There is valet available as with most DC restaurants and the lobby is clean, bright and very “new”.  Which I love………Siren, DC, Robert <span class='hiddenSpellError wpgc-spelling' style='background: inherit;'>Weidmaier</span>, dmv, seafood, dinner, date, loriannmd, urablankslate, blank slate, cheers, top chef, washington, frederick, md , va, summer, caviar . darcy hotel, review, travel, blogger, wordpress, instagram, loriannmd, lori tauraso,

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The host stand and part of the Siren Bar in the distance.  We did arrive early 5:30 on Friday so were the first diners – however, it never really seemed to get overly busy.  The restaurant only opened about 6 weeks ago and after speaking with the beverage director Todd Salvadore (very friendly and helpful member of the team) they have done only a soft opening.  No big push yet as to work out the kinks.  I think this is a really great idea and gives the restaurant and staff a chance as there were some definite “kinks” that evening.  loriannmd, decor, travel, blogger, lori tauraso, hotel, dc, dmv, dining, the darcy hotel, robert <span class='hiddenSpellError wpgc-spelling' style='background: inherit;'>Weidmaier</span>, blogger, instagram, dc, washingtonian magazine, frederick, md, This is part of the hotel lobby just before entering the restaurant – love the antique mirrors and the wood floors running throughout.  The stairs lead to the restrooms and elevators, The bathrooms btw were stunning, clean, elegant and no expense spared there.  bar, siren dc, chef driven, robert <span class='hiddenSpellError wpgc-spelling' style='background: inherit;'>Weidmaier</span>, dc, dmv, dinner, happy hour, drinking, dating, blogger, travel review, hotel, lobby, things to do in dc,

We decided to really treat ourselves as they had CAVIAR SERVICE on the menu!  We went for it and ordered the ROAYL OSETRA CAVIAR and they came with homemade blinis.  3 each for us both: white chocolate, potato and buckwheat (my favorite).   They were a bit large for the 1-ounce service but I’m not really complaining.  One word – YUM.  The caviar itself was wonderful not too salty and the way the tiny little eggs burst in your mouth – a slice of heaven for sure.  The whole service is well worth the $125 price tag.  If you want to try caviar Siren is the place.  Champagne would be perfect or a chilled vodka accompaniment if you so chose.  Todd was more than happy to help with beverage choices. caviar service, Siren Restaurant, Chef Robert <span class='hiddenSpellError wpgc-spelling' style='background: inherit;'>Weidmaier</span>, seafood, caviar, dinner, dining, dc, dmv, happy hour , travel blogger, review, travel review , food critic, washingtonian, frederick, md , loriannmd, lori tauraso, mike tauraso, married, date , dinner date, The Darcy Hotel,

I had the Big Eye Tuna as my entree while Mike went for the showstopper below of whole fish.  The picture does not do it justice as we were in a very dark room but large portion enough for two if you wanted to share.  Interesting presentation and a little over mushy so I’m not sure I would do that again.  My tuna was fantastic, the flavors went perfectly, the avocado mousse, macadamia nuts, lime dressing blew me away!
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We also had one dozen oyseters on the half shell – this part was disspointing – the server did say they were small – which I like but ice got into many of them – the tray was too large for how tiny they were – lacked flavor, no oyster brine, and the disspointing part was they were from the West Coast –  maybe one offer from East Coast Rhode Island but we have fantastic local seafood all up and down the East Coast – Chincoteague oysters, Long Island Blue Points, the Carolinas and the raw bar itself fell a bit flat not very impressive for a “SEAFOOD” 

My favorite thing other than caviar was this wonderful salad.  It was new that day on the menu and was outstanding.  I can hardly describe it but almost a sweet dessert like foam dressing and vegetable presentation.  It was the “grilled little gem lettuce” on the menu, young veggies, a papalo mouse, cumin and sweet strawberries.  That grilled baby romaine just did it for me!  salad, dinner, Siren, Chef driven, dmv, dc dining, loriannmd, lori tauraso, frederick, blogger, travel writer, food critic , cheers, happy hour, new restaurant washington dc, summer, grilled vegetables,

We got dessert – when don’t we get dessert?  They were fine, nothing to write home about Mikes was a bit hard to eat.  The chocolate dessert was on a bed of some hard biscuit and impossible to cut/spoon into without crashing down on your plate.  My grapefruit sorbet was pretty and quite refreshing seemed more of a palate cleanser than dessert and the plate was way too big.  I’m so over the deconstructed dishes.  The flavors were there and fresh grapefruit segments could not have been better – It was good, not great and as usual Mike finished it for me.

Now my take away review….. the food is good – the attention to detail and care by the restaurant especially the management and Chef’s on hand; Chef John Critchley and Chef Brian McBride the partners w/RW whom both were present this past Friday overseeing things from the kitchen to raw bar and back.  I spoke briefly to Chef McBride who was at the front of the house for a moment who took time to say “Hello” and ask about my meal so I was happy to sing the praise of the Big Eye Tuna app and that grilled salad.   Our server while pleasant vanished often and took too long to explain things – we don’t need every ingredient listed and explained each part of the cooking method – unless we ask – it took forever and became awkward if you know what I mean?  The tuna mousse amuse bouche was not my cup of tea at all.  The lavish bread seemed more pita and no plates were given us for the caviar service – we had to use our small side plates came out of the gate great and than……….  The bus boy was fantastic and really tried hard there but not there and attentive, we appreciate good work for sure.  It would also have been nice to sit at a better table not a two top at the back wall with no light especially seeing as there was no one in the restaurant.  At the end of the meal, we went to get our car this part crazy.  We gave our ticket and found that the valet was not validated!  Not included with dinner?  Tacky – I mean it is not the money it’s the principle after spending $390 for dinner to be charged parking not cool Siren, you have got to work some kind of deal with The Darcy.   I would not call it a raw bar as some reviews said, however, it was clean, seafood was fresh and the staff was aiming to please.  That being said, would I go back???????  Yes, maybe for a girls brunch or light dinner after they work some more things out.

Have a great week and just no these opinions are my own everyone has their own thoughts and I know I can be a tough critic.




Review Baltimore Fleet St Kitchen

Hey Peeps – Here’s My Review:
**Just so you know when we go out to eat everyone starts out at a five on a scale from 1 to 10 you can either go up or down depending on food service and decor so keep that in mind on review ?.  I am a tough cookie – just so ya know.  
We made a reservation this past Saturday for 5 PM 2pp FLEET ST. KITCHEN – BALTIMORE, MD I couldn’t wait to get there to see the space and taste the food!  I’d heard a review on this & really was looking forward to it. The menu seems modern American new farm to table.  We arrived about 10 minutes early Saturday & sat outside in the alleyway between their sister pizza joint BAGBY PIZZA just across from Fleet Street.  Unfortunately they wouldn’t open doors until 4:53 – ? annoying.  *(If you have a reservation at 5 o’clock aren’t you ready to go a little while prior? Just saying….). Anywho – finally we were let in – waited in foyer than few minutes later we were seated.
It was beautiful. The mix of rustic wood a stunning plaid banquet wood trim and then crystal chandeliers. That ying & yang thing – one of my favorite combos.  We started with a amuse bouche of borist and tangy delicate goats cheese – so pretty – love……

The menu was nice – clear – layed out nicely & easy to follow.  We were told that they have three farms that they procure their hogs and their vegetables from.  Everything locally sourced when possible. I had a “mocktail” muscat mule non alcoholic with extra ginger ( love my ginger more is always better) .  
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Muscat Mule “MOCKTAIL” Extra Ginger For ME!!!!!
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Chilled Potato Leek Soup {CRISFIELD, MD}
Fresh Maryland crab, confit potato, pesto,
charred lemon ash
looks beautiful but waaaaaayyyy to thick – more like a paste and the crab had a “fishy” taste (not in the good way)
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Angus Steak Tartare {ROSEDA FARM, MD}
White miso-truffle emulsion, shaved radish,
shaved summer truffle, toasted baguette –
This was very good – my only complaint I don’t like my tartare all mixed upon presentation –  too much sauce I like to crack yoke myself and mix accordingly – Bread crostini were fantastic however.
Wild Mushroom Agnolotti {KENNET SQUARE, PA}
Spring onion, fava bean, whipped ricotta, pine nut,
shaved summer truffle.
 This was the BEST THING ON THE TABLE I could’ve had 3 of these!

Bibb Lettuce Salad {URBAN PASTORAL, MD)
Chilled lobster, citrus segments, petite herbs, orange vinaigrette  – very dissapointing – dressing blah – not much lobster and the citrus segments overpowered the whole plate.

Lovely ladies room – love the mix of wood and crystal throughout the space here!

So in short gang – I LOVE BALTIMORE – so many new great places popping up.  You gotta go to the harbor and try them out great hotels and shopping as well.
My review is as follows:
Food: 5.75
Service: 7 (we had to wait quite a while between courses – not as attentive considering we were first in DR and no one else really arrived until 6:15 – however server was pleasant and knowledgeable)
Presesntation: 8
Decor/Atmosphere: 7
Would I go back?  Maybe – however so many other places to try – I will be going soon to Bagby Pizza to try the “coal fire pizza” soon – I’m a pizza connoisseur in case ya didn’t know.  HAHA.  So def. stay tuned for that.
Heading out to finish my bike ride – already did 4 miles this a.m. 2 more to go – gearing up for Bermuda end of the month quick 
R & R.  Than first BOD mtg for our community – I will be our “cluster’s” spokesperson – whoa baby!  Still purging my closet and reorganizing – pics at the end of the week after long overdue IKEA trip.
Hugs To You All!

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