There has been a lot of buzz about Founding Farmers restaurant in Washington DC. Some of the buzz has been good, some of it has been not so good. Some people love the food, others are disappointed by it. Service seems to be a problem in this new-ish restaurant located in the International Monetary Building. And some people think the whole thing is just overrated.
That's why I was so happy when Rhea invited me to her birthday dinner at Founding Farmers. Not was I only going to hang out with her and meet her two other friends, but I'd finally have a chance to judge the restaurant for myself.
Let me just say that the restaurant is absolutely gorgeous. Everything from huge jars of corn and lychees to impeccably designed bathrooms, to comfortable booths and low-key and homey wooden tables. I could live in that space!
We did, however, right away had a few issues with service. At first they wanted to sit us at a two person table. That wasn't going to work! Then our poor waiter, who also happened to be managing the restaurant that day, had to go back and deal with a cut in his hand. Etc, etc, etc.
I started the meal with Fraise Fling--A unique blend of fresh strawberries, lychees, Snow Queen Organic Vodka, and finished with Charles de Fere Brut. Perfect on a hot summer's day! It was such a pretty drink, but did not have too much alcohol: perfect. Rhea had Nice Coat!-- A little fresh basil, a little fresh lime juice, a little Blue Coat American Dry Gin, and a little love. Nice!
We decided to start with two appetizers: fried green tomatoes and cornbread. I've only had fried green tomatoes once, when I was in Atlanta (Flying Biscuit restaurant), and I wasn't too impressed. They reminded me of Granny Smith apples. What I loved about Founding Farmers' green tomatoes was the fried coating and the awesome goat cheese spread that came with them.
The cornbread was amazing! It really tasted more like a souffle than your typical cornbread. And look at the adorable presentation: it comes in a little skillet! I chose not to use the honey butter that came with the cornbread, and instead used the goat cheese spread from the fried green tomatoes. Delicious!