Everything's coming up roses.


My mom often remarks that we eat like the kings and queens of centuries past. I think she's right: we're straight up spoiled. William and I had our first gourmet Greek experience at Helen last month, and we were in heaven. I scoured the Houston Restaurant Weeks menu yesterday and noticed I had been to many of the places listed.

Helen in Rice Village has received high praise from Houstonians, including these two.
The point being, I've had my fair share of fabulous meals for my age. Remember this series? Austin was no exception. I think I've decided, though, that my all-time favorite is in DC: cue Rose's Luxury

wish you were with us? be there with my Boomerang!
When I tacked on a Monday evening to the tail end of my trip, I wanted to make sure we ended with an exclamation mark. Annie made it seem like Rose's was my only option, and Merl agreed. You have to be in line by 5 for any chance at a table, so I figured the food was good but had no idea the d├ęcor would be to die for.

The front facade is unassuming -- a flickering fluorescent green light displays the signage, simply reading Rose's. A small patio graces the sidewalk which the eager diners surround as they wait in line to snag their reservations.

As one nears the entry, they can peer at the menu of the day, a list of small plates--categorized by hot and cold--and a smaller selection of large family style plates.

I had the perfect amount of time to peek around the place (and snap a few pics) as I waited for Merl to meet me from work. I was stunned with what they were able to do with the space. CPR instruction posters from the 70s hung on the same rusty red brick walls as sketches of South Texas wild life.

I thought to myself exactly what the white neon sign read across the way from the exposed kitchen: this is "awesome."

Beyond that, the ceilings extend and twinkle lights dance between the ivy above the diners. There lies the garden bar, where Merl and I spent our evening.

Their drink menu, like their dinner, is not too overwhelming and includes an option for everyone--the whiskey enthusiast, the gin drinker (that's me! and Merl), the bourbon bad ass.

The bartender greeted the man behind us. "Hey, chef!," he said. We looked to see if the chef himself had escaped the heat of the kitchen for a cocktail before his nightly performance. Turns out, it was the chef's brother, who was an equal wealth of knowledge on how to navigate the menu. Merl and I picked his brain for our virgin experience at his sibling's famed foodie establishment.

The sweet potato bread tided us over until our plates arrived one by one. First the lychee salad which the waiter encourages you to play with as you whip the foam into all the other chilled ingredients.

Then came the warm, grilled romaine heart with duck egg, crispy potato, herbs and buttermilk, which I'd eat for breakfast...lunch...and dinner. The confit goat with barbecue sea island red peas, rice and garlic breadcrumbs was next followed by the fresh pasta: bucatini with sungold tomato sauce. The plates were as pretty as the food.

We elected to not order dessert only to find two scoops of Cinnamon Toast Crunch ice cream presented in front of us moments later, compliments of the bartender. Words to the wise: supposedly, if you're torn between two dishes, express your panic to the waiter. They'll bring out both!

If was this kind of gracious hospitality, the gorgeous surroundings and the food, of course, that made for a memorable final night with my best friend. It has a way of making you feel fabulous without any fuss.

Some were there to celebrate; some were there to experience life's goodness. We were there for both.

And we'll be back for more.

(& ME!)


Unknown said...

Salivating and wishing we could go back TONIGHT! missin you more than ever <3


Can't wait to finally make my trip there... thanks for letting us live vicariously! xoxo

Unknown said...

Need Rose's now!!!! Just another thing to add to our list of similarities.