Flavorful Fine Dining in NoVa, But First You Have to Find 2941

The ubiquity of GPS technology is both a blessing and a curse – it helps you find everything – expect when it doesn’t.

G and I were clearly out of our element.  We had crossed over the river to Northern Virginia for a friend’s party, and then were planning to trek .9 miles from her house to 2941.  I’d always read good things about it, but where was it again?

Following GPS, we looped around Route 50 and random “parkways,” making U turns.  I then turned to my iPhone map app which had us threading our way around some empty office parks (it was 9 pm on a Saturday, after all), we eventually found it.

Dining room at 2941

The restaurant was surrounded by cute fountains and a ponds, with a nice view of woods.  Floor to high ceiling glass windows.  It reminded me of Charlie Palmer, except it was (appropriately) dimly lit.  Oversized mirrors added depth and space, and the fireplaces added warmth.

It was formal – very Northern Virginia in that way.  One guy wore jeans – yeesh, did he not get the memo?  Almost everyone had a jacket on.  Women were in suits or dresses – I had opted for pants.  Lots of foursomes out on couples dates, groups of families and couples sitting along the banquette or with views of the woods.

The food was very good, starting with the bread.  I know, since when has the bread basket been a highlight of the dinner?!?  The best was a chocolate chip baguette.  At first, I thought maybe it was a raisin bread, but then realized it was chocolate – not overly sweet, just a subtle, slightly spicy swirl.  I wanted to try more, but when the appetizer came, I was glad I had exercised restraint.

The tuna carpaccio looked beautiful, a circle of red tuna, with colorful splashes of color.  It was topped with tiny slivers of octopus, salty capers, tangy blood orange segments, bursts of olive and crunchy, tiny anchovy.  Terrific flavors.

My main course, the veal loin, was quite good as well, but the accompaniments, hedgehog mushrooms, grilled fennel and winter vegetables were the best part.  The veal stood nicely on it’s own, but the texture and flavor could have been brought out by maybe just a touch more sauce.  G, meanwhile, scarfed down his entire venison topped with foie gras and wrapped in pancetta, enjoying every last morsel.

We finished up the evening with a quartet of sorbets – two tart, Peruvian lime and blood orange, and two tropical, pineapple and coconut (creamy, but not too sweet or overpowering).

One of the nicest meals we have had in a while.

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