In 2013, the Capella Hotel, opened on the C&O Canal. It had a restaurant called the Grill Room which was reviewed in the May 2013 Washington Watch. The Capella became the Rosewood Hotel in 2016. The hotel closed for renovations in October 2018 and reopened in early August of this year.
There is no physical resemblance between the public spaces of the Rosewood and the Capella.
The lobby of the hotel and the Bar and Lounge are completely redone. The kitchen, which was out of sight, is now fully exposed in a rather dramatic fashion and they no longer have the private dining room.
Whereas the Grill Room was essentially closed off from the rest of the hotel, the Bar and Lounge are open to the dining room through a waist-height wall.
At each end of the dining room there are two booths that will seat up to four people. There are a couple of 2-tops on the canal side of the dining room which can be seen through the floor-to-ceiling glass windows/doors. On the opposite side of the dining room there is a banquette seating 2-tops which on one side faces the kitchen and on the other side faces into the dining room. There are six 2-tops on each side of the banquette. There a couple of 4-tops in the center of the dining room.
As I viewed the lounge and dining room and then sat in a booth and then on one of the dining room chairs…one word came to mind…luxurious.
The dining room seats up to 66 people at 19-20 tables and the restaurant is serving up to 100 people per evening, somewhat less at lunch time.
Debbie and I went to CUT with Virginia and Tom on the 13th day it was open. Tom and Virginia had been there a week earlier so Tom was known. About a week later, I went to Cut with Carol for lunch.
George, the assistant manager, remembered Tom and Virginia from their first visit and was particularly attentive and friendly.
Everything biscuits and small twisted bread rolls were delivered to the table.
For appetizers…Virginia chose Black Rock Orchard Heirloom Tomatoes; Debbie selected Charred Leeks; Tom picked Sashimi – Boston Bluefin Tuna. I opted for Pennsylvania Sweet Corn Tortelloni. We shared Earth ‘n Eats Farm Carrots. And George ordered up for the table Sliced Beets topped with crème fraiche and caviar.
For main courses…Virginia selected Filet Mignon;
Debbie and Tom shared a Bone-in New York Steak. Debbie asked that the bone be saved so she could take it home. When it came time to leave, Debbie asked for the bone and it had disappeared. George insisted that she come to the kitchen, where she was given another bone was about 2 feet long. (The next day she heated it up and gnawed on the pieces of meat at the foot of the bone.)
I opted for Virginia Rockfish.
Before we had a chance to select desserts, George provided a selection: cheesecake, warm cookies (sugar, chocolate and chocolate chip), and chocolate mousse shaped like an Andy Warhol painting.
As we were about to leave, yet another dessert arrived, a warm souffle, which Tom had delivered to the table of four people next to us – to their surprise and pleasure.
I had lunch with Carol at CUT about a week later. I arrived before Carol and was first seated at one of the tables for two at the window. I asked if we might instead be seated at a 4-top near the 2–top. The request was quickly honored. One of the chefs stopped by to say hello seeming to remember me from before. Carol had been there a couple of times before and George clearly remembered her.
Before we had a chance to order, George showed up with two plates of an excellent chopped salad. When we finished the salad, George had delivered a plate of lobster spring rolls. Neither of these items were on the menu for that day.
Already feeling a bit full Carol and I shared Earth ‘n Eats Farm Carrots and Maine Lobster Club Sandwich.
I could not resist dessert, so I ordered coconut pecan fruit ice cream with a pecan cup.
A second friend of mine, also named Carol, had lunch at CUT with a friend and has been at CUT a couple of times. On this lunch occasion she noted that they were under no pressure to order quickly. (This was also true at my two visits.)
Here is how she described their lunch, “…one of us had the lobster club (messily delicious) which was served on a multi-grain toasted bread with chunks of lobster in it. I had the tomato/burrata salad, which was composed of multiple types (colors and sizes) of tomatoes. All were delicious with the creamy burrata and a drizzle of pesto sauce to heighten the flavors. I also had the tuna tartare with sashimi tuna dressed in a drizzle of oil and little beads of flavored oils.”
When Carol #2 inquired about the restrooms she was directed down a flight of stairs toward the front of the hotel. She was not told that there is a single unisex restroom on the main floor which I happened to notice when we came in. I did visit that restroom.
The room has a sliding door which I did not realize until one of the restaurant folks pointed it out to me. There is a square, white ceramic washbasin, fronted by a mirror and sunk into a white ceramic counter that is decorated with grey squiggles. There are bright lights on each side of mirror. There is a white ceramic commode with appropriate handicap safety bars. The
walls are white marble with the same grey squiggles.
31st Street will be blocked between M Street and K Street through at least the middle of next year as they build a new bridge across the C&O Canal. From M Street you can walk down to the hotel on the far side of the street. You can also drive to the hotel up 31st Street from K Street and then be dropped off. There is also valet parking.
CUT is open for:
breakfast from 7:00 a.m. to 10:30 a.m.
lunch 11:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m.
dinner 5:30 p.m. – 10:30 p.m.
A Wolfgang Puck Restaurant
Located in the
1050 31st St. NW
Washington, DC 20007