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Friday, July 22, 2011

District Cuisine Digs Tru Orleans

welcome, patrons
Photo by philliefan99

District Cuisine reviews the newly opened Tru Orleans (400 H street). BTW, Tru Orleans has a spiffy new website up.

11 comments:

Anonymous said...

Went to TruOrleans yesterday evening since my girlfriend and I like to try all the new restaurants popping up on H St. They've done a fantastic job with the decor and the ambiance feels about right which is impressive for a place that just opened up. Having said that, the food was less than stellar and the prices definitely don't match the quality.

In summary: High marks for concept, decor and friendly service but no so good with food and value.

Anonymous said...

District Cuisine? Is that a thing? Looks to me like the kind of fake review website that a publicist would put up to get quick hits on blogs like this.

inked said...

4:44,
I can't say for sure, but I'm assuming it's legit. We'll have a better idea once other reviews pop up. New blogs, like anonymous comments, can pretty much have anyone behind them.

District Cuisine said...

@anonymous we just got started--Tru Orleans was our first review. Look for more reviews in the next week. We're going to focus on NE, but we'll be eating and reviewing in other parts of the city too.

charles said...

Honest to goodness New Orleans food should never be called "cuisine".

Gonzo said...

Still haven't eaten at Tru Orleans yet. I figured I'd let them iron our the kinks before, but based on the Yelp reviews, I am not sure I have much hope. Does anyone know if any of these guys has run a restaurant before? So many of the flaws that people point out are considered very basic for restaurants. I just shake my head wondering what they were thinking. I think they took on too much too early, possibly because they anticipated opening months go. They could have limited the menu and done drink service first. I think that has worked best for many places. They could have also done a week long soft opening. They seem like they have service issues, menu issues, inventory issue, ambiance issues, and I am not sure that the chef is up to par with the pricing.

But I'll wait it out another week and see if they can pick up speed. Hopefully they will be receptive to the chorus of criticism and make the needed changes. While they're at it, I hope they add more local beers.

inked said...

Gonzo,
my understanding is that they did do a limited menu to start. They also had a series of non-public soft openings before the grand opening. Give it a month or two to find its footing. Menus change, and servers and kitchens find their rhythm in that time. I would say that it's not uncommon to have inventory issues for the first week or so on the food because they have to gauge demand (it's not like booze, which doesn't spoil). Particularly if you are talking seafood, the shelf life is not long at all.

Gonzo said...

I totally understand. I actually want the place to thrive. The design and concept are both stellar. I think that might even explain why people are bummed (high expectations). I've worked in many restaurants in my life and practically grew up in one. A lot has changed over the years, so it must be challenging to be a restaurant these days. A good manager has to think about more than the food coming out of the kitchen (point of sale, social media, online reviews etc). It's a tough job. But experience in the modern industry, and lack of it, really shows sometimes. I'm going to give them another week and then I'll drop in. I'm a fan of the brunch menu.

Sunshine said...

My husband and I went there last week Wednesday. We definitely want them to thrive but they have to work on a few critical elements. The decor is great - they got that down right. Service was poor. Basic things just were not done - like bring a glass of water to your table in a timely matter. Prices are just too high for the level of service, size of portions, and just generally the vibe of the place. The total price of our e-mail was not too far off from what we paid at Smith Commons and this no by no way in the same class. While we didn't regret going there (we live in the neighboorhood and definitely support all businesses coming to our area) It is not a place that we would go back to.

Anonymous said...

gonzo - i read that one of the guys owns or is part of public bar in dupont and a strip club in far NE. i don't know about any actual restaurants.

inked said...

8:39,
He also owns Sushi Rock in Clarendon.