Finding Comfort at The Atlas Room

Not open for lunch, but for drinks and dinner (at 10th and H), The Atlas Room is a newish addition to the H Street scene, a good place to go for a low-key, long conversation over polished drinks and exceptional yet surprising first, second, and third dishes.

What’s “first, second, and third dishes”? you say to yourself, scratching your chin and cocking your head to one side.  They are not first, second, and third places, but rather they are more like small, medium, and large.

Once you select which dish you want–chicken, pork, beef, seafood, vegetable, or lamb–you then pick the size you feel you’d most like.  Each size plate does the dish a special way, but that’s the fun of it.  Kudos to the chef for pricing and portion sizing! The service is prompt and polite.

The bar area is intimate and well-designed for conversations with friendly strangers and the chatty bartender. The decor is nice, but ultimately nothing special.  But don’t think that’s not a good thing: no one would call Cheers anything special, but everyone wanted to be there.  Right?  Right.

Which sadly (tearfully, really) brings us to the end of this review — the Atlas Room, while a pleasant place to dine, isn’t much of a destination.  There are no dancing monkeys, no theme, no cover, no crowds.  There isn’t anything to complain about – the food is wonderful, the drinks are good.  For the eclectic H Street scene, it’s quiet enough to feel out of place.  And that’s why I like it.

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