Le Diplomate – The dazzling, sophisticated, elegant French restaurant loved by many celebrities, diplomats and politicians is the place residents dream to try, and where tourists flock. A classic French restaurant, haute cuisine with a two page menu simply for bottled wine is a true DC fine dining experience.
I knew before hand that it would it would be quite a pricey experience, but I was ready for fireworks. At first, the bread and the starter of foie gras was beyond what I expected. Having lived in France for a bit, I experienced the best of the breads, and le Diplomate’s bread with their creamy butter was definitely on the top of the best list. Baguette, Rye and Cranberry bread, all buttery and exquisite. It was the perfect way to start a meal!
For the starter, we ordered the foie gras which arrived midst stuffing our faces with bread and butter. The creamy, delectable delicacy, sprinkled with chives was served on a wooden chopping board with thick toasted buttered bread and a sweet strawberry jam. The silky smooth foie gras spread across the crispy toast is a true testament of a French King’s cuisine. The fruity jam wasn’t a great additive, I understand how some may enjoy it, but it didn’t heighten the taste of the dish. The foie gras itself with the bread was perfection and did not need anything else.
After the outstanding bread and starter I was looking forward to an over the moon main course. I was leaning towards ordering the steak and frites, but since my friend was adamant on having that, I had to have something different, for diversities sake. Rumour has it that le Diplomate has one of the best burgers in town, so I thought of course I must have the best burger. When ordering the waitress asked my friend how he wanted his steak cooked, but she didn’t ask how I wanted my burger done. When mentioning I wanted it medium rare, I was informed the chef makes it medium and I would be okay with it unless I wanted it well dome or rare. I accepted thinking the chef knew the best way to make a burger.
When the food arrived, both the steak and the burger, adorned with both French and American flags took up a quarter of the plate and the rest was filled with hundreds of fries, or so it looked. Don’t get me wrong, I love fries, but there are only so many fries I can eat or want to eat. Despite the amount of fries, they were crisp, salty and delicious. However, I was most interested in the burger and was beyond excited to dig in. Sadly, my excitement did not last long. The burger was not the best, not even close. Their version of medium done was not what I wanted, I like it rarer and given that I did not have the option for medium rare I was disappointed. To top it off, the flavour was not the most enjoyable. The mountain of fries which I barely made progress into was the best part of the plate.
I loved the start of the meal, the atmosphere and service. My burger may have been an off day or I ordered the wrong entree for myself, but I would definitely come back. Perhaps later in life with a little more money in my pocket so I can get some wine and a more expensive and hopefully tastier dish.