Thanks to Salt River Lobster (saltriverlobster.com), there’s no reason to count lobster out when on a budget. The crustaceans—driven down from Maine each weekend and only $9.99 a pound—come in a range of sizes that can be preordered by phone or e-mail and picked up Fridays in Bethesda or Saturdays in Kensington.
There’s no better way to end a round of lobster rolls than with the blueberry pie ($6 a slice) that pastry chef Heather Chittum serves at Georgetown’s Tackle Box. The slightly cinnamony filling, made with a mix of fresh and frozen wild Maine berries, spills out of a flaky, buttery crust. The pie has so many fans that the seafood joint tends to run out.
With so many restaurants serving crabcakes, you’d think it would be hard to settle on a best. It’s not. Kinkead’s makes the call easy. The kitchen knows to go heavy on jumbo lump and light on binder and not to get cute with seasonings.
Fried chicken ought to be easy—drop it in a fry basket and be done with it. Or so you may think until you bite into a wing at Oohhs & Aahhs and realize what you’ve been missing: not a touch of grease and a coating of spices—the place won’t divulge specifics, but lemon pepper is involved—that keeps you reaching for more.
KBQ Real Barbecue lacks the open pits that nearby Charles County—alone among area counties—allows. Owner Kerry Britt makes up for it with a lifetime of pitmaster tricks. He slathers big, meaty ribs in a house-made spice rub, then stashes them in the smoker, where they spend most of their cook time developing the smoke ring that ’cue enthusiasts look for. He finishes them on the grill. Sauce? There are three options, but ribs this smoky and juicy really don’t need it.
This appeared as part of The Washingtonian's July 2009 Best of Washington issue, on stands now.
Best of Washington: Readers' Picks
More>> Best Bites Blog | Food & Dining | Restaurant FinderFollow the Best Bites Bloggers on Twitter at twitter.com/bestbitesblog