Pearl Dive Oyster Palace
1612 14th St., NW
Washington, DC 20005
Neighborhood: U Street/Shaw, Logan Circle
Open Monday through Thursday for dinner, Friday and Saturday for lunch and dinner, Sunday for brunch and dinner.
Wheelchair Accessible: Yes
Nearby Metro Stops: U Street/African-American Civil War Memorial/Cardozo
Price Range: Inexpensive
Noise Level: Chatty
Reservations: Not Needed
Oysters on the half shell; seafood-studded salsa with fresh-fried chips; grilled bacon-wrapped oysters; any of the gumbos; fried chicken; crawfish étouffée; BLT with fried catfish and a runny egg; Derby pie; Key-lime pie.
Starters $6 to $15, entrées $13 to $27.
Special Features: Wheelchair Accessible
Few newcomers in recent years have so perfectly captured the culinary zeitgeist as this recent addition to the 14th Street corridor. Jeff and Barbara Black's fifth restaurant exudes sophistication even as it bids you to ditch the tie, translates impeccably sourced shellfish into generous plates and bowls that strut their downhome roots, and offers impressive value without cutting corners.
Looking at the oxidized sign and the weathered floorboards, it's hard to believe the place hasn't been around a decade or two. It also functions with a smoothness that belies such a young operation, a credit to its veteran owners. Dishes are upscale enough to be worthy of leaving home for but not so much that they become precious.
What to get: Oysters on the half shell; seafood-studded salsa; grilled bacon-wrapped oysters; any of the gumbos; fried chicken; crawfish étouffée; BLT with fried catfish and an egg; Derby pie; Key-lime pie.
Open Monday through Thursday for dinner, Friday through Sunday for lunch and dinner. Moderate.