Old Angler's Inn
10801 MacArthur Blvd.
Potomac, MD 20854
Neighborhood: Potomac/Cabin John
Cuisines: Seafood, American
Open Tuesday through Saturday noon to 10 PM, Sunday 11:30 AM to 6 PM.
Price Range: Expensive
Dress: Upscale Casual
Noise Level: N/A
In the warmer months, there are few prettier perches than an umbrella-topped table in the lush, hilly garden that fronts this fieldstone restaurant, which in the 19th century served as a clubhouse for an association of hunters and fishermen. Inside, crackling fires keep out any wintry chill.
The charming setting was the main draw here until 2011, when chef Nick Palermo arrived. He ditched the tired continental menu, adding an eclectic mix of winning dishes such as ricotta cavatelli with pillowy meatballs, fat sea scallops with Banyuls reduction, and sablefish pho, which has a terrific, lime-heavy broth swirling with vermicelli and basil leaves. Not everything is a success—skip the standard-issue Caesar in favor of the Chilean salad, with hearts of palm and asparagus, and ignore the poorly balanced cocktails altogether. When dessert rolls around, you’re safest with crème brûlée.
Open Monday for dinner, Tuesday through Saturday for lunch and dinner, Sunday for brunch and dinner.