How hot are offal and pork? So hot that they’re making their way into vinaigrettes—the sauces chefs have turned to for generations to undercut the richness of things like pork. At Vidalia (1990 M St., NW; 202-659-1990), R.J. Cooper spoons a pickled-tongue vinaigrette over a coddled duck egg with sweetbreads; another vinaigrette shot through with pickles, pearl onions, and bacon fat accompanies a roasted baby pig. At Ceiba (701 14th St., NW; 202-393-3983), bits of Spanish chorizo perk up the vinaigrette drizzled over a filet of grilled salmon. By contrast, a vinaigrette currently on chef Tony Conte’s menu at the Oval Room (800 Connecticut Ave., NW; 202-463-8700) looks downright conventional for being so light—it’s made with razor clams.
This appeared in the November, 2008 issue of the Washingtonian.