If good things come to those who wait, as the proverb goes, Joe Englert’s newest restaurant, H Street Country Club (1335 H St., NE; 202-399-4722), is set to deliver. More than two years after he first piqued interest with talk about opening a space that combined food and an indoor miniature-golf course, Englert’s vision has finally materialized. So does H Street Country Club live up to its expectations? We’ll let you be the judge. Check out the video tour of the space, and read on after the jump for more information on the restaurant, including the food menus (designed by Ann Cashion of Johnny’s Half Shell and Taqueria Nacional), miniature golf, and other games.
Despite its narrow appearance from the outside, H Street Country Club is a two-level 6,000-square-foot space with seating for more than 300 people.
Downstairs, there’s a small Tex-Mex menu, dubbed “El Norte” for Texas’s geographic location in relation to Mexico. It includes such Tex-Mex treats as spicy tamales ($7), Texas-style beef empanadas ($7), and a jalapeño-pickled chile con queso ($6). There’s also a spacious bar that seats about 25 people as well as a large game area with pool tables, skee-ball, and shuffle boards.
“It’s ideal for large parties,” says restaurant manager Kristin Cook. “People come in, congregate, and relax—some play pool, others skee-ball. I think we go through $100 a night in change just for skee-ball.”
While seating downstairs is done on a first-come, first-served basis, upstairs seating requires checking in with a host but the place doesn’t take reservations.
On the menu is authentic Mexican food including chicken escabeche ($18), pork-rib carnitas ($19), chilaquiles served with roasted duck ($22,) and lamb enchiladas ($19). Coconut flan ($6) and buñuelos ($6)—honey-drizzled fried dough—are available as desserts.
The full menu is also available at the bar, which features hundreds of golf balls displayed behind glass.
The dining room shares a level with the miniature golf course, where guests sign up for a game at the “putt putt hut” for $7 and wait their turn. Cook says during the week, the line isn’t too long. But on weekends, waits can extend up to 45 minutes.
“It’s been a little rough, just because we weren’t anticipating such a big turnout,” she says. “What we’re going to start doing is taking people’s cell-phone numbers and calling them back when space becomes available.”
Open Sunday through Thursday 5 PM to 2 AM, Friday and Saturday 5 to 3. Valet parking is available Thursday through Saturday starting at 5, and unmetered street parking is also available.