New Desserts at Looking Glass Lounge


Next time you’re at the Looking Glass Lounge at Georgia and Princeton I insist you get this. For $6 get a Berry Shortcake made up of raspberry, blackberry, whipped cream and a fresh biscuit. I don’t even really like desserts and I ate it in about 32 seconds.

On the completely opposite side of the spectrum Gridskipper had a listing of its top 10 most overrated restaurants in DC with Lauriol Plaza topping the list. Hilarious. What do you think is the most overrated restaurant in DC?

43 Comment

  • guapo’s…..ugh hate it, but people flock to it. so unhealthy and so nasty…they put cheese on everything.

  • looking glass lounge is up there. i went with a couple friends last week and the food was really sub-par. Plus (I know i’m going to catch shit for saying this) the vegetarian options were pathetic. until they add some variety on the menu, and learn how to not cook the food to death, i think i’ll stay away.

  • Ben’s Chili Bowl. Yes, I know they are a DC institution, but does anyone actually think the food is good? I think people like the idea of Ben’s more than the place.

    I’ll add Buffalo Billiards as my all time pet peeve happy hour location: boring, in a basement, crowded, bad food, um and full of the “dockers and darts” crowd that the NY Times talked about in DC…

  • there’s nothing wrong with darts….and ben’s has perfected the chili dog so yes, i think the food is good

  • that thing looks like it could do with half the whipped cream…

  • Ben’s half smoke is pretty freakin unstoppable. That is all.

  • I am seconding Lauriol. That place sucks. Yet you still have to wait. Yeah, guapo’s is pretty average too, but it’s cheaper and with far less pretension. Also overrated: Perry’s. I’ve only eaten there a few times, but that was enough. In my worst experience there I ordered tuna rolls. The tuna was cooked. I complained, and the chef (who was definitely not Japanese) told me it was a “grilled tuna roll”. It was not marked as such on the menu and I have never heard of such a thing. I don’t think it’s too much to expect that tuna be raw in sushi.

    It was downright nasty and I sent it back. They didn’t even take it off the check.

    Most underrated: Mixtex. Next door to pasta mia. Cheap, awesome authentic Mexican food.

    And you can’t call Looking Glass overrated. Has anyone ever said the food was great? It’s ratings seem about on par with the offerings. But give them a chance. I know they are trying hard to get the food into a stable place, the menu has been changing frequently.

  • I think Jaleo and Central aren’t overrated at all. And Ben’s Chili Bowl! That’s sacreligous! What exactly about it is overrated? Because everything I’ve ever eaten there is fabulous.

    I think nearly all of the restaurants in Georgetown I would consider overrated: all of the waterfront restaurants (yes, definitely Sequoia), J. Paul’s, Clyde’s, La Madeleine, Paper Moon, etc … and also while it was open, I think Galileo was a tad bit overrated.

    And good lord, yes Lauriol Plaza is overrated, although non-Mexican food is actually pretty good. But for the whole scene and mess that it is, it doesn’t make up for it.

  • Cheese on everything is a GOOD THING! Of course, bacon would be even better. Who goes to Tex Mex places to eat healthy?

  • I think they got it right on Sequoia and Jaleo. Sequoia w/o the view is not a restaurant. The last time I ate the Jaleo’s was back in 2000. It was terrible. I can’t believe people spend that much on tapas.

  • Hard to find a restaurant more overrated than Ben’s or Lauriol Plaza; they’ve got to top any list. And if local chains are in consideration, Potbelly has to be way up there, as well. Locals rave about it, oblivious to the fact that they serve small portions of Subway-quality sandwiches. Gawd-awful.

  • I went to Looking Glass Lounge twice in one week a couple weeks ago and I’m done with that place. Ever since they changed their menu it’s as if they don’t care anymore. No more poached tuna for their nicoise now it’s canned (because it’s cheaper) and then the 2nd visit $15 for a salad with only lettuce no other vegetables (they told me that’s the way they’re serving it now), no dressing (they forgot), and steak so low in quality I couldn’t chew through it for all the gristel and fat. Great way to keep your customers coming back.

  • Lauriol keeps the customers waiting long enough that they’re sauced by the time the meal’s arrived, which might contribute to its being overrated. This happened to me way too many times until I ate there sober one night and realized that it’s actually pretty bad. The drunk factor also works in favor of Pizza Mart, which also merits a mention for being overrated.

  • Lauriol overpriced??!!! Compared to what??? All the Latin places I visit in MtP/CH/AM are mad expensive. My typical peruvian chicken meal runs me 10 bucks. Even Pollo Campero is a break off.

    Sorry, but I guess I’ll be the lone Lauriol supporter on this thread. Having been a long time customer (approx 15 years) I can say without a doubt one of my favorite DC dishes is Masitas de Puerco (cuban roasted pork). 15 years ago, I could get a fantastic meal for 10 bucks. Well guess what, after 15 a years, a multimillion dollar facility, and enough demand to drive up the price, I can still get my Masitas for about 10 bucks. Granted, you can likely find more authentic Latin in CH, sometimes it’s nice to eat in clean restaurant on white tablecloths. Believe me, cleanliness and consistency are not overrated.

    I agree with most others mentioned though. Ben’s is seriously overrated. If you’re ever in Iceland, try and Icelandic hot dog — they put Ben’s to shame.

  • Really? You’re comparing a hot dog in Iceland to Ben’s? Really? That doesn’t even make sense. You might as well have typed adl;fj;akldfsvkjahdfvh askdljsfhakjhfkajlhdsfhaslkvhdalkjfh.

    Of course, everyone has their different opinions on places. I personally believe that Ben’s is good at what it does – providing great comfort food.

  • On a side note, PoP, I saw you sitting at the bar at LGL last night. I wanted to sit next to you and chat, but my wife was scared away by your long hair.

  • Agreed re: Ben’s, only popular for the cool / D.C. institution factor, both dogs and chili are awful. So many better options in the area (Cork, Marvin, Etete, etc.). Even the dogs at M’Dawg are far, far better. I just don’t get the Ben’s thing … some of the worst chili I’ve had. Agreed on Laurial, Legal’s and Jaleo as overrated as well. You can toss half of the high end restaurants in D.C. in as well … Oyamel, Rosa Mexicano (twice the price for mediocre mexican, yeah!), Corduroy, and on and on … after a weekend in NY, coming back to the D.C. food scene is kind of a drag.

    But Central is great, WAY out of place on that list.

  • IndeBleu is truly, and epicly horrible. I know it got pulled from the Washingtonian Top 100 on the most recent go-round, but the fact that it is even still in business makes it overrated.

    As for Ben’s…what in the world do you expect? You go there for a good half-smoke (the chili is meh) and a cultural experience. That said, I was in there for lunch mid-week last week and OMIGOD have the demographics changed. There were full on tourists with fanny-packs and clumsy cameras. Weird. That’s what the Food Network will do for you I guess.

    The only food I’ve tried since Temperance became LGL were the Garlic Fries and they were approximately 10 times worse than they were before the switchover. At some point the owners are going to notice that 90% of comments about the direction they’ve taken the menu are negative. I know I’d be more likely to give dinner a shot there if I didn’t read crappy comment after crappy comment about the food (and I’m not even counting the veggie mafia that pops up on any and all food posts).

  • Temperance Hall’s food was so much better. No more wings, no more fuji and fontina, no more fish sandwich. And, worst of all is the tragedy that happened to the burger. RIP Temperance Burger – you will be missed.

  • I’m going to be skewered for this but we’ve tried moroni and brothers three times and thrice have been disappointed. It’s a good thing we live closer to (gasp) Red Rocks.

  • Lauriol Plaza, hands ( and everything else) down. That place has more attitude than Whitney Houston in her prime… As for Ben’s… I don’t mind the food-but it is to DC residents what Times Square is to residents of NYC- a place to generally avoid.

  • Brunch has also gone way downhill at Temperance, I used to be a regular (great omelette, great toast) and on my one recent visit it was awful (and they were out of all the good omelette fillings to boot). Between the terrible name change, the definite downgrade in music, and the food, the ownership switch has been a real downer.

    Oh, and I have no idea how I missed IndeBleu, good call, that place is atrocious. OH, and I recently tried Old Tabbard Inn after hearing good things — alas, the food was really bad. And it is not “rated” yet but the new restaurant on E Street, Asia 9, warrants mentioning as perhaps the worst food I’ve had in D.C., how they could spend so much on the space and forget to hire a chef, I have no idea. Unreal.

  • I’m going to further offend the heart-attack-on-a-plate crowd by adding I just don’t get Five Guys…just greasy awful to me.

  • gasp…moroni’s rocks. i know lauriol is a mess, but i love their “cuban” selections. so tasty.

  • wait, i thought of another place that is SUPER overrated…..CAKELOVE!!!! so disappointed every time i go…overpriced and the pastries are always cold, like they just came out of the fridge. no likey.

  • YES YES YES. Cakelove’s cupcakes are atrocious, I just do not get how a place specializing in cupcakes can’t make one that tastes decent or has a pleasing texture. I gotta defend Moroni’s though, I think the pizza is solid.

  • OK I know Cake Love has their nay-sayers, but if you don’t like it because the pastry is cold… wait for it to come to room temperature, as they advise. It makes a world of difference and is well worth the time.

  • actually, that picture doesn’t look appetizing at all!

  • I was at Looking Glass Lounge on Friday and had THE BEST SHRIMP I’ve ever had. EVER had… The new chef (Adam Something, I think) is officially in and creating some amazing specials (I got to sample from three different specials).

    I think this guy might be the Holy Grail. And I know the steak used to be really gross, but it’s entirely new and entirely improved now.

    These people never meant to be the “Bad Guys”. They should be allotted some bumps in Transition Rd.

  • I thought Sequoia went out of business a while ago… I think that spot was taken over by a new restaurant. The chef of the new place (can’t remember the name) was on Iron Chef.

    I really want to try Central – my husband went for lunch and said it was fantastic!

  • I fourth (or fifth) Lauriol Plaza on the list of overrated restaurants. Yech. But, should I be forced to go there again because I can’t convince my friends otherwise, I’ll try a Cuban dish.

    I loved Rosa Mexicano when I first visited the restaurant in New York years ago. I was so excited to hear about an outpost coming to town. Talk about a disappointment.

    And, much as I hate to rag on Cakelove and my pretend husband Warren Brown, I haven’t been bowled over by the pastries in that place. But I’m willing to give it another try, if I’m in the area and can actually find a place to sit down and wait for my pastry to come to room temperature. Most of the time it seems like folks are trying to make it a second home.

  • My vote for most over rated is Two Amys off Wisconsin. It is over run with screaming kids and all three time I was there the pizza crust was burnt black. Unforgivable!

  • LGL food sucks and the service is inconsistent at best. I miss T-Hall.

    Also over-rated is the$10 burget at Palena. What no lettuce? tomato? onion? Oh but you do get a pickled beet on the side. Go figure.

  • i’ve been to LGL twice, and i had a great night both times. that said, i think the food i had wasn’t great. i ordered steak the first night and lamb the second, and both were really overcooked – i wonder, PoP, is the light really low in the kitchen? also, neither had any seasoning. i’m pretty easy to please – there are few things i like more than a steak grilled with salt, pepper, and garlic powder – and both these dishes were overcooked and flavorless. also, we ordered salad and green beans for veggies, and the salad was just lettuce – i’m sorry, but $5 or whatever for 1/4 of a bag of field greens is kind of ridiculous.

    all that said, i STILL really like the vibe, location, and music. and the first time i went, the service was better than at TH. not the second time, though 🙂

  • I can’t believe I forgot Cakelove.

    How a place like that and with the reputation it has can make such dry, bland cupcakes is beyond me. I seriously don’t get it.

  • You know what’s NOT overrated. El Limeno. I had some last night. So So So good.

  • Can we nominate places close to the District? I’d like to throw Restaurant Eve out there. Terrible salty salad and cake with freezer burn. That’ll teach us to stray outside the District lines!

  • yeah, el limeno was great.. i hit it up with friends last night too… i would have never noticed it without PoP, even though i live less than a block away! the service and decor were awesome, the food was good (i dont even like mexican food honestly), and it was very sad to see it so empty…

  • I had a pretty bad experience at Looking Glass recently as well. I thought I would provide some constructive feedback since I want the place to do well. Through Pop, I got the manager’s email address. Sent some thoughtful comments in. Did not hear squat back. No thank you for taking time to write, no sorry this happened, no we will try to do better night time. Bubcous. I am done with the place. Sorry, I tried.

  • I’ll put Lauriol’s “Masitas de Puerco” ($10) up against anything in its price range. Name your dish. Perhaps our time might be better spent identifying the real “gems” out there seeing how most DC restaurants are total shite.

    Head scratchers … Cake Love, Ben’s, Indebleu, oh yeah… and PASTA MIA!!!! WTF!!!

  • @Pauper: yes, the Icelandic hot dog is far superior to Ben’s. I’m assuming you’ve tried an Icelandic hot dog, else your defense would be meaningless. That said, you can’t even begin to talk about hot dogs unless they exist within a natural casing. A proper dog should “snap” when you bite it. Anything else is simply backyard grilling with ol’ uncle Morty.

  • What the heck is an icelandic hot dog? Ground fish or lamb…lamb is big in iceland isn’t it?

  • Went to LGL the other week and it has to rate at one of the worst meals I have had since moving to DC three years ago. Had the brick chicken and my friend had the veggie meatloaf. The meatloaf was tasteless and the texture was bad. My chicken was rubbery and was giving off a smell close to antifreeze. We had both been when it was TH and the menu then was about 100 times better. Do not try to be more than you are is my advice, stick to the bar food unless you really know what you are doing. Won’t be back to eat any time in the foreseeable future

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