Judging Restaurants


Has anyone checked out Commissary located at 1443 P St NW? Their Web site says:

“After considerable deliberations, we’ve decided to close Merkado Kitchen (1443 P St NW DC) and re-concept. This is not a decision we come to lightly. We believe the Merkado concept has never realized its full potential given its amazing location. We have tweaked, changed and adjusted the concept many times over the past 3 years and still, we just aren’t as busy as we believe we can be. Our sister concept, Logan Tavern, is wildly successful, yet Merkado is now and has always been only mildly successful.”

So is it better than Merkado?

13 Comment

  • I liked Merkado a lot, but Commissary is lower priced and more laid back, so I think overall it was a good move. The french fries were pretty disappointing if I remember correctly, though.

  • I like Commissary! I had never been to Logan Tavern, but the new place is a whole lot cheaper and has has a good vibe. There are tables around the sides for traditional meals, and a lounge area in the middle for reading, laptop-ing, etc. There’s also a full bar off to the side.

    The sandwiches are very good, and at 7-8 bucks (including fries or salad) a good deal compared to similar casual restaurants. They’re big on small plates to share, too — popcorn, edamame, quesadillas, that type of thing. It can get really, really loud during lunch time, but if you go at off-peak hours it’s a good place to sit and work. I had a really disappointing salad last time I was there, but the sandwiches are all really good (make sure to try the serrano and gruyere). They make their own soups, which include great clam chowder and chili. The free wireless is a nice perk, too.

  • It’s kind of meh-tastic. The atmosphere is overall pretty good, but I get the feeling that they’re trying to be too many things. It’s really hard to be successful as a casual restaurant, laid-back coffee house, AND bar. But I’d say I definitely prefer it to Merkado, since the neighborhood needs more casual places more than it needs another fancy(ish) restaurant.

  • merkado was great when it opened but went waaaay downhill after that, the food declined dramatically in quality. in particular they had vegetarian nachos that were to die for when they first opened, with this delicious crema sauce and tasty homemade-tasting salsa; within a few months the nachos looked and tasted about like you’d expect to get from a Chi-Chis. yuck. IMO that restaurant group has overreached and lost its focus.

  • MUCH better than Merkado! I was there for lunch with a friend last week–the bill came to $16.38 total, and each of us had a large sandwich with fries. Even a non-profiteer such as myself can afford that!

  • Eatwell is the Ruby Tuesday franchise of the District. How many places can we sustain with average food with “hip” twists like wasabi crusted meatloaf? I’ve never been blown away at any of their establishments…everything seems to be incredibly salty or be glazed with some sort of teriyaki concotion…..if you want sandwiches go to Stoney’s directly between them.

  • Meh-tastic is right. Go to Stoney’s instead. That place has a soul.

  • I liked merkado when it first opened. I had a really good Thai salad or something there once. Have not tried the new place yet.

  • I like. Decent food, high quality ingredients and reasonable prices. What’s not to like.

  • its great – i suggest stopping in.

    and its cheap too

  • I’ve heard it was weak, but I haven’t bothered to go. I’d rather go to Stoney’s if I’m on that block.

  • Agree with those who prefer Stoney’s. Always good, great warm atmosphere.

  • Food was so-so. It’s better than Merkado, which isn’t saying much since it had to have been the blandest food anywhere in the metro area.

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