36 Comment

  • austindc

    I went to Black Jack for a bocce tournament, and it wasn’t bad! Happy hour specials are great ($1 oysters, half priced drafts). The oysters weren’t the best, but at a buck each, I still ate 18 of them. The beer selection could hold its own, but it got a bit overpriced after happy hour ended. I also had a decent, though not mind-altering pork and pepper sandwich. Probably the best part about the place was the decor and the indoor bocce court. The staff were all wicked nice too.

    • 18 oysters! I’m impressed! Pls get a cholesterol check soon though.:)

      • Based on recent studies, the consensus of doctors is that eating saturated fat and trans fats is the chief cause of high levels of bad cholesterol, while eating foods high in cholesterol (like oysters) actually has a minimal impact on a person’s cholesterol levels. So eat away!

      • austindc

        It could be worse. One time my wife got me about 60 oysters through Rent Mother Nature, thinking I could collect a dozen or so at a time. Well they all got delivered in one big sack, so I ate them all in 48 hours. Take that, heart. That being said, I’m probably doing better than the oysters. . .

      • news flash – we all die – enjoy life

    • I’ve been playing in the bocce tournie too. There’s a court on the second flood (Black Jack).

      I don’t eat oysters and found the menu to be a little lack luster, but the beer selection is good (Pork Slap!), the staff is super nice, and they have a bocce court (how fun is that!!).

      Thumbs up!

  • Place is awesome. Their HH menu po’boys are really good.

    I think this is one of the better place on the 14th st strip.

  • +1 on the HH specials. They usually have a great deal on their “beer of the day” which was Lagunitas Pils when I was there, along with the usual deals on your generic light beer etc.

    I’ve tried a few small plates and all were good. Cannot wait to go back.

  • I went overboard there last week. A bunch of oysters and the seafood gumbo. Plus, they have those “red lobster” -esque biscuits. I ate four of those before dinner even started. I was hurting afterward, but it is my own fault. Good stuff. I will be back.

  • The decor is absolutely spectacular, just beautifully designed. I didn’t love the menu, for some reason; not many of the choices seemed all that inspired, and I thought the food was just OK, not commensurate with the high price point — and not nearly as good as, say, Estadio in the same neighborhood. I STILL haven’t found a seafood place in DC that I really love, and I think I’ve tried just about all of them. I do want to try the brunch — the brunch menu looked more interesting to me.

    But man, a truly spectacular design job, they got every detail right.

    • not every detail….sadly there is a lighted now serving sign that is seemingly out of place, why can’t they just take down your description and come find you when your table is ready instead of lighting up your number?

      • “why can’t they just take down your description and come find you when your table is ready instead of lighting up your number?”

        Because it is asses to elbows slammed most nights…and the upstairs area is huge. I’m actually a fan of the “now serving” sign approach.

    • Thanks for the decor compliment! I’m the lead designer from CORE and we had the opportunity to work with a great team! Follow us on Twitter @COREdc

      CORE architecture | design
      Atreus Works (millwork & sculpture)
      Shelter Studios (graphics & fine art)
      Potomac Construction Services (contractor)

  • Black Jack upstairs is pretty cool. Indoor bocce. Regular hours drink prices are a little silly–no surprise in DC– and I’m always kind of baffled by drink prices that aren’t whole dollars ($6.60 beers?)

  • bartenders don’t know what they’re doing. i ordered a campari and ginger and got a lowball filled with campari and a splash of ginger. waitress tipped herself from my change, which i didn’t appreciate. not sure i’ll be back.

    • So you’re complaining that you got what you ordered? Maybe order a tall if you want to taste more of your mixer.

  • Some of the food is good, but more than half of the things I’ve eaten are really bland and need salt. The duck gumbo that the Post food guy raved about was unbelievably mediocre. The drink menu and the bartenders aren’t great, I agree. I was really excited by the decor when it opened, but I haven’t found a reason to go back in weeks. The crowd upstairs is weird too, total meat market.

  • Been downstairs for dinner and everything was great…from the oyster selection to the gumbo to the apple pie served in a cast-iron skillet.

    Upstairs is was fun. The drinks are on the higher end, one of the female bartenders did seem a little confused about how to…well, mix drinks. There are not enough bathrooms. I continue to see this over and over again in many of these new spots…I think DC code needs to be revisited for restaurants turned bars in the evenings.

  • I thought the food was good (apple pie in the skillet mentioned above is fantastic), but the drinks were overpriced and over-iced.

  • 1st visit: Drinks and Oysters at Black Jack were very good.

    2nd visit: Brunch was amazing. The first Bloody Mary was very good but the second the mix was weak and flavorless. The boughth the second round. 🙂

    3rd visit Dinner: The seafod ceviche was great! The mussels not so much neither were the crabcakes. I think Ulah has the best inexpensive crabcakes in the area.

    All in all a positive experience that will require more research 😉

  • The Cigar, one of the drinks at Blackjack, was fantastic. Mescal, prosciuto, and they somehow smoked the water from which they made the ice cube. Solid sarzerac too. Food downstairs was very solid, admitting I was a couple strong drinks in by then. Mussels were nice, crab cakes very good, catfish po-boy even better. But the pies for desert, just fantastic. I will definitely go back. As for the “now serving” thing, it works fine, but I prefer the opportunity to make reservations. I don’t enjoy waiting over an hour for a table on a Wed night.

  • Great happy hour, 2 for 1 raw oysters! Their po-boy looked amazing too.

  • what time is their happy hour?

  • Went to BlackJack with some friends for taco night – 3 tacos, a shot and a beer for $15. What could be bad about that?

    The service – that’s what. It took them over an hour from the time we gave them our cards (4 for the table – nothing crazy) and the time they brought us our receipts. Our waitress also seemed like she was having a nervous breakdown as she ran our cards 3+ times over the course of 45 minutes before eventually giving up and having a manager do it. And in the end it was still wrong, and I had something like $200 in charges held on my debit card for a week. On the bright side, we were compensated generously for the delay.

  • went there for the first time on my birthday last wednesday. great happy hour. Great prices for oysters and mussels and beer at the bar at pearl dive. The pecan pie was amazing. music and vibe upstairs at black jack was fun.

    Tried to go back on saturday for a slice of pie with a friend visiting from Philly. The place was packed and trying to get to the bar was awful. We ended up leaving.

    Will definitely go back, just not on saturday night.

  • went early last saturday to check out both spots…blackjack is a well-done bar spot….great drinks and atmosphere. i like the tables with the high tops in the middle too, so when your drink gets served, its like its on display

    restaurant lagged behind in coolness, though the food was good. oyster dishes were creative and unique [for DC anyway] wasn’t a big fan of the wait. the booths and table areas are small and tough to navigate. also, if you’re a vegetarian, this place is NOT for you. additionally, there is pork in just about every dish [not a problem for me, but others may have a problem with that] overall, i’ll definitely go back, but probably just for drinks and oysters

  • Had dinner (after a long wait) downstairs. Great oysters (only second to Hank’s). Fish stew was awesome, a bit more heartier than most places, including Hank’s, Black Salt. Small but impressive detail: our bread basket was amazing: warm buttery biscuit (reminds me of Colorado Kitchen’s) Would love to go more often, but like Birch/Barley when in its first year, the wait is too long.

  • Definitely a solid spot and welcome addition. Food is very good and reasonably priced, especially the ceviche appetizer and the oysters. Agreed that the drinks are less impressive and comparatively more expensive.

    Upstairs is a bit of a s—show. Cool bar but super crowded (too crowded) and it’s true the bartenders and servers aren’t great. One bartender had to ask me at least 3 times w/in about 2 minutes what drinks I wanted (they were just beers) and a waitress definitely brought the wrong drinks once.

    All and all, pretty positive, guessing Blackjack will die down once novelty of bocce wears off. Pearl Dive itself is worth a visit…also they have a limited late afternoon menu if you wander in on a Sat around 4pm like we did.

  • We stumbled upon this restaurant a few weeks ago on a Friday night. We got there at 8:30 waited at the front bar until a table opened up at 10PM. The food was excellent. The drinks, expensive but good. It definitely was packed with people. All drinkware (glasses) and utensils smelled/tasted like oysters/seafood, so you get a good whiff of seafood when you take a drink of wine. Waitstaff was great, but bartenders didn’t seem to know what they were doing.

  • The chef is AMAZING! Food is always on point, check it out!!!!

  • no one has mentioned the grilled redfish – awesome. I’ve been to Pearl Dive twice – first time I tried a vodka drink that had an oyster in it. it was revolting, we mentioned the waiter and the next time I was there (couple weeks later) it was off the menu.

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