Capitol Hill keeps giving me good reasons to leave my Northwest haven and head crosstown and when I heard about Locanda I decided it was time for me to once again risk getting lost (which always seems to happen when I drive into Capitol Hill) and make another trip to Southeast.  You see, the search for great Italian food in the DC area is my holy grail quest.

Cost – $$$

Service – A-
Our server was knowledgeable about the menu, friendly and down-to-earth.  He came over with an appropriate frequency and after the meal when I (jokingly) asked him if they could extract the marrow from the bones and put it in a doggy bag he honestly started contemplating how they would make this feat happen (before I admitted to him that I was not actually interested in this feat happening).

Food – B
Although the food certainly wasn’t a disappointment, the grail quest unfortunately, shall continue for there was nothing really that special about the cuisine at Locanda.  The scialatielli was the only thing that impressed but I was disappointed by the chianti-braised lamb shank.   Further, the wine seemed marked-up a bit too much, creating a final tab that didn’t seem to quite match-up to the culinary experience.

Decor – A-
An optimist would refer to the decor as inspired by Philippe Starck while a pessimist would say the Locanda proprietors spent a quick afternoon on Ikea.com to furnish the space.  I’d say the truth probably leans more towards the former than the latter (hence the grade).  It offers a modern feel that I think Capitol Hill needs more of.

Feel – C
I had a great time but mostly because of the company and the additional dimension offered by the waitstaff.  For the spend, it was probably not worthwhile and there are a number of other options where I feel like I’d get more for my spend.  Furthermore, the clientele definitely seemed to skew a bit more on the mature side when we were there, which I’m not opposed to but sort of offset the modern aesthetic of the venue.  Overall, I liked what Locanda was trying to do but felt like the execution needs some improvement before I would return.

Locanda is located at 633 Pennsylvania Avenue.  They can be reached at (202) 547-0002.

Locanda on Urbanspoon

2 Responses to “Locanda”

  1. tammy barszcz March 21, 2009 at 9:51 pm #

    To the author, I am curious about the night you dined at Locanda. The items you wrote about where on our winter menu of 2007 and I am curious to the date you dined? Thank you for visiting and I hope you will visit us and try our new spring menu.

  2. Jiyan March 22, 2009 at 3:37 pm #

    Hey Tammy! I will come back. I liked your restaurant. I dined there March 5…

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