For years I’ve passed Cashion’s Eat Place, never tasting the delicious food that lurked behind their doors and coming from their kitchen. While Ann Cashion is no longer there, the food apparently hasn’t lost its edge. A few weeks ago Living Social offered a $50 for $25 deal for Cashion’s and I decided that it was a deal too good to pass up AND a chance to finally try Cashion’s Eat Place.
Cashion’s is located right off the main ‘drag’ of Adams Morgan and has a very nice upscale feel without feeling stuffy. Large mirrors align both sides of the restaurant, giving it the appearance of feeling larger than it actually is. There is a pretty sizable bar for a pretty small restaurant.
Having reservations at the busiest time of a Friday night, 7:30, the service was still very attentive and quick. Our waitress (whose name escapes me) was excellent. She was very knowledgeable about the menu, despite some items having only been added the day before. This was helpful since I had a really hard time deciding what I wanted to eat.
Anna had her heart set on the goat cheese soufflé appetizer, but we were told it would take about 20-25 minutes to make to order. That was ok though…we opted to order their spread platter to go along with the delicious hybrid bread — by that I mean they were like biscuits but were also like French bread. The 3 spreads were a salmon roe spread, hummus and tzaziki. It also was accompanied by roasted olives. I thought they were all creamy and delicious, particularly the salmon spread. It was almost like a whipped cream cheese, but blows Philadelphia spread out of the water.
I finally decided on the quail appetizer which was a butterflied whole quail over frisse lettuce, Haloumi cheese, with walnuts, grapes and pomegranate molasses. I am almost afraid to admit here that I have never had quail, so it was a bit exciting. The meat was tender, very similar to a cornish hen. The cheese was nicely grilled and the pomegranate molasses really brought together the whole dish.
The goat cheese souffle was paired with a few small toast points and a small frisse salad. I tasted all three and found it to be quite good, but also very rich. Anna’s only criticism was that it was a tiny bit too salty. Other than that, the empty plate spoke for the rest.
For our entrees, I went with the Muscovy duck breast which was served with bok choy, corn, shiitake mushrooms, mango with a duck reduction. For starters, im a sucker for delicious duck on nearly any menu, especially a French restaurant. Here I was swayed by the glowing endorsement from the waitress. The duck had a perfect sear on the outside and was cooked to a perfect medium rare. The reduction sauce was excellent, a nice sweet taste, but I also could taste the duck fat that probably made its way into the sauce. My only complaint were the vegetables. They were not really treated, though they were good, and they didn’t seem to really fit with the dish. It was almost like “what veggies can we stick on the plate to fit in the middle.”
Anna ordered the vegetarian plate, rather than the scallops, and it turned out to be a good choice. It was served with a spicy cooked spinach, which she actually ate (normally a hater of Popeye’s favorite meal), fingerling potatoes, mushrooms over creamy polenta, corn and english peas and a small frisse salad. The potatoes and peas were the stars of the dish, along with the creamy polenta. Just like the souffle, the cook could have used a lighter hand with the salt. Other than that, this dish did actually shine.
My (and Anna’s) overall impression was that the food was excellent. There were a few small issues with the veggies and the salt usage, but overall the quality of the ingredients was superb. The pairings in the appetizers definitely were better than the pairings in main courses. The duck was probably the best thing of the night, but the pomegranate molasses was a close second. The service made the night all the better. I would definitely come back again to try all the things I didn’t try this time.