Monday, June 27, 2011

Station 4 is Finally Open!

After what seemed to be eternity, yesterday at 5pm was the grand opening of Station 4.  There was some initial confusion about whether reservations were needed to eat at the restaurant.  In fact, some people left when they were initially told they couldn't eat unless they made a reservation ahead of time. It turns out that those who decided to eat at the bar area didn't need reservations and could order food in addition to drinks.  Service was a bit slow, which was expected since it was opening night and the restaurant was packed.  However, the food (once it did arrive) was very good. I asked several people how their food was and the sweet & sour pizza, cioppino, crab cakes, and spicy tuna cubes received high marks. I had the duck spring rolls (see above) and they were also good. The menu by Spanish chef Orlando Amaro is now on their website.

Welcome to the newest restaurant in Southwest!

It seems that the general consensus from patrons last night was they were glad a new restaurant is in the neighborhood; however, they weren't sure what kind of vibe or audience Station 4 is going after. Jazz and Sinatra was playing in the sound system, and along with the decor, gave an aura of swankiness. I found the restroom area to be a bit odd - several people were confused about whether the restrooms were unisex since there were no visible signs of which side was for men vs. women. The paper towel dispensers by the sinks are positioned very low and the astroturf on the walls in that area were curious. 

The outdoor terrace has several tables available for people-watching.

Will Station 4 be primarily a "before the show" dinner spot for Arena Stage patrons? Will locals adopt it as the neighborhood bar, despite not having happy hour specials?  Only time will tell, but I'm sure the operators of Station 4 hope there will be a full house every night as it was on Sunday evening.  The Southwest Playground Project folks must be pleased about the turnout last night too, since 20% of proceeds went to their efforts to build a playground in Southwest.

Several Southwesters turned out for opening night at Station 4

Here's a reminder that my 3rd Anniversary happy hour has been rescheduled for Wednesday, July 6th from 5:30-8:30pm at Station 4.  We will be located in the lounge area to the right of the main entrance by the bar - just look for a balloon.  I hope you can make it and there will be cake!


Marrio TheBlackGuy said...

The food was excellent, I and @iamako had the Pork Belly, Flying Duck breast, the Watermelon salad, Batch 19 beer, and the Mango Mousse for dessert. Everything was just delicious! The two older gentlemen to my right had the duck fat fries and the cheese burger, which looked delicious and smelled even better! I will try that the next time I visit.

I had 5pm reservations because I was sure it would get crowded late and I was right. My food was on time and the service was very good.

I can barely see the back of my pink shirt in your third photo..{I'm almost famous:}

Blake Ourso said...

those prices are ridiculous....and no happy hour? Not my neighborhood bar at the least bit. The "i'm trying it because it's new" crowd will die down soon and then the place will have a slow slow flow of people and hopefully shut down! I'm tired of ridiculously overpriced eats...especially it being the FIRST place in SW.

I was so hoping for a nice relaxing environment, $10-$20 plates, 4-7$ beers, a great happy hour, and a place to relaxe. This will not be it.

SeanO said...

I enjoyed almost every dish that I had. The charred octopus, stuffed zucchini were fantastic, and the Station 4 pizza was rather delicious. We also had the brussel sprouts with bacon (good, though thought the sprouts were a bit on the tougher side) and the crab macaroni and cheese. Honestly the crab mac was the only disappointing dish. It was not bad, however you barely registered any hint of crab and the bacon on top overpowered. Good but not what was anticipated.

I was very happy with the overall delivery, especially for an opening night (first night jitters and issues always arise in restaurants). The restroom situation was a bit confusing and the astroturf through me off, but overall the decor is great.

PostIt said...

Awww, man. I'm bummed I can't make the happy hour. Have fun!

Daniel said...

So the posted hours say they are open until 2AM on Mondays, and serve dinner until 11PM. I arrived at just after 10PM only to find the doors locked, restaurant closed. Very bummed, what gives?

sr said...

Very excited to have a restaurant in the neighborhood, but a happy hour menu would have been nice! Disappointed about that.

Becky said...

Agree 100% with Blake. I was looking forward to a fun, reasonably priced bar with a happy hour. I don't think the place will last with the current menu/prices.

DC said...

I asked on Facebook about the Happy Hour menu. The Station 4 rep said that they would be posting a Happy Hour menu soon. I probably won't be going back until it's available, and I'm sure I'm not the only one. This is DC - Happy Hour is like going to church for us!

Robert said...

The decor is amazingly beautiful.
Excellent staff
Food is very delicious but the dishes are not complete/balanced. No veggies, no starch, just meat. (we had crab cakes, duck). We left feeling hungry. Probably because we didn't finish our meal - we are healthy eaters - it just doesn't feel right to eat so much meat and nothing else.

Prices should be 2/3 for most items.

Tables for two are too small and environment feels dense. (especially for the price)

Drinks seems watered down. We had Pisco Sour and a Lemonade. (My neighbor complained about the strength of the drink also)

We really want the restaurant to be successful. We hope that they make these changes so that we can return and more people will come. As it stands, we cannot come here regularly - we will have to continue going to the Hill.

Looking forward to the Happy Hour menu though.

Hang in there Blake Ourso! I hope they will work out the kinks:)

w said...

I tried it because it's new and in the neighborhood. Meh. Do people really like the posh pretentiousness that seems to be the rage in dc? And why does going to the bathroom have to be an 'experience'?

At least I can get a decent take out pizza.

SWDC said...

It just wasn't the place everyone in the neighborhood was hoping for. Don't get me wrong, it was very nice. But when you make $80-100k/yr and still can't afford the place, something is wrong. This isn't Dupont and we don't want it to be. Welcome to SWDC, Station 4....the last real neighborhood in the District.

Wizzyliz said...

Ugh! I was so excited to visit our newest SW restaurant but the prices are just way too high for me - $10 and more for an appetizer with entrees averaging over $20? I'll keep going to Pier 7.

csj50 said...

I liked it. The prices are average, if not lower than to many other restaurants in DC. It's about time SW had a restaurant of this caliber in the area. Comparable to the other places in the area, I'm happy to pay a little more for quality food from a chef driven restaurant, and service. As someone in the service industry, I'd like to say that prices aren't higher to be higher and be unapproachable (well, most of the time). Chefs go out of their way for their preparation of food, from where they are sourced, etc. Much rather be here than down the street at Cantina where I observe staff pour drinks in plastic cups and then throw my remainder on the ground or in the water when I'm finished.

Anonymous said...

I was pleasantly surprised. I went there for brunch today. My experience was a very good one. Good service, good food and good atmosphere.

Anonymous said...

It just wasn't the place everyone in the neighborhood was hoping for.

Actually, it is everything I was hoping for, good quality, nice spot, soon to have evening entertainment

ut when you make $80-100k/yr and still can't afford the place

Not sure why we make less than that as a couple and found it afordibile
everyone has their priorities, mine include "duck fat fries"

10 and more for an appetizer with entrees averaging over $20?

That is well within the average of DC restaurants, and about what I spent on a bland meal at Peir 7

We have 2 pizza Authenticas, 3 subways, 2 McDonalds, 2 5 guys, and a Quiznos etc.. No lack of affordable options, I think it's great we also now have a choice (BTW on that note I still want a local pub)