Visited Seasons 52, in North Bethesda, MD. They have locations across the country, as well. Their name stems from the (four) seasons in the year, and the 52 weeks that comprise it. The menu is very seasonal, so if you go often, you better not have a favorite. And they use this theme so everything can be very fresh.
Since it’s fall, squash and pumpkin is everywhere. They even had it in the bar. I went with a Pumpkin Pisco Sour, Crop Organic Pumpkin Vodka, Pisco, Aromatic Bitters. Tell you what, pretty good.
Took awhile to choose the main course, so my friends and I decided to split a flat bread. The one with the goat cheese caught my eye since I can eat that stuff. I’ll always give it a chance since many goat cheeses are now made less goat-y, as in a bit harder than they used to be. So we went for the Artichoke & Laura Chenel Goat Cheese with leaf spinach, balsamic onions, roasted peppers. Was a very nice start to the meal.
Then main course selection became harder, because of my lactose intolerance. Many of the dishes had some form of dairy (from cow) and normally it can be eliminated. But when I asked the waiter he said it would be tough. It wasn’t that easy to find something I could eat, which was surprising with the type of restaurant it is. Fresh, seasonal. He then mentioned they have a ‘special’ menu for those with allergies, intolerances, etc. The menu was cut more than 1/2. Then when ordering you had to be sure to ask for the elimination of specific ingredients in dishes. This is an extreme case, but if I ordered mac & cheese, I would need to be sure to ask for it without the cheese and milk. Some weren’t that bad, but some were complex.
I was a bit disappointed. I ended up ordering the Asian-Glazed Chilean Sea Bass from the lactose-free menu – Organic black rice, snow peas, shiitake mushrooms, micro wasabi **request without brown butter sherry vinaigrette (wouldn’t that be the glaze? — as I had no glaze on mine).
Overall the whole dinner was good, I was just a bit disappointed with the overall feel of the menu. The service was also very slow. Took over 20 minutes to get drinks and then a glass of wine. But, was there with friends to catch up so it wasn’t that bad.