mussels and fries

A few years ago, celebrity chef Bobby Flay challenged Teddy Folkman to a Throwdown! The premise of the show is simple. The Food Network tricks chefs and restaurant owners into believing they are being profiled for a television special. The chefs/owners reveal all their secrets and then Bobby Flay challenges them to a cook off over the menu items they are most famous for.

Teddy Folkman is the chef at Granville Moore’s on H street, and his moules fromage bleu blew Bobby’s mussels out of the water. I had read a number of good reviews about the mussels and seen a number of awards given to the restaurant, so a few friends and I made the trek for a taste. Helpful hint: If you go on Mussel Monday, bowls of mussels are $12 versus the normal $17. They also rotate the type of mussels served, so check out the menu before you go.

Though the food is delicious, the location is slightly out of the way and quite a hike if you are impatient and hungry. A friend and I were looking for something a little closer to the Foggy Bottom campus, someplace we hadn’t been to before. My trusty best friend, Yelp!, directed us to St. Arnold’s on Jefferson. Many of the reviews mentioned happy hour specials, but I could find no proof on the restaurant’s website to confirm these rumors. Undeterred, we ventured toward Dupont.

Jefferson is a one-way street that runs from Connecticut Avenue toward 19th street. St. Arnold’s is marked by a bright red overhang that hovers above stairs leading down to a basement door. An older gentleman greeted us when we opened the door, and we were confused and a little nervous because the restaurant was mostly empty. It’s a small space with beautiful exposed brick, wooden tables, tiled floor, and terrible lighting. And an excellent happy hour special.

From 3:30-6:30, mussels and fries (yes, both!) are half off. For less than $10, you get a pot of mussels in your choice of broth and fries and bread. I also believe the onion rings and buffalo wings are half off. We split an order of Mussels St. Arnold’s (House beer sauce, caramelized shallot, garlic, thyme in duck fat) and The Very Spicy Mussels (habanero, red chili and delicious other things). Did we finish the mussels? No, because we probably ate 10 pounds of bread soaked in the broths. So. Good.

It was such a great happy hour find. What are some of your favorite happy hour specials in the district, and how did you find them?

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One comment

  1. I LOVE granville moores! I’ve only been once but had such an awesome experience. I love the old antique refrigerators that they keep all the beer in. I also love how it’s kind of a dive and it feels like you’re stepping in to a different time period when you walk in, but you’re greeted at the door by a host with an ipad and this cool app that keeps track of everyone waiting and texts you when your table is ready. I’ll definitely have to try St. Arnolds. I’m totally blanking on happy hour places right now. I used to be totally into it when I was at GW, but now that I work all the way out in friendship heights I feel like I can never get back to the city while it’s still happy hour!

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