2941 Fairview Park Drive
Falls Church, VA 22042
CUISINE International, Fusion
PRICE $$$$ (Over $31)
HOURS Open for lunch, Monday through Friday, dinner daily.
NVM AWARDS Best Restaurant 2011
Best Restaurant 2006
Best Restaurant 2012
NEARBY METRO None
By Warren Rojas
Food: 9.1 Ambience: 8.9 Service: 9.2
The continuation of budget-friendly price points and year-round dining specials have apparently helped flood 2941 with a whole new clientele.
While the storied space remains a magnet for business luncheons and celebratory outings, you are now just as likely to spot retirees in short sleeves dining alongside camera-toting, 20-somethings—2941 seems to welcome point-and-shoot diners intent on documenting chef Bertrand Chemel’s edible art—or Red Hat Society ladies sharing sips of newly discovered wines.
The more the merrier.
Twin lobster claws, the marvelously sweet, pink meat stained black with cuttlefish ink, are folded across a vibrant risotto populated by grilled mollusk, piquant scallions and red pepper-infused grains.
Beef tartare threaded with black onion sauce (sweet landing, garlicky finish) is well supported by crunchy rosti patties.
Dark chocolate ice cream, cacao, flourless chocolate biscuits and pecan streusel are fused together in a ravishing frozen truffle.(November 2009)
By Warren Rojas
Food: 9 Ambiance: 8.7 Service: 9
Though most eyes still focus on the lakeside view (guests routinely pause to snap photos by the captivating koi pond), the rest of 2941 is beginning to show its age.
The jellyfish-like centerpiece now seems terribly dated. And the growing ranks of faded/cracked/split seatbacks beg for refurbishing.
Chef Bertrand Chemel, on the other hand, has made modernization his top priority. Epic tasting menus have carved into more easily digestible alternatives (a tony, three-course bar carte comes to mind), delightful nibbles (lobster rolls, on-call profiteroles) and value-conscious daily specials.
Homemade pasta pockets stuffed with creamed kernels and surrounded by roasted niblets (a sweet corn trifecta), join sweet crab, peppers and spinach beneath a shower of mascarpone foam.
A soft shell two-fer reveals homemade brioche stacked with Bibb lettuce, ripe tomato, hearty bacon and deep-fried crab, while the other crisp crustacean basks in cherry tomatoes and pickled ramps.
Bitter notes of sauteed chard and the tangy POW! of sour cherries roll right off the back of a slow-roasted duck (the perfumed meat playing peacemaker between the potent greens and syrupy fruit).(November 2008)
By Warren Rojas
Food: 9.2 Ambiance: 8.9 Service: 9.3
If you are keeping score, the arrival of executive chef Bertrand Chemel has ushered in 2941 3.0 (or maybe 2.5 if you count the fly-by-night tenure of interim toque Scott Bryan).
The revolving-door kitchen has done little to stymie interest in the landmark property. A quick glance around the dining room confirms that this is the spot up-and-comers bring parents/friends/significant others to prove that they’ve arrived—though the smattering of dressed-up couples and backslapping revelers who often line the swanky bar would suggest some people see nothing wrong with some self-spoiling.
Chemel is only too happy to oblige, plying guests with rare indulgences (Wagyu ribs, sustainable fish) the world over.
Fresh Kumamoto oysters are decorated with fluke tartare, zesty cantaloupe and spicy shiso (terrific synergy). Tea-smoked duck soars sky high with sweet-and-sour cherries and almond-studded barley risotto. Steamed sea bass virtually dissolves beneath leek-broccoli-serrano ham au jus (fabulous).(August 2006)
By Warren Rojas
F 8.7 A 8.8 S 8.5
Start with a panoramic lake view. Add several parts imaginative cooking to a healthy dose of aesthetic design. Sprinkle signature touches like artisan breads and homemade cotton candy. And voila! You've got the recipe for success that keeps the tables filled at the illustrious 2941.
Floor-to-ceiling windows bathe daytime patrons in natural light, while a starry cape descends for those interested in a late-night meal-begging the question if Mother Nature is on the payroll. Inside, a team of impeccably dressed servers fawn over each table while chef/owner Jonathan Krinn charms guests during his impromptu tableside visits.
The menu features a host of seasonal dishes along with myriad package deals including a nine-course tasting extravaganza (available at lunch or dinner) and the build-your-own menu spontane (four courses per couple).
A bouquet of white asparagus, leeks and spaetzel is awakened by terse vinaigrette. Maine lobster in a blood orange curry proves exciting. Halibut anointed with razor clams is a soft treasure. Stuffed chicken breasts hug a core of creamy morels. Or sate your taste for beef with a hanger steak soaked in Merlot or a pepper-encrusted sirloin paired with polenta.