My date and I were in for a treat when we headed to the Sofitel’s in-house restaurant, iCi Urban Bistro for a preview of their fall dinner menu. We were excited for the French cuisine and upscale vibes of this downtown D.C. hotel and restaurant.
We walked into the gorgeous lobby to be promptly greeted by Joe, the Director of Marketing for the D.C. locale. The bar was lively and quite busy, but we were whisked away into the cozy and romantic dining room. The low lighting and red accents would make for a perfect fancy-pants date night spot.
We let Joe take the lead in ordering for us and he did not disappoint. We started off with the foie gras, seafood trio, and fried oysters from the bar. The foie gras was prepared with candied walnuts, pomegranate seeds, maple syrup, pumpkin spice, and served with French toast. The toast was crunchy and buttery and the perfect complement to the richness of the Hudson Valley foie gras.
The seafood platter was delightful, especially the salmon tartare. The large, fresh chunks of salmon were perfectly prepared with orange, capers, and salmon roe. I thoroughly enjoyed this top notch dish. The mussels gratin were divine. They were perfectly cooked and seasoned. The fried oysters were perfectly cooked and battered. Even my seafood-averse date even took a crack at them–and liked them!
One of our favorite plates of the night was the pan seared Atlantic halibut. The fish was seasoned and prepared expertly. Always one to order the salmon, halibut might be my new go-to fish. The fish was served in a honey ginger carrot and lemongrass cream sauce. The flavor profile was clearly well thought out and executed nicely.
The classic French cassoulet was also a hit. This warm, hearty comfort dish won us over. It was prepared with cannellini beans, duck leg confit, Toulouse sausage, and braised lamb. We were very pleased with not only the presentation, but also the portion size. The dish was piping hot and warmed us up on that chilly night. We highly recommend this as a great dish to share.
We couldn’t leave without sampling the Amish chicken either. This chicken was anything but boring. Our bird was cooked and seasoned just right. The side of potatoes were also delicious and hit the spot.
Somehow we were still hungry for dessert–so we ordered two. We were in a chocolate mood, so we chose the seasonal chocolate pumpkin mousse and mainstay chocolate lava cake. Describing the lava cake as delicious would be an understatement. The lava was thick and rich. It paired perfectly with the vanilla bourbon ice cream and raspberry coulis. This is a must order.
I didn’t think I’d be wowed by the chocolate pumpkin mousse–how good can mousse be? Boy, was I wrong. This dessert blew us away. It was absolutely delicious and very unique. The chocolate mousse was thick and rich. The pumpkin cream was light and not too strong. These flavors combined made for a unique and delightful dish.
The fall menu at the Sofitel is nothing short of scrumptious. Lucky for you–many of the fall dishes will be available during their Thanksgiving dinner. Book your reservations now and leave the cooking, cleaning, and stress to the professionals.
iCi Urban Bistro
Sofitel Washington D.C.
806 15th St. N.W.