Masseria Impresses with Soft Launch

30 Jul
Fresh Fruit and Sorbet at Masseria

Fresh Fruit and Sorbet at Masseria

You will need to suspend your disbelief when you approach the front entrance at Masseria (1340 4th Street, NE) in the Union Market district.  While the restaurant will one day be a neighbor to upscale apartments and retail, it is currently across the street from a wholesaler, next to an empty parking lot, and a half block down from a Motel 6.

Open Faced Ravioli with Rock Shrimp at Masseria

Open Faced Ravioli with Rock Shrimp at Masseria

But don’t let that scare you away!  Once you enter Masseria’s front gate, you will completely forget the outside surroundings.  Immediately upon walking in, you walk through a beautiful outdoor patio and lounge with couches and a floor that is covered in tile.  Via a large bar, the patio gives way to the indoor dining space that features an open kitchen where you can watch your dinner being made.  There are several seats at the kitchen bar that give you the best view.

Summer Soft Shell Crabs at Masseria

Summer Soft Shell Crabs at Masseria

Dinner starts with an amuse-bouche followed by a presentation of bread featuring fresh focaccia, miniature breadsticks formed into small rings, and a sundried tomato sauce.  Masseria has a robust wine program as well as a large craft cocktail list (we tried a type of mojito that included beer in it…sounds strange but it worked).

Sample Menu at Masseria

Sample Menu at Masseria

The menu is a tasting menu (either three or six courses) where you can choose what you want from the menu.  The menu is broken up by antipasti, pastas, fish/seafood, and meat (see sample menu above).  On the pasta front, we tried the linguine with salami and a spicy XO sauce as well as the open faced ravioli with rock shrimp.  Both were wonderful with the spicy XO sauce packing a real punch.  From the seafood category, we tried the summer softshell crab dish featuring two halved crabs in a bed of summer corn.  The soft shells were delicately sauteed and topped with basil blossoms, which added a strong basil flavor.  The combination of the corn and the basil blossoms made it taste like pure summer.

Bread Presentation at Masseria

Bread Presentation at Masseria

Save room for dessert.  Our favorite was the summer fruit and sorbet plate, although the chocolate cake with ice cream was also great.

Linguine with Spicy Xo Sauce and Salami at Masseria

Linguine with Spicy Xo Sauce and Salami at Masseria

For the next couple of days, Masseria is continuing its soft open where meals (excluding alcohol) are half off.  Be sure to check it out soon!

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One Response to “Masseria Impresses with Soft Launch”

Trackbacks/Pingbacks

  1. Masseria’s Lounge Ideal for Autumn Nights | District Cuisine - September 25, 2015

    […] menu that is less expensive than the tasting menu in the main dining room area.  You can check out our early review of Masseria here.  The lounge has comfortable couches and chairs complete with fire pits, the ideal autumn setting. […]

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