By Helen Saks
The twinkling fairy lights on Red’s Table’s terrace make it an enticing go-to restaurant in South Lakes Drive, Reston. On arrival, it was clear that it’s a restaurant for all types – a glam ladies only group were giggling over their wine on the terrace, while inside it had more of a family and friends vibe. Little ones are in for a rare treat at Red’s Table, as we were impressed by the extensive kids menu. Thinking outside the box, the chef offers welcome alternatives to standard kids fare such as eggplant parm, crabcakes and veggie pasta.
The food is pitched as fresh and locally sourced by the three local brothers who own Red’s Table. We chose the signature appetizer of goats cheese fritters to start. Light and fluffy, they were delicious. Served with chili apricot jam and green onion, they were indulgent without being heavy. The jam was more sweet than spicy and added a welcome compliment to the fritter.For the entrée, I chose the Maryland Lump Crabcakes with celeriac remoulade and grilled lemon. This classic dish was simple, meaty and tasty, the crabcakes deceivingly filling.
My French friend’s eyes lit up when she saw the suggestion of ‘cassoulet’ on the menu, so we couldn’t resist trying this traditional fare, that comes from her home town! Sadly, this Americanized version didn’t quite come up to scratch in her opinion, as in the south west of France this would be prepared days before and served sizzling hot in a clay pot. Instead, it was confit de canard (duck) served on a bed of beans with sausage. However, with no local French market to source your traditional cassoulet ingredients, the difference is perhaps understandable, although she was left underwhelmed.
With not much space left to breathe, we were convinced by our outstanding server at Red’s Table that we should indulge in a dessert. All desserts are made in house and they boast their own gelato expert – it sounded too good to resist! We opted for the Spiced Cream Cake and the Nutella Ice Cream. The Spiced Cream Cake was beautifully presented with a fine, wispy parsnip crisp decorating the whipped cream topping. Double layered with cinnamon ice cream in between, this felt like a Christmas treat mid-year and an extremely delicious one at that! The nutella ice cream was rich, smooth and creamy with chocolate pieces to add to the luxurious flavor.
Red’s Table: The Verdict
Overall, Red’s Table was a very pleasant dining experience. The service was exceptional and it was a lovely place to catch up with a friend. Although the food didn’t blow us away, this is a restaurant that changes its menu regularly. I’m looking to see what new items they add to the menu.As a diner, I appreciate the creativity, thoughtfulness and originality of an ever changing menu.
Red’s Table, South Lakes Village Shopping Center, 11150 South Lakes Dr, Reston, VA 20191, Website