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Review of Tosca Restaurant

Tosca Restaurant
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Ranked #87 of 3,228 Restaurants in Washington DC
Certificate of Excellence
Price range: US$31 - US$50
Cuisines: Italian
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Good for: Special Occasion Dining, Romantic, Business meetings
Dining options: Dinner, After-hours, Lunch, Reservations
Dining style: Fine Dining
Neighbourhood: Downtown / Chinatown
Cross street: between 11th and 12th
Tabernacle, New Jersey
Level Contributor
4 reviews
3 restaurant reviews
Reviewed 13 July 2014

I was expecting something great from this restaurant, but it was very average and overpriced. I want to blame the dishes I picked, but when paying such hefty prices I believe everything should taste fabulous. The staff was polite, but not very engaging. Overpriced and mediocre food.

  • Visited July 2014
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Thank sherry v
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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507 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
Rating summary
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • Italian first
  • Japanese first
  • Korean first
  • Portuguese first
  • Russian first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Level Contributor
367 reviews
156 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 177 helpful votes
“Great Meal but Where's the Soy Milk?”
Reviewed 10 July 2014

This is a grown up, white table cloth, power lunch setting. Food is excellent. Had the tuna steak on my last trip. Good dessert. Only one complaint: this restaurant still has no accomodation for those allergic to milk: no soy milk, no almond milk. Very odd. Cost them a star.

  • Visited July 2014
    • Service
    • Food
Thank FredTravelVa
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Caeur D Alene
Level Contributor
531 reviews
376 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 118 helpful votes
“Great place. Great tapas. Great service ”
Reviewed 5 July 2014 via mobile

Very nice interior decoration. Feels like a typical Spanish downtown place.

Great vibe. Iberoamerican music playing. Bar area is open and comfortable

Service was very friendly.

Loved the duck tapa. The paella was great too.

Thank Jaime U
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Level Contributor
143 reviews
78 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 41 helpful votes
“Tasting menu slipped a notch”
Reviewed 2 July 2014

For most of the last decade we have been indulging ourselves with Tosca’s tasting menu several times a year. Until last night it was always a great experience that often caused us to rate it five-star, but two weeks ago we had a disappointment. Several individually minor glitches reduced “great” to somewhere between “good” and “very good.”

Open Table would not take a 7:30 reservation, so we came at 7:00 and saw empty tables throughout the evening. The first course, a shellfish salad, was so overwhelmed by Old Bay that the shellfish could hardly be tasted through the saltiness. Crab shell pieces also intruded on my portion. I would have preferred any of the fish crudos I has on past occasions.

The roasted scallop in the second course was perfect, but the accompanying sauces did little to enhance it, and the peppercorn in my wife’s portion was out of place. The risotto was properly cooked so that it had a nutty crunch, but the cheese was monochromatic. I yearned for the risotto with cheese, mushroom, and a hint of truffle enjoyed on a past occasion.

The pastas, ordinarily a high point, were not. I had the pasta with antelope ragu, cheese, and roasted peppers. It was earthy but not outstanding. My wife, who dislikes peppers, instead had the carrot-flavored pasta with rabbit ragu and thyme, a Tosca signature dish previously the high point of the tasting menu. Last night’s did not have the over-the-top richness we have come to expect. We asked our waiter if the recipe had changed; he said he would ask the chef, but never returned with an answer.

The lamb chops were perfect, but the accompanying fava beans added little and my wife thought the cheese-infused polenta was a mismatch. Dessert, fruit semifreddo with Gorgonzola ice cream, was very good.

Service was correct, albeit cool. A water glass remained unfilled for a long period. We saw a lot of new faces among the wait staff, and we saw none of the three excellent veteran waiters we have come to know. During this visit and the previous one, we did not see Paolo out in front. Perhaps he is busy with his newer restaurant.

On the way home, we speculated over the cause of our disappointment. We didn’t begin the evening in a bad mood; perhaps the restaurant just had a bad night. Perhaps staff changes or a lack of owner attention have caused slippage. Perhaps there was a chef decision to make the food “lighter” and healthier. We could not decide, but we also reminded ourselves about the decision of Washingtonian’s critics to drop Tosca from their top 100.

  • Visited June 2014
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Thank Arlingtonfoodie31
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Level Contributor
263 reviews
154 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 106 helpful votes
“My niece and nephew loved it”
Reviewed 25 June 2014

They are in their 20's - not a place for small children.
Very good Italian food - scallops and sea urchin. Venison. Risotto. Salmon. Salads well dressed and fresh. Imaginative menu.
Chocolate dessert worthy of the air miles needed to get the chocolate !
Don't eat all day before you go so you can thoroughly enjoy it - portions and nice size - not huge and extremely well presented.
Great ( if a touch expensive wine list - hard to get a bottle for under $50).
Excellent service. You need to book for prime times.
$500 for 3.

  • Visited June 2014
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Thank cultureoutdoors
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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