When we were first invited to the Trump International Hotel’s BLT Prime by David Burke, I have to admit we were quite sceptical; after all, we are vegetarians. Thankfully, Executive Chef, Bill Williamson, one of President Trump’s chef of choice, cast away all our doubts by curating a meal which far exceeded our expectations. He is no stranger to the DC circuit considering he regularly plates up dishes for President Trump.
We were seated on the mezzanine level of the restaurant with an uninterrupted view of the magnificent lobby and the hotel’s landmark clock tower. The steakhouse is unquestionably one of DC’s most coveted restaurants, an observation I made purely by noticing the exclusive gatherings of diners around me. The décor is chic and sophisticated, adorning classic wooden furniture and ivory-colored leather chairs. sprinkled with elegant crockery and glassware.
Our experience commenced with a glass of champagne each, the perfect start to most evenings. To further set the tone for our meal, we were served an amuse bouche comprising a refreshing piece of pickled radish accompanied by flavoured tomato and garlic crumbs. Chef Williamson made a personal visit to the table to take us through the menu for the night, a four-course vegetarian meal with an emphasis on fresh and locally sourced produce.
Our appetizer was one of my favourite dishes of the night; freshly baked bread filled with gruyere cheese and accompanied with homemade butter. The fluffiness of the bread, coupled with the creamy Swiss cheese made the dish a warm and surprisingly light first course; I admired it most for its simplicity.
Dinner started with an entrée of an asparagus and green pea risotto. The perfectly cooked and slightly crispy Arborio rice was what lent this dish its overall character. The asparagus and green peas were seasoned to perfection, and of course, the generous servings of parmesan shavings added greatly to the flavour profile of the dish.
Our second entrée of the night was a tagliatelle pasta in a saffron sauce with freshly sautéed spinach leaves, topped with panko crusted breadcrumbs. The pasta was cooked to an ideal consistency, al dente style. The saffron sauce straddled sweet and savoury effortlessly, adding a golden hue to the dish. The flavour of the sauce was perfectly balanced with the sourness of the sautéed spinach leaves and crunchiness of the panko breadcrumbs.
The final entrée of the evening was a cauliflower steak with almonds, apples, and raisins. While the concept paid a respectful tribute to vegetarians, the dish did not live up to the rest of the entrées. Unfortunately, the amalgamation of flavours did not appeal to our taste-buds as much as we would have liked them to.
To end our splendid culinary experience, we were offered a plethora of delectable options from the dessert menu. While we were extremely eager to cater to our sweet tooth, neither of us had the ability to consume even a morsel more.
Our overall experience at the BLT Prime by David Burke was wonderful. The knowledgeable and courteous staff definitely added to our experience, but it was Executive Chef Bill Williamson who enhanced our meal by experimenting with dishes outside his comfort zone to cater to our vegetarian palette.
Where: BLT Prime by David Burke
1100 Pennsylvania Ave NW, Washington, DC 20004, USA
Phone: +1 202-868-5100
Note– The critic was invited by the hotel. But all the opinions expressed herewith are her own.