On the Edge
I had reserved a seat for two for my father and me. Initially, I thought this'll be a great way to have a father-son bond after our shaky relationship for years past. Admittedly, I'm young and I did dress semi-formally. Instead of the smiles and the warmth I expected, I was getting cold looks from both waiters, busboys, and other customers alike.
The food was excellent however. The pan-seared tuna fell apart like the clouds after a long day of raining. The oysters were fresher than Neil Patrick Harris' just ironed suits. The tile fish was so delectable that I could almost hear Gordon Ramsay screaming on top of his lungs in jealousy. The Thai mussels, sauteed in coconut milk, almost brought a tear to my eye.
It was that good.
8/10/2013 12:00:00 AM
Consistently good but service...
As usual, food here is never a disappointment. The brunch is small but serves well selected high quality items. This is a buffet for quality not quantity! The seafood bar is the best in town with fresh oysters, clams, tuna, anchovies, caviar, smoked mussels, and more great stuff! Service however was not as good. We had to call out to our server for service not because they were busy, but because they had bunched together and were happily exchanging stories. We could see our poured Bellinis sitting in the bar while our server finished his funny story. The restaurant only had a handful of guests and so they had no pressure to serve quickly. Management needs to pay more attention!
8/11/2013 12:00:00 AM
excellent as usual - one quibble
Excellent food as usual - mussels cant be beat.
Only quibble is waiters who are too intrusive. they are friendly, helpful - but could tone it down a notch as they kept breaking into conversation. I guess ideally they would find times when there is a gap....
8/14/2013 12:00:00 AM
Went for a business lunch and sat at a small booth
In the bar area. Good place to be able to eat
8/15/2013 12:00:00 AM
The restaurant sat us right away. Food and drinks were delivered at a good pace. Didn't feel rushed. Food was amazing. Would definitely come back!
8/16/2013 12:00:00 AM
My second time at Black's..The first was absolutely fabulous..Service, food, atmosphere, etc. was great...
However, this time the service was not good..Young lady was just okay and not attentive..our glasses sat empty until we asked for refillls, no salt on table, no silverware for dessert, etc...
Will return, but hope service is better...
8/18/2013 12:00:00 AM
My companions liked Black's but...
I found the service pushy in the beginning even though we were dining early, 6:00-ish, on a weeknight when the restaurant was not full. The server kept coming by to see if we were ready to order drinks and our dinner. The server was well versed on the menu and specials so that was satisfactory. Once we ordered and dishes began to arrive our server disappeared and did not return until we had finished and we had a table clear enough to have room for the dessert menus.
With that said, the food was very good just be prepared to order and eat at your pace and not the server's.
8/20/2013 12:00:00 AM
I loved the Saffron Stew!!!
I loved the Saffron Stew!!! Great and friendly staff.
8/21/2013 12:00:00 AM
Superb Dinner & Service
We had a very tasty soft shell crab appetizer.
The duck was perfectly prepared as was the seafood stew.
Our server, Sam, was attentive and very pleasant.
We enjoyed the entire experience.
8/22/2013 5:00:00 PM
As always excellent food & service!
Great soft shells with excellent sauce. Waiters are terrific!
8/23/2013 12:00:00 AM
1st Black's dinner, new favorite!
Everything was great about our birthday celebration dinner. The aroma as we walked through the dining room to the outdoor patio was phenomenal. Sam, our waiter was knowledgable, friendly and made us feel special. The food was superior and the drinks were unique and delisious. We were surprised that the bar and restaurant was not packed, with a line out the door. What can we do to help get this place packed to its full potential? We bought a gift card for a friend while we were there, as we think anyone who goes will love it! Thanks again for an excellent dining experience.
8/23/2013 12:00:00 AM
Great food, terrible service
The food was outstanding but it was impacted by the terrible service. The waiter got our order wrong, then could not be found for 15 minutes in order to tell him it was wrong (as it sat on the table cooling off). Then the waiter just apologized and did not offer to fix it, instead only saying sorry, I hope it will be ok. He had an attitude that he was superior to everyone, like the waiter job was so below him.
8/24/2013 12:00:00 AM
Just plain wonderful food and wine
Each dish was a delight! Superb soft shells (with fantastic trimmings), swordfish with NO dryness, steamers, scallops, YUM fried oysters, clams, all perfect. A perfect pound cake dessert topped it all off.
We all commented that it had been a long time since we were so pleased with a meal right in our Montgomery County "back yard."
8/24/2013 12:00:00 AM
Food doesn't disappoint at
Food doesn't disappoint at lunch. Service a bit slow with our party of five, though.
8/26/2013 12:00:00 AM
Black's Bar and Kitchen was a great find. My boyfriend and I had never really been oyster fans, but the waitress recommended a few different kinds and they were amazing! We split the asparagus salad then had delicious entrees. I had trout and he had the duck. We didn't even offer the other a bite until we had almost cleaned our plates. The wine list was excellent. There was a price range for everyone on the wine list, too. The dessert menu looked great, but we were just too full to order anything. The service was excellent. We didn't have to wait for anything but she also didn't hover. It was worth every penny!
8/26/2013 12:00:00 AM
Wonderful food, great energetic
Wonderful food, great energetic ambience but able to have conversations. Tables were far enough apart so if privacy a concern not a problem. Will definitely go back.
8/29/2013 12:00:00 AM
The bruschetta was DEE-LISH! We really enjoyed our dining experience. It's not a quiet spot but you will enjoy your meal. Helena took good care of us.
8/30/2013 12:00:00 AM
If Fresh Is What You Want
Truly doesn't get fresher than this. Great raw bar oyster selection, clever and delicious preparation for a variety of fish and most always featuring a special. The selection of side dishes will appeal to most everyone. My suggestion try the cold corn soup. It's flavorful, well spiced and truly memorable. The signature scallop dish is a delight and who knew sautéed greens could be so tasty.
Our server was terrific. Friendly, efficient, totally unpretentious. Well informed about the various appetizers and entrees. Offered good advice about menu and wine selections. The dining room is dark and comfy. There's a terrific outdoor deck and a busy but very comfortable bar. Parking is a breeze thanks to the public garage next door.
8/31/2013 12:00:00 AM
Black Salt Oysters were not as salty as expecting but still delicious!
8/31/2013 12:00:00 AM
We were seated inside, our choice, but along the perimeter of the room where AC vents were blowing right down on us. We requested a change of table into the middle of the room which solved the problem, although we had preferred the privacy of the other location. A regular we spoke to said he always brings a jacket - and I don't mean a dinner jacket - he was wearing an outdoor jacket!!!
9/1/2013 12:00:00 AM
Consistently good fish dishes. Black's excels with quality and creativity.
9/1/2013 12:00:00 AM
Great food and service
I set up a reservation And i requested a birthday celebration for my girlfriend. Blacks service was impeccable and provided special attention to my girlfriend and put a happy birthday wish with her name on the menu. They rolled up the menu with a ribbon for her to take home. My server was excellent and he treated us very well.
9/11/2013 12:00:00 AM
Good food and good service
Haven't been in a long time, but was very pleased to see that everything was very good. Asked for and got a quiet table on a Thursday, so my friend and I could catch up. Will be back soon.
9/19/2013 12:00:00 AM
Was craving some oysters, so once again, made a reservation at Black's. They did not disappoint. The selection was delightful, and the freshness unparalleled. Matt, our server, was knowledgeable and attentive - altogether, a GREAT meal. Thanks, Blacks!
9/20/2013 12:00:00 AM
We had reservations for BlackSalt, but due to changes in our schedules we changed our reservation to Black's Bar and Kitchen and was not disappointed. Our waiter was very attentive without being intrusive and was very knowledgeable regarding the food and menu. Of course the oysters were delicious but the entrees and dessert delicious as well. I will definitely be going back, after I finally visit BlackSalt!!!
9/21/2013 12:00:00 AM
Really good evening
Had dinner here with friends the other night. The ambiance is great and the service/staff outstanding. That is before we got to the food and wine, which "sealed the deal." I very much appreciate a place where simply prepared fish is made a star. Here the grilled fish and meat options are alone a reason to go back. Bu that is accompanied by a diverse options with a raw bar, great specials and well done alternative entrees and sides. I had gone to the old restaurant and had mixed feelings but recently had lunch and now dinner at the new version and it is worth many return trips. Great place....
9/21/2013 12:00:00 AM
Great time out
It was our first time in and our server Sam was great. The food was amazing. We will be going back.
9/27/2013 12:00:00 AM
Good , Better, BEST . . .
I've observed Black's over the years as a 15+ year business professional in Bethesda and occasionally invite clients to dinner at Blacks.
From day one I've never been disappointed. And over the years they keep getting better; menu selection, decor, etc.
Recently, moved to Bethesda and now I more frequently dine with my family and friends. I declare they're even better than better.
10/1/2013 12:00:00 AM
My boyfriend and I ate here for our anniversary and the food was exceptional! I would recommend this place for a date night and also if you were enjoying an afterwork cocktail for happy hour. The bar was very vibrant and I wish we would have sat there rather than the main dinning room. Yes I enjoyed the quietness of the dinning room because we were able to talk , but we were the youngest people in the dinning room, plus we both enjoy a good bar atmosphere. But the food was amazing! I ordered the scallops as my main dish and he ordered the ribeye, both had wonderful flavor and were not overcooked. We also started with oysters and mussels, which both had good flavor, but my boyfriend wasn't completely happy with the oysters he ordered.
10/4/2013 12:00:00 AM
Love the food and the overall feel of the restaurant. Their mojitos are #1 in my book!
10/5/2013 12:00:00 AM
If you love seafood, a fun and energetic environment and scrumptious desserts then this is the pinnacle of places to go! I was so happy to find it on Open Table and this has now become one of my favorite spots in Bethesda. Service was good but not the best so there is one area for minor improvement but after eating, drinking and good company little did you notice that a couple hours had flown by! Worth every penny...
10/10/2013 12:00:00 AM
It's our corner bistro
Jeff Black has been serving great food at each of his five restaurants for a long time.
Happy hour at Black's Bar and Kitchen is a great deal. Better food and lower prices than anywhere else in the neighborhood. If you're a shellfish fan, check out their happy hour menu,
10/11/2013 5:00:00 PM
Makes Special Occasion more special
We went there for my 50th with my family who were visiting from out of town. There was a snafu when we arrived, somehow in confirming the reservation on open table and trying to reduce the number, the reservation got cancelled. The Black's staff were so nice, and they were able to find another table for 6 within 10 minutes. The service and food were superb. I had the whole fish - a Branzino - which was delicious. Others had the seafood stew and the rockfish. The oysters were fresh and tasty. Service was excellent. All in all, a very special occasion.
10/12/2013 12:00:00 AM
Our group of three family
Our group of three family members there for a birthday celebration was blown away by the complexity of flavors in the appetizers, particularly the cauliflower and gnocci dish and the veal. The rockfish and steak that followed were also simple, straightforward, and delightful.
Overall, we liked the range of choices in the menu, the friendly service from an excellent waiter, and the relaxed, unfussy atmosphere.
10/12/2013 12:00:00 AM
Another excellent meal- great rockfish and mussels
10/18/2013 5:00:00 PM
Always a good time at Blacks
This was probably our sixth visit to Blacks and as always, we had a wonderful meal. Service is attentive and friendly, the ambiance spot on - lively, not too young but still feels hip, with exceptional food and drink. My one complaint, was the butter lettuce salad with burrata and asparagus. It was bland and needed some other spices to kick it up a notch. on its own, burrata doesn't have much taste and neither does butter lettuce. A more interesting salad dressing or rolling the cheese in some nuts, etc would have helped. Main dishes were delicious. My partner had the seafood stew, his go to dinner entree and said it was incredible. I had the trout with sunchokes, and a mushroom cream sauce, a terrific dish.
We'll be back next trip to DC.
10/25/2013 12:00:00 AM
Great for business meetings
Noise level makes Blacks a perfect place to hold an intimate business meeting.
10/31/2013 5:00:00 PM
Delicious Treat and Enjoyable Time
We loved our evening here. The menu was varied, the service superior, the food excellent and the wine wonderful. What more could one ask for?
11/1/2013 12:00:00 AM
Inventive and inviting
Love the food here. I had salmon on a bed of mashed butternut squash, brussels sprouts and parsnips. Yum. Salmon cooked perfectly (for me, as I'm a medium rare person). We were taken for our reservation immediately, sat in a place where we could hear each other speak and enjoyed the whole experience, especially the complimentary chocolates after the meal.
11/5/2013 4:00:00 PM
THIS is a "quiet table" ???
Black's is a pricey restaurant, with an excellent menu, and a capable chef, and a lot of promise. Unfortunately, in an otherwise good setting, it is raucously noisy! When making the reservation, I requested a quiet table; on confirming it, I requested a quiet table; on arrival, I requested a quiet table. Conversation at the table provided was nearly impossible. This is very unfortunate, because the food was excellent (the selection of fresh oysters incomparable; the fish stew outstanding), and the service was quite good. If it provided a conversation-friendly noise level, It would easily reach the "highly recommended" level.
11/7/2013 4:00:00 PM
The food is always very good - the service is also
11/8/2013 4:00:00 PM
Great brunch spot
Black's has a wonderful raw bar for a brunch buffet. We really enjoyed the seafood and salads. The desserts were bite-size pieces of nirvana. The only thing disappointing was the cold quiche. Service was excellent - friendly and efficient.
11/9/2013 4:00:00 PM
Fish Lovers Unite
A great restaurant for fish lovers, but if you're not a fish lover (like my dining companion) the options are pretty slim.
11/13/2013 4:00:00 PM
Good food, good service,
There are tons of restaurants in Bethesda, but most have mediocre food. Mr. Black seems to have it figured out. Good food, good service.
11/14/2013 4:00:00 PM
The food is excellent. The fish is always fresh and very expertly prepared. The service is top-notch. Great restaurant in Bethesda.
11/15/2013 4:00:00 PM
Black's Bar & Kitchen was
Black's Bar & Kitchen was great. On Sunday's they have a half price bottle selection that has range and paired nicely with our meal selections. Our server Matt was extremely accommodating and knowledgeable. I had the skirt steak with orange peppercorn sauce, others had fillets. No one complained about their steaks or meals in general. If you are a fan of acquired tastes, definitely try the oysters.
11/16/2013 4:00:00 PM
What a delicious surprise, and good value, too. The a-la-carte brunch menu was limited but incredibly well though out, the usual main ingredients but with excellent attention to detail. Meanwhile, hats off to the bartender for a brunch cocktail list like no other: try the sangria champagne cocktail with its fruit diced just the right size to come through your straw. The bloody Mary was excellent, too. I want to go again.
11/16/2013 4:00:00 PM
Better than Kinkade's
My wife and i went to Kinkaid's Restaurant for seafood for more than 20 years and were very disappointed when it closed. But we feel that Black's Bar and Kitchen has improved to the point where the seafood food is actually as good if not better than Kinkaid's. The decor isn't as elegant as Kinkaid's but it's in a convenient Bethesda location with public parking next door. A true neighborhood gem.
11/18/2013 4:00:00 PM
First time but not the last time.
We enjoyed the bar before meeting friends for dinner. We' ll make sure we arrive early next time too. We were seated and served promptly but didn't feel rushed to leave as we were catching up with old friends. Food was very tasty. Free parking right next door. A real plus.
11/22/2013 4:00:00 PM
Very pleased with the seafood. Plus 1/2 off on selected wines on Sunday
11/23/2013 4:00:00 PM