We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

“Polena”
Review of Palena - CLOSED

Palena
Price range: US$31 - US$50
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Good for: Business meetings, Romantic
Dining options: Breakfast, Dinner, Reservations
Dining style: Casual Dining
Neighbourhood: Upper Northwest
Cross street: Porter St. SW
Transit: Cleveland Park Metro Stop
Reviewed 22 October 2013

The food is great and I don't mind the $3 charge for bread since they make it very clear. Twice, however, when I have added up the charges on my computerized bill, the total was more ($4 the 1st time and $6 the 2nd time) than the total of the itemized charges. When I questioned this, I was told there is a charge for ice for drinks on the rocks of $2 per drink. There is no line item for this on the bill. One has no way of knowing, without asking, why the total is more than the sum of the itemized charges. I would object perhaps less if I could see a charge of rocks or ice $2 rather than just having them secretly add an extra $2 per drink to the bill. Charging for ice is absurd. They justify this by saying it's a bigger pour.

    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
1  Thank fulton215
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviews (114)
Traveller rating
Traveller type
Time of year
Language

9 - 13 of 114 reviews

Reviewed 16 October 2013

If you are looking for a gourmet burger with the rich taste of beef bone marrow, this is the place to go! Very nice folks there, small menu. Lovely place to visit.

    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Thank Kim C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 12 October 2013

An odd place where you leave annoyed despite good food and decent service. Hardly elegant, the cafe section of palena is supposed to be a relaxed environment with affordable food and drink. It misses on the latter point. Pastas were microscopic despite being over $15. How expensive is it to add a few noodles? The crude appetizer was tasty but featured very little actual fish. The best value and taste was the cheeseburger. Not a great recommendation for such an expensive place.
The small portions are obviously a conscious decision and meant to make some sort of statement-- but the message received is that the owners are simply cheap.

    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
1  Thank DCGUY1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 9 October 2013

Visited this place with my sister, who lives in the same neighborhood. Went for a late afternoon lunch. Ordered the cheeseburger, based on her recommendation. I was not disappointed. The flavor was excellent, and the homemade bun was also quite tasty. Recommended

Thank heyyu
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 26 September 2013

The ambiance was nice. The lighting was calming, the noise level was quite low, and people are seated far enough apart to have a private conversation. The service was quite slow, perhaps due to a private party in the restaurant (we were in the cafe area). I ordered a Lillet aperitif which was poured too short for $12.00. My appetizer was a salad with whipped artichoke under it, I believe, and a piece of fish. It was very, very sparse and not tasty. My entree was red snapper in a tomato-based broth. Again, the serving was shockingly small and only fair. It was impossible to get the attention of our waiter when we had a request for more bread or a drink. My Lillet was so skimpy that I ordered another, which in any other restaurant wold equal one serving ($24.00 for 2 small
aperitifs).

I was shocked that a restaurant with such a good reputation could so disappoint. My friends, who are also international travelers, felt the food and service did not at all live up to their expectations.
The Real Shocker was that we were charged for the bread--$6.00 for 2 small baskets, wherein only the bread sticks were commendable. I did wonder if the Emperor had clothes--and my friends agreed.

I would not return to Palena. Perhaps I chose my dishes poorly, but I was quite disappointed. We went to the yogurt store for dessert, which smacked of Paris with its bright colours, then paid the $12.00 parking fee.

    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Thank Francophone2222
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

Travellers who viewed Palena also viewed

 
Washington DC, DC
 

Owners: What's your side of the story?

Own or manage this property? Claim your listing for free to respond to reviews, update your profile and much more.

Claim Your Listing