With the madness of M Street and the abundance of restaurants, it might be easy to miss Unum. Every time I passed by it, I would read the menu, want to order almost everything and then realize that doing so would in no way fit my budget.
Then restaurant week came around and I knew it was my chance. With two of us there and each able to order four items from the menu, we got to sample eight dishes in total and leave completely satisfied. Now, while no dish was short of great, some plates or parts of them stood out and were quite amazing.
Lets start with the appetizers. Even though fried food is usually a winner, the lobster bisque surpassed the chorizo-stuffed fried squid. It was smooth without being overly creamy or bland, and had the largest chunks of fresh lobster I have ever seen outside of an actual lobster.
For our mains, we ordered seared duck, branzino, a seafood combination and short rib pasta. The duck was delicious and accompanied by the most interesting sides of the four plates: kale with pine nuts, kumquats and a sunchoke puree. I still don’t fully understand what a sunchoke is or what it looks like, but pureed, it tasted creamy and added a complimentary touch to the duck.
The branzino (a type of white fish) was grilled perfectly, and was better than the other seafood dish. Also, I don’t usually eat pork, but the short rib and root vegetable tagliatelle was phenomenal – so comforting for a cold winter night. The sauce was warm, delicately spiced yet very hearty, and the ratio of meat to pasta was on point (read: lots of short rib in each bite).
Lastly came desserts; we ordered the blackberry apple crumble and Unum sundae. The crumble was served hot with vanilla ice cream, and aside from the too crunchy toffee bits on top, it was superb and different from the normal apple-only crumble.
The sundae was more of a deconstructed sundae. There was very faintly banana flavored ice cream, moist chocolate cake, chocolate marshmallow crème (which tasted like frosting), sour cherries and topping it all off was caramel popcorn.
Overall, I am so glad that we got to try so many dishes (for a fraction of the price they normally would have cost). Next time I go I will know what to avoid, but it’ll be hard to decide what to order out of the amazing plates they do serve.
Address: 2917 M Street Northwest, Washington, DC 20007
Hours: 5:30 pm – 10 pm