Review: Washington Street Ale House, Wilmington, DE

by Michele Pesula Kuegler | June 8th, 2009 | Restaurant Reviews

washington-street-ale-houseOn a weekend trip to Delaware, we were seeking a restaurant near our hotel that would please adults and kids alike.  Thankfully, the concierge at our hotel recommended the Washington Street Ale House.

Entering the restaurant, we were greeted by the hostess and seated at one of the available tables on the restaurant side, which was sparsely filled.  The lounge portion of the restaurant was fairly packed.  Our waitress, Shannon, greeted us and asked to take our drink orders.  As we had had a moment to check out the menu, my husband also ordered an appetizer at this point.

Shannon returned with our beverages quickly. My husband had ordered the Spiked Arnold Palmer, and I had ordered the Ale House Cosmo.  Both were well made and delicious.  As we needed a few more minutes to choose our dinners, Shannon left and returned with bagel chips and garlic spread.  The bagel chips were regular-sized bagels that had been sliced extremely thin and toasted.  They were addictive, especially with a little bit of the garlic spread.

We made our final decisions on our meals, and soon Shannon appeared with our appetizer.  After she took our orders, we dug into one of that day’s appetizer specials, flatbread pizza.  This pizza was topped with figs, bacon, honeyed marscapone, and parmesan cheese.  While the figs made it unappealing to the kids, both my husband and I enjoyed it thoroughly.  Of course, with the aforementioned bagel chips to nibble, the kids were pleased with their appetizer also!

The arrival of our dinner was timed perfectly, as our appetizers were finished but we had had some time to relax between courses.  Our son enjoyed his full order of FOTB (Fall Off The Bone) Spare Ribs.  Covered with a homemade barbecue sauce, they lived up to their name.  The one flaw (if it can be called that) was that we like ribs with more of a bite, and this sauce was mild.  Served with a side of onion rings and cole slaw, our son made a deal to trade his sides with my husband, which pleased both of them.  My husband thought the onion rings and cole slaw were excellent.  It should be noted that the onion rings were huge!

Our daughter ordered popcorn shrimp off of the kids’ menu and enjoyed her meal.  While nothing extraordinary, it was perfect kid food.

After having some of the appetizer, I knew I wouldn’t have the appetite for a full meal, so I ordered an appetizer for my entree.  I chose the Smoked Duck & Goat Cheese Quesadilla.  Served in a flour tortilla with a drizzle of sriracha sauce, it was fabulous.  It was a combination I had never tried and found it melded well.  To accompany the quesadilla, there was a shiitake mushroom salad that was tossed with a combination of soy sauce and sesame oil.  It made a lovely light side.

My husband ordered the Chorizo Meatloaf Burger.  From his quick eating and contented smile, I knew this was a winner.  Getting a small bite for myself, I found it to be a terrific combination of flavors.  Served with french fries, our son was pleased with his trade.  Crispy and hot, they were perfect.

Washington Street Ale House is a terrific restaurant.  They have an incredible menu that offers everything from simple kid-friendly dishes, such as grilled cheese, to restaurant basics, such as caesar salad, to creative dishes, such as a curry chicken wrap with caramelized apple and raisin salsa.  They also offer impeccable service.  Shannon was timely, friendly, and considerate of all of our dining needs.  Although most likely we won’t be in the Wilmington area soon, we definitely will recommend it to anyone visiting there.

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