Friday, May 27, 2011

Freddy's Lobster & Clams, Bethesda, MD

The owners of Grapeseed Bistro in Bethesda recently opened Freddy's Lobster & Clams next door. It's a much more casual counterpart to Grapeseed that is in the spirit of a New England clam shack.
I popped in for lunch last weekend, and boy, I can't wait to go back already. I started with a small lobster stew. In tradition with how it's prepared in New England, the soup was basically cream and butter with a huge amount of lobster. It was wonderful. They serve it with a blueberry muffin that I ate the next day.
I decided to try their lobster roll as well. They gave the option of having it warm with a melted butter or chilled with a little mayo & lemon zest. I opted for the cold variety. The lobster was so good, and was really pleasant with just a dash of the mayo.
I need to go back soon to try their fried whole belly clams.

4867 Cordell Ave
Bethesda, MD


Edward said...

I also tried Freddy's Lobster in Bethesda.

First the Good: The cold lobster roll was moist and tasty with what looked like a full 1/4 pound of lobster. Some people have suggested lemon was used in the aioli mayo, but to me it tasted a lot more like lime juice, which was actually very nice. The second star was awarded solely for this tasty morsel, which was the only saving grace in our entire meal.

Now the Bad: Everything, and I mean EVERYTHING else.

To begin with, all portions of food besides the lobster roll were small and way expensive. An $8.00 bowl of clam chowder was served lukewarm and bland. Wolfgang Puck's canned clam chowder from the supermarket is better. I have spent many summers on Cape Cod, and every second rate clam joint and chain restaurant there has better chowder than Freddy's.

The fried chicken special had all of the flavor burnt out of it and the accompanying fries were served ice cold. I have had this same fried chicken at the Old General Store in Silver Spring, and it was 1000% better there. The pieces of chicken here were small and dried out from the deep fryer and served with a small cup of grease(?!) I guess this was supposed to be gravy, but I have no idea since it was just plain nasty. Ice cold fries were hastily replaced by our waitress once we complained, and the freshly cooked ones were decent.

Except for the lobster roll, quality control was pretty much non-existent at Freddy's and corner cutting is rampant. Even the calamari was served with barely a tablespoonful of marinara sauce. Did they really have to skimp on the (cold) marinara sauce like that? Apparently so.

What a disappointment. I spent $50.00 on our meal and my date and I left hungry and feeling ripped off. Fortunately I knew a decent rib joint nearby where we were able to finish our dinner. I'd say the only thing worth eating at Freddy's is the lobster roll, and even then I'd get it as take out. If you insist on actually dining here, eat somewhere else first, since you're not going to get much in the way of actual food at Freddy's.

I take a cold measure of satisfaction in the knowledge that given the current US economy, the poor quality food here and the expense of keeping a restaurant open on Cordell Ave. in Bethesda, there will probably be another restaurant opening in this space before the summer's out.

Anonymous said...

Wow, Edward, I've eaten there twice now and each time my food was all delicious. Maybe you just had a bad experience.