Eaton Workshop is ambitious. It’s a hotel and work space and meeting space and cocktail bar and coffee shop and radio station and news stand and restaurant and another coffee shop that’s just for members and a rooftop bar and I’m sure I’m forgetting something. American Son, the restaurant on the first floor, just to the left of the main entrance, may turn out to be its calling card. Chef Tim Ma is doing a whole lot right, right when you walk in.
Eaton DC is getting lots of The Line comparisons and they’re warranted. Rather than pretend the Eaton DC concept is brand new, it’s inevitable to connect the two hotels/work spaces/restaurants/cocktail bars/radio stations/etc. American Son, an all-day restaurant serving, “an Asian-inspired take on American face,” according to their site, will make you think of Brothers And Sisters, an all-day restaurant in The Line serving, “A menu of American and Asian dishes in the spirit of great hotel lobbies of Asia, but from Erik’s unique DC vantage point,” according The Line’s hotel group site. This doesn’t really matter, it’s just something that’s hard to shake when eating at American Son. Brothers And Sisters has great reviews. Will American Son garner the same love? Based on our initial visit, yes.
Chef Tim Ma is a very good chef. If you’ve eaten at Kyirisan, you know this. The Michelin Guide knows this. American Son is an all-day version. The food can be just as indulgent (the beef cheek alone is worth a visit), but there are healthier, lighters options so you can continue on your day and do actual work, like the charred romaine salad.
The middle ground between a salad and beef cheeks, is the tofu gnocchi. The vegan dish is great for sharing and without knowing it’s a vegan dish, would not lead you to believe it’s a vegan dish. I hope the vegans reading this know I mean it as a compliment.
Order the tofu gnocchi and share the scallops and you have the perfect food for a lunch meeting. You can also order variations of the scallops and the tofu gnocchi at Kyirisan, which means you can have Tim Ma’s scallops and tofu gnocchi for lunch at American Son and again for dinner at Kyirisan. We’re not recommending that. We’re just saying it’s an option.
Yes, American Son will make you think of Brothers And Sisters. It’ll also remind you of Kyirisan, for obvious reasons, and Unconventional Diner. Unlike those places, American Son is located downtown, at 12th and K Street. It’s ideal for breakfast and lunch meetings and due to the proximity of BYT’s offices, we’ll most likely be back for breakfast and lunch. If the meetings go well, we’ll be ordering the fun and visually pleasing desserts.
Chef Tim Ma is doing a whole lot right. Eaton House did a fine job finding the chef to anchor their anchor restaurant.