Photos By Armando Gallardo, Words By Brandon Wetherbee
Declaration, the newest dining location in the Atlantic Plumbing compound, is attracting the kind of customers that you most likely won’t find at 9:30 Club. Located down the block from the legendary club, the pizza place from the people behind Teddy & the Bully Bar and Lincoln, are giving concert goers a fine dining option before the show.
The two best pizzas we sampled were the most traditional and the most absurd. The VA Thomas Jefferson (all of the pizzas are named after the original 13 colonies and the prices correspond with that colonies founding) with Smithfield ham, arugula, lemon, olive oil and oven roasted tomatoes is the kind of pizza that will please a party of unsure diners. It’s not too spicy, not too heavy, not too meaty, not too frivolous. It’s a solid pie that should be in your delivery catalog.
The most absurd pizza that legitimately tasted good was the MA John Adams. It’s the clam chowder pizza. This is a good gimmick pie. Shucked clams, potatoes, pork belly, thyme and Fontina cheese reads as disgusting. It’s not. It was shockingly not disgusting. In fact, it was good. I would like to point out I was sober during this meal, I have no allergies and was not sick in any way. The pork belly overwhelmed the clam taste so maybe that’s why I have found memories of a soup taste on a pizza. This dish is not for everyone. The VA option is.
Not all of the gimmicks are winners. The PA Benjamin Franklin is a cheesesteak pizza. I’m glad I tried it and I’ll be perfectly content with my one experience with cheese sauce on a pizza.
The highlight of the beginnings section of the menu is the crispy calamari. It’s light for calamari, bursting with flavor thanks to the celery tapenade and olive oil. But for $11, just three pieces doesn’t justify another order.
The people that sat next to us instantly struck up a conversation about whether or not President Obama should be allowed to appoint the next Supreme Court Justice. After a heated discussion of agreement that President Obama should not be allowed to appoint the next Surpreme Court Justice, the two white men moved on to the GOP. One exclaimed, “Rubio is THE MAN!” Once again, I was sober.
Declaration is located down the street from D.C.’s best music venue and across the street from D.C.’s newest movie theater. It’s in a neighborhood that is supposed to attract people that don’t usually talk about the GOP at Teddy & the Bully Bar and Lincoln. But it is. Whether regular diners of those two places are going to Declaration because of their affiliation with the other establishments or Shaw is just changing quicker than previously thought is unknown. What is known is a brand new pizza place in Shaw is appealing to dudes that think Rubio is THE MAN.
If you’re looking for a bite for two before a concert or a movie, Declaration is a great option. Before an event the meatball is great for sharing and sized for 2. At happy hour it’s an even better deal. If you want a nightcap, order the Chocolate Chip Ricotta. And a drink. You need booze when it’s impossible to escape men who need to proclaim the greatness of any presidential candidate.