If you are ever in Alexandria, VA, or even within two hours of, there is only one thing that you need do. Eat at Daniel O'Connell's.
This restaurant has been the place of two very meaningful nights in my life. The first night was a dinner with my husband and my amazing parents-in law as we celebrated spending the week together in our nation's capital before we received news that changed all of our lives. Today, as I do always, I remember the beautiful, selfless and hilarious Nadine Smith, my husbands (and my) Nana. The second night was a dinner with my daughter, my sister, my coworker and my boss to celebrate my husband being admitted into the Bar of the Supreme Court of the United States of America. Needless to say, this place has a special place in my heart.
And, oh, the fabulousness of the restaurant. O'Connells (or as Rob calls it, Seamus McDougals), is filled with vibrant life, fantastic food and vintage soul. The entire restaurant is furnished with items from salvaged old ships and churches. The first night we sat at a table that was placed on the bow of an old ship and Rob and I sat in an old church pew. We had filet mignon and shepards pie while the folks in the bar were "Irish" drunk and wonderfully loud. I strive for that every night.
Then we had dessert. There were s'mores. At our table. S'mores. Hershey's chocolate bars, Reses' Peanut Butter cups, marshmallows, graham crackers and a sterno. All the wonderfulness of camping without all the suckiness of camping. Perfection. Add blueberry bread pudding. Hold on...I need a moment.
Daniel O'Connells means the world to me. As much as I love food, there is nothing better than the experience it brings with it. Tonight, I wish all of you the love of food!