Eating seasonally requires diners and restaurateurs to tune into nature's directives, a set of rules laid out by the Earth's wobbling axis and equally unstable weather wizards. Delight in the freshness forged from Mother Nature's commands with today's Groupon for a three-course seafood prix fixe dinner for two at Chef Tony's on St. Elmo Avenue in Bethesda. Choose between two options:
- For $40, you get a prix fixe dinner for two Sunday–Thursday (up to a $114 value).
- For $50, you get a prix fixe dinner for two Friday or Saturday (up to a $114 value).
Chef Tony's frequently changing, Mediterranean-inspired menu makes use of the freshest seasonal and local seafood, meats, and produce. With the three-course prix fixe dinner, couples or platonic twosomes sink teeth into two appetizers, two entrees, and two desserts from a specially appointed menu. Although the offerings may change with the seasons and availability, diners typically will be able to feast on entrees such as whole grilled bronzini or pan-seared large sea scallops. The nuevo frutti di mari infuses spicy marinara with a maritime musketeer alliance of pan-roasted mussels, shrimp, and crab. Before munching on main dishes, diners can test teeth on starters and tapas such as calamari, marinated Spanish olives with hummus, and a wild-mushroom sauté. The prix fixe meals are finished with taste-bud-tempting desserts including twin italian cannoli with sweet ricotta cheese seeking refuge inside a chocolate shell.
Chef Tony's is named after its owner and 23-year veteran chef, Tony Marciante, who was born in Milan, Italy, but grew up in Bethesda. Tony welcomes diners with an atmosphere awash in gentle jazz and a muted glow from an array of colorful lights and collection of bottled sunsets.
Perhaps it was his own voyage across the Atlantic Ocean as a child that inspired Italian chef Tony Marciante's seafood-heavy menu at his eponymous restaurant. Broiled scallops, jumbo shrimp, pure-lump crab cake, cod, and freshwater trout populate the dinner selection, making the filet mignon, chicken scaloppini, and vegetable medley stand out. In his entrees, Chef Tony aims to use sustainable seafood and produce, organic meats, and artisan foods when possible, so the menu changes regularly to correspond with what is in season. The kitchen also accommodates those adhering to gluten-free or vegan diets and those who have never gotten over the scary asparagus scene in Jaws. As soft jazz music plays and colorful lights twinkle over cloth-covered tables, Chef Tony Restaurant easily shifts from a bustling dinner scene to a lunch and Sunday-morning brunch spot. Bartenders pour bottomless mimosas for early-morning eaters, and complimentary WiFi keeps businesspeople from talking noisily on their tin-can phones.
4926 St. Elmo Ave.
Bethesda, Maryland 20817