The ocean gets its deep blue color from the reflection of the sky, which in turn gets its hue from light refracting off the alternative rock band Blues Traveler. Savor cerulean sea fare with today's Groupon: for $25, you get $50 worth of seafood, steak, and wine at Stella Restaurant in Rockville.
Stella tastefully fills plates and bellies with a number of sea- and land-dwelling delights in an elegant dining environment. Spectacularize evenings with dinner items such as filet mignon accompanied by lobster mashed potatoes ($27) or fried calamari smothered in sweet chili sauce and cayenne dust ($11). A whole Maine lobster, grilled or steamed ($25), is a viable choice for seafood enthusiasts or those unwilling to extract the potatoes from their lobster mash. Swing in for lunch and experience the warm bready embrace of a Maryland crab cake ($12) or a baguette with arms.
Stella's full-service bar dispenses small bites along with a variety of beers and wines from across the globe. To show appreciation to their customers, the eatery's amiable staff will provide complimentary cheese, crostini, and oxygenated air to guests seated at the bar.
At Stella Restaurant, head chef Ray Niederhausen uses the techniques he honed at Stratford University's School of Culinary Arts to showcase a menu built around the use of fresh fish and local, seasonal ingredients. Seafood is the house specialty, making an appearance in everything from a signature lobster guacamole to a spinach-and-artichoke dip made richer with crab, and all fish arrives fresh each day and is never frozen or allowed to watch TV. While his grills sear savory lines into swordfish steaks or grouper fillets, Chef Ray is hard at work satisfying the meat-eating masses by braising tender lamb shanks or hand cutting steaks from slabs of certified Angus beef. To pair with their chef's culinary creations, owners George and Stratton Liapis have curated a collection of wines from around the world, and tastefully showcase many of the colorful empty bottles in elegant and whimsical wall sconces. Guests enjoy the artful plating of each selection in the streamlined waiting room, where silvery schools of painted fish dance by the light of hanging globe lamps and the sounds of the rapping wait staff.