Sorry it has taken me so long to post a review, but I can't get on chowhound message boards at work and I finally have some free computer time at home today!
You were all so kind with recommendations for food and hotel. Just to refresh, my husband and I decided at the last minute to come to DC for Pres. Reagan's funeral. We booked the Best Western Capitol Skyline and I was leary of staying there after some of your comments, but we found it to be OK for what we needed. While it's not in the best of areas (large concentration of homeless due to the catholic charties being in the area), the hotel itself was spotless, the pool area nice, and the room where very clean and comfortable. If I HAD to stay there again, it would be OK, although I'd probably try to find something comparable in a bit of a better neighborhood. They did have secure underground parking, so I felt safe going to and from the car.
In Baltimore I managed to snag a room at the Sheraton Inner Harbor from priceline. It was awesome, the bed was so comfy. The room overlooked Orioles stadium, unfortunately the game got rained out so we didn't see any action.
Forgive me for copying the rest from the review I posted today on my local (Cleveland) food and wine forum..... Thanks again for everything!
"Here's my review.... I wrote it when we got home, but never got around to posting.... better late than never, I suppose.
What an experience to be a part of the ceremonies in Washington DC this past week. I was only 1 when the last State Funeral took place, so this was an amazing experience for me. Pres. Reagan fan or not, you couldnt help but feel a part of history this past week. When those F-15s flew over in the missing man formation I dont think there was a personal along the parade route that didnt gasp. What a sight and sound.
On to food ..Well, we never actually ate in DC, except for a quick lunch at the American History Museum. The two nights we spent in DC, we drove to Alexandria, VA for dinner. The first night we ate at Austin Grill, a local Tex-Mex chain. (7 locations in DC, MD, and VA). I know, I know, chains are not looked upon favorably, but we were so tired and I needed a good margarita (El Tesoro Anejo Tequila, Cointreau, and fresh lime juice---YUM!)The stand out dishes there were the dry rubbed Grilled Wings (A pound of chicken wings are rolled in a delectable combination of seasonings and chilled overnight to let the flavor soak in. Then we grill them to order just for you.) My husband loved them, I am not a wing or red meat eater, but they actually looked good and I had a taste of the rub and it was spicy. He also had a Skirt Steak Fajita Salad with cilantro lime dressing and corn relish that he loved. Give him skirt steak on anything and he is happy though!
The next nights dinner was at the Union Street Pub. Coach, the bartender knew everyone and had their drink on the bar for them before they pulled up a barstool. We had crab rolls with spicy plum sauceout of this world. Their cream of crab soup is tasty as well, so rich and thick that a cup will do just fine. Their fish fry is good also. A Tuna melt the next day for lunch was light and tasty. (Our car decided to eat its alternator belt on Thursday night, so we found a local garage in Alexandria, VA, so we could hang out in Old Towne, thus the repeat visit to The Union Street Pub.)
On to Baltimore and Capitol City Brewing Co. It is my favorite crab and corn chowder anywhere (creamy crab chowder with corn, onions, bacon, red peppers, and jalapeños.) We did a bunch of appetizers for dinner. BBQ Cajun Angels Appetizer (Six shrimp stuffed with poblano peppers and wrapped in bacon. Grilled and brushed with house chipotle sauce. Served over black bean corn relish), was the favorite of the night. My husband loves their Pale Rider Ale.
On the way out of Baltimore on Saturday, we took Lindas recommendation and hit LP Steamers. We had emailed Bud, the owner, to tell him we were coming and he had been recommended through the Cleveland Food and Wine Forum. We arrived about 11:20am and the place was closed! Oh no . but . we gave a quick call and he answered and said theyd open at noon, we told him who we were and wed see him in about 30 minutes and he told, no way, come on in, Ill open for you. The pictures speak for themselves I had the crab fluff (a crab cake to us Northerners) and it was divine, as was the cream of crab soup. My husband had steamed shrimp and steamed lobster, he was in heaven."