There aren’t too many destination restaurants in the Georgetown area. Good restaurants, but not great. Occasionally, I’ll stop at Maruta Shoten and pick up things to go, like their terrific garlic chicken wings and well-made sushi. In the northern part of Georgetown, almost to the SoDo district, is Marco Polo Bar & Grill, which has been serving its popular fried chicken for decades. Inside, the ambience is a dimly-lit bar with pool tables. Its darkness is muted by the white walls, and there is auto racing paraphernalia on the ceiling and walls and a race car in the pool table room, not to mention Cougar football posters.
The menu is basically pub food: burgers, fried things, beer on tap, etc. But, the main reason people come here is for the fried chicken, which as of this writing sets you back $8.95 for three pieces, $1.50 for each additional piece. When the order arrives, which will take some time (apparently, each order is individually prepared), you will get thigh, leg and drumstick pieces, which are my preferences and therefore fine with me, but may not appeal to diners expecting breast meat. That, it seems, is reserved for their chicken tenders and sandwiches. With the fried chicken, you also get your choice of a side: jo-jos, fries, mac salad or potato salad.
Because it’s broasted, the chicken meat is moist. The batter is very thin and crispy, which those who want a thicker and crunchier batter may not prefer. The chicken itself seemed in need of more seasoning, perhaps brining, to suit my taste, but it appears this doesn’t bother a lot of diners. The jo-jos were limp and mealy.
Marco Polo Bar & Grill
5613 4th Avenue S.