According to The Washington Post and other sources,B. (Barbara) Smith’s eponymous Low-Country restaurant in Union Station is closing after nearly 20 years in business. B. Smith was the first African-American to author a high-end entertaining book and also spent time as a model.
I used to love their She-Crab soup, but on my last visit though Union Station, it was unavailable for some reason. I didn’t feel like bringing home a big gumbo or something like that, either. Apparently, others felt the same way; the Post reports that even Smith didn’t feel like the restaurant was keeping up with modern D.C. palates. She may open again somewhere else in the District. It’s kind of a shame that she didn’t just close for a bit to re-tool in what was the historical and beautiful Presidential Suite in Union Station. She won’t find a location like that again.
My cousin, Freya Grand, is a famous artist whose paintings were displayed at B. Smith’s! For the opening installation night, she kinda knew that I would be coming . . . but what she didn’t know was my dad — her then-elderly uncle who taught her how to drive — was flying in from Chicago! He just quietly slipped in and started taking photos, like he always did. He made some innocuous remark in the crowd, like “nice painting,”. My cousin looked and it took her a second to realize who it was. She laughed and laughed. We then got snacks at the restaurant.