Federal Bistro & Fritter Shop is up and running at 62A Rehoboth Avenue in the former Modern Mixture spot on the south side of the ocean block of Rehoboth Avenue. The owners, Ellen Kassoff and Todd Gray, are also the owners of downtown Washington, D.C.'s iconic Equinox restaurant. Their fritters are a riff on the traditional Italian arancini – the signature bite is their fried risotto fritter with cheese. They are delicious, and served in a little cone for popping into your mouth while strolling around town. There is a selection of five different flavors.
See the MENU HERE.
Listen to the podcast of Ellen & Todd's appearance on The Rehoboth Foodie's Beach Eats radio show that aired on 5/8!
But Federal Bistro & Fritter Shop is a LOT more than just fritters! Hidden behind that unassuming carryout façade is a wonderful culinary experience whipped up by 4-time James Beard nominee Todd Gray. In addition to their selection of 5 different fritters, they offer a delicious Sweet Corn Chowder – entirely plant-based, by the way, though you'd never know it. On our visit, the special was an amazing yellow tomato and lump crabmeat gazpacho. Hidden in and amongst were thin-as-air slices of scallions. It's one of the tastiest cold soups I've ever had. (OK, my veggie/vegan friends, go ahead and say “I told you so!” This one's for you.)
See these goodies by scrolling through the photo gallery!
Federal Bistro & Fritter Shop is very much “specials” based, so you'll never know exactly what's on the mains menu. On our most recent visit, we had three amazing small plates, including a BBQ salmon with sweet corn succotash and plump spring peas. Another great experience included Chef Todd's take on the softshell crab. It was presented atop a beautifully spiced combination of grilled asparagus and creamy grits accented with caper butter. I have to tell you it was sublime. The evening was topped off by braised short rib nestled comfortable on a bed of greens.
If Todd has the fresh berries with zabaglione dessert, GET IT! I have always be wary of zabaglione because most places put in WAAAYYY too much marsala wine. Not Todd. Barely a hint, and that's a good thing. There's a good photo in the gallery. I wish you could taste it!
You can see more by CLICKING HERE.
Follow Ellen and Todd on FB by clicking HERE.
As with many of our eateries, their hours could change in a moment. Feel free to give them a call at 302-727-5609.
I reserved a table at the Federal Fritter weeks in advance of our arrival in Rehoboth Beach and called the day of – August 17th – early on to confirm the outside reservation for five of us at 6:30 and the reservation was confirmed. We showed up precisely at 6.30 and were informed that the table was taken by others (the table was empty) and the woman said she had called earlier to inform me. She said the only way you can guarantee an outside table was to use Open Table. Nowhere on the website is this mentioned and this had never been mentioned to me on the telephone. Turns out a call was made to my phone at 6:10 – 20 minutes before our arrival – but no message had been left. There was no apology, no alternative offered. The woman even told my daughter-in-law “bye-bye” in a dismissive way. This restaurant had been highly recommended by a close college friend who has come to Rehoboth for years. This was no way to run a railroad! So disappointing a dismissal!
I had a totally different dining experience from the raves given in your column. The entree I chose was not what I was served and the difference was drastic. Aren’t wait staff supposed to inform diners of a change in their menu before the diner orders. What was described sounded delicious and interesting; what was served was plain and ordinary missing the main ingredient. The waiter placed the dish and left. I stared at what was before me. They should stick to sidewalk carry-out fritters.