The Dish: seafood soup

The Location: El Tamarindo, 1785 Florida Ave. NW, (202) 328-3660

The Price: $10.95 (according to the restaurant, price will rise to $12.95 next month)

The Skinny: Think of El Tamarindo’s sopa de mariscos as a brothborne seafood sampler pack. If you don’t want to choose between crab, fish, mussels, or shrimp, this mixture served up by the Adams Morgan stalwart means you don’t have to. Granted, those ingredients (and veggies like pieces of green peppers) don’t always complement each other exactly. It is, after all, difficult to get, say, a shrimp and a mussel on the same spoonful, and fishing out and eating the seafood was a challenge my table manners weren’t always adequate to. But that’s a price worth paying for a little variety. The dish’s overall heartiness may make it a better choice for a miserable winter night than a warm summer day, but messiness and all, the soup works fine when you know you want some seafood, but you can’t quite narrow down your preferences.