Fire Station One in Silver Spring is an interesting place that seems to be trying to find its identity.
The restaurant/bar is housed in a converted fire station on Georgia Ave in Silver Spring. The building was originally a National Guard Armory, but was converted into a fire station back in 1919. The fire station moved to a new location across the street a number of years ago, and the building was sitting vacant until construction started on the restaurant.
Due to the history of the building, and the fact that the restaurant embraces it’s fire-house roots – the space is pretty cool. There is a large, open lower level dining room/bar area and an upstairs loft style bar with more room for seating. An outdoor patio area sits outside the large glass garage doors of the old station. There is even a fire truck parked outside.
Admittedly – Fire Station One is a neat place to meet friends for drinks or catch happy hour. The bar offers a decent selection of beers including many from the local Hook & Ladder brewing company. (Rumor has it that the Hook & Ladder team was originally more involved in the project, but are now just partners in beer arena).
Unfortunately, the menu strays a bit too far from the concept’s fire-house roots, resulting in some confusion about what the kitchen is trying to be. The menu features some fire house favorites, but is also peppered with fancier dishes that are out-of-place and (even worse) poorly executed.
The food in general is poorly executed, each item seemed a bland (and overly processed) rendition of what it should have been… If you go – stick to the burgers, steaks, ribs, chili etc… and the home-made potato chips are really nice! The pizza also had some fans on my recent visit, but the thick crusted versions are not suited to all of the toppings on the menu.
The good news is that I have seen improvement between visits, and I hold out hope that the kitchen will find it’s voice in the coming months. I really hope so because I work in close proximity to the place, and would like to have another good restaurant to add to the lunchtime rotation! Stay tuned.