President Biden and First Lady Jill Biden raised eyebrows when they reportedly ordered the same dish at an upscale D.C. restaurant in February.
The Bidens went to the Red Hen, an Italian restaurant in Bloomingdale. The couple ordered two bowls of the restaurant’s signature rigatoni, along with grilled bread and butter, radish salad and a few glasses of Barbera wine.
The rigatoni dish — which is made with red sauce, fennel ragout sausage and Pecorino Romano — is popular at the restaurant. But social media users were still confused that the Bidens ordered the same meal.
“I’ve honestly never heard of a couple – married or otherwise – ordering the EXACT same thing at a restaurant.” one Twitter user remarked.
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“I would definitely look at my husband if he ordered the same thing as me because obviously we have to try as much of the menu as possible!” said Washington editor Jessica Seidman.
“Getting the same thing as the person you’re having dinner with is stupid,” DC resident Hannah Madden told the Washington Post. “The whole point of going out to eat is to try as many things as possible.”
“At first, I thought, it’s funny that everybody’s in such an uproar about this,” Madden observed. “And then I realized, ‘Oh wait, I’m on a roll for this!'”
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Red Hen owner Michael Friedman said he was amused by the online discussion about the couple’s pasta order.
“It’s a great honor to have a presidential visit, but it’s funny that this has come about,” Friedman said. “It’s a fascinating thread that people have chosen to follow and I just really enjoy the jokes.”
The owner also confirmed that the rigatoni is very popular, with the restaurant selling 50 to 70 orders every night.
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“When I was working the pasta line, I would dream about it,” Friedman said.