New (Old) Restaurant Opening At Washington-Reagan Airport Brings Back Memories For Me

This post won’t contain ground-breaking news for most of us, but it’s reminiscent of a fond memory for me. While there are lots of days I’m writing about things that I think travelers need to know, sometimes I enjoy writing a story that’s more for me, if you will. I’ve always enjoyed the art of good storytelling. I wouldn’t consider myself a master storyteller, so I hope I won’t put you to sleep with my short tale.

Growing up in the Northeast we used to enjoy vacations at the Jersey Shore. If you lived in NY and weren’t rich, you weren’t really allowed on Long Island, so my middle class family went South in the summer.

One of the things I enjoyed that doesn’t venture far out of the Northeast are soft-shell clams also called steamers by some.

These clams are actually one of the only varieties whose shell remains open on a pretty constant basis. They have a membrane on the outer portion of the shell that also covers the neck of the clam that looks kinda yucky when you first experience them. You peel the membrane off the neck, dip the clam in butter (at least I do) and eat. Some people don’t each the neck because it’s tougher. As a kid, I didn’t like the color or texture of the neck but grew to love the clams.

Because the shell remains open sand can collect in the clam even with the membrane in place. In short, taking the sand, membrane and the fact that the shells break easy, steamers don’t come across as the most appetizing dish. But I love them. I don’t find them often outside of the Northeast but way back when my wife and I were dating, I introduced them to her and she grew to enjoy them as well.


By Flickr user: Paul Keleher.Badagnani at en.wikipedia [CC-BY-2.0 (], from Wikimedia Commons

Fast forward to the day after our wedding and we were headed to Washington-Reagan airport to depart for Cancun, our honeymoon destination. My wife had never been out of the country before. Heck, when we started dating she had never been North of the Mason-Dixon Line.

We checked our bags and headed to our gate with some extra time. There used to be a Legal Sea Foods restaurant at the front of Terminal C. We stopped for a glass of Sauvignon Blanc and some steamers, our first meal on our first full day as husband and wife. We set off shortly for a great honeymoon and have been enjoying our time together ever since (except when I travel too much for work, sorry honey!). That location long since closed.

When I arrived at Washington-Reagan airport earlier this week I was pleased to see it was the grand opening of the new Legal Sea Foods location, in front of Terminal B.


Life is a series of memories that we grab and store on our way down a never-ending moving walkway. Sometimes we run, sometimes we crawl. I feel like I’ve been running the last 5 years or so, and I cherish the memories I’ve been able to create while the world moves by too quickly.  I view travel with my family as a time to turbo-charge those memories.  Exploring new places or returning to favorite destinations of the past, travel has allowed me a great opportunity to build memories.  In those moments where an image reminds me of something like this, it puts a smile on my face.

If you made it this far in my post, I’ve gotten a bit long-winded while reminiscing.  Some may not view it as the most romantic date in the world, but it might be time to take my wife to an airport for dinner and relive an old memory.  If you see two people with no suitcases, a pot of steamers and two glasses of wine sitting at Legal in DCA, you’ll know it’s us.


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