The newest exhibit at our National Zoo opens to the public at noon tomorrow, Saturday, September 1. After lengthy renovations, the American Trail, home to North American river otters, beavers, the bald eagle, wolves and the beloved seal and sea lions, reopens with additional viewing areas, environmentally-friendly site design and water conservation features.
Of course, my interests in the new exhibit tend to the fishy side… specifically, the new Seal Rock Cafe and its sustainable seafood options. I visited this week for a preview and chatted with chef Tom Ramsey. With new food provider Sodexo, the Zoo has significantly upgraded its food offerings this summer. The American Trail’s cafe offers local and certified sustainable seafood, including a lobster roll, shrimp roll, or Hawaiian poke salad. The fish in the poke salad will change according to what’s available. (And tofu can be substituted in any dish.) It’s fresh, tasty and all served in stylish bamboo dishes.
The exhibit leads you down a quiet, shady canyon towards the seal and sea lion pools. The new viewing area gives you above and below water viewing opportunities. Lastly, the new exhibit features a tide pool splash pad — so the kids can splash around while you’re chowing down on that lobster roll. Fun!