By Tom Sietsema Sunday, May 23, 2010 Even if you're a card-carrying carnivore, act like a vegetarian and ask for the meatless sampler at Georgia Brown's. Like all of the dishes at this Southern-themed rendezvous, its portions suggest you're a farmhand. Unlike some of the meatier selections, however, it's finger-lickin' good. A scoop of moist Carolina rice is tinted red with bits of tomato. A cake of corn bread, veined with black-eyed peas, comes striped with aioli lit with cayenne. Predictably, there's a fried green tomato: Golden and crisp, it's stuffed with goat cheese and decorates a stump of sauteed spinach. Rounding out the plate is a zesty slaw that snaps with blue cheese and is sweet with grapes. But first, you get a biscuit that is invariably dry and dull. That bread, and the firm corn stick that also greets you, turn out to be signals of distress elsewhere on the menu, starting with a bowl of she-crab soup that smacks mostly of hot cream and ending with sweet-potato cheesecake that leaves a slick trail on the tongue. The shrimp and grits, tasteless and swamped with yellow liquid, aren't anything they'd recognize in Dixie, and aside from the baked beans, the best part of a combination barbecue platter of dense ribs and sawdust (chicken, actually) is the moist nap for cleaning up. A bright spot in my experiences: chicken livers marinated with pineapple, a treat to find on a downtown menu. The restaurant's crisp service is another asset. The dining room, all wooden curves and undulating metal branches, is noisy but also a people-watcher's paradise; D.C. Mayor Adrian Fenty and CNN's Roland Martin are frequent presences, and even the first lady has dropped by. Still, this diner would gladly trade some celebs in the mix for more finesse on the plate.