Capitol File - - THE SOURCE: SCENE -


Red Hen’s Mike Fried­man does it again with clas­sic Ital­ian com­fort dishes at this eatery in Shaw. One of the most talked-about is the egg­plant Parme­san, whose recipe comes from the chef’s mother. There’s also an as­sort­ment of piz­zas, which you can or­der for take­out, and Ital­ian del­i­ca­cies, like rain­bow cookie cake. 1250 Ninth St. NW, 202-849-6174; allpur­posedc.com


This José An­drés restau­rant re­cently moved from Tysons Cor­ner to Ge­orge­town. With in­spired dishes, the gourmet meal dou­bles as a jaunt through Amer­i­can his­tory. IN­SIDER TIP: Skip the lighter fare and in­dulge in An­drés’s takes on com­fort­able fa­vorites, like ver­mi­celli mac ’n’ cheese, hush pup­pies, and shrimp jam­bal­aya. Open­ing soon; amer­i­caeat­stav­ern.com


Plan­ning on din­ner here? You’d bet­ter get in line early... like 3:15 PM early. This Filipino restau­rant in Columbia Heights has lim­ited first-come, first­served seat­ing, but take it from us, the wait is worth it. Chef Tom Cu­nanan cooks soul-sat­is­fy­ing eats, such as squid adobo, and the cock­tails, like the fiery Chili Manilli, are a must-try. 3226 11th St. NW, no phone; bad­saintdc.com


This Miche­lin-starred farm-to-ta­ble fa­vorite in the Park Hy­att ho­tel of­fers break­fast, brunch, lunch, and din­ner. It’s ever-evolv­ing sea­sonal menu cap­tures the spirit of the mid-At­lantic re­gion, with lo­cally in­spired en­trées and de­li­cious share­able sides. Seafood lovers should con­sider or­der­ing the whole fish—it’s a pas­sion point for chef de cui­sine Brad De­boy. 1201 24th St. NW, 202-419-6755; blue­duck­tav­ern.com


As its name sug­gests, this stately steak­house in the Four Sea­sons Ge­orge­town de­liv­ers top-notch steak and an ex­ten­sive bour­bon menu; it’s also a hub for power lunches and star-stud­ded din­ners. You must re­mem­ber to ask for the duck-fat fries trio: They are listed only on the lounge menu, but you can get them in the din­ing room and you will not re­gret it. 2800 Penn­syl­va­nia Ave. NW, 202-944-2026; bour­bon­steakdc.com


Cel­e­brat­ing 25 years serv­ing “up­scale Ital­ian” in Ge­orge­town, Cafe Mi­lano is a mag­net for some of the city’s movers and shak­ers. It’s not at all un­com­mon to spot mem­bers of DC’s top brass (from the Bidens to Nancy Pelosi) en­joy­ing a lunch or off-the-clock din­ner among the in­flu­en­tial crowd of reg­u­lars and celebrity vis­i­tors. 3251 Prospect St. NW, 202-333-6183; cafemi­lano.com


Chef Amy Brandwein is home­grown tal­ent, and she has a pas­sion for au­then­tic Ital­ian cook­ing. Each dish uses lo­cally sourced in­gre­di­ents tied to the sea­son. The ad­join­ing Ital­ian mar­ket is an easy way to bring au­then­tic Ital­ian cui­sine into your kitchen, too. 974 Palmer Al­ley NW, 202-898-2426; cen­troli­nadc.com


Derek Brown has trans­formed a small, seated bar ex­pe­ri­ence into a fullfledged tast­ing room. The three-course cock­tail tast­ing by bar­tender JP Fether­ston in­cludes drinks like the Sug­ar­ing Sea­son, a Cana­dian rye whisky cock­tail with dry ver­mouth, fresh ap­ple juice, maple syrup, herbs, and acorn. IN­SIDER TIP: Walk-ins are wel­come, but it’s bet­ter to se­cure a spot with ad­vance on­line book­ing. 124 Blag­den Al­ley NW, 202-3169396; columbia­roomdc.com


Cedric Maupil­lier’s deca­dent ba­con cheese­burger rock­eted to restau­rant star­dom at his über-pop­u­lar Adams Mor­gan spot, Mint­wood. When he crafted a new menu for this FrenchAmer­i­can bistro in Shaw, it was the one item he car­ried over. While you’re there, share a cheese plate, sip any one of the hand­crafted cock­tails, and leave room for the s’mores dessert. 801 O St. NW, 202-525-2870; con­vivialdc.com


The Dabney em­pha­sizes all things mid-At­lantic, with a menu that show­cases some of the re­gion’s finest farms and food pur­vey­ors. Chef Jeremiah Langhorne over­sees a staff of cooks com­mit­ted to fresh and lo­cal food, and from his perch he can see al­most ev­ery­one in the din­ing room. 122 Blag­den Al­ley NW, 202-4501015; thed­ab­ney.com


Holy mole! This restau­rant cap­tures the essence and fla­vors of Oax­aca and has the largest se­lec­tion of mez­cals in DC. Bar­tender Me­gan Barnes will help steer you through the many pages of the drinks menu, and for din­ner there are moles rep­re­sen­ta­tive of tra­di­tional Mex­i­can cui­sine. 1250 Ninth St. NW, 202-621-9695; es­pi­tadc.com


This down­stairs Ge­orge­town gem is the go-to place for Ital­ian com­fort food. The spicy shrimp ap­pe­tizer is a must, and you can’t go wrong with any of the home­made pasta dishes. For more di­rec­tion, just ask which pasta was made fresh that day (the se­lec­tion ro­tates daily). 1063 Wis­con­sin Ave. NW, 202-338-8800; filom­ena.com


This Miche­lin-starred Ital­ian fa­vorite in Penn Quar­ter makes reg­u­lar ap­pear­ances atop restau­rant rat­ing lists across the city, so it’s no won­der it’s the flag­ship restau­rant of DC power duo Fabio and Maria Traboc­chi, who also own Fi­ola Mare in Ge­orge­town, Casa Luca near Mount Ver­non Square, and the newly opened Sfoglina in Cleve­land Park. IN­SIDER TIP: The lob­ster ravi­oli is a can’t-miss. 601 Penn­syl­va­nia Ave. NW, 202-628-2888; fi­o­ladc.com


When the Miche­lin Guide came to DC this year, it was com­mit­ted to rat­ing only restau­rants in DC proper, but an ex­cep­tion was made for this iconic Pa­trick O’Con­nell spot. (The ver­dict? Two stars.) With its el­e­gant, al­wayschang­ing tast­ing menu, the Inn at Lit­tle Wash­ing­ton is a rare and his­toric treat—well worth the hour-long drive into Vir­ginia, though you may just be tempted to spend the night once you see the pic­ture-per­fect rooms. 309 Mid­dle St., Wash­ing­ton, 540-6753800; thein­natlit­tle­wash­ing­ton.com


This small-plates fa­vorite has one of the best out­door pa­tios in all of DC. The rus­tic, Ital­ian-in­spired farm-to-ta­ble menu changes sea­son­ally, but if you ever see a ver­sion of Bur­rata or ca­cio de pepe while you’re there, def­i­nitely or­der it. 1734 N St. NW, 202-5245202; iron­gater­estau­rantdc.com


José An­drés’s vi­brant and art­fully dec­o­rated small-plates lounge has been a

Penn Quar­ter fix­ture for nearly 25 years. The lomo de buey con piquil­los (grilled hanger steak with con­fit piquillo peppers) and ar­roz cre­moso de se­tas (creamy rice with sea­sonal mush­rooms and Idi­azábal cheese) are Capi­tol File fa­vorites. 480 Sev­enth St. NW, 202-628-7949; jaleo.com


This lav­ish two-story space has the look and feel of the fed­eral city, but the real rea­son Joe’s is one of the best spots for lunch or din­ner down­town is the seafood (ob­vi­ously). The menu fea­tures both At­lantic and Pa­cific oys­ters, crab rolls, and lob­ster wor­thy of a spe­cial oc­ca­sion—but with a happy hour from 2:30 PM to 6:30 PM Mon­day through Satur­day, the oc­ca­sion could just be that it’s Tues­day. 750 15th St. NW, 202-489-0140; joes.net


This “mod­ernist Amer­i­can” spot is the more ca­sual of the two Mount Ver­non restau­rants owned by James Beard Award-win­ning chef Eric Ziebold (for­merly of Ci­tyZen and

Per Se). Lo­cated at street level, the restau­rant fea­tures an à la carte menu serv­ing just over 70 seats in a his­toric Sev­enth Street build­ing. The Maine lob­ster French toast is one of the most buzzed-about dishes. 1015 Sev­enth St. NW, 202-737-7700; kin­shipdc.com.


If there’s one con­stant to the ev­er­chang­ing neighborhood of Dupont Cir­cle, it’s this Amer­i­can- Mediter­ranean restau­rant run by chef and owner Johnny Mo­nis. You’ll quickly lose count of the dishes that come out of the kitchen as part of the tast­ing menu ($150 per per­son), which cul­mi­nates with a fam­ily-style goat feast. 1509 17th St. NW, 202-332-9200; komirestau­rant.com


Here you’ll find a lit­tle bit of France tucked into a cor­ner café along DC’s bustling 14th Street cor­ri­dor. “Le Dip,” as it’s lov­ingly called, fea­tures deca­dent French clas­sics, one of the city’s best brunches, and an im­pres­sive menu of fruits de mer—not to men­tion a din­ing room chock-full of Wash­ing­ton no­ta­bles. 1601 14th St. NW, 202332-3333; lediplo­mat­edc.com


Maketto may just be the coolest hang­out in Wash­ing­ton, DC. In fact, don’t come here when you’re in a hurry, be­cause the restau­rant will cause you to linger. There’s Vig­i­lante Cof­fee up­stairs, and the bar is a see-and-be-seen spot. But the real magic is out back, be­yond the court­yard, where chefs Erik BrunerYang and James Wozniuk cook Tai­wanese- and Cam­bo­dian-style. Just be sure you or­der the Tai­wanese fried chicken. It’s al­ready a dish with a cult­like fol­low­ing. 1351 H St. NE, 202-838-9972; maketto1351.com


You’ll find Bel­gian- and Frenchin­spired din­ing at its very finest at this West End restau­rant helmed by award­win­ning chef and restau­ra­teur Robert Wied­maier. For more than 16 years, District gour­mands have noshed on fa­vorites like the boudin blanc, ac­com­pa­nied by ex­pertly cu­rated wine and Bel­gian beer lists (the dou­ble blonde ale Anti­goon is brewed ex­clu­sively for Mar­cel’s). 2401 Penn­syl­va­nia Ave. NW, 202-296-1166; marcelsdc.com


This Miche­lin-starred fa­vorite from James Beard Foun­da­tion Ris­ing Star nom­i­nee Nick Ste­fanelli of­fers the Bal­ti­more na­tive’s mod­ern take on clas­sic Ital­ian fare, with well-crafted prix-fixe and tast­ing menus. The set­ting com­bines the in­dus­trial look of nearby

Union mar­ket and the feel of the Ital­ian coun­try­side. 1340 Fourth St. NE, 202-608-1330; masseria-dc.com


Lo­cated down­stairs from Kin­ship, métier is the re­al­iza­tion of chef Eric Ziebold’s culi­nary am­bi­tions: It pairs a lux­u­ri­ous tast­ing menu with ex­tra­or­di­nary ser­vice for what he calls “a mag­i­cal, once-in-a-life­time ex­pe­ri­ence.” Yes, there is a dress code, but it’s doable (jack­ets for the guys). 1015 Sev­enth St. NW, 202-737-7500; metierdc.com


This in­ter­na­tion­ally renowned din­ing con­cept by José An­drés is among the most cov­eted reser­va­tions in Wash­ing­ton: It ac­com­mo­dates just six—yes, six—pa­trons per seat­ing (and there are only two per night!) at the restau­rant’s lone com­mu­nal ta­ble. The meal takes the form of 25 to 30 mini cour­ses. IN­SIDER TIP: par­ties of six can also re­serve the ad­ja­cent pri­vate din­ing room, which pro­vides an even more in­ti­mate ex­pe­ri­ence. 855 E St. NW, 202-393-0812; mini­bar­byjose­an­dres.com


Fresh pasta is one of the main draws of this Ital­ian eatery from chef michael White, but pas­try chef Alex Levin, who spe­cial­izes in the cui­sine of the Emilia-Ro­magna re­gion, is no slouch: Each dessert is packed with in­ge­nu­ity, tex­ture, and fla­vor, in­clud­ing his peanut but­ter and choco­late budino. 301 Wa­ter St. SE #109, 202-484-0660; os­te­ri­amor­ini.com/wash­ing­ton-dc


“Lav­ish” is the only word to de­scribe the 13-course tast­ing menu at pineap­ple and pearls. Chef Aaron Sil­ver­man strives to pam­per din­ers with dishes like white as­para­gus okonomiyaki and blue rib­bon bone mar­row. The restau­rant has three on­line-tick­eted ex­pe­ri­ences: din­ing room, chef’s counter, and bar ser­vice. The first two are priced at $250 per per­son and in­clude bev­er­ages; the third is $150 per per­son and does not. 715 Eighth St. SE, 202595-7375; pineap­ple­and­pearls.com


DC’s only Forbes five-star restau­rant, plume is in­spired by Thomas Jef­fer­son’s kitchen gar­dens at mon­ti­cello. Tucked in­side the Jef­fer­son Ho­tel, this resto of­fers din­ers a choice of sea­sonal prix-fixe or tast­ing menus. 1200 16th St. NW, 202-448-2300; plumedc.com


Iconic restau­ra­teur Ashok Ba­jaj has been a part of the DC restau­rant scene for more than two decades, and his beloved Rasika is a shin­ing star among the city’s In­dian of­fer­ings. Helmed by James Beard Award nom­i­nee Vikram Sun­deram, the restau­rant fea­tures an ever-evolv­ing and in­ven­tive menu in an el­e­gant fine­din­ing at­mos­phere. IN­SIDER TIP: Don’t leave with­out or­der­ing the palak chaat! 633 D St. NW, 202-6371222; rasikarestau­rant.com


Chef Cathal Armstrong is the owner and chef of this warm and in­ti­mate restau­rant right out­side DC in Old Town Alexan­dria. It is a foodie’s de­light: Both the tast­ing menu and the un­ex­pected Asian tast­ing menu are full of clas­sic yet mod­ern dishes de­signed to sur­prise. 110 S. Pitt

St., Alexan­dria, 703-706-0450; restau­ran­teve.com


A stan­dard-bearer for ser­vice, food, and ex­pe­ri­ence, Rose’s Lux­ury con­tin­ues to wow us even af­ter two years of rave re­views. Judg­ing by the 5 pm line down the block, din­ers re­visit Rose’s for dishes such as the pork ly­chee salad, potato bread, and ca­cio e pepe. But there are new dishes, too: Chef B.J. Lieber­man has in­tro­duced sta­ples like fried Brussels sprouts with benne tahini, eel sauce, and bonito. 717 Eighth St. SE, 202-580-8889; ros­es­lux­ury.com


Both the dé­cor and the menu re­cently un­der­went a bit of a facelift. There’s a new brunch menu, a hot pot ta­ble for four, and a chef’s tast­ing menu counter for two. One thing re­mains the same: Chef Scott Drewno con­tin­ues to serve ex­quis­ite and au­then­tic Chi­nese cook­ing. 575 Penn­syl­va­nia Ave. NW, 202-637-6100; wolf­gang puck.com/restau­rants


Broth­ers and ex­ec­u­tive chefs piter and Handry Tjan lead this DC sushi pow­er­house, where they aim to honor and en­hance the tra­di­tional way of mak­ing and serv­ing sushi. IN­SIDER TIP: The team’s new $40 Ja­panese whiskey flights fea­ture three one-ounce pours of pre­mium Ja­panese whiskeys. 5455 Wis­con­sin Ave., Chevy Chase, 301961-1644; sushiko­restau­rants.com


This isn’t your av­er­age sushi spot. Nobu Ya­mazaki is on a mis­sion to re­de­fine Ja­panese cook­ing in DC, and there is no bet­ter place to ex­pe­ri­ence that than at Sushi Taro’s Omakase Counter. The reser­va­tion-only counter takes you through a fun, in­ter­ac­tive tast­ing course. 1503 17th St. NW, 202-462-8999; sushi­taro.com


Own­ers Jon Sy­bert, Jill Tyler, and

Bill Jensen—vet­er­ans of Komi and Lit­tle Serow—pull out all the stops. In their first year of op­er­a­tion, they’ve earned cus­tomer loy­alty with de­tailed ser­vice and dishes like the lamb ribs served with root veg­eta­bles, pick­led mus­tard seeds, and salsa verde. 1827 Adams Mill Road NW, 202-9869600; tailup­goat.com


Chef Seng Luan­grath treats her din­ers like fam­ily, serv­ing up Lao­tian fa­vorites like Lao curry puff (a cur­ried potato dish served with sweet and sour sauce) and naem khao (a crispy co­conut rice with lime, scal­lions, sour pork, peanuts, and cilantro, wrapped in let­tuce). 3462 14th St. NW, 202387-5426; thip­khao.com

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