It’s undeniable that DC is in the middle of a vibrant restaurant revival, with award-winning, critically adored restaurants opening up every week. Pare down your list with our recommendations for the coolest spots to see DC’s culinary renaissance in action.
If you’re sick and tired of monotonous happy hours with stale beer and sad-looking sauvignon blanc, try hitting up vermouth hour at this Shaw cidery, which specialized in Basque cuisine. Once you’ve sampled some vermouth, we’d recommend splitting a small plate (or two or three) and ordering a platter of manchego and cheese-filled croquetas.
300 Florida Ave NW, Washington, DC 20001
When even the New York Times has sung the praises of this tiny Columbia Heights Filipino spot, it’s hard to remember that it only opened a year ago. Don’t let the line scare you off. Head here for flavorful, fragrant adobo chicken or kinilaw (mackerel in coconut milk).
3226 11th St NW, Washington, DC 20010
Everything on the menu at this Michelin-starred retreat in Shaw is sourced from local farms, meaning that the dishes here are always seasonal (and always delicious). This winter, enjoy dishes like a rustic poached farm egg with hearth-roasted brassicas and creamed turnip or charred bok choy with hush puppies.
122 Blagden Alley NW, Washington, DC 20001
Helmed by Vikram Sunderam, the chef behind acclaimed modern Indian restaurant Rasika, this Cleveland Park restaurant focuses on street food from the subcontinent, with inspired fusion twists. We’re all about the masala popcorn and the pav bhaji, a vegetable curry wrap served with ginger.
3309 Connecticut Avenue, NW, Washington, DC 20008
Chef Tim Ma mans the kitchen at this Shaw restaurant, noted for its stunning modern interior. The menu is pan-Asian cuisine meets Lyonnais bistro, so you can expect dishes like beef short rib with Chinese barbecue sauce, fresh, tangy cherry tomatoes, and crispy shallots. Be sure to also try the sous-vide duck confit with apple cider sauce and burnt blood orange, or wings with oyster sauce, creme fraiche, and chili paste.
1924 8th St NW, Washington, DC 20001