Restaurant Recommendations

Non-Exhaustive Recommended Food List (asterisk means personal favorite of Josh)

Near the Library of Congress:

  1. We the Pizza
  2. District Taco
  3. Hank’s Oyster House (affordable and excellent Chesapeake seafood)*
  4. Pret a Manger (sandwiches to go)
  5. Firehook Bakery (coffee)
  6. Le Pain Quotidien (coffee and sandwiches)
  7. Rose’s Luxury (hip restaurant, several hour wait to get in)

Nearby in Penn Quarter:

Quick Sandwiches:

  1. Taylor Gourmet (cheese steaks and deli sandwiches)
  2. Luke’s Lobster
  3. Teaism (healthy eating with loose leaf teas)*
  4. Paul Bakery (French bakery with good sandwiches)
  5. Red Apron Butcher (meat sandwiches)
  6. Shake Shack (popular NYC burger joint, long lines)

Restaurants (advance reservation very highly recommended):

  1. Rasika (nationally-ranked fusion Indian food)*
  2. Oyamel (Mexican tapas)
  1. Zaytinya (Mediterranean tapas)
  2. Jaleo (Spanish tapas, won a James Beard Award)
  3. barmini (extremely expensive)
  4. Proof (expensive but good New American cuisine)
  5. Sei (fusion Japanese)
  6. Graffiato (Top Chef contestant Italian food)
  7. Daikaya Izakaya (ramen)

Additional Recommendations:

Union Market:

  1. Rappahannock Oyster Bar (best Chesapeake oysters and crab cakes in DC, no reservation needed)*
  2. TaKorean (Korean tacos)
  3. Red Apron Butcher and Bar (meat sandwiches)
  4. Neopol Smoked Fish (outstanding smoked fish sandwiches)*
  5. Masseria (hip Italian restaurant next door to the market)

Logan Circle/U Street:

  1. Le Diplomate (outstanding bistro French)*
  2. Estadio (Spanish tapas)
  3. Ben’s Chili Bowl (famous sausage storefront, not worth the wait if there’s a long line)
  4. Dukem (famous Ethiopian restaurant)*
  5. Etete (famous Ethiopian restaurant)
  6. Tico (fusion Mexican/New American)
  7. Busboys and Poets (good diner food)
  8. Compass Rose (fusion tapas from multiple cuisines)*
  9. Fast Gourmet (excellent and affordable Zagat-rated sandwiches)*
  10. Amsterdam Falafel (to-go)*
  11. Pearl Dive (Chesapeake seafood, no reservations taken, very busy)*
  1. Eat the Rich (Chesapeake seafood, bar and counters for eating)
  1. Church Key/Birch and Barley (beer taverns, same building/owners)
  1. Mockingbird Hill (great sherry bar with ham and cheese plates)*
  1. Doi Moi (Southeast Asian fusion)

Foggy Bottom:

  1. Founding Farmers* (great local farm-sourced food, long lines)
  2. Rasika West End
  3. Old Ebbitt Grill (touristy, but not bad)
  4. Teaism (healthy eating with loose leaf tea)

Columbia Heights 

  1. Meridian Pint (great beer bar with good food)*
  2. El Chucho (affordable Mexican bar food)
  3. Gloria’s Pupuceria (affordable and delicious El Salvadorian food)*
  4. Bad Saint (hip Filipino restaurant, long lines)
  5. Thip Khao (hip Laotian restaurant, long lines)