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Oct 4, 2006 02:10 PM

downtown friday night, no reservations?

We'll be driving down from NYC on Friday and so I don't really want to make a reservation anywhere, since can't be sure when we'll arrive. On the other hand we'll be hungry when we get there so don't want to have to wait an hour to get seated somewhere! Suggestions for somewhere in the downtown area? I was thinking Border Cafe or Jaleo, but are the waits insane on a Friday night? (figure around 8ish.)

I should add, anything but Italian, as we are dining at Dino's on Saturday.

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  1. The waits are going to be a little crazy at those places, but not completely out there. You could also try Cafe Atlantico (it's owned by the same people who own Jaleo), I find that the wait there is much less (possibly because the mojitos are so good?). Another idea would be Hank's Oyster Bar in Dupont, if you aren't attached to going out on 7th St. The wait tends to be 15-20 minutes, but well worth it.

    1. I don't think you'll have to wait at Nooshi (19th below M St.) which is pan-Asian.

      1. Corduroy. Because it's a hotel restaurant, they always have some tables available for hotel patrons that don't get booked via reservations. Even when I go on Friday/Saturday nights, I always see a table or two open, and there's never a crowd at the front waiting for a seat.

        1. thanks all. Cafe Atlantico looks great, i'll add it to the list--although really we are looking for something pretty casual (and not expensive) for this meal.

          1. I think you will find that both Cafe Atlantico and Corduroy (although I love Corduroy) are both more expensive than you are looking for.

            Here are a couple of places you can usually walk into.....

            If you are interested in something a little divey but excellent, you might consider Pyramids on 6th and Florida....great Egyptian food. In the same neighborhood (the U Street corridor), Etete on 9th Street NW is the best Ethiopian food I have ever had (and I am not crazy about Ethiopian food).

            Then there is always my favorite place for Chinese...Full Kee on H Street NW between 5th and 6th.

            Happy eating.

            1 Reply
            1. re: Jim Zurer

              Great suggestions, Jim, especially since the OP will be driving in from New York, both Pyramid and Etete are easily accessible from The New York Ave exit of 295.

              Do a search for menu recs on this board.