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Tough new noodle for an old chowhound - where to take the visiting madre? (DC)

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Hey, y'all.

So, I've got a bit of a noodler. My mom is coming into town on a Sunday not so far off (but sufficiently far off that I could confidently get a reservation anywhere).

When she comes in to town, it's always just for a night, and I like to take her out somewhere nice - not super fancy, but nice. So, Citronelle is out (too fancy), and Taqueria Distrito Federal is out (not nice enough).

Past times, I've taken her to:
Palena
Minibar at Cafe Atlantico
Chez Mama-San in G'town
Sushi Taro
Curry Club
Vidalia
Makoto

The question now is, where do I take her? I don't want to duplicate, and five of the places I just thought of - Rasika, Komi, Central, TenPenh, and AV Ristorante Italiano - are ALL closed Sundays. P.Paradiso doesn't feel nice enough to me, and I want to avoid the whole Clyde's franchise. I live in Chinatown, but kinda dislike Indebleu and Zengo. I like Jaleo, but I am sorta in the mood to take her somewhere I've never been myself.

I would LOVE other ideas!!!!! Two other places I have thought of, which I am pretty confident in, are:
Oyamel
DC Coast

But like I said, I WOULD LOVE other, new ideas!!!! Can anyone shed some light?

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  1. Dino or Kinkead's?

    1. does she eat thai?
      Regent and Rice have both been very good when I've been there, have very nice decors - and if it's nice out, Regent has a great out door area.

      1. Bistro D'Oc?

        1. I just did an Open Table search for the hypothetical date of Sunday, April 15. I've turned up the following restaurants with Sunday hours I think you could happily consider:

          Bistro Bis
          Charlie Palmer's Steak
          Kinkead's
          Marcel's -- probably too fancy

          1. Johnny's Half Shell (just checked - closed Sundays), Cashion's (open), or Acadiana (can't tell) to add to the list of potentials?

            1 Reply
            1. re: Dennis S

              Oooh, acadiana and bistro bis definitely just got added. Thanks for those!

              (Bistro du Coin is another place I took my mom and she liked - and it was Dino, not Palena, that we went to in the past.)

              (Also, I took an ex to Bistro d'Oc for Valentine's Day one year, so I think it may be permanently X-ed)

              (And yes she eats Thai but I actually am an un-fan)

            2. I would 2nd Dino. Also in your area is Zola...I believe they are open Sundays for dinner. Or Creme on U St is great food, limited menu but they do everything perfectly and its not too fancy at all.

              Other ideas: Acadiana, Blue Duck Tavern (LOVE!), Cafe 15 (might be too fancy), Hank's Oyster Bar (get the lobster roll and sugar snap peas and mac and cheese), LIMA (not sure about Sunday and might be too trendy for Mom but delicious food), and Bistro D'Oc for incredible French in a cozy, laid back atmosphere.

              Good luck!

              1. Hi, you said you like Jaleo -- why don't you try Zaytinya, which also serves tapas?

                It's definitely in the "nice, but not super fancy" range that you're talking about. I took my mom there last year and she loved it. I think it's good, not my favorite, but definitely worth trying!

                1. I went to DC Coast a couple weeks ago, and was very unimpressed. Quality, service and general concept was dissapointing.

                  How about Mountsouris, been there 4 times now and it's consistently good. Outthere Bistro like food. Small place. Same owners as Montmatre. Dupont Circle area.

                  Montsouris
                  2002 P St. NW, Washington, DC 20036
                  202-833-4180

                  1. poste?

                    4 Replies
                    1. re: food.fiend

                      Never been inside Poste or Zola (crime, since I hear good things about them and I live so close)..........

                      Right now we are looking at, I think, the final 7 - anyone want to vote for your favorite American Idol!??!? (Seriously, I will go with the will of the chow on this one... I have never been to any of these spots and I would be very excited to try any of them)

                      Oyamel
                      Poste
                      Zola
                      Montsouris
                      Black Salt
                      Lima
                      Bistro Bis

                      1. re: EricDC

                        Oh heck, if Black Salt is on the list, it's got my vote.

                        1. re: Dennis S

                          Black Salt also gets my vote. That place is fantastic, and if you don't usually venture up to the Palisades area it will also be a chance to visit another part of the city.

                          1. re: lumos1428

                            I am major jealous that you can take your mother to places like these -- mine won't have anything with noticable black pepper in it; now that makes for hard choices!