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zola, oyamel, 701 and cap hill questions

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Hi, parents are coming to town so a few questions:
oyamel--no reservations available; is it possible to walk-in for 4 w/o waiting all night?
want to take them somewhere in the area afterwards
701--they like jazz but is the atmosphere very stuffy/staid after dinner on a saturday?
zola--was a cool bar from what i remember but are there tables if just having drinks?

also, does anyone know a good place near Capitol or LOC for a late lunch on Saturday (post 2:30?)

thanks!

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  1. Les Bon Cafe is good

    1 Reply
    1. re: ChewFun

      Le Bon Cafe is a good idea. I would also highly recommend the cafeteria at the American Indian Museum. Trust me it's not your typical cafeteria food...it's really incredible!!! You get to chose from various styles of food by region of country (basically Southwestern Indian cuisine vs. New England Indian cusine.) The food is fresh and very seasonal. I went a week or so ago and highly recommend the salmon from the Pacific Northwest and the pumpkin soup from the New England area. It's certainly a different experience...my foodie parents loved it. And it's not that far of a walk from the Capitol (actually its the first museum you'll hit walking down the Mall from the Capitol).

    2. I remember just a very limited amount of seating other than right at the bar at Zola.

      Capitol Hill is a tough request at that hour most places: Sonoma, Jordans 8, B. Smith and I think Bistro Bis aren't serving.

      Belga Cafe might be serving. You might call Locanda they don't have hours on their website. You could also eat at the Eastern Market but that will be casual. Tortilla Cafe is good, but also casual, as well as Tuncliff's right across from the market good for like burgers and sandwiches. There is a lot of new stuff which has opened there in this past year (yeah since I moved it all came) but this is a tough time of day.

      5 Replies
      1. re: ktmoomau

        What about Montmartre for a dinner--near eastern market? I def 2nd the suggestions for Le Bon Cafe and the Indian museum.

        1. re: j fish 44

          I third Le Bon Cafe and NMAI cafeteria for lunch, unless you want something more fancy -- neither is table service, eg. Le Bon Cafe doesn't do dinner, so make sure it's still open for that late lunch -- it's really really close to the LC. I think that would be a good time to go to NMAI (American Indian museum), because its cafeteria gets really crowded at lunch time.

          Does anyone know about the place right next to Le Bon Cafe, is it Pete's Diner or something?

          1. re: mselectra

            When I worked nearby I ate at Pete's Diner every once in awhile. Total greasy spoon, cheap eats type of place. Not terrible but I certainly prefer Le Bon Cafe (which I now find myself making excuses to eat lunch there during the week since I work inEastern Market). Le Bon Cafe is just a cute, consistantly good spot. My favorite is the Provencal tuna salad sandwich and their lavender lemonade. But their soups are also usually pretty tasty.

          2. re: j fish 44

            I am not 100% sure, but I don't think Montmartre is serving at the 2:30 time either. But I think Le Bon Cafe might be open I can't find a website, but some non-Le Bon Cafe website said weekends they serve till 3:30 so you might be in luck. I would call and make sure though. The Native American Museum is open till 5:30 and I think their cafeteria is open the whole time.

            1. re: ktmoomau

              I've been to the NMAI cafeteria right at closing time, so, yeah you should be able to count on them being open -- whether all the food is available all afternoon, I don't know.

        2. Oyamel can get crazy on weekend nights, but I have had luck getting in without a reservation. There's so much in the area that if Oyamel is full, just walk to Jaleo (probably full, too), Kanlaya, Zaytinya, PS7, Rasika...Your luck will increase, of course, if you go early.

          I do not find the atmosphere at the bar at 701 at all stuffy. On weekends it's a pretty mellow place and the bartenders are great. As I recall, Zola had a few low chairs and some tables in the front of the bar area. However, if Zola is crowded, you can try next door at Poste, in the Hotel Monaco. If by chance the weather cooperates, Poste has a great outdoor space.

          Dare I suggest that you could go into Union Station for a late lunch on Saturday if you don't mind the food court vibe. Of all the places mentioned on Cap Hill, I can only say for sure that Tunnicliff's does serve food at all hours. I don't know about Monmarte or Belga. If you're near Union Station anyway, it might make sense to get on the Red Line at Union Station to Chinatown or metro center or even Dupont Circle for a much wider variety of choices. I think, for example, that once Bistrot du Coin at Dupont circle opens, it serves continuously all day. Places like Circa and Vapiano are also likely to do the same.

          3 Replies
          1. re: dcandohio

            I'm almost positive Belga serves that late. But you of course would want to call and double check.

            1. re: Elyssa

              Thanks everyone! Le Bon sounds perfect, I hope its open. The NMAI is great but I've already taken them there. Otherwise good backups! Does Belga have good service? I thought I had read somewhere no? Does Bistro du Coin have vegetarian? I can't remember. Great info on Chinatown too.

              1. re: foodallthetime

                Personally I'm not a fan of Belga's service...I think they are snooty and absent when you need them (despite a rather small restaurant). But their brunch is quite good so I've put up with the attitude the few times I've eaten there. But I work down the street and have the opportunity to eat lunch there every day and don't for a reason.