DC: Penn Quarter, June 14-16
For our annual post-beach sojourn to the nation's capital, we (my wife, 14-year-old son, and I) are staying for a couple of days in June at the Marriott Metro Center. We'll be going to the International Spy Museum and the National Portrait Gallery, among other things.
So what's good to eat in the Penn Quarter area? Remember, we'll be dressed as tourists, so nothing upscale. I guess we need "eats" not "dining."
A few suggestions for non-upscale but tasty places in the neighborhood:
- Matchbox: good pizza and burgers and brunch
- Potbelly's: hot sandwich chain - kind of fast food-esque, but ingredients are fresh and it's a great place to grab a quick bite
- Capital Q: barbeque
- Five Guys: totally greasy burgers and fries!
- Jaleo: Spanish tapas
- Vapiano (the Chinatown location will probably be open in June): upscale fast self-serve Italian with fresh ingredients
2 Easy suggestions near the Spy Museum: Matchbox (www.matchboxdc.com) which is fun and has casual food (great mini-burgers and pizzas). Also Clyde's (www.clydes.com), which makes for a nice dinner but you can still get away with fairly casual dress. There's several other good options in that area (Zaytinya & Jaleo, among others) that you might want to make a quick change for but are worth it.
Here's where we ended up:
We ate dinner Saturday evening at Chinatown Express (http://www.washingtonpost.com/ac2/wp-dyn?node=cityguide/profile&id=1121150) in (where else?) Chinatown. Outstanding noodles and dumplings, hot and sour soup, egg drop soup, and good company; we were seated at a large table with a couple that lives in DC. I highly recommend this place. Actually, I now fantasize about going to Chinatown and eating my way up one side of the street and down the other.
Dinner Sunday (Father's Day) was at Ella's (http://www.ellaspizza.com/). This wood-fired pizza place isn't cheap, but it sure is good. I had the pizza melanzane with red and yellow peppers, eggplant, tomatoes, red onion, and goat cheese. It was sensational.