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Jul 22, 2009 06:33 PM

dining solo and outside, Dupont Circle

Moved here from Seattle last week and getting to know my neighborhood. I am a bit overwhelmed by the options and figured Chowhound was a good place to start. This weekend I want to explore some nice dinners and brunches in Dupont. I'll be dining solo and prefer to sit outside. Any rec's on moderate to upscale dining? European, American or ethnic are all good, as long as the food is too. More intimate places with a bar for dining are also good. Thanks in advance.

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  1. This is my neighborhood as well and I dine alone all the time.

    Some of my favorite spots (bar or otherwise) are: Hank's Oyster Bar, Sette Osteria, and Bistro Du Coin. Both Sette and Hank's have outdoor dining. At Bistro du Coin if you are lucky you can get a table near the big open windows.

    8 Replies
    1. re: Elyssa

      Excellent suggestions, exactly what I am looking for! I've been to Hanks and Du Coin and looking forward to Sette Osteria this weekend. We're on the same page, any other suggestions? Doesn't have to be in Dupont. Thanks again, I really appreciate it.

      1. re: vega4933

        Other places I dine quite often solo: Central and PS7 at the bar, Bistro D'Oc, Sakana (also in Dupont for sushi), and Taberna del Alberdero for their 1/2 off tapas happy hour during the week.


        1. re: vega4933

          I thought of one more: I dine solo at Kramerbooks and Afterwards quite often. It's not the best food in the city but if you pick and choose correctly it can be good. (They have a chicken paillard salad with blue cheese and other goodies that I really like. Their Best Piece of Bass is nice as well. Hanger steaks are done well.) Plus they have always been friendly to me as a solo diner--letting me pick and choose where I sit if it's not too busy, they also have a bar I can dine at etc.

          They don't seem to mind if you sit there for awhile reading and drinking your beer after finishing your meal. They also have a popular brunch and they are open 24/7 on the weekends. Plus it's attached to a great independent book store.

          1. re: Elyssa

            Definitely not the best food but it's also overpriced.

            You might like Zobra--outside seating and reasonable.

            1. re: Jacey

              You maybe interested in Moby Dick. It is a local chain. Fast, casual. Excellent freshly prepared kebobs, terrific rice, warm pita, yogurt sauce, hummus, gyro and daily specials. I usually go for the chicken kebob. In fact, I am heading to the Bethesda location for dinner tonight.

              1. re: Jeserf

                Actually the Moby in Dupont does have outdoor seating (unless I'm thinking of another kabob place...I don't eat there that often but walk by one all the time...near California Pizza Kitchen?)

                1. re: aburkavage

                  Ok that is the right place. Out door seating with good affordable food. I should eat there more often but I always forget about it. The kabobs are nice and the rice is super good (probably thanks to a gallon of butter but makes it taste yummy haha).

                  1. re: Elyssa

                    (Maybe I went in winter....I haven't been literally in I could have easily missed it if it wasn't nice out! I just remember it was PACKED)

        2. I had a surprisingly good brunch at Circa last year. They have a nice covered patio, with a good view of the streets (which is good if you enjoy people-watching as much as I do). I just checked out their online brunch menu and it seems they have added a significant number of dishes. Cuisine is sort of upscale American, with some European nuances.

          1. I live around the corner from the following places where I see people dining solo, outside, all the time. I'm sure a certain person will pan them, but they're good neighborhood spots, esp during a week night, to sit outside, people watch, and eat

            Rosemary's Thyme
            Larry's - you can order from Straits of Malaya and eat/drink outside.

            The neighborhood is devoid of good indian, though a place called "Safrificial Lamb" has a "coming soon" sign on R st (I think R) between 17th and NH.

            5 Replies
            1. re: Jeserf

              I've always been curious about Larry's and Straits of Malaya. So they are not connected but they let you order food from one and drinks from another? That's pretty sweet!

              1. re: Jeserf

                Ugg I really dislike Rosemary Thyme, I haven't really liked anything I have ever eaten there, it's just mediocre. Lauriol plaza is ok if you stick with their non-mexican dishes, but it is so crowded on the weekends. Haven't been to the other two.

                I would much rather wait for Sette, for Italian if it were up to me.

                1. re: ktmoomau

                  I"m simply throwing out places where I regularly see lone diners enjoying their table and food. Never been to sette as I don't usually go out for Italian food unless others I'm wish request it, so to me, Rosemary's is cheap is has good enough pizza for cheap.

                  And Elyssa, Larry's and Malaya are owned by the same people. Maybe we'll try that place this weekend and I can let you know how it is. We usually go to Regent, but we need to try new things.

                  1. re: Jeserf

                    I loooove Regent. I don't get there nearly enough though.

                    1. re: Jeserf

                      I've had some nice meals at Malaya. Sit on the rooftop deck. It's shady and funky and very sweet. You can look over at Lauriol and watch the crowds.

                2. I eat solo alot and have been craving roast suckling pig which Komi has been preparing lately----but everything on their tasting menu is for two----They discourage solo dining---Not nice.