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Jul 23, 2009 11:24 AM

Clubby restaurants in DC?

I'm from LA and we have a famous old clubby restaurant called Musso and Frank Gille, started in 1917/1919. For anyone out there familair with both LA and the capitol, is there a DC equivalent to Musso's? Are the old hotels a good place to look? I'm going to visit DC for the first time in September and I'm trying to decide where to go. Thanks in advance.JEJ

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  1. Though I am from LA, I've never been to M&F but I gather you're looking for unique atmosphere. For me, the Hay Adams hotel bar has it in spades. Right across Lafayette park from the whitehouse, this is a very unique, DC spot. Stop by for a cocktail. View from the rooftop deck is spectacular but I've only been there for special events so I don't know if is open on a regular basis.

    1. I also grew up in LA, but haven't been to M&F. I think that the Jockey Club in the Fairfax Hotel, at least in its heyday, may have been what you're looking for. It was renovated in the last few years and I have not been there since, so not sure how much of a 'clubby' atmosphere it retains.

      1 Reply
      1. re: Lauman

        Prime Rib and 1789 cone to mind but they just don't ahve the funk of M&F. Nor the endless menu of things out of the freezer either! Old time LA guy here who went to M&F before it was a hipster hangout.

      2. Dear Deangold, We laffed and laffed. We "dig" you! We've been going to M&F for MANY, MANY years and eat their house salad, their bread, their ravioli and their Diplomat pudding. M&F is unique because it's possible to have an echt LA experience and still spend less than $30+drinks at the bar. I checked out the Jockey Club menu: that's serious money. The Chateau Marmont is less expensive than the Jockey Club.

        1 Reply
        1. re: canyon

          If you "dig" deangold go to his restaurant while you're in town...

          I don't think I'd call it clubby...but we love it, as does the greater chowhound community.

          3435 Connecticut Avenue, Washington, DC 20008

        2. If you're looking for dinner and not just drinks ... Capital Grille (even though it is a chain) or Old Ebbitt have the atmosphere. The Monocle is maybe closer in spirit. But I don't think there's a great all-around equivalent.

          1 Reply
          1. re: Bill on Capitol Hill

            bill, is there any time the old ebbitt is not mobbed by tourists these days?

          2. I assume you are looking for like the old men's club style of place.

            I think the Round Robin Bar at the Willard Intercontinental really has that feel you can get food there they used to serve meals from their other restaurant, now it would just be Cafe Du Parc, which isn't as old school as the Willard Room. They do have great mint juleps.

            That's the only place I can think of not already mentioned.

            3 Replies
            1. re: ktmoomau

              was just at the round robin. i didn't get the sense there of the atmosphere sought by the OP.

              1. re: alkapal

                I was there two weeks ago and agree -- it's so small and crowded. Good service though.

                1. re: Teddybear

                  i think we had 4 different waiters in the span of a couple of hours.