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Your 10 favorite DC Metro restaurants

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I am just trying to get new ideas and see what is current for our DC Metro restaurant scene -so I decided to throw this question out. Doesn't have to be in any particular order and thank you for sharing!

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  1. Some of these may not qualify as "restaurants," per se.

    1. Komi
    2. Restaurant Eve (Tasting Room)
    3. City Zen
    4. Black Salt
    5. Central
    6. Obelisk
    7. Ray's Hell-Burger
    8. Taqueria Nacionale
    9. Eamonn's
    10. Pizzeria Paradiso

    11 Replies
    1. re: biscuit

      Proof
      Matchbox
      Founding Farmers
      Granville Moore
      CocoSala
      Komi
      Moby Dick

      1. re: biscuit

        (In alphabetical order)

        1. Brabo Tasting Room (best lunch ever)
        2. Chinatown Express (best fried rice and noodles ever)
        3. Fontainne Caffe & Creperie (best crepes and brunch ever)
        4. Levantes
        5. Los Tios (best Mexican/salvadorean food ever)
        6. Mama Ayesha’s (very affordable, beautiful interior and fun white wines to go with the amazing food)
        7. Pizzeria Paradiso
        8. Potenza
        9. Rasika
        10. Zatinya

        1. re: bboyneko

          Yikes, CE for "Best noodles ever" makes me think you've lived a sheltered life. Even if the noodles were good, they are served with a ton of oil. Not too many good noodles in the area, though. So far I'd have to say the Chengdu noodles at Hong Kong Palace and also the Dan Dan Mien at Peking Village get the texture right.

          Where is Fontainne Caffe & Creperie? Are all the crepes served with the same batter?

          1. re: Steve

            i believe fontaine is in old town, don't know about the batter, though. there's a crepe place downtown that looks interesting....crepeaway or something like that. hoping to try it soon.

            1. re: Steve

              Fontainne is in old town, its amazingly delicious and a sort of hidden gem. I highly recommend dropping by.

              1. re: Steve

                Steve,
                I believe fontaine has at least two batters, because I had a whole wheat crepe and normal crepe. They are near Alexandria J&DR court so a good choice when Eve is packed for lickety split. I thought the crepes were pretty good, they had a nice variety of fillings. And not too expensive for lunch. For me a crepe isn't necessarily amazingly delicious as the fillings tend to be pretty normal, but it is a good nice lunch.

                1. re: ktmoomau

                  A few years back when I was in San Francisco, there was a crepe fad going around. Maybe still is? I was amazed how many crepe places there were. I had always thought it was one of those 70s "Magic Pan" gimmicks. Every household all of a sudden had their own crepe-making pan. Anyway I never thought much about crepes until I ate at Ti Couz in the Mission District, and I realized what I had been missing, Especially the buckwheat crepes served with a savory (as opposed to sweet) filling. The sweet crepes had a different batter, and I believe they made at least four different batters regularly. Now I am pretty well disappointed with most crepe places that are supposed to be serious but aren't really.

                  My guess is that if I were to travel to Brittany, I would find some pretty amazing crepes.

                  1. re: Steve

                    Spot on, Steve. I just went back to Paris for a visit and had an amazing savory crepe (just the standard: cheese, ham, egg on a buckwheat batter) which reminded me of why I am constantly disappointed by crepes in the US. I wish we had a place that could do it right. I've always been puzzled since it doesn't seem like it should be that hard. The ingredients are simple, it's not a complicated technique. But for some reason, it hasn't happened in DC. I almost tried Ti Couz last time I was in SF but the wait was too long. I'll make sure to try it on my next visit.

                    1. re: Steve

                      I was an exchange student in Brittany- I think I am just not that wowed by crepes, as we went to some good places around there and they were good, but... This place does have pretty good crepes I would give it a shot really- not to expensive and good. I love buckwheat pancakes and sausage- don't remember if they had buckwheat. Like I said I am just in general not a huge crepe person but this is definitely worth a try.

                      1. re: ktmoomau

                        That's too bad. Well, their website claims that they offer "Gluten free 100 % buckwheat flour crepes" so maybe there's hope. I am a little turned off by the overly fancy filling options, though, and $12-15 is just too much for a crepe in my book. I'm just too cheap to live in this area ;)

                        1. re: ktmoomau

                          Thanks, next time I'm in OT, I'll give it a shot.

              2. Not sure about my top 10 but some of my favorites are: Central, Corduory, PS7, Hank's Oyster Bar, Cafe Atlantico, Bistro D'Oc, Brasserie Beck and Restaurant Eve.

                1 Reply
                1. re: Elyssa

                  I forgot Equinox! How could I forget Equinox!? I use to also have Cashion's on my list but I haven't been there since the new chef so not sure anymore.

                2. cool thread!

                  • proof
                  • mourayo
                  • sonoma
                  • oval room
                  • beck
                  • zola
                  • kaz
                  • granville moore's
                  • the greek deli :)

                  1. Not my top 10 (don't know if I have such a list) but my top restaurant in each category.

                    Komi - multi-course tasting
                    Hong Kong Palace - Sichuan - my favorite dish is the cumin fish
                    Passage to India - got the chef to make crab masala with a whole dungeness crab, that was fantastic
                    Ray's - steak
                    Bourbon Steak - expensive celeb chef steak
                    Obelisk - Italian
                    Corduroy - adventurous American
                    Present - Vietnamese
                    Bacchus of Lebanon - love their fried smelt

                    1. My list started per the OP but kinda went the way Ericandblueboy went.

                      Ray's Hell
                      Hong Kong Palace
                      El Charrito Caminante
                      Caribbean Grill
                      Thai Luang
                      Pho Reston 75
                      Black Salt
                      Passion Fish
                      Lightfoot
                      Hank's

                      The Deli (Herndon), Bungalow Billiards), and Jimmy's, and all make the list for specific things that drive me back repeatedly (respectively these are The Hot Sicilian, Wings, and for Jimmy's the Fish fry, wings, and the cheese steak).

                      1. These are my current places that I crave might not be my all time top ten:
                        Minibar
                        Central
                        Italian Store
                        Restaurant Eve (the $13 lunch special is a steal)
                        Taqueria Poblano (I like the Del Ray location the best for some reason)
                        Eventide
                        Rays Hellburger or the Steaks
                        Liberty Tavern
                        Matchbox
                        Sonoma

                        I don't have a lebanese restaurant even though I really crave this a lot because I go to different ones depending on what I want. I might sub in Passionfish somewhere, but I don't know what to take out...

                        1 Reply
                        1. re: ktmoomau

                          It is funny looking at this list there are many things I still wouldn't change... Liberty Tavern, Italian Store, Restaurant Eve, Eventide, Rays... but I think I would add Againn and Trummer's on Main and sub out Sonoma and Taqueria Poblano. I have a feeling this next week after trying Pizzeria Orso and Pupatella store I will have a new favorite over Matchbox for pizza, but we will see.

                          -----
                          Restaurant Eve
                          110 South Pitt Street, Alexandria, VA 22314

                          Italian Store
                          3123 Lee Hwy, Arlington, VA 22201

                          Sonoma Restaurant
                          223 Pennsylvania Avenue, SE, Washington, DC 20003

                          The Liberty Tavern
                          3195 Wilson Boulevard, Arlington, VA 22201

                          Taqueria Poblano
                          2400 Mount Vernon Ave, Alexandria, VA 22301

                          Pupatella
                          5104 Wilson Blvd, Arlington, VA 22203

                        2. Not in any order, and a couple aren't "restaurants" in the strictest sense of the word, but all good eats:

                          Kotobuki
                          2 Amy's
                          Hank's Oyster Bar
                          Ben's Chili Bowl
                          Matchbox (Barrack's Row)
                          Zaytinya
                          Mama Ayesha's
                          Creme
                          Paper Moon
                          Rockland's

                          2 Replies
                          1. re: amfulay

                            paper moon in georgetown by the movie theater? i have long wondered about this place but never heard anything about it. what's it like? what's good there?

                            1. re: littlew1ng

                              Middle Eastern dance parties were Paper Moon's specialty when I lived in G'town n the late 90's to early 00's. The food was Italian, nothing exciting.

                          2. Corduroy
                            Equinox
                            Kaz Sushi Bistro
                            Ray's The Steaks/ The Classics
                            Restaurant Eve
                            Marcel's
                            Hank's Oyster Bar
                            Matisse
                            Willow
                            Parkway Deli--just makes me happy...

                            1. Restaurant Eve (tasting room)
                              Kabob Palace
                              Deli City
                              Obelisk
                              Woodlands
                              Greek Deli
                              Cava
                              Levi's Port Cafe
                              Ray's the Steaks
                              La Mexicana Bakery & Taqueria

                              1. In no order, for lots of different reasons:

                                Komi
                                Bistrot du Coin
                                Regent Thai
                                Bar Pilar
                                Bombay Club
                                Rasika
                                Thai X-ing
                                Oyamel
                                Corduroy
                                Kaz Sushi Bistro

                                1. In no order
                                  Corduroy
                                  PS7s
                                  Moby Dick
                                  Sardis
                                  Pizza Paradiso
                                  Ruan Thai
                                  Grace Garden
                                  Sonoma
                                  Matchbox
                                  Lebanese Taverna (Congressional Plaza location)

                                  5 Replies
                                  1. re: MrsWheatie

                                    I was going to add Grace Garden (had their amazing fish noodles yesterday), but I figured Odenton was too out-of-the-way to be considered "DC Metropolitan area."

                                    1. re: monkeyrotica

                                      It's a good thread for me b/c it reminds me I need to get to Grace Garden and also try Thai X-ing (dcandohio and Steve).

                                      1. re: Dennis S

                                        the Thai X-ing on Florida?

                                        I REALLY want to try it, too, but the convenience factor of driving there, looking for parking, etc....but it always seemed like such a great place to try...

                                        1. re: Jeserf

                                          I've never had trouble parking about a block south of the restaurant. And I have been turned away once because I didn't want to wait or there's nowhere to wait for a table. Although in nice weather you could eat outside in their front 'garden.'

                                          It is quite the experience.

                                          This is a place where it pays to pick and choose carefully. The red curry salmon is a MUST ORDER, and go for the tofu soup and the pad kana. If you want another dish, try the larb gai. But I have to say the pad thai here is dreadful and the chicken vigitisbot (named after the chef) is nothing special.

                                          1. re: Steve

                                            I've heard, though, that if you call ahead to order, you can be waiting for a LONG time. That's why I've never gone (it's on the way home from the animal shelter on ny ave, and I've always wanted to try but that's the reason I never have!). Is it really that bad?

                                  2. Joe's Noodle House
                                    Ruan Thai
                                    Oohs and Aahs
                                    Myanmar
                                    Jaleo
                                    Lounge at Citronelle
                                    Nha Trang (Eden Center)
                                    Bay Lo (Eden Center)
                                    Chez Auntie Libe
                                    Thai X-ing

                                    9 Replies
                                    1. re: Steve

                                      Have you been to Chez Auntie Libe recently? What do you recommend there? I sampled their wares at a Francophone festival and was completely blown away.

                                      1. re: hamster

                                        Yes, I've been there recently. It's best to go with about four people if you can. Yassa Chicken, Whole Fish, Manioc (cassava leaf stew), and Maffe Lamb are among the highlights. Manioc is my favorite, but it is also the most challenging dish if you are not used to it. Maffe is served as a thick peanut stew, and all the food here is very rich, so a little goes a long way.

                                      2. re: Steve

                                        Lotta my faves in there, Steve. As people consider Volt a DC restaurant (the waaay north end), I suppose I could throw in a few of my own Frederick favorites:

                                        Tasting Room
                                        Bangkok Kitchen
                                        Lucky Corner
                                        Monocacy Crossing
                                        Taco Michoacan

                                        1. re: flavrmeistr

                                          Taco Michoacan?!?! I like the sound of that!

                                          1. re: Steve

                                            I think it's been closed for at least 1 year. It was a great taco joint out in Centreville.

                                            1. re: Ericandblueboy

                                              This Michoacan is in a small strip mall at the west edge of Frederick right near the US 40/Alt. US 40 split. Their tacos are first-rate, especially the lengua. Next door is a great Mexican grocery with a carneceria that features great sausages and skirt steak. I believe they also have a place in Gaithersburg.

                                              1. re: flavrmeistr

                                                That clears up the confusion. I've been looking for good tacos.

                                        2. re: Steve

                                          Chez Aunt Libe..Have you been to Roger Miller?

                                          1. re: WestIndianArchie

                                            Yes, I went there once with a couple of other Chowhounds and tried a few items. We didn't have anything delicious, but I'd be willing to go back and explore more. RM features some interesting items cooked with seeds. But so far I have found the cooking more interesting than good.

                                        3. Kabob Palace
                                          Nava Thai
                                          Taqueria Distrito Federal
                                          Restaurant Eve
                                          Ray's Hellburger
                                          Etete
                                          Saigon Cafe (the one across from Eden Center)
                                          Hong Kong Palace
                                          2 Amy's
                                          Pret a Manger

                                          1. 2 Amy's
                                            Taqueria District Federal
                                            Central
                                            Ray's-Steak/Classics/Hellburger
                                            Palena
                                            Old Ebbitt raw bar during HH
                                            Cava on Capitol Hill
                                            Vidalia-their $19.00 3 course lunch special is the best deal in the city right now
                                            Addis Ababa
                                            Dolcezza

                                            1 Reply
                                            1. re: pineapple sage

                                              Just moved here from Seattle. These lists are gold! Thanks.

                                            2. obelisk and tosca are two restaurants that always put a smile on my face. central works at so many levels (snacks, bar food and wine, terrines, soups and so much more).
                                              cafe atlantico is maybe the coolest place in town for sunday brunch. sit on the top floor overlooking the activity below. don't shy from challenging the barkeep.

                                              1. Nava Thai
                                                Dino
                                                Passage to India
                                                Spice X-ing
                                                Ghar-e-Kabab
                                                Ruan Thai
                                                Bobby's Crabcakes
                                                Mia's (pizza)
                                                Two Amys
                                                Samantha's

                                                1 Reply
                                                1. re: JeffCraddock

                                                  Nice list!

                                                2. Ravi Kabob (Karahi, kabobs, nihari on weekends)
                                                  Hong Kong Palace (Most anything on the traditional menu)
                                                  Eamonns (Irish fish and chipper in Alexandria)
                                                  Present Vietnamese (Spicy & sour seafood soup, not on menu)
                                                  La Placita (Bladensburg taqueria)
                                                  La Fondita (Bladensburg as well. Lamb soup.)
                                                  Rays Hellburger.
                                                  Rays the Steaks
                                                  La Caraquena (Venezuelan. Black bean soup.)
                                                  Pho Tay Ho (I think. On 7 in strip mall between 7corners and baileys XR. Pho and cha gio).

                                                  3 Replies
                                                  1. re: sekelmaan

                                                    komi
                                                    tosca
                                                    corduroy
                                                    zentan
                                                    blue duck tavern

                                                    1. re: sekelmaan

                                                      Rabieng
                                                      Huong Viet
                                                      Ravi Kabob
                                                      Rays Hellburger
                                                      China Bistro
                                                      Super Pollo
                                                      Present
                                                      The Italian Store
                                                      Minhs- just for the grilled pork

                                                      Honorable mention "cafes": Yas Bakery, Cafe Arax (the mamouls!), Kasha's Kitchen inside Kennedy's Natural Foods store (lentil burgers and cookies)

                                                      1. re: CoconutMilk

                                                        Ooh. I forgot Super Pollo in Ballston. I love that place.

                                                    2. Komi
                                                      Kaz Sushi
                                                      Kotobuki
                                                      Makato (yeah, I love sushi)
                                                      Haandi
                                                      Breadline
                                                      Proof
                                                      Bourbon Steak
                                                      Cafe Atlantico
                                                      2 Amys

                                                      1. 1) Vermilion
                                                        2) Rasika
                                                        3) Central
                                                        4) Ray's Hell Burger
                                                        5) Ray's the Steaks
                                                        6) Bangkok 54
                                                        7) Los Tios
                                                        8) Rio Grande (sorry, I love the fajitas)
                                                        9) Teaism
                                                        10) La Casa

                                                        3 Replies
                                                        1. re: maoj

                                                          Where is La Casa?

                                                          1. re: Steve

                                                            Duke Street. It is a pizza place, plus some greek and italian.

                                                            1. re: maoj

                                                              not in any order...

                                                              rasika
                                                              neyla
                                                              morayou
                                                              blacksalt
                                                              zaytinya
                                                              sonoma
                                                              rice
                                                              la taberna
                                                              mandu
                                                              blue duck tavern

                                                        2. In no particular order, some for particular mealtimes only or for certain dishes:
                                                          Matchbox
                                                          Equinox
                                                          Firefly
                                                          Alero – Dupont location only
                                                          Chadwicks – Old Town location, Brunch
                                                          Spider Kelly’s (the spider kelly burger)
                                                          Liberty Tavern
                                                          Pizzeria Paradiso
                                                          Jackson 20
                                                          And…
                                                          Georgetown Cupcake.

                                                          4 Replies
                                                          1. re: MDoodle

                                                            I can't possibly imagine anyone having Alero on their Top 10 list... ever. That's pretty unbelievable. In fairness I have never been to the Dupont location but the one in Cleveland Park was equivalent to Mexican food you might expect at a chain restaurant in Des Moines. It was abysmal. Made Lauriol Plaza seem like Topolobampo.

                                                            1. re: masonuc

                                                              I won't defend chain restaurants, but Mexican food in Iowa can be pretty darn good. My mom showed me a place in Atlantic that would be a stand-out here.

                                                              1. re: masonuc

                                                                Haha gee, thanks. I think Lauriol Plaza is terrible, btw. I don't know what it is about Alero in Dupont. Its odd, I know. Their location on U street is not great either. Just Dupont. Or. its just me. Or, the margaritas. Hey, its my personal opinion, and my list, right?

                                                                1. re: masonuc

                                                                  The mistake people make at Lauriol is ordering the "Mexican" dishes. They are not good. The Carribean dishes are actually pretty decent, though.

                                                              2. In no particular order:
                                                                Restaurant Eve
                                                                Kincade's
                                                                2941
                                                                Haandi
                                                                L'Auberge Chez Francois
                                                                Proof
                                                                Le Chamiere
                                                                Me Jana
                                                                Schmankerl Stube (Haggerstown)
                                                                Montmarte

                                                                4 Replies
                                                                1. re: cassidym

                                                                  I think that Haandi is so far and away the best Indian restaurant in the area, it amazes me that everyone else doesn't agree. Note: the Bethesda location is much, much better than the Fairfax one. I rarely go, because it is so far and Heritage is so close for me (Dupont)... but when I make the trip I wonder why I ever go to Heritage.

                                                                  1. re: masonuc

                                                                    You do realize this thread is about people's top ten favorites, not what is generally considered the top 10 of all dc right?

                                                                    1. re: masonuc

                                                                      Im from the UK, live in New england right now , I tried the Haandi,(Bethesda Location) last night and have to say that its the best I have had in the USA, had the lamb Vindaloo, and it was just great, Im not a real big rice lover but I asked and got the way they cook it

                                                                      1. re: djr222

                                                                        I have to respectfully disagree. Haandi is just awful. Do you see any Indians eating there? Never. Do you know why? Not only is the food mediocre, but they treat Indians very poorly. I've actually experienced eating there in a large mixed group of Indians and non-Indians and they actually treated us differently at the same table!! I'm from an Indian family and nobody I know who is Indian ever dines there!

                                                                        -----
                                                                        Haandi
                                                                        1222 W Broad St, Falls Church, VA 22046

                                                                  2. great post! Here are the 10 that I could think of when reminiscing about wonderful meals in the past year:
                                                                    Palena
                                                                    La Canela (peruvian)
                                                                    Co Co Sala
                                                                    Sweet Basil (thai)
                                                                    Passage to India
                                                                    Vidalia
                                                                    Bistro D'Oc
                                                                    Mia's in Bethesda
                                                                    Me Jana
                                                                    Prailine

                                                                    1 Reply
                                                                    1. re: FoodieMcGee

                                                                      Komi
                                                                      Ray's Hell Burger
                                                                      Vace
                                                                      Mia's Pizza
                                                                      Comet Ping Pong
                                                                      Rasika
                                                                      Nava Thai
                                                                      Ruan Thai
                                                                      Amsterdam Falafel
                                                                      Teaism
                                                                      Burger Joint (Bethesda)
                                                                      Dino's
                                                                      Amma Vegetarian Kitchen
                                                                      Granville Moore's

                                                                    2. Volt
                                                                      Marcel's
                                                                      2941
                                                                      The Source
                                                                      Cityzen
                                                                      Tosca
                                                                      Proof
                                                                      Inox

                                                                      1. Ray's Hell Burger - burgers
                                                                        Lalibela - Taye Kitfo
                                                                        City Deli - Pastrami
                                                                        Loeb's - Pastrami
                                                                        Nando's Peri Peri - 1/2 chicken extra hot

                                                                        Amsterdam Falafel
                                                                        Granville Moore - Fromage Blue Mussels
                                                                        2 Amy's - Pizza
                                                                        Present - pretty much anything
                                                                        Ba Le in College Park - Banh Mi
                                                                        Golden Krust - Patties

                                                                        4 Replies
                                                                        1. re: WestIndianArchie

                                                                          What and where is Golden Krust? Never heard of it and I'd like to hear more.

                                                                          1. re: Dennis S

                                                                            1) Franchised Take Out Jamaican, I prefer it to Tropican Eatery, Naby, Negril, Rita's, and a few of the other closer Jamaican spots. It's not Brooklyn (which isn't JA), but it's closer.

                                                                            2) 3500 E West Hwy, Hyattsville, MD

                                                                            Generally I wouldn't call it transcendant or revolutionary, just good cheap food that reminds me of home.

                                                                            1. re: WestIndianArchie

                                                                              Not related to the Golden Krust in Brooklyn?

                                                                              1. re: Steve

                                                                                Same franchise

                                                                        2. Rays the Steaks
                                                                          Hanks Oyster Bar
                                                                          Central
                                                                          Tie- Brasserie Beck for food/Bistrot du Coin for atmosphere
                                                                          Komi
                                                                          Rasika
                                                                          General Store (Colorado Kitchen RIP)
                                                                          Blacksalt
                                                                          Belga Cafe
                                                                          Cork

                                                                          1. What a list and great resource. Who wants to do the spreadhseet;)

                                                                            1 Reply
                                                                            1. re: vega4933

                                                                              HA i was thinking the exact same thing!! i might tackle it tomorrow if im bored at work

                                                                            2. ten places I enjoy the most right now

                                                                              - Hong Kong Palace
                                                                              - Present
                                                                              - Vidalia
                                                                              - Rocklands (haters of this place baffle me)
                                                                              - El Charrito Caminante
                                                                              - Ray's Hell Burger
                                                                              - Oyamel
                                                                              - Ravi's Kabob
                                                                              - Village Bistro
                                                                              - Minh's

                                                                              (ten very close runners up include Lebanese Butcher, Etete, Belga Cafe, El Pollo Rico, Kaz Sushi Bistro, Zaytinya, Jaleo, Nava Thai, the Majestic, and Hank's Oyster Bar)

                                                                              1. OK, if the question is "favorites," not best, then my top dozen (as of this moment, anyway) would include (in alphabetical order):

                                                                                Ba Le (Rockville)
                                                                                cf folks
                                                                                Full Kee (DC)
                                                                                Jaleo
                                                                                Joe's Noodle House
                                                                                Komi
                                                                                Nava Thai
                                                                                (the Bar at) Palena
                                                                                Ravi Kabob
                                                                                Ray’s (all three -- I cheat)
                                                                                Teaism
                                                                                2 Amys

                                                                                Too far for any definition of "Metro" -- Town House (Chilhowie)
                                                                                Late, lamented: Colorado Kitchen

                                                                                Runners' up would include (in no particular order):

                                                                                Taqueria Distrito Federale
                                                                                Taqueria El Charrito Caminante
                                                                                Corduroy
                                                                                Hong Kong Palace
                                                                                Ruan Thai
                                                                                Huong Viet
                                                                                Pho Hot
                                                                                Kotobuki
                                                                                Deli City
                                                                                Grace Garden (broad reading of "Metro")
                                                                                Myannmar
                                                                                Oohs and Aahs
                                                                                Queen Makeda
                                                                                Obelisk
                                                                                Sushi-Ko
                                                                                General Store
                                                                                Dairy Godmother
                                                                                Thai X-ing

                                                                                Regretting that I haven't tried them yet:

                                                                                Spice X-ing
                                                                                Cork
                                                                                La Caraquena
                                                                                Bar Pilar
                                                                                Eve
                                                                                Teaism
                                                                                Granville Moore’s
                                                                                Volt
                                                                                CityZen
                                                                                Proof
                                                                                Teatro Goldoni
                                                                                New Heights (w/Logan Cox)
                                                                                Vidalia (since the new lunch specials)
                                                                                Sushi Taro (since the omakase renovation)

                                                                                1 Reply
                                                                                1. re: Marty L.

                                                                                  sorry, Teaism in the last category is a typo; it belongs in the first

                                                                                2. Oops, missed this thread earlier... well, anyway. In no particular order -

                                                                                  Woodlands (THIS is the best Indian - Langley Park)
                                                                                  El Tapatio (Bladensburg)
                                                                                  Mandalay
                                                                                  Proof
                                                                                  Granville Moore (only been there once so far but I adored it)
                                                                                  Poste
                                                                                  Etete
                                                                                  Sonoma Wine Bar
                                                                                  Dolcezza (finally, good coffee in Bethesda)
                                                                                  And lastly, I'm going to vote for the Sunday special dinner at the General Store in Silver Spring because everyone else is always hating on it.

                                                                                  1. I'm visiting DC from London in a few day's time and have found these lists to be useful in my research. I was wondering what places you would recommend for a foreigner in central DC (we are staying in Logan's Circle). On my maybe list are:

                                                                                    Matchbox
                                                                                    Sonoma
                                                                                    Bistro du Coin
                                                                                    Bar Pilar
                                                                                    Central
                                                                                    Jaleo
                                                                                    Rice
                                                                                    Vidalia (for lunch special)
                                                                                    Teaism
                                                                                    Rasika (but wondering whether it's worth it given that London is great for Indian)

                                                                                    Many thanks.

                                                                                    6 Replies
                                                                                    1. re: greedygirl

                                                                                      Hi greedygirl, of the restaurants on your list, most are very good, but I especially recommend Sonoma, Bistro du Coin, Bar Pilar, Central, and Jaleo (one of my personal favorites). Haven't been to Rasika, but friends and a lot of people on this board enthusiastically endorse it. But as you said, you have a lot of great Indian restaurants in London.

                                                                                      For a unique experience (and if you don't mind venturing into a few different neighborhoods), you might also look into Minibar, Cafe Atlantico (Latino Dim Sum brunch), Obelisk, and Mendocino Wine Bar & Grille. Cheers.

                                                                                      1. re: Gigi007

                                                                                        sunday brunch at cafe atlantico is a ton of fun.

                                                                                      2. re: greedygirl

                                                                                        Rice - Certainly not worth going out of yuor way for, and maybe not going to at all.
                                                                                        Matchbox - nothing special. Good mini-burgers
                                                                                        Sonoma - quite good, especially if you will visit Library of Congress (and you should).
                                                                                        Bar Pilar - only ok.
                                                                                        Central- v. good to great.

                                                                                        1. re: Steve

                                                                                          We went to Central the other night and it was indeed v. good to great. My simple green salad was impeccably dressed and the cassoulet fabulous. Good wine list too - they even had one of our favourite wines fwhich we discovered this year via our usual wine supplier in France! I thought it was lacking in atmosphere though.

                                                                                          1. re: greedygirl

                                                                                            Thanks for your report. Fabulous cassoulet is hard to find, so I'm glad you mentioned that.

                                                                                            Now you don't need to waste your time with Bistro d'Oc. Jaleo for Spanish tapas would be a next v. good stop. Especially the grilled asparagus, spinach with raisins, patatas bravas, tortilla espanol, chorizo, dates with bacon, and anything else that strikes you.

                                                                                            Though I can't claim it will make you forget about Barcelona.

                                                                                            1. re: Steve

                                                                                              We're long gone I'm afraid - in Charleston now. In DC, we made it to Ray's Hellburger (great), Matchbox (wanted something casual as we were jetlagged on our first night), Market Lunch and Regent Thai (local option - tired after walking for miles and miles and miles and miles!).

                                                                                      3. Maybe I don't get out and about as much as others, but these are my favorites from the restaurants I have been to (in no order):

                                                                                        1. Willow
                                                                                        2. Crystal Thai
                                                                                        3. Argia's
                                                                                        4. Piola
                                                                                        5. Cafe Oggi
                                                                                        6. Liberty Tavern
                                                                                        7. Mourayo
                                                                                        8. Cafe Assorti (samsas and pierogis)
                                                                                        9. Carlyle Cafe
                                                                                        10.Palena

                                                                                        2 Replies
                                                                                        1. re: Mulan

                                                                                          Is cafe oggi really good? I went there years ago and wasn't impressed.

                                                                                          1. re: CoconutMilk

                                                                                            We generally go Saturday night--sometimes I notice with restaurants they are "on" for the big nights, but not so good on the weeknights. Anyway, what we usually get are osso bucco, spaghetti with seafood, fried calamari, fried zucchini. It is all very good. Frankly, I find the food better than the trendy Sette Bello, although the atmosphere is a bit tame as it is filled with older folks.

                                                                                        2. (1) 2 Amy's (NW DC)
                                                                                          (2) Mark's Duck House (Falls Church, VA)
                                                                                          (3) Present (Falls Church, VA)
                                                                                          (4) Magnolia at the Mill (Purcellville, VA)
                                                                                          (5) Fireworks Pizza (Leesburg, VA)
                                                                                          (6) Four Sisters (Merrifield, VA)
                                                                                          (7) Pho 75 (Herndon, Virginia)
                                                                                          (8) Hooked On Seafood (Sterling, Virginia)
                                                                                          (9) Urban BBQ (Rockville, Maryland)
                                                                                          (10) Any of the Great American Restaurants (Sweetwater Tavern, Arties, Coastal Flats, etc.-Several Northern Virginia Locations)

                                                                                          Too many honorable mentions or other restaurants that could also be on this list.

                                                                                          3 Replies
                                                                                          1. re: marcbjohnson

                                                                                            Any of the GAR chain except Jackson's in Reston.

                                                                                            Can you say a bit more about Hooked on Seafood? I haven't heard of the place but am intrigued.

                                                                                            1. re: marcbjohnson

                                                                                              Urban is the best bbq in the area.

                                                                                              -----
                                                                                              Urban Barbecue Co
                                                                                              2007 Chapman Ave, Rockville, MD 20852

                                                                                              1. re: Fracis

                                                                                                Sad, isn't it?

                                                                                            2. Anyone have thoughts as to a modification of this list...what about 10 best food finds...places you can't live without

                                                                                              1 Reply
                                                                                              1. re: sarcasmsk

                                                                                                I think we should start a new list (in a new thread) and have it Todd Kilman style where you list places you would spend your own money.

                                                                                              2. Amazing that people will rate places like 2 Amys and Moby Dick (are you KIDDING me?) above really good restaurants. We are not talking about value here. Or is this just reverse snobbery?
                                                                                                Do they really mean to say if price was no object they would rather have a burnt pizza than a four course meal from a world class chef? Probably they prefer MacDonald's to Prime Rib, too.
                                                                                                Since I have not eaten at that many places, I can only say some that are outstanding include, more or less in order of quality: Inn at Little Washington, 1789, Tosca, Chez Francois, Il Pizzico, Palena, Morton's, Ray's, Persimmon, Aroma (in Olney), Cesco.
                                                                                                This is not to dis any of the other favs, except maybe Jaleo or Grapeseed, which are not very good, Kincaid, and Cava which I think are OK but overrated, and places like Amys, Joes and Moby, which are OK but simply not in the same league as the others.

                                                                                                9 Replies
                                                                                                1. re: a1234

                                                                                                  While I certainly wouldn't put Moby Dick's on my list, the OP used the term favorite - which definitely does not mean high tier. Value can indeed be part of it - as I'd view favorite to get to the Gestalt.

                                                                                                  1. re: a1234

                                                                                                    Let's look at your list a little bit closer: Two of them are steak places. Maybe great steak places. But why is your love of steak better than my love of hong you chao shou? Or chaat papri? Or jerk chicken?

                                                                                                    So if you have a pizza place you'd like to put on your top ten list, by all means tell us. But if you think a pizza place CAN'T be on a list of favorites, then I believe you have not been following Chowhound very carefully. It is one of the most passionate subjects of all.

                                                                                                    1. re: Steve

                                                                                                      I have never met a pizza I didn't like. I even like the frozen stuff at the supermarket and can force down a Domino's. But Amy's biggest claim to fame is it supposedly replicates pizza sold in the street in Naples, as if this is some great culinary achievement. Pizza is very easy to make and requires absolutely no skill. Ask the kids at Pizza Hut - with a few fresher ingredients, they could produce a 2 Amys pizza. Although I do like pizza, it is basically junk food. A restaurant that serves mainly pizza is by definition not a great restaurant, just as one that serves mainly fried chicken or chili - which are more real food than pizza - is not. So no, a pizza joint should not be on such a list, especially if it makes mundane pizza and has little ambience, selection and service.
                                                                                                      If your point is such lists are subjective, I will admit you are correct. So maybe somebody likes Twinkies better than the tiramisu at Tosca, or MacDonald's is better than Peter Lugers, Maybe somebody likes pizza more than a full meal at a good restaurant or even at home. That's their taste, and they have a right to it. But I think by any objective standard the two are in different leagues, and most grownups at most times prefer the one to another.
                                                                                                      Furthermore,I think in many cases it is simply reverse condescending foodie snobbery, as in "only I have the sensitivity to recognize the hidden genius in this lowly food, only I am perceptive enough to smell out the best hot dog or bagel". This is "foodie" nonsense. I don't even like the term "foodie", the ultimate in reverse snobbery. Who doesn't like food, but let's have some sense of perspective on quality.

                                                                                                      1. re: a1234

                                                                                                        If you have anything to say about pizza in general, then by all means post it on the General Topics Board for all Chowhounds to participate.

                                                                                                        Just to keep this OT:

                                                                                                        Every margherita pizza I've had at 2 Amys has been stellar. The last one I had, about the middle of the summer, was the best single pie of my life. I also love their polpete, suppli, rapini, and most other things I've had their including various salads and small plates. So what's a fella to do?

                                                                                                        Here is a post about 2 Amys from Ed Levine, author of a pizza book and major domo of Slice, the foremost pizza website:

                                                                                                        http://slice.seriouseats.com/archives...

                                                                                                        I didn't even put 2 Amys in my top ten. But if someone does, I'm certainly not going to object.

                                                                                                    2. re: a1234

                                                                                                      Moby Dick isn't even close to the best kabob place in the area. I've tried different locations over the years to understand the fascination, but just don't get it.

                                                                                                      1. re: repete

                                                                                                        I agree and would put Reston Kabob, Charcoal Kabob and Shamshiry on the list but for different reasons (the kabob itself, the sides, the rice, respectively). Caspian Sea in Germantown would also make the list along with Mayur on K around 12th.

                                                                                                        What other places would you put on the list ahead of MD?

                                                                                                        1. re: Dennis S

                                                                                                          I'd rank both Kabob n' Karahi (which is a ways out (Cloverly on New Hampshire) and Sam's Market on the Rockville Pike ahead of MD with Kabob n' Karahi clearly the tops. Great place and the smothered "chat" samosas are also top-notch.

                                                                                                          1. re: repete

                                                                                                            I love the Lamb Kabob and the Sheek. Not a fan of the chicken sheek kabbob but botht he bone in and boneless chicken are superb. Still for under $10 for the kebobs and the naan and really good raita (plus a few welcome shreds of iceberg and onion), this is a super bargain!!

                                                                                                      2. re: a1234

                                                                                                        Oh no , another contrary opinion!

                                                                                                        What are we going to do?

                                                                                                      3. I think it is important for us all to remember the point of this thread. Not to list the ten best restaurants in the area, but our favorite.

                                                                                                        I would never insult someone because of what they choose as a favorite restaurant. It often has to do with your upbringing, where you live, your income and personal experience.

                                                                                                        Some places are on my list because they are traditional places that are incorporated into my Husband and I's life (we used to have a regular schedule while we were dating that included the Italian Store on weekends that we just got to relax and spend time with each other, so now if I haven't seen him for a while or we are super busy I crave that tradition and therefore that food) or a special date spot that means a lot to us.

                                                                                                        2Amy's may be a favorite because many people have kids and appreciate how nice they are to the little ones. Or pizza comforts them. I probably crave pizza more than any other food, except beef. Or Moby Dick's might be something someone gets for work lunch on bad days, or they went their at school in Gtown, or gosh darn it they just like it. You never know why something is someone's favorite. And I appreciate that people listed their favorites so I can learn something about them. So you people that feel like criticizing restaurants that's fine, but please don't translate that into sneering that some restaurant is a favorite to someone.

                                                                                                        1. 1)Restaurant Eve
                                                                                                          2)Komi
                                                                                                          3) Central
                                                                                                          4)Churchkey
                                                                                                          5)Sushi Taro
                                                                                                          6)Present
                                                                                                          7) Four Sisters
                                                                                                          8) Palena
                                                                                                          9) Oyamel
                                                                                                          10) Tie: Sandwiches from Cowgirl Creamery or Taylor

                                                                                                          2 Replies
                                                                                                          1. re: mraamer

                                                                                                            I've never heard of Churchkey - do you mind expounding a bit?

                                                                                                            1. re: Dennis S

                                                                                                              Churchkey is the relatively new bar above Birch & Barley at 14 & T. b The beer menu at Churchkey is outstanding. They have 50 craft beers on tap each day, including a few cask specials. I've had some fantastic beers there that I haven't come across elsewhere. They also do small pours, so you can try a variety of beers w/o getting wasted or spending a ton of cash.

                                                                                                              It's a whimsical bar menu. Sweet bread "poppers," deviled duck eggs with duck panceta, shrimp corndogs, foie "tots." Had a really nice flat bread there recently with gorgonolza and figs.

                                                                                                              I haven't had a chance to try Birch & Barley yet, but the menu looks pretty fantastic. Tom Sietsema wrote a "first bite" column on Wednesday and gave it a very strong review.

                                                                                                              Here's a link: http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/...

                                                                                                          2. We need a poll option..

                                                                                                            1. In no particular order:
                                                                                                              Komi
                                                                                                              2941
                                                                                                              CityZen
                                                                                                              Indique Heights
                                                                                                              Equinox
                                                                                                              Zaytinya
                                                                                                              Sushi Taro
                                                                                                              Plume
                                                                                                              Kinkeads
                                                                                                              Minibar

                                                                                                              Have yet to try Volt. Honorable mentions include Taqueria Nacionale, The Palm, Capital grille, Blue Ridge, Good Stuff Eatery, Proof, Brasserie Beck, Bens Chili Bowl, Oceanaire

                                                                                                              1. (no order)

                                                                                                                Thai Luang (Herndon)-Thai
                                                                                                                Pho 75 (Rosslyn)-Vietnamese
                                                                                                                Dante Ristorante (Great Falls)-Italian
                                                                                                                Smith and Wollensky (NW)- steaks/seafood
                                                                                                                A. Litteri Inc. (NE)-italian market-subs better than italian store
                                                                                                                Geppettos (Bethesda)-pizza
                                                                                                                L'Auberge Chez Francois (Great Falls)- French
                                                                                                                Dubliner (NW)- Bar Food
                                                                                                                Full Kee (NW)- Chinese
                                                                                                                Blue Ridge Grill (Leesburg)- American

                                                                                                                Those are off the top of my head, I havent been to any Ray's but it sounds like they would be on the list

                                                                                                                1. In no particular order:

                                                                                                                  Sabai Sabai Simply Thai (Germantown)
                                                                                                                  2 Amys
                                                                                                                  Chix (U Street Corridor)
                                                                                                                  Mama Ayesha's (Woodley Park/Adam's Morgan)
                                                                                                                  Julia's Empanadas (Adams-Morgan)
                                                                                                                  Volt (Frederick)
                                                                                                                  Selam (Eritrean cuisine, U Street)
                                                                                                                  Al Crostino (U Street)
                                                                                                                  Urban BBQ (Rockville)
                                                                                                                  Dogfish Head Brewpub (Gaithersburg)

                                                                                                                  1. Nothing too surprising
                                                                                                                    Minhs
                                                                                                                    Liberty Tavern
                                                                                                                    Ray's the Steaks
                                                                                                                    Central
                                                                                                                    Brasserie Beck
                                                                                                                    Oya
                                                                                                                    Kaz Sushi Bistro
                                                                                                                    Guajillo
                                                                                                                    La Bodega
                                                                                                                    Againn

                                                                                                                    2 Replies
                                                                                                                    1. re: mjhals

                                                                                                                      WHere is La Bodega? Is that the tapas place in Georgetown?

                                                                                                                      1. re: Steve

                                                                                                                        yep, that's it. I love their piquillo peppers stuffed with short ribs, and they do a good tortilla de patatas. Sangria is good too, although not as good as Guajillo.

                                                                                                                    2. Getting back on DC Chowhound after a long absence! This seems like a great thread to start up again. My favorities are below (no particular order) - and by favorites I mean places where I love the food, dig the atmosphere, and the staff are friendly and knowledgeable.

                                                                                                                      Eve (especially lunch special in the bar, which I can actually afford)
                                                                                                                      Komi
                                                                                                                      Dino
                                                                                                                      Present
                                                                                                                      Proof
                                                                                                                      Rabieng (thai)
                                                                                                                      Central
                                                                                                                      PS7 lounge area - specifically for the tuna sliders which I could eat every week!
                                                                                                                      2941
                                                                                                                      Cafe Atlantico (brunch)

                                                                                                                      I really wanted to put My Karma in Lorton, VA in the mix, but I think that is too far for "DC Metro" - love that place though!

                                                                                                                      2 Replies
                                                                                                                      1. re: baconjen

                                                                                                                        @ baconjen: Do you mean Restaurant Eve as your first-named restaurant?

                                                                                                                        1. re: ulterior epicure

                                                                                                                          Yes! I especially love going there with a friend for lunch in the bar. We can each order two things for under $14 and share. It's a great deal for some of the best food in the DC area.

                                                                                                                      2. Hey - new to the DC board - moving in a few weeks to Alexandria. Bit of a foodie, as well as a data nut, so in request of a spreadsheet...

                                                                                                                        http://spreadsheets.google.com/ccc?ke...

                                                                                                                        as of 3/28, 450 votes, 226 restaurants (lots of opinions! a good thing I think). Almost 80% only had 1 or 2 votes. Here's a list of everyone with 5 or more votes (19 total):

                                                                                                                        Restaurant Votes
                                                                                                                        Komi 12
                                                                                                                        Ray's Hellburger 11
                                                                                                                        Central 10
                                                                                                                        2 Amys 9
                                                                                                                        Present 8
                                                                                                                        Proof 8
                                                                                                                        Ray's the Steaks 8
                                                                                                                        Matchbox 7
                                                                                                                        Rasika 7
                                                                                                                        Restaurant Eve 7
                                                                                                                        Sonoma 7
                                                                                                                        Corduroy 6
                                                                                                                        Granville Moore's 6
                                                                                                                        Hong Kong Palace 6
                                                                                                                        Kaz Sushi Bistro 5
                                                                                                                        Palena 5
                                                                                                                        Ruan Thai 5
                                                                                                                        Teaism 5
                                                                                                                        Vidalia 5

                                                                                                                        Sorry for the formatting. Methodology was, download the board, delete everything that didn't look like a list, delete extraneous characters, fix/combine misspellings, and run simple analysis on. Quick and dirty, but it's something.

                                                                                                                        I'm in Austin right now, and glad there's such variety, as well as some really good Asian I'm looking forward to! Be nice to be back on the east coast and get good Chinese, pizza, and bagels...

                                                                                                                        reply if you see any issues, and I can update the spreadsheet.

                                                                                                                        thanks,

                                                                                                                        Jonathan

                                                                                                                        6 Replies
                                                                                                                        1. re: siskomartel

                                                                                                                          That was fantastic; thanks for pulling it all together! Hopefully it will guide you well!

                                                                                                                          1. re: siskomartel

                                                                                                                            Wow! Thanks for doing this -- it's interesting to see it laid out this way. Looks like a couple of people voted for "Eve" when they probably meant "Restaurant Eve".

                                                                                                                            I'm looking forward to reading your posts after you move to the area - welcome!

                                                                                                                            1. re: woodleyparkhound

                                                                                                                              Great catch - I've made the change, and now Restaurant Eve is at 9 votes. Thanks!

                                                                                                                            2. re: siskomartel

                                                                                                                              Thank you! That was a wonderful gesture and will be useful to many. Welcome to Alexandria! Please go to Restaurant Eve...you will love it.

                                                                                                                              1. re: siskomartel

                                                                                                                                Is 'Central' referring to 'Grand Central' on 2447 18th Street Northwest?

                                                                                                                                1. re: mstinawu

                                                                                                                                  1001 Penn - down nearish the White House.

                                                                                                                                  http://www.centralmichelrichard.com/

                                                                                                                              2. Wow, surprised that I don't see Sawatdee anywhere on that spreadsheet. Very good Thai place in Courthouse plaza.

                                                                                                                                Some of my favorites (some nicer than others, atmosphere-wise):

                                                                                                                                Sawatdee
                                                                                                                                Ray's the Steaks
                                                                                                                                Founding Farmers
                                                                                                                                Zatinya
                                                                                                                                Tabard Inn
                                                                                                                                El Pollo Rico
                                                                                                                                Kabob Bazaar

                                                                                                                                1. my ten are in no order (actually 11)
                                                                                                                                  1. LeAuberge Chez Francios
                                                                                                                                  2. 2941
                                                                                                                                  3. Minibar @ Cafe Atlantico
                                                                                                                                  4. Citronelle
                                                                                                                                  5. Matchbox
                                                                                                                                  6. 2- Amys
                                                                                                                                  7. Cieba
                                                                                                                                  8 DC Coast
                                                                                                                                  9. Rays Hellsburger
                                                                                                                                  10 Eat First
                                                                                                                                  11. The Palm (cant pass up a huge lobster)

                                                                                                                                  -----
                                                                                                                                  Cafe Atlantico
                                                                                                                                  405 8th Street, NW, Washington, DC 20004

                                                                                                                                  Citronelle
                                                                                                                                  3000 M Street NW, Washington, DC 20007

                                                                                                                                  Eat First Restaurant
                                                                                                                                  609 H St NW, Washington, DC 20001

                                                                                                                                  DC Coast Restaurant
                                                                                                                                  1401 K Street, NW, Washington, DC 20005

                                                                                                                                  1. We like:

                                                                                                                                    1. Komi. Simply the best, high-end eating in DC. The food is imaginative and fun without being weird.

                                                                                                                                    2. 2941. We'll be getting married there later this year. Honestly, the food is not as interesting as Komi but it is very good and the setting is great.

                                                                                                                                    3. Minibar. Very creative and (mostly) delicious food.

                                                                                                                                    4. Central. My fiance loves the fish and chips. Everything is good here. We first had a French 75 with Gvine here...a revelation.

                                                                                                                                    5. Raku. We like it. The chirashi is one of the best bargains in town.

                                                                                                                                    6. Rays (either the Steak or Classics)...we love it. Haven't tried Hellburger yet.

                                                                                                                                    7. The Italian Store has rockin' sammies...great to take to Wolftrap.

                                                                                                                                    8. Jaleo

                                                                                                                                    9. Makoto - not enough food though

                                                                                                                                    10. To be discovered

                                                                                                                                    -----
                                                                                                                                    Komi
                                                                                                                                    1509 17th St NW Ste 1, Washington, DC 20036

                                                                                                                                    Italian Store
                                                                                                                                    3123 Lee Hwy, Arlington, VA 22201

                                                                                                                                    1. Mine are:
                                                                                                                                      Kabob Palace
                                                                                                                                      Deli City
                                                                                                                                      Obelisk
                                                                                                                                      Woodlands
                                                                                                                                      Greek Deli
                                                                                                                                      Cava
                                                                                                                                      Levi's Port Cafe
                                                                                                                                      Ray's the Steaks
                                                                                                                                      La Mexicana Bakery & Taqueria

                                                                                                                                      Nancee Swartz
                                                                                                                                      Brookline MA

                                                                                                                                      -----
                                                                                                                                      Deli City Restaurant
                                                                                                                                      2200 Bladensburg Rd NE, Washington, DC 20018

                                                                                                                                      Kabob Palace
                                                                                                                                      2315 S Eads St, Arlington, VA 22202

                                                                                                                                      Greek Deli
                                                                                                                                      1120 19th St NW Frnt 1, Washington, DC 20036

                                                                                                                                      La Mexicana
                                                                                                                                      13016 Middlebrook Rd, Germantown, MD 20874

                                                                                                                                      1. 1. Citronelle
                                                                                                                                        2. Ray's Hell Burger
                                                                                                                                        3. Blue Duck Tavern
                                                                                                                                        4. Rasika
                                                                                                                                        5. Cityzen
                                                                                                                                        6. Ray's the Steaks
                                                                                                                                        7. 2 Amy's
                                                                                                                                        8. Tosca
                                                                                                                                        9. Etete

                                                                                                                                        And that's about it. I've eaten at a ton of places, but I'm just not a huge fan of the DC scene.

                                                                                                                                        -----
                                                                                                                                        Etete
                                                                                                                                        1942 9th St NW, Washington, DC 20001

                                                                                                                                        Rasika Restaurant
                                                                                                                                        633 D Street, NW, Washington, DC 20004

                                                                                                                                        Citronelle
                                                                                                                                        3000 M Street NW, Washington, DC 20007

                                                                                                                                        Ray's Hell Burger
                                                                                                                                        1713 Wilson Blvd, Arlington, VA 22209

                                                                                                                                        Blue Duck Tavern
                                                                                                                                        1201 24th Street NW, Washington, DC 20037

                                                                                                                                        1. In no particular Order I couldn't stop at just 10.
                                                                                                                                          1. Komi
                                                                                                                                          2. Central
                                                                                                                                          3. Bistro Bis
                                                                                                                                          4. 2Amys
                                                                                                                                          5. Rasika
                                                                                                                                          6. Tosca/Siroc very similar northern Italian fare.
                                                                                                                                          7. Charlie Palmer Steakhouse
                                                                                                                                          8. The Prime Rib/Bobby Vans
                                                                                                                                          9. Rays Hell Burger/Rays the Steaks
                                                                                                                                          10. 701
                                                                                                                                          11. Corduroy
                                                                                                                                          12. Palena
                                                                                                                                          13. Ravi Kabob
                                                                                                                                          14. Italian Store/Taylor Gourmet

                                                                                                                                          notable mentions, Oval Room, Brasserie Beck, Shamshiry, Greek Deli, Nando's, Peking Gourmet Inn.

                                                                                                                                          -----
                                                                                                                                          Bistro Bis
                                                                                                                                          15 E Street, NW, Washington, DC 20001

                                                                                                                                          Palena
                                                                                                                                          3529 Connecticut Ave NW, Washington, DC 20008

                                                                                                                                          Rasika Restaurant
                                                                                                                                          633 D Street, NW, Washington, DC 20004

                                                                                                                                          Brasserie Beck
                                                                                                                                          1101 K Street, NW, Washington, DC 20005

                                                                                                                                          Komi
                                                                                                                                          1509 17th St NW Ste 1, Washington, DC 20036

                                                                                                                                          Greek Deli
                                                                                                                                          1120 19th St NW Frnt 1, Washington, DC 20036

                                                                                                                                          Shamshiry
                                                                                                                                          8607 Westwood Center Dr Ste 100A, Vienna, VA 22182

                                                                                                                                          Peking Gourmet Inn
                                                                                                                                          6029 Leesburg Pike, Falls Church, VA 22041

                                                                                                                                          7 Replies
                                                                                                                                          1. re: Jeremy303

                                                                                                                                            Where is Greek Deli that you mention?

                                                                                                                                            -----
                                                                                                                                            Greek Deli
                                                                                                                                            1120 19th St NW Frnt 1, Washington, DC 20036

                                                                                                                                            1. re: Jeremy303

                                                                                                                                              Nice list (at least the 14) but I don't believe 2 Amys is the fourth best restaurant in DC by any standard, and certainly does not belong in that company, except maybe for The Italian Store.

                                                                                                                                              -----
                                                                                                                                              Italian Store
                                                                                                                                              3123 Lee Hwy, Arlington, VA 22201

                                                                                                                                              1. re: a1234

                                                                                                                                                He did note that it was "in no particular order."
                                                                                                                                                And I will stand up for 2 Amy's - a return trip a few weeks ago re-ignited my enthusiasm for it! I love the pizza there. There was none of the soupiness that you always hear about on chowhound. It was all-around awesome. We also had some risotto balls (telefoni?) that were addictive. This was a Sunday night, by the way, maybe 8:30ish.

                                                                                                                                                1. re: hamster

                                                                                                                                                  2Amy's is always great! The Doc's pizza's are my favorite, I cant resist the buffalo mozzarellat. The Aranaci balls are always delicious, have you tried the potato frittas? and the potato croquettes? They are both excellent. I need to go there on Sunday for their brunch for bialys and homemade doughnuts that I heard are excellent.

                                                                                                                                                2. re: a1234

                                                                                                                                                  I said at the top of my post that my list was in no particular order. Ofcourse 2Amy's isn't the 4th best restaurant in DC. The Greek Deli is at 1120 19th Street NW, go early (before 12 for lunch) or the line will get extremely long, it's a few doors down from Smith & Wollenskys. It's a extremely small restaurant, there are a few tables outside but the Greek Deli is mostly for takeout. The Gyro and the Avgolemono Soup (Chicken Lemon) are my favorite dishes. You can get those 2 in a combo for $9.99 which also comes with a piece of bread. This is my favorite Gyro in the city, I always ask Kosta (The owner) for extra Tzatziki Sauce for my Gyro. Enjoy!

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                                                                                                                                                  Greek Deli
                                                                                                                                                  1120 19th St NW Frnt 1, Washington, DC 20036

                                                                                                                                                  Smith & Wollensky
                                                                                                                                                  1112 19th St NW, Washington, DC 20036

                                                                                                                                                  1. re: a1234

                                                                                                                                                    Is 10 *favorite* restaurants, right? That's a subjective preference, IMHO, not a claim that a place is the "best" by critical standards. This is the best I can do - only 8. I've only been in DC for two years now, and still have a lot of places on my list of places to go (Citronelle, Rasika, Zaytinya, Ray's, etc.). In no particular order:

                                                                                                                                                    (1) Blue Duck Tavern - because I actually experience cravings for their buttermilk brined chicken and apple pie, and because I love the patio.
                                                                                                                                                    (2) Juice Joint - amazing breakfast/lunch counter with a serious commitment to healthy ingredients - the tofu mayo is fantastic, but I'm really in it for the mahi mahi sandwhich or the turkey bacon in a breakfast wrap.
                                                                                                                                                    (3) Againn - Love the brunch with $5 mimosas, I actually like their bloody marys (which is rare), and I had a burger there that was truly out of this world. And they have a great whisky selection.
                                                                                                                                                    (4) Proof - Everything I have here is great, I get to match wine samples to courses, or create my own flights, and the desserts are spectacular. I really like the lounge during off hours.
                                                                                                                                                    (5) Jaleo - Okay, besides the paella, there's nothing on the menu I go nuts over, but I just love it here. It's fun, the sangria is good, and the house gin & tonic is possibly the best cocktail in the city.
                                                                                                                                                    (6) Pizzeria Paradiso (Georgetown) - This beats the other great pizza places in DC for me because of the bar downstairs. Really well chosen selection.
                                                                                                                                                    (7) Sushi Taro - I did the chef's table, and I've never had better sushi and I probably never will have better sushi. I, like everyone else, miss the old version, but you can't blame them for capitalizing on the fact that their fish is just better and fresher than everyone else's and I get what they're trying to do.
                                                                                                                                                    (8) Capitol Grille - I reserve the right to swap this out for Ray's once I make it over there, but so far this is the best steak I've had here and compares to any steak I've had anywhere. And if you split the Porterhouse, it's not a total bank-buster. The pineapple cocktails and lobster mac & cheese are great here, also.

                                                                                                                                                    1. re: Raids

                                                                                                                                                      Having tried out a few more places since I wrote this, I'm going to give my last two spots to Birch and Barley and Rasika.

                                                                                                                                                3. 1. PF Changs Arlington
                                                                                                                                                  2. Potbelly Ballston
                                                                                                                                                  3. Chipotle Falls Church
                                                                                                                                                  4. Ted's Montana Grill Alexandria
                                                                                                                                                  5. Arby's Merrifield
                                                                                                                                                  6. Golden Corrall Arundel Mills
                                                                                                                                                  7. Boston Market Rt 1 Alexandria
                                                                                                                                                  8. Denny's near BWI
                                                                                                                                                  9. Maggiano's Tyson's Galleria
                                                                                                                                                  10. Minibar

                                                                                                                                                  3 Replies
                                                                                                                                                  1. re: deep smied

                                                                                                                                                    Really? Chain restaurants. Surely, you jest.

                                                                                                                                                    1. re: deep smied

                                                                                                                                                      deep smied gets my vote for awesomest post.

                                                                                                                                                      1. re: deep smied

                                                                                                                                                        nice list.

                                                                                                                                                      2. Here are a few basic "nice" old favorites and hot spots:

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                                                                                                                                                        La Tasca
                                                                                                                                                        722 7th Street NW, Washington, DC 20001

                                                                                                                                                        Acadiana
                                                                                                                                                        901 New York Ave., NW, Washington, DC 20001

                                                                                                                                                        Clyde's of Georgetown
                                                                                                                                                        3236 M Street NW, Washington, DC 20007

                                                                                                                                                        Gordon Biersch Brewery Restaurant - DC
                                                                                                                                                        900 F Street NW, Washington, DC 20004

                                                                                                                                                        Banana Cafe & Piano Bar
                                                                                                                                                        500 8th St SE, Washington, DC 20003

                                                                                                                                                        News Cafe
                                                                                                                                                        3056 M St NW, Washington, DC 20007

                                                                                                                                                        Las Placitas
                                                                                                                                                        517 8th St SE, Washington, DC 20003

                                                                                                                                                        Kramerbooks & Afterwords Cafe
                                                                                                                                                        1517 Connecticut Ave NW, Washington, DC 20036

                                                                                                                                                        Georgia Brown's
                                                                                                                                                        950 15th Street, NW, Washington, DC 20005

                                                                                                                                                        Ted's Bulletin
                                                                                                                                                        505 8th St SE, Washington, DC 20003

                                                                                                                                                        Art & Soul
                                                                                                                                                        415 New Jersey Ave NW, Washington, DC 20001

                                                                                                                                                        1 Reply
                                                                                                                                                        1. re: elledeepea

                                                                                                                                                          I had lunch at Georgia Brown's last week. It was wonderful!

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                                                                                                                                                          Georgia Brown's
                                                                                                                                                          950 15th Street, NW, Washington, DC 20005

                                                                                                                                                        2. Peking Gourmet Inn
                                                                                                                                                          Zaytinya
                                                                                                                                                          Spartan's
                                                                                                                                                          Heart in Hand
                                                                                                                                                          Union Street Public House
                                                                                                                                                          Georgia Brown's
                                                                                                                                                          News Cafe

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                                                                                                                                                          Union Street Public House
                                                                                                                                                          121 S Union St, Alexandria, VA 22314

                                                                                                                                                          Zaytinya
                                                                                                                                                          701 9th St NW, Washington, DC 20001

                                                                                                                                                          Peking Gourmet Inn
                                                                                                                                                          6029 Leesburg Pike, Falls Church, VA 22041