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Anniversary trip for foodies, only three weeks out! help!

My husband and I are going to DC for our anniversary on labor day and we love food. We wanted to go to mini bar... but obviously screwed up and didn't make reservations in time at this point. We want to go to an amazing (expensive is ok) place for dinner that different than the usual meat with fancy stuff on a plate we get in restaurants in Raleigh. All the amazing places seem to fill up a month in advance. Where should we go and we can still get in in three weeks? We're also open for fun and different places that are more hole in the wall and less fancy for other meals.

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  1. Komi, Proof, Granville Moore's, Coco Sala, Central, Brasserie Beck, Matchbox, Rasika are a few suggestions. They are all very different from one another, and I love all of them. My suggestion is to google them and see what looks most appealing to you...
    Have fun...

    1 Reply
    1. Jaleo (tapas), Zlatynia (middle eastern small plates), Granville Moore's or Brazzerie Beck (mouiles and pomme frites, beers), Cieba (pan latin), Eat First (chinatown hong kong style without much style but great chinese), Matchbox, Cafe Atlantico sunday brunch, Central

      5 Replies
      1. re: dining with doc

        Hey dining -- I hope you don't mind my reply -- I've been copyediting today and just came on here for a little break and can't resist -- since OP may want to look these places up and correct spelling could help:

        Zaytinya, Brasserie Beck (moules), Ceiba

        (I'm not endorsing or panning suggestions, just copy-editing -- but, fyi OP, they seem more for the "fun and different" than replacement for minibar request -- and may I add, DC has great Ethiopian restaurants, which fits your request for hole in the wall less fancy and, I'm assuming, not like Raleigh).

          1. re: mselectra

            Yeah, Ethiopian would be awesome too! Can you recommend one?

            1. re: littlepotsticker

              Most people are saying Etete is their go to place for Ethiopian. I've seen a few for Dukem as well.

              1. re: burgeoningfoodie

                The best Ethiopian ever is at Red Sea on 18th Street in Adams Morgan- try their Vegetarian mesob for 2. It's super yummy and super cheap, too - 2 eat for under $20 a healthy, tasty meal!

        1. Hands down Chef Table at Teatro Goldoni. 15+ courses. Same price as mini bar. Do a search and you will see my review and a couple of others.

          1. we got a very last-minute reservation at the inn at little washington and had an amazing and very special meal there...though it's a bit outside of DC, it's a unique and memorable experience. I highly recommend it.

            1. I'm glad you posted this. I will also be in DC over Labor Day coming from the Triangle. Though my significant other said she didn't want to pay that much for Minibar. I think we are trying to base it around what our schedule will be like. Right now I'm looking at Obelisk or Equinox for at least one evening. We want to hit up Eastern Market and as much as I've heard raves about the Toasted Marshmallow shakes at Spike's joint... I don't think we'll get to them. I loved Jaleo last time I was there since I don't think any place in the Triangle really does a good representation of tapas. Though the Cafe Atlantico Latino dim sum brunch looks great. I've seen a lot of recommendations for CitiZen, Central, and Marcel's. I've been wondering about Art and Soul (though it is Southern food). Good luck! And if you want to see my thread...


              1. I highly, highly, highly recommend Rasika. There's really nothing like it, well, anywhere, from what I have seen. It is really exceptional.

                Since you're interested in Ethiopian, I'll recommend Etete. Everyone else's suggestions are great, too, but i want to endorse Rasika as a must-visit.

                1. My favorite restaurant is Blacksalt, which is a little out of the way on McArthur Boulevard, but has terrific seafood and outstanding service. I don't share others views of Rasika, I ate there Saturday night and was not particularly impressed, but then again Indian food is not my favorite. Also not impressed by Art and Soul, I would pick Acadiana for creole instead or Vidalia for a southern flair. I would go with Equinox over Obelisk based solely on the very limited menus offered by Obelisk. Brasserie Beck and Central are both currently quite hot and have terrific, but similar food so I would not do both. If you like Italian, you cannot do better than the quite upscale I Ricchi.

                  Eastern Market is worth doing, particularly for breakfast on Saturday morning -- the blueberry pancakes are famous (ask for blues or blue bucks if you prefer buckwheat pancakes). It opens at 8:00 and I suggest getting their early. The market is packed by 10:00 and you will stand in line for an hour.

                  6 Replies
                  1. re: Melanie96


                    I'm basing it around schedules. I will be over at Capitol Hill on Friday afternoon and so I'm not sure if we will go back Sat morn for breakfast. Luckily the hotel we are in does a free breakfast which could save time and money to splurge on higher end dinners. I've not read much on I Ricchi as compared to Obelisk, Tosca, or even Teatro Goldini and so thanks for the nod.

                    Coming from the South, I'm not worried about Soul Food/Southern Food. I remember going up to DC a few years back and seeing a Southern Food restaurant in Union Station (still there I think) and the prices were shocking to say the least and so I'm not going to bother. I'd rather make a worldly tour out of my dining experience in DC though my lady day doesn't fare too well with Indian, Ethiopian, or Mexican/Latin American. Though she agreed to go to Jaleo if we so choose since I keep talking about it... I know I know he has at least 4 other restaurants with some being better than others.

                    1. re: burgeoningfoodie

                      If you like Jaleo, also consider Zaytinya, for mezze. It's another Jose Andres restaurant, and while I do love Jaleo, I think Zaytinya is superior - and much more beautiful, too.

                      1. re: katecm

                        Well if we don't do Jaleo.. I'll probably look more towards the Latino Dim Sum at Atlantico... My biggest problem being outside and doing the tourist thing most of the day is having the appropriate clothes available for most places (esp. during lunch since we won't go back to the hotel)... Anyways, this is someone else's thread and I apologize for hijacking.

                      2. re: burgeoningfoodie

                        Whatever you do, don't go to I Ricchi. A quick CH search will tell you.

                        1. re: mselectra

                          Don't plan on it. I saw the reviews on here and the collective reviews when you do a Google search.

                          1. re: burgeoningfoodie

                            If you like Mexican, but your companion generally does not, you you might try Oyamel. The chef does Mexican tapas and is fairly creative.

                    2. Since you and I are on the same sorta timing/trip and looking for the same things.. Please note that Central is closed over Labor Day weekend on that Sunday-Tuesday (I believe).