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May 17, 2010 12:52 PM

Lunch near C&O Canal?

One thing my DH really wants to do is take the C&O Canal boat tour when we come to DC this fall. Is this in the Georgetown area? Can anyone recommend a good place for a late lunch or early dinner?

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  1. I checked on the web site for the C & O Canal boat rides. In the decades we've lived here, I've never known that there's a boat ride that passes through Georgetown itself. The canal itself is very obvious in that part of town, but I remember seeing the bottom of the dry canal more than seeing even a trickle of water in Georgetown itself. Perhaps the Georgetown label is simply a more familiar label than Palisades. Certainly, the portion of the canal that heads north FROM Georgetown is filled with water, and, based on the web site, boat rides are possible in either Great Falls or Georgetown. I've always taken the Great Falls boat ride and I've enjoyed it, although I haven't done this in years.

    Now, how to tie this boat ride into your eating plans... First, you'll want to choose which boat ride you'll take. If the weather is nice and you can spare the time for a drive to Great Falls (MD side) and a walk along the trail to the viewing platform, then I'd recommend the Great Falls itinerary. You could drive back to downtown DC via MacArthur Blvd and eat a fabulous late lunch or early dinner at Black Salt on MacArthur.

    Why don't you do a bit more sleuthing and let us know which trip you've selected? Also, please get more specifics about points of origin/completion for the Georgetown trip so we can make some recommendations for that option, too.

    1. There is a lock in G'town and the boat ride starts there and ends there (30th St). In that vicinity, you have some pretty good restaurants - Bourbon Steak, La Chaumiere, Sea Catch to name a few that does lunch.

      La Chaumiere
      2813 M Street, N.W., Washington, DC 20007

      3 Replies
      1. re: Ethnicchowhead

        Indy - I won't have a car so although the Great Falls option may be nicer, I don't know how I would get there. We were planning on taking the boat from the G'town lock (located at 1057 Thomas Jefferson Street, NW, Washington, DC). Looks like we can take the metro and then a bus? Or a long walk?. Kind of a pain, but DH really wants to do this.

        Thanks Ethnic - I'll check out the places you listed.

        1. re: tdmort

          You can use the Circulator bus to get to Georgetown now, depending on where you're coming from, that's likely you're best bet (or just walking).

          The canal ride that the National Park Service runs there (the one you're talking about) is really great, although of course some park rangers are better than others -- I think of it as a hidden gem, although they do manage to fill the boats and that's around seventy people, I believe, so it's not exactly unknown. I'm with your DH on this one ;)

          I'm not helping with food, though -- but, yes, you will be right in the center of Georgetown, and perhaps you could say something about price range and how dressy you want to be? There are a lot of places that aren't very good in Georgetown, so I think it is a good idea to get recommendations for places that might not stand out when you're just walking around. You might also check on Leopold's Kafe....

          1. re: mselectra

            I second Leopold's. Fun place with a cool vibe.
            I also like Pain Quotidien, Amma Vegetarian Indian (though not sure they'll be open for you at that time), and Pizzeria Paradiso. All on M St.

            Pizzeria Paradiso
            3282 M St NW, Washington, DC 20007

      2. Sea Catch and La Chaumiere are both very close to the Georgetown lock (especially Sea Catch). Sea Catch also has an outside deck overlooking the canal, although you may have trouble getting a table on it at peak lunch time. Late lunch would work nicely.

        La Chaumiere
        2813 M Street, N.W., Washington, DC 20007

        2 Replies
        1. re: Hal Laurent

          The schedule on the National Parks page says it runs Wed - Sun at 1:30 and 3:00. We would probably do the 3:00 and eat after so a really late lunch/early dinner. Unless there's a good place for brunch in the area then we could eat and go on the 11:00 or eat brunch after. I think we will do it on a Sunday so brunch just might work. I am not looking for high end, nor very fancy. We are going to spend the day sight seeing so we will not be dressed up.

          1. re: tdmort

            Sea Catch isn't open on Sunday, so you can rule that out.

        2. I recommend Sunday brunch at Cafe la Ruche. 1039 31st St. in G'town.

          Nice outside patio and steps to the canal.

          1 Reply
          1. re: crackers

            Filomena's is right there as well.

          2. Although I haven't been in awhile (rarely go to Georgetown nowadays), I used to like Bistro Francais, which is very close to where the boat ride starts.

            If this recommendation is no longer any good, I hope someone will comment here.

            Bistro Francais
            3124-28 M Street NW, Washington, DC 20007

            Bistro Francais
            3128 M St NW, Washington, DC 20007