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Metro Center Upscale Casual Lunch

daves_32 Dec 8, 2011 05:32 AM

I am looking for a place to take a friend for lunch tomorrow in Metro Center/Penn Quarter. I work in the area but I always get take out to bring back to my desk (if anyone needs recommendations from that end, I have had the good and bad). This time, I need to take my friend to an upscale casual place. She lives in New York but doesn't venture much beyond her neighborhood pizza/thai/italian place. In other words, don't need to "impress" but just want an enjoyable place. I want somewhere that has good food and a somewhat fun atmosphere but she won't be out of place in jeans (I will be in a suit) AND a place that will respect my need to get back to work. No three martini lunch this time. My choices off the top of my head would be in the realm of: Bibiana, Zaytinya, Proof, etc. I have eaten at all these places for dinner but don't know much about their lunches. Please help!

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  1. woodleyparkhound RE: daves_32 Dec 8, 2011 06:09 AM

    I haven't been to the places you mentioned for lunch, only dinner, but I can recommend Central for lunch. I especially love their corned beef sandwich.

    1. e
      Elyssa RE: daves_32 Dec 8, 2011 08:10 AM

      Bibianna was my first choice when I read your post. They have a great lunch and I think you both will feel comfortable there and will find something to eat.

      Another option nearby is Againn. I personally prefer their lunch menu to their dinner. Your friend might also like the way they plate their dishes---which I usually find rather cute.

      1. m
        Marty L. RE: daves_32 Dec 8, 2011 09:25 AM

        Trust me -- you want to go to Fiola, sit at the bar, and order either the $15 "presto" lunch or one of the three-course prix fixe lunches.

        3 Replies
        1. re: Marty L.
          ktmoomau RE: Marty L. Dec 8, 2011 09:42 AM

          I second this, although as a note all the places you listed as options are find ones and I think they all fit your requirements.

          1. re: ktmoomau
            katecm RE: ktmoomau Dec 8, 2011 10:06 AM

            Proof also has a similar lunch deal at the bar, and it's fantastic.

            1. re: katecm
              daves_32 RE: katecm Dec 13, 2011 05:35 AM

              These were all good ideas. During my next rough day, I am going to pull up to the bar and check out Fiola. The best RW lunch I have ever had (best meal, probably) was at Bibiana so I know I need to get back there. However, this situation called for a Zaytinya afternoon. We did a couple mezze and split the shredded chicken sandwich (lunch only). It was ok but just above a basic take out lunch sandwich. It didn't have much flavor. The side salad was good. Then we had the butternut squash dolmades which were excellent. I can't remember another small plate. Then we had the rice pudding special which was good but not great. I like Zaytinya and I think it is a fun atmosphere. However, if someone says Greek lately, I am suggesting Cava.

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