Acqua Al 2
Acqua Al 2

Acqua Al 2

  • Dining Style: Casual Elegant
  • Website: http://www.acquaal2dc.com/
  • Phone: (202) 525-4375
  • Hours of Operation:
    Hours of Operation Lunch: Tuesday - Sunday: 11:30am - 2:30pm

    Dinner: Sunday - Thursday: 5:30pm - 10:30pm Friday - Saturday: 5:00pm - 11:00pm
  • Payment Options: AMEX,Discover,MasterCard,Visa
  • Cuisine: Steak, Italian
  • Executive Chef: Ari Gejdenson
  • Dress Code: Smart Casual
  • Accepts Walk-Ins: Yes
  • Additional Details: Banquet/Private Rooms, Bar Dining, Full Bar, Non-Smoking Restaurant, Patio/Outdoor Dining, Personal wines welcome, Personal wines welcome (corkage fee applies), Private Room, Weekend Brunch, Wheelchair Access, Wine, Wine Bar

Getting there

  • Public Transit: Eastern Market Metro
  • Parking: Street Parking
A word from Acqua Al 2
DC native, Ari Gejdenson, has brought Acqua al 2, known around the world for true Tuscan cuisine, to Capitol Hill. Famous for its Bisteca alla Fiorentina, balsamic and blueberry fillets, variety of vegetarian pastas, and daily fresh fish selections, this warm and rustic restaurant offers an authentic dining experience that will transport you back to Florence.
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Awards voted by OpenTable diners
  • Diners' Choice WinnerItalian
Acqua Al 2 reviews from OpenTable diners
236 reviews since July 29, 2014
Overall Rating4.4
  • Food4.5
    Service4.3
  • Ambiance4.3
    Noise LevelModerate
94% of reviewers would recommend this restaurant to a friend.
fit for foodies (149)neighborhood gem (147)special occasion (123)romantic (103)notable wine list (84)great for outdoor dining (57)good for groups (33)hot spot (30)great for lunch (14)late-night find (12)kid-friendly (10)great for brunch (7)vibrant bar scene (5)scenic view (2)Show More
  • Mediocre and rushed
    OpenTable Diner Since 2008
    Dined on 11/21/2014
    From the moment we sat down it was apparent that we were guests of limited duration and there were repeated attempts to ensure the table was quickly vacated. I understand that turning tables is part of the business but it felt like we were on a half an hour lunch schedule. The table next to us didn't even get to enjoy their wine - they had it corked to go. Finally I could have made the bow tie pasta at home - it was literally al dente barilla pasta with a butter cream sauce based with just a few slices of mushroom thrown in. I expect a professional kitchen to well exceed my own capabilities. Such a cute place for such an uncomfortable and mediocre experience.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • A great after-concert dinner!
    MikeinMD
    Dined on 11/16/2014
    We dined at Acqua al 2 after attending a Washington Chorus concert at the Kennedy Center. The restaurant was graciously flexible as my guest count fluxuated up and down prior to dinner, and they also held my requested window-side table despite being a little late coming from the Kennedy Center. The food and service were outstanding (as usual). We are semi-regulars at Acqua al 2, making the 90 minute drive several times a year up from our home in So. MD to tour the DC sights, attend events such as the concert, and to eat great Italian cooking. Saji was attentive and took wonderful care of us throughout the evening, and Ralph stopped by to say hello. Ari was out for the evening, so we missed him. My wife and I had the opportunity to eat at the original Acqua al 2 in Florence, Italy, back in September and we let Ralph know that his DC restaurant was the best. Nancy Pelosi happened to be at Acqua al 2 that evening. She and her entourage passed through our dining area on the way out and she actually looked at our table, smiled, and waved. Not being a particular fan of Ms. Pelosi, I simply returned a slight head nod. At the end of the day though, good food is non-partisan, but the next time I see Ari I'll have to let him know he's "off my Christmas card list". ;-)
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, great for lunch, late-night find, neighborhood gem, romantic, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Great Find
    gardenfl
    Dined on 11/14/2014
    Had a great time and the food was fantastic! i was celebrating my daughter's birthday and she's a vegetarian. Lots of food choices for her. We both agreed that it was a great place with fantastic service and food. Can't wait to go back
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, hot spot, late-night find, neighborhood gem, romantic, scenic view, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelCannot Recall
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • cozy and vibrant Italian at Eastern Market
    OpenTable Diner Since 2003VIP
    Dined on 11/14/2014
    Acqua Al 2 is the perfect spot for a glass of wine and plate of pasta on a chilly winter evening. Try the balsamic steak!
    Special Features:
    neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Blueberry Steak!
    Love2Eat
    Dined on 11/14/2014
    I ate at the Florence location a couple of years ago and have been raving about it ever since. During a trip to DC, I knew I had to go back. I was very pleased to discover that they had been able to keep the same unique and delicious taste of the Risotto and Blueberry-Reduction steak! It tasted exactly the same as it did in Florence! You need to get the Blueberry Steak if you ever go! And the Gorgonzola Risotto! You will be in heaven.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for lunch, great for outdoor dining, neighborhood gem, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Excellent all around
    Bill
    Dined on 11/11/2014
    One of the best restaurants in the city. I've eaten here on several occasions and have never been disappointed.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, hot spot, neighborhood gem, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Weekday lunch
    FoxCfox
    Dined on 11/11/2014
    I took my mother here for my birthday lunch on my lunch break. They were not particularly swamped, but the service seemed so impersonal and rushed. The bread was served with a bowl of oil. No salt or pepper, and it was not a particularly good oil. The salads were ok, and the veal with porcini was cooked ok, but nothing stood out to me as a need to make this a repeat. I was disappointed and felt bad because I don't spend a lot of time with my mother and had hoped to leave an outstanding memory impression as opposed to a mediocre one. All in all, is say you be fine missing this one for one or two diners. We held a private dinner here a year back and it was phenomenal. For coordinated private events, I would still consider them.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelCannot Recall
  • Authentic Italian
    JP422p
    Dined on 11/10/2014
    Acquainted Al 2 is a wonderful Italian restaurant with authentic Tuscan cuisine. The food is amazing, the wine is incredible and the ambiance is great. A great place for a celebration or a romantic dinner.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, great for outdoor dining, neighborhood gem, notable wine list, romantic, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Favorite Restaurant
    barreview
    Dined on 11/9/2014
    This is my absolute favorite restaurant in D.C. It is a little pricy but worth every penny. The blueberry steak and the cheesecake are two of my all time favorite food items. First went to Acqua Al 2 in Florence and was ecstatic to learn that there was a location in D.C.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, notable wine list, romantic, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • There are many better alternatives.
    ShermVIP
    Dined on 11/7/2014
    We were excited to go to Acqua Al 2 DC after eating at its Florence sister a couple of years ago. But DC was an enormous letdown. The food was incredibly bland and the portion sizes were microscopic. I ordered a bowtie pasta with butternut squash sauce, and it was completely absent of seasoning. Baby food with pasta. My mother ordered the pasta flight, which was so plentiful and tasty in Florence. Not the case in DC. Most pastas were very bland, and the bechamel sauce was the blandest I've ever tasted. Each plate came with approximately two bites of pasta. The service was fast and the staff were efficient, but our server was clearly put off that we didn't order wine, so chose to ignore us once we ordered our food. He made his goal of turning our table very clear. There are so many great Italian options in D.C.; this one is not worth your time.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • A favorite before the theater
    alice
    Dined on 11/6/2014
    We look forward to dining at Acqua Al 2 when we go to the Folger Theater.....even coming from out of town....service is attentive but not intrusive...regular menu has many nice selections and there are always new interesting "specials"...the food is always nicely presented and delicious...and the portions are just right.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, notable wine list, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Just like Italy
    travelfoodieVIP
    Dined on 11/4/2014
    Food was fantastic and so was the service. The plates reminded me of being in Italy. The Burrata with honey was AMAZING. Definitely a must when in DC!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, hot spot, neighborhood gem, notable wine list, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Get the specials!
    Bean
    Dined on 11/4/2014
    The recommendation I got from a friend was to just "follow the chef's recommendations" and so I ended up getting the special which was scallops over risotto - it was incredible. Perfectly cooked, flavorful, purposeful. I highly recommend going at night and sitting outside next to a heat lamp - the atmosphere is wonderful.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for outdoor dining, neighborhood gem, romantic, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • My new fave in Capital Hill
    McSilversVIP
    Dined on 11/3/2014
    This is my new favorite restaurant in Capital Hill. Fantastic Italian food for reasonable prices. Had the salad sampler, tagliatelle ragu and the frozen caramel mousse. DEFINITELY go if you are in the area.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for lunch, notable wine list, romantic
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Great Service
    OpenTable Diner Since 2008VIP
    Dined on 10/31/2014
    Love the restaurant. The location was great to see all the neighborhood trick or treaters on Halloween.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for outdoor dining, late-night find, neighborhood gem, notable wine list, romantic, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • OpenTable Diner Since 2010
    Dined on 10/31/2014
    Had a wonderful waiter who was very helpful with wine and food choices. He was also very attentive during the meal even though the restaurant was busy. Food was also quite marvelous.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for outdoor dining, neighborhood gem, notable wine list, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • More than a Neighborhood Restaurant
    SESWho
    Dined on 10/31/2014
    We'd travel through lots of neighborhoods to get to Acqua Al 2. Delicious pasta. Tasty salads as well as meats. We loved our selections.
    Special Features:
    neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • pleasant return trip
    MichaelVIP
    Dined on 10/28/2014
    The last time here, the restaurant was very loud (back rooms especially). This time, we had a table off the front of the resto and it was great (if the service was a bit slow). Salads were excellent and more-than-ample. Main selections also good. Beware: the wine list is really over-priced, making it difficult to get the wine you might want at an affordable and fair price.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • you can't go wrong - all was great
    OpenTable Diner Since 2012VIP
    Dined on 10/19/2014
    we thoroughly enjoyed our dining experience from food to service. top notch all around. can't wait to come back and try some more excellent dishes
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • trainfoodie
    Dined on 10/18/2014
    Not overly impressive, but good Italian. The highlight was a burrata appetizer -- wonderful flavor combination with an always-amazing type of cheese, can't really go wrong. The steaks were also fantastic -- our selection of three steaks were all cooked perfectly with amazing reductions. The pasta sampler unfortunately fell short. We learned the "Specialty" pasta sampler is actually just a random assortment of whatever the chef happens to be cooking for others at that moment, and we were unfortunately unhappy with the selection of pastas at the time of our order. The couple next to us had a different (and much better looking assortment). The dessert was good, but not amazing. Overall, solid Italian meal, but we won't be rushing back.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Even better than I remembered
    Saranicc
    Dined on 10/18/2014
    I came to Acqua al due for the first time over a year ago, and had since moved away from DC. On this visit I was dying to go back and it was everything I remembered and more. The pasta tasting was amazing, and the steak tasting was even better. We ordered our steak medium rare it was perfectly cool just falling apart when you cut it. The blueberry steak is a favorite here and did not disappoint at all.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, neighborhood gem, notable wine list, romantic, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Overwrought
    TomC
    Dined on 10/17/2014
    Ordered the Filet Mignon with Balsamic Vingrette - filet came drenched in sauce completely overpowering the flavor of the filet. As the dressing was black the plate came out looking like an oil spill. Antipasti came with only one cheese and five variations of Salami - undressed. Very underwhelming. Most pasta options featured fusilli pasta (with very slight variations) - ended up ordering the Gnocchi with Gorgonzola sauce - pasta was overcooked. Service was unbearably slow and we say without bread for nearly 30 minutes.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Constantly Lovely Food
    GB31
    Dined on 10/16/2014
    I love Acqua Al 2! The food is absolutely delicious-- as someone who comes from a city with a ton of Italian food, I can honestly say that the food at Acqua Al 2 is some of my favorite Italian food ever; including the Italian food I've had while in Italy! I've had both the risotto and the pasta, and both are so good that I've had dreams about them (seriously). And both the wine and the cocktail list are great! The service is also wonderful; I've been to this restaurant around a half-dozen times, and I've never had a complaint about the people who work there. Everyone from the bartender to the busboys are pleasant, and the restaurant wouldn't be the same without them! I recommend this place for a date of any kind, but in particular for anyone looking for good food, nice drinks, and a great atmosphere.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, late-night find, neighborhood gem, notable wine list, romantic, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Buddycat
    Dined on 10/16/2014
    Friendly as always. A al 2 staff always try to be accommodating and on this occasion succeeded. They gave us a quieter table (although not quiet enough for real conversation--see below) and turned down the fan so that we weren't frozen. A al 2 is a real contribution to the comfort we find in living on CH.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for lunch, neighborhood gem, notable wine list, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Definitely recommend
    Gustavo
    Dined on 10/13/2014
    Nice place! Service really friendly, good food and good price.
    Special Features:
    notable wine list, romantic
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Always right on
    OpenTable Diner Since 2006VIP
    Dined on 10/11/2014
    As always, we had fabulous meal with excellent service,ÿ
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, neighborhood gem, romantic, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Always excellent
    ChirsVIP
    Dined on 10/11/2014
    Second visit to the charming DC location after visiting one in Florence. Many similarities. Overall, this place serves excellent, down-to-earth Italian cuisine in a charming setting. The service is friendly and prompt without being too casual or hovering. Good drinks and a good wine list. Highly recommended.
    Special Features:
    neighborhood gem, romantic
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Outdoor dining delight
    gagibson
    Dined on 10/8/2014
    I can't imagine a better place to dine in Capitol Hill, outside, on a balmy October Wednesday evening. Friendly and efficient service, good wines and food, and a panna cotta as good as any I've had in Italy.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for outdoor dining, neighborhood gem, notable wine list, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Amazing food and service
    EileenDVIP
    Dined on 10/6/2014
    Loved this place, the service was fantastic and they went out of our way to make our anniversary super special. I'm pregnant and loved that they had a delicious non-alcoholic cocktail (fruit juice mint and ginger beer). We made our server aware I was pregnant (mentioned it when we booked through OpenTable) and she went out of her way to find out/let us know which cheese on our cheese plate was unpasteurized, which really impressed me. We got the cheese tasting and pasta tasting which was the perfect amount of food. The honey that came with the cheese was AMAZING. I'd definitely recommend both, as well as the frozen caramel mousse for dessert. Definitely let them know if it's your anniversary when you book, they have a private booth.
    Special Features:
    neighborhood gem, romantic, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Amazing amazing amazing
    Kristina
    Dined on 10/5/2014
    Acqua al 2 reminds me of its sister restaurant in Florence, which I've been to earlier this year). My boyfriend and I went to celebrate our 3 years together (and to compare the place to the Florentine version), and it was nothing short of incredible. We had the ricotta balls to start, then moved on to the chef's specialty of three 3-ounce filet mignons with different sauces on each (blueberry was one), sipped on some of the most delicious wine we've ever had, and finished it all off with a tasty tiramisu. Service was fantastic. I am so happy this restaurant exists in the US- I will definitely be returning.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, hot spot, late-night find, neighborhood gem, notable wine list, romantic, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Stubborn Chefs
    DebbiedoesdctooVIP
    Dined on 10/4/2014
    I get it - you are the chef and the expert, but I fail to see the harm in putting a reduction on a different steak. In fact, I am quite convinced that the reduction would be DIVINE on a strip steak - or any steak for that matter because the reduction is DIVINE.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, hot spot, notable wine list
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Come to the hill
    RobL4
    Dined on 10/3/2014
    Always enjoy this neighborhood gem. Great service and great food each time.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for outdoor dining, neighborhood gem, vibrant bar scene
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Fantastic
    Foodlover
    Dined on 10/3/2014
    Definite must do in DC! Great food and ambience. Felt like I was back in Firenze. Motto bene
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, great for outdoor dining, kid-friendly, neighborhood gem, romantic, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Does it better, and better
    OpenTable Diner Since 2005VIP
    Dined on 10/3/2014
    Been going here for special occasions for years and, rather than be complacent, they are at worst consistent, and at best better and better. We shared a primi of papardelle with boar and it was generous and wonderful. My steak was perfect and I could not get enough of the pepe verde sauce. No room for dessert, but my espresso was among the closest this side of Rome.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for outdoor dining, neighborhood gem, special occasion, vibrant bar scene
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Fantastic
    ArrCeeDee
    Dined on 9/30/2014
    I have no complaints about my experience at Acqua Al 2. The food was amazing and the service was second to none. What an amazing restaurant and experience. I will definitely be back for more!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, great for lunch, great for outdoor dining, hot spot, notable wine list, romantic, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Still as good as the first time..
    DaisyVIP
    Dined on 9/30/2014
    I went to Acqua 2 a couple of times several months ago, and somehow hadnt been back to Eastern Market again till this week when I was meeting a friend after work. I'd forgotten how great this place is - we were seated immediately inside, the decor is charming and slightly dim which gives it a cozy atmosphere. The food is terrific, fresh Italian fare, both traditional items and seasonal dishes on the menu. The wine list has plenty of choices by the glass & bottle, and a wide range of prices. The service is pleasant and efficient, your water glass doesn't get past half before it's filled again, the same with bread and olive oil. Really such a great place, I'm going back more often!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for outdoor dining, neighborhood gem, romantic, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Great Find in DC
    cher10VIP
    Dined on 9/27/2014
    I haven't eaten in the one in Florence, but I've heard its simply amazing as this DC branch is. The burrata special over spaghetti squash with honey and pomegranite was good, burrata not that creamy though. The arugala and pear salad was delicious. The filet mignon with blueberry sauce was amazingly good. The shrimp over linguine with zuccini and cherry tomato was very good, though didn't remember the waiter saying that it was a little"hot". Flourless chocolate cake was to die for. Go if your in DC. Plenty of street parking.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, great for outdoor dining, neighborhood gem, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • A great business lunch
    OpenTable Diner Since 2005
    Dined on 9/25/2014
    Went their with a new business acquaintance and, while we did not have the lunch special, we enjoyed the meal and service greatly. Will take my wife there for dinner, too.
    Special Features:
    great for lunch, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • birthday dinner
    corsica6
    Dined on 9/21/2014
    I took my boyfriend here for his birthday...it was his choice. He has been here multiple times. I have been here once before, but for lunch. We had a wonderful evening and the food and service was awesome!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for lunch, great for outdoor dining, neighborhood gem, romantic, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Great local spot
    OpenTable Diner Since 2014
    Dined on 9/14/2014
    Take your girlfriend here, I did - it was a hit. Great service and food. Many options and highly recommended
    Special Features:
    great for outdoor dining, neighborhood gem, romantic
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet