Cafe La Ruche
Cafe La Ruche

Cafe La Ruche

  • Dining Style: Casual Dining
  • Website: http://www.cafelaruche.com/
  • Phone: 2029652684
  • Hours of Operation:
    Monday - Thursday: 11:30am - 12:00am, Friday: 11:30am - 1:00am, Saturday: 10:00am - 1:00am, Sunday: 10:00am - 12:00am
  • Payment Options: AMEX,MasterCard,Visa
  • Cuisine: Contemporary French
  • Dress Code: Smart Casual
  • Accepts Walk-Ins: Yes
  • Additional Details: Beer, Cafe, Full Bar, Happy Hour, Non-Smoking Area, Patio/Outdoor Dining, Weekend Brunch, Wine

Getting there

  • Public Transit: Foggy Bottom-GWU (Blue and Orange lines), Dupont Circle (Red Line)
  • Parking: Public Lot
  • Parking Details: Meter Parking or there is a parking garage across the street from the restaurant.
A word from Cafe La Ruche
La Ruche is French for Beehive. And Café La Ruche is aptly named. You'll often find my bistro abuzz with laughter, convivial conversation, and good cheer. Of course, I make sure that's all punctuated with wonderful food, the best espresso and cappuccino in town, and our signature pastries. A bit of Paris on the Potomac. If you've not dropped by in a while, I invite you back. We'll work hard to make you a regular.
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Cafe La Ruche reviews from OpenTable diners
8 reviews since June 3, 2014
Overall Rating3.4
  • Food3.4
    Service2.8
  • Ambiance3.4
    Noise LevelModerate
75% of reviewers would recommend this restaurant to a friend.
great for outdoor dining (5)great for brunch (4)great for lunch (4)neighborhood gem (4)kid-friendly (1)good for groups (1)Show More
  • OpenTable Diner Since 2005
    Dined on 6/29/2014
    Was very sad to learn that we visited this Cafe on its last day and that it is now closed.
    Special Features:
    great for brunch, great for outdoor dining, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Love it
    Skidder
    Dined on 6/27/2014
    It is closing on July 1! It is too bad, because it is one of my childhood memories.
    Special Features:
    great for brunch, good for groups, great for lunch
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Disappointed
    KimSVIP
    Dined on 6/22/2014
    The brunch portions were fairly small, there weren't a lot of different options (ie. soy milk for a latte), and we ate outside which was more like an alleyway, not well decorated. The pastries also were limited in choices, and a bread or pastry basket didn't come to the table first like other restaurants. The service was poor and difficult to get someone to check on the table to get any missing things (ie salt). A bit disappointing considering the great things I'd heard from years ago.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • Ratings-Only Reviews
    Based on 5 ratings-only reviews submitted since June 3, 2014
    • Overall Rating3.2
    • Food3.2
    • Ambiance3
    • Service2.8
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • The following 150 reviews are from the Cafe La Ruche reviews archive.
  • Even Better Than Before!
    RCfromDCVIP
    Dined on 5/29/2014
    The service, menu, and setting does remind one of a small French restaurant in Paris. We have been eating at Cafe LaRuche for years, but have noticed that the quality of the food has improved recently. That's not to say that we have ever been disappointed with the fare, but the upgrade is welcome. The noise level was above its usual quiet due to an unhappy child. Cafe LaRuche is our "go-to" restaurant for a good meal at a good price.
    Special Features:
    great for brunch, great for outdoor dining, romantic, special occasion, great for lunch, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Birthday Outing
    OpenTable Diner Since 2009
    Dined on 5/22/2014
    The location and outside patio was perfect for our ladies' birthday outing. The wine list has a number of reasonable options by the bottle. The food and service were just average. There was a gentleman playing the guitar who was very sweet. Altogether an enjoyable experience.
    Special Features:
    good for groups, great for outdoor dining, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • Paris in DC
    Novelist
    Dined on 5/20/2014
    We ate al fresco in a charming courtyard and could pretend we were in France. The food was excellent, especially the sausage appetizer and the boeuf Bourguignon. If setting and meal weren't enough, the owner is perhaps the most congenial and welcoming ever. A wonderful evening!
    Special Features:
    great for outdoor dining, romantic
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • Terrible meal
    AJsfVIP
    Dined on 5/18/2014
    We had a terrible meal. The steak frites was extremely poor quality meat, and it was overcooked the first time. When it came back out, it was tough and an edible. The mussels and quiche also had no flavor.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • Fabulous French food!
    JofBMD
    Dined on 5/11/2014
    Cafe la Ruche has been a favorite of mine for years now, and it manages to maintain its high standards and wonderfully prepared meals. I have not been disappointed by a single meal I have had there, and there have been many meals. Our Mother's Day meal was no exception to the warm welcome, good service, and delicious food that is their standard. I highly recommend Cafe la Ruche to one and all.
    Special Features:
    great for brunch, fit for foodies, great for outdoor dining, romantic, special occasion, great for lunch, late-night find, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • Pleasant atmosphere.
    OpenTable Diner Since 2014
    Dined on 5/11/2014
    Quiet, pleasant outdoor patio seating area. Was perfect for a light brunch for our party of 9 celebrating a university graduation. Great location. Friendly, efficient service. Food was well prepared and enjoyed by all.
    Special Features:
    neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • It Could Be So Much Better
    GoNavyVIP
    Dined on 5/11/2014
    I love the outdoor seating area. It's an amazing bit of calm and charm just a block off of M Street. Sadly, the execution always falls below my expectations. Every time I've visited, the host has given me a bit of attitude about whether I have a reservation or how I can possibly expect a table. He didn't believe me until I showed him my phone. I ordered the simplest French item on the menu -- quiche and salad. The quiche was greasy -- not the nice light eggs I wanted. The salad was drowned in dressing and came in an odd proportion that included too little greens. None of this would be difficult to fix, but it never seems to improve. I go back hopeful because I love sitting outside and if nothing else, the coffee is great ...
    Special Features:
    great for brunch, great for outdoor dining, great for lunch, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • Didn't Shine
    BethesdaTim
    Dined on 5/10/2014
    We were a group of 5 and didn't have a reservation on a Saturday night so our cjoices were limited. This area of Georgetown has a vibrant dinner atmosphere with most restaurants fully booked on a Saturday. When we arrived the restaurant was maybe 25% full which left me with a not good feeling. The food quality was at best average. The wine list was thin but the bottle prices were good for the labels carried. The wait staff were friendly and did a good job. Although there was nothing that stood out in the negative, I would not go back here again.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • Nice al fresco dining spot
    HomesickTexan
    Dined on 5/9/2014
    We dined at Cafe La Ruche prior to a theater performance so we weren't there to linger. Outdoor dining on a beautiful evening was a treat. Menu is limited but had traditional French options. We had the French onion soup and country pate -- both were excellent. The beef bourguignon and the garlic mussels with pomme frites were very nice. Coffee with a Napoleon and the creme caramel finished off the meal. Service was excellent. Only complaint was the bread. As other reviewers have noted, the rolls were the supermarket variety, nothing special. Hard to believe the owner hasn't made the switch to a simple fresh baguette or other crusty loaf.
    Special Features:
    great for outdoor dining, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • Better Menu for Happy Hour
    Babsy
    Dined on 5/1/2014
    While the onion soup was good, the rest of the menu for Happy Hour was not very inviting. Consider what the competition offers. Outdoor dining was the best feature.
    Special Features:
    Great for Outdoor Dining, Notable Wine List
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • Quaint & Quality
    Sklar
    Dined on 4/21/2014
    Great Georgetown eatery with good food, ambience, and not crowded or noisy, and a wonderful outdoor eating area.
    Special Features:
    Great for Brunch, Fit For Foodies, Great for Outdoor Dining, Romantic, special occasion, Great for Lunch, Neighborhood Gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • Food warm, service not.
    MDNeighbor
    Dined on 4/11/2014
    Cafe La Ruche has been a favorite of mine for many years, and I returned after a long absence to find it pretty much the same. My companion and I both had the beef bourguignon, which was fine. Desserts have always been a highlight at La Ruche, and our desserts were good enough, my raspberry & blueberry tart being excellent. My companion's sponge-cake roll was a bit dry, and I was disappointed to find two old favorites missing from the menu: Bavarian creme and pure raspberry tarts, although the combination of raspberry and blueberry tart that I had was just as good, maybe even better, as it has more variety. The server was coldly efficient.
    Special Features:
    Neighborhood Gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Disappointing
    babybit
    Dined on 4/6/2014
    We have been fans of LR for years and went back recently for birthday brunch with group of friends. It was less than great, and won't be going back. I understand that it is under new ownership, but the quality of food was disappointing. I am sure the chef has done his best given the changes the new owners have made. Please - stale French bread ? How could you?
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Café La Ruche is a long-standing
    Speedy
    Dined on 4/6/2014
    Café La Ruche is a long-standing Georgetown classic: the restaurant does very nice French-inspired basics at a very reasonable price. The atmosphere reminds us of being at a small bistro in Paris, and the service is very accommodating and not intrusive. We'll continue to enjoy good, basic French dishes at this small, quiet spot.
    Special Features:
    great for outdoor dining, great for brunch, neighborhood gem, great for lunch
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Always a good meal at Cafe La Ruche
    meander
    Dined on 3/30/2014
    My husband and I have been eating at Cafe La Ruche for the 30 years we've been in the DC area. We like how laid-back it is, not pretentious, and we love the French food. We can always count on a good salad, beautiful quiche, hanger steaks, and good glass of wine. We decided to come here last week to celebrate his birthday, as he loves desserts and the desserts here are just scrumptious. We enjoyed our meal, the night was quiet as it was cold and rainy, and the Cafe, on a quiet Georgetown street, was warm and welcoming. It's equally nice in the summer, with its large patio/garden area. Highly recommend!!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, great for outdoor dining, late-night find, neighborhood gem, great for lunch, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Croque Monsieur
    MabelDodge
    Dined on 3/20/2014
    This bills itself as the oldest French restaurant in DC and they seem to have lost their memory for how to make a croque monsieur.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelCannot Recall
  • It would make a Parisian chef cry
    JakeFoodieVIP
    Dined on 3/6/2014
    I have wanted to try this restaurant for many years, and I finally got around to it last week. Unfortunately, the food was incredibly bland. The frites with my steak-frite we're not worth eating -- starchy emptiness. The steak was decent. My friend's beef bourguinon was not prepared properly; the kitchen clearly over relied on tomato paste to make the sauce.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Just like a bistro in Paris
    fanofbrunch
    Dined on 3/2/2014
    We have gone to La Ruche several times for brunch. The food is excellent. Our friend got steak fritte and I was very jealous, but my quiche was delicious. Want to go back to try the onion soup and pate that I saw another table eating. And desert - I have to go back just to try their deserts.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for brunch, kid-friendly, neighborhood gem, great for lunch
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Another lovely meal
    NomNominDCVIP
    Dined on 2/28/2014
    Cafe La Ruche doesn't disappoint with its expertly prepared food, quick service and lovely ambiance. We had the Beef Bourguignon (a special) which was so very tasty -- the meat melted in your mouth. We also had the vegetable soup which was hearty without being heavy -- perfect for the winter we've been having.
    Special Features:
    neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Delicious!
    Ang8
    Dined on 2/23/2014
    The brunch menu is fantastic and the food is delicious. We were seated by the manager at a lovely patio table. The server wasn't exactly friendly but the food came out correctly and timely.
    Special Features:
    great for outdoor dining, great for brunch
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Best dessert tarts in D.C.
    kramalot
    Dined on 2/23/2014
    Come for the eggs and salads, stay for the tarts. These fruit tarts (banana, strawberry, raspberry, mixed fruit) have been consistently good for 35 years or more. They make them fresh several times a day. If you want an authentic French Cafe in Georgetown, and don't mind the hassle of finding a meter, then La Rouche is for you. Try it when the weather is nice for al fresco dining.
    Special Features:
    great for outdoor dining, great for brunch, romantic
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Consisent and friendly
    TomG
    Dined on 2/19/2014
    I have been coming to La Ruche for many years, It is quiet, affordable with very froiendly staff and very good food.
    Special Features:
    neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Solid french restaurant
    JamesVIP
    Dined on 2/15/2014
    My wife and I enjoyed our lunch at Cafe la Ruche. The restaurant did a decent job trying to create the feel of a country French restaurant. You won't exactly feel like you're across thr Atlantic, but it does have a unique feel. The French onion soup was very tasty. The chicken cordon blue was also good, but you might consider trying something more adventuresome.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Enjoyed a lovely brunch
    NB41VIP
    Dined on 2/15/2014
    Brunch on a snowy Saturday -- nice ambiance, very good food and service
    Special Features:
    good for groups, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • Not sure what happened
    PopsVIP
    Dined on 1/31/2014
    Came in for first time dinner post theatre. The place was empty and made us a bit nervous. The food, however, was excellent and filling.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • eh...
    OccasionalEater
    Dined on 1/26/2014
    The food was passable, but very heavy and greasy. Service was ok - Nothing special. IT felt like it's seen better days and is a relic that earns its good reviews based on the memory of what it was decades ago. If you don't eat out much and are looking for a good place for an occasional brunch, you can do much better than Cafe La Ruche. I was disappointed.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • Old Friends are the Best Friends
    OpenTable Diner Since 2008VIP
    Dined on 1/24/2014
    The charms of CLaR are may not be immediately evident, but if you have ever lived in France, CLaR feels like a favorite restaurant that became your neighborhood hang-out years ago. Lots has changed in Washington, but CLaR still offers: a really good meal; great prices; a "full pour" for a glass of wine; and solid service (including the owner greeting you at the door!). If you are looking for a place that gives you a realistic French, bistro experience, then CLaR is your place. Recently, I had the lentils with sausage -- had to ask for container to take home some of the meal. The wine daily special was great and the dessert was as tasty as the coffee that rounded out my meal. In 5 star hotel across St., CUP of lentil soup, 2X $ of CLaR
    Special Features:
    good for groups, great for outdoor dining, great for brunch, kid-friendly, neighborhood gem, great for lunch
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Nice spot for brunch
    RobertBVIP
    Dined on 1/19/2014
    A good neighborhood spot, with friendly servers and good food. Eggs benedict or florentine is the standard fare.
    Special Features:
    great for brunch, kid-friendly, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • Lovely location; Dated Food
    MargaretVIP
    Dined on 1/8/2014
    Cafe La Ruche is in a terrific location -- tucked away on 31st Street by the canal in Georgetown, but the menu is very limited with tired renditions of French food from the 1960s. The steak is drowned in a fairly bad Bernaise sauce. The wine is undrinkable. The pastries, bread and soups are fine and the atmosphere is warm and cozy. Please update the menu!
    Special Features:
    neighborhood gem, great for lunch
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • Quiet New Year's Eve Celebration
    RCfromDCVIP
    Dined on 12/31/2013
    Cafe La Ruche usually does a brisk New Year's Eve business without an expensive pre fixe menu. We had an early reservation, so did not stay for the complimentary champagne at midnight. It still manages to pull off the ambience of a modest Parisian cafe with a menu that recalls my dining experiences there. Service was very good. I enjoyed Chicken Cordon Bleu, my wife Salmon Au Four. Some of the dessert choices were not available, but we were happy with our choices (me chocolate mousse, she fruit tart). We both noted that the food has improved over our last visit.
    Special Features:
    late-night find, neighborhood gem, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Excellent Birthday Lunch
    Carolzee
    Dined on 12/30/2013
    We had a girl's birthday lunch for a friend who had lived in Europe for 8 years. She was delighted with the authenticity, great fresh food and service. Carlos served our table with excellent care. Owner chef Jean Claude came out to say hello. This is definitely on my top 5 list of favorite DC reliable restaurants!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for brunch, notable wine list, neighborhood gem, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelCannot Recall
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Lucked out to an enjoyable evening
    AlohaLouieVIP
    Dined on 12/23/2013
    We were staying at the Ritz-Carlton and wanted to go somewhere close by for a light dinner. Less than a block away, Café La Ruche was a real find. The bistro-style dining area was festively decorated with flags and Parisian memorabilia. The food: salmon for her, coq a vin for me, was exceptional as was the service. The guitarist-vocalist was very versatile, personable, and added a pleasant touch to a most enjoyable evening.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Family-Friendly French
    copernicus2013
    Dined on 12/23/2013
    A family-friendly place with a nice French touch. The restaurant is a bit off the beaten path but well worth a visit. The menu is authentic, the wine list has several interesting and reasonably priced selections. The wait staff is friendly, and the ambiance is pleasant.
    Special Features:
    good for groups, kid-friendly, neighborhood gem, great for lunch
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • good late lunch
    31canbefun
    Dined on 12/23/2013
    tasty and reliable food, servers pleasant, no rushing customers but also no delays
    Special Features:
    neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • Just like a French Bistro should be
    fanofbrunch
    Dined on 12/15/2013
    Could be in Paris at a cute little Bistro. The food isn't fancy but if you are in the mood for Bistro food in Georgetown don't overlook this little gem.
    Special Features:
    great for brunch, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Charming French Cafe'
    Moonrocks
    Dined on 12/14/2013
    A longtime Georgetown restaurant that remains charming and delicious! Excellent cappacino and quiche, and one of the few remaining cafés where it is possible to have meaningful conversation without competing with loud music, t.v. or other diners.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for outdoor dining, great for brunch, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Early Saturday dinner
    dano
    Dined on 12/7/2013
    We had not been to LaRuche in a few years and decided to go after taking young daughter to show at Kennedy Center. Beef bourgeognon and coq au vin were very good. French onion soup was ok. Service and price were excellent.
    Special Features:
    good for groups, kid-friendly, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.