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  • Marvin

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Marvin Details

  • Dining Style: Casual Elegant
  • Website: http://www.marvindc.com
  • Phone: (202) 797-7171
  • Hours of Operation: Dinner: Sunday - Thursday: 5:30pm - 11:00pm, Friday & Saturday: 5:30pm - 12:00am Brunch: Sunday 10:30-3:30 (bar open all day)
  • Payment Options: AMEX, Carte Blanche, Diners Club, Discover, JCB, MasterCard, Visa
  • Cuisine: American
  • Executive Chef: Angel Franco
  • Dress Code: Casual Dress
  • Accepts Walk-Ins: Yes
  • Additional Details: Bar Dining, Bar/Lounge, Beer, Full Bar, Non-Smoking Restaurant, Patio/Outdoor Dining, Private Room, Smoking Area, View, Weekend Brunch, Wine
  • Entertainment: The lounge has nightly DJs spinning the best of rare groove, soul, classic hip hop and eclectic independent artists.

Getting there

  • Cross Street: 14th and U Streets
  • Public Transit: Walking distance from the U Street/Cardozo metro on the green line
  • Parking: No
A word from Marvin
Located in the Shaw area of D.C., Marvin serves American comfort food and a few soup-inspired dishes (shrimp and grits), and is named in homage to Marvin Gaye - a huge mural of Marvin is painted on a main dining room wall. The restaurant decor gives some of the feel of a traditional local place, with a cool vibe as you enter the upstairs lounge.Continued
Foodspotting photos
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Diner Reviews
  • "From Cocktail, to appetizer, entree' and dessert. We enjoyed every bite!"
    Dined on 7/19/2014
  • "I've been to Marvins before, but I never knew they served food. I went for Sunday Brunch, and the food was just "blah." I ordered the shrimp and grits and received a small bowl of tasteless grits with about 4 shrimp. My friends and I also decided to order the waffles (thinking they were Belgian, fluffy waffles with a nice crisp outside...wrong. The waffle was soft and had the worst, bittersweet chocolate in it. I'm not sure if Marvins has a culinary team that reviews it's food offerings, but it is need of some direction. I don't think I will go to Marvins for the food again. Guess I will stick to the drinks and dancing."
    Dined on 7/13/2014
  • "The food was excellent but...the noise level was way to loud and the lighting level way to low. I had to use table candle to read menu. I would go back again but maybe really early before it gets crowded so I don't have to shout across the table to my date."
    Dined on 7/12/2014
  • "Wonderful food, great service, excellent location!!!!"
    Dined on 7/12/2014
  • "I came to Mavin to surprise my friend for his 30th ( its his faavorite restaurant)birthday and everything was executed perfectly. The host was awesome and our server she was the best. From the champagne toast to the desert her timing was perfect. I want to say thank you very much. I do want to thank you. Our host had a nice accent with a little ponytail your were great. Thank yiu sir. And our server I dont recall her name thank yiu maam. I will defiantly be back. The only thing that is missing is a few subtle hints of Marvin Gaye. Besides that picture perfect."
    Dined on 7/11/2014
  • "The food was great, the service was ok, great outing for me and my group"
    Dined on 7/10/2014
  • "Marvin merges Belgian and Southern food (an odd combination, at first glance), and all of it is quite good. The Belgian mussels are wonderful (several different preparations, all steamed in a pot), and come with classic Belgian frites. I enjoyed the bite of my wife's steak that I had; topped with gorgonzola. And we had an appetizer of delicious, fall-off-the-bone tender baby back ribs. Skip the Victory Saison beer. The vibe is awesome; great music, really cool mural of Marvin Gaye (the namesake) on the wall, and a dark, wood-paneled, urbane feel. I look forward to returning; decent value, very good food, and a great scene."
    Dined on 7/7/2014
  • "Make sure to get the Monday Mary, it's the best Bloody Mary in all of Washington, DC and worth the trip! And the Sunday brunch menu never dissapoints."
    Dined on 6/29/2014
  • "Two fairly weak drinks and an entree will push you over $30."
    Dined on 6/29/2014
  • "Made dinner reservations at Marvin for after drinks at The Gibson next door. The ambience and service was fine, but the food selection was not that exciting, checking it out online the menu selections seemed more exciting than they actually were. I ordered two appetizers for my meal, Shrimp and Grits and the Chicken Fried Oysters both were delicious. My friend ordered the Pork Shank, he wasn't too thrilled with it, I tried it and it was nothing special. I would recommend Marvin for cocktails and appetizers, if you looking for a show stopping meal this may not fit the bill."
    Dined on 6/28/2014
  • "Great place off the beaten path for traditional tourists in DC."
    Dined on 6/28/2014
  • "Great old school interior, nicely lit and walls of polished dark wood; cool music that ranged from classic soul, R & B and some sharp Hip-Hop. Food was terrific; everybody enjoyed their meals but standout was the fish and the crispy brussel sprouts. Also a mac and cheese to write home about. Our waitstaff was attentive, knew the details of the menu and friendly without being overbearing. No complaints except the busing of the table was a little energetic with plates starting to vanish before we were finished."
    Dined on 6/28/2014
  • "The food and ambiance were great! Love coming here with family and friends"
    Dined on 6/21/2014
  • "scallop appetizer was perfectly cooked. mussels are always great. cleaned our plates. love this place!"
    Dined on 6/21/2014
  • "We found this place on a quick check of restaurants near the Black Cat following a Dr. Who happy hour. I was sold on chicken and waffles. I'd had DC area chicken and waffles before at 219 in Old Town Alexandria but Marvin did it better. The most significant difference was their use of the collards. At 219 the greens are on the side and rarely get eaten. At Marvin they serve the collards underneath the chicken and waffle. In this capacity they're delicious and just enough bitter/sour to complement the sweet as opposed to on the side, a large portion of bitter/sour eaten alone. The open table noise ratings are insufficient. This place is LOUD. Small and in DC where everyone speaks loudly. Overall this place is great. Will definitely return."
    Dined on 6/20/2014
  • "Popular spot with great vibe but disappointing flavorless food....where's Marvin's soul??...definitely NOT in the cooking!! Bistro fare with a Southern twist really misses the mark (how could fried chicken be such a letdown?).... dishes lacked adequate spicing and sauces were very lackluster. More about the scene than the bland food."
    Dined on 6/20/2014
  • "Barely saw our waitress. Even when we got there and it was practically empty she was absent. Didn't actually communicate with us at all. "Hi- can I get your drinks?... What would you like?" may have been literally all she said. Would have liked more drinks and prompter service. Food was good, but I paid an exorbitant amount for the gnocchi and was disappointed in the serving size. The rest of the table was generally unimpressed by their fare as well, excepting the modules frites. Group of 6 at a 3x3 table downstairs. Couldn't hear the person at the other end of the table. Recommend bringing a smaller group if you must."
    Dined on 6/18/2014
  • "Marvin's eclectic food and drink menu options make for a great way to start an evening with a few friends. Make your way to the roof top bar to keep the night going. It gets a little warm and the constant fans blowing quickly become a gift and a curse. However, the great music selection and the residual food high make it all bearable. Highly recommend it for DC nightlife novices."
    Dined on 6/16/2014
  • "Had a birthday dinner here. It was amazing. So is Sheldon."
    Dined on 6/15/2014
  • "The service was great. The drinks were pricey and so small. Had chicken and waffles - chicken was moist and cruncy; waffle great; collards were not seasoned but passable. Husband had ribs which he enjoyed."
    Dined on 6/15/2014
  • "I had been in the hunt for chicken and waffles in DC and stumbled upon Marvin's. From the outside it was unassuming, but he food was GREAT! Chicken was tender and juicy. The ribs were also excellent. Marvin's is now on my list of regular places to eat."
    Dined on 6/14/2014
  • "This was my first time at Marvin. The location was easy to find. The vibe in the restaurant was energetic. Upon entering I could tell I'd like to eat there but I was a teeeeny bit put off by the smell of collard greens in the air. It just smelled a little old. But other than that everything was great. Our server was great! He recommended several items on the menu, all of which we got. The bartender hooked us up with amazing drinks. The service was perfect and we got our food SUPER FAST! Overall we had a great time. I think the next time we go back, we will go upstairs and hang out on the rooftop. I'm actually of thinking of making a reservation for this coming Friday."
    Dined on 6/13/2014
  • "We used to live in the neighborhood and Marvin was our favorite local spot, but our recent experiences there have been less than stellar. $15 for two tiny scallops on a bed of shredded asparagus is redic -- even for this pricey neighborhood. I used to love the chicken and waffles, but last night the waffle was leathery and the chicken equally chewy, and the bed of collards served with this plate were cold and tasteless. Very underwhelming I'm sorry to say."
    Dined on 6/12/2014
  • "my husband and I made reservations to try and Marvin for the first time On June 11th 2014. The food was unbelievable. And the rooftop brought back fond memories of being young and spending time with coworkers after work."
    Dined on 6/12/2014
  • "I attended Marvin's at the recommendation of a friend and was totally disappointed. One of my guests ordered a Bloody Mary and was told this drink was only available at brunch. She then ordered a Mojito but was told the restaurant did not have any mint leaves and therefore, she couldn't get that drink either. My guest then ordered Jack Daniels Honey with ginger ale but was told NO because they did not carry Jack Daniels Honey. What type of establishment with cannot or will not prepare a beverage for a customer. Horrible. To add insult to injury, the alcohol drinks were weak and watered down. The food! NEVER AGAIN will I visit this place. The noise! This place to TOO LOUD! My guests could not hold a decent conversation."
    Dined on 6/7/2014
  • "The noise level was a little loud but still intimate enough for a romantic date. The computers crashed while we were there, delaying our food a bit but we were compensated with free drinks. Worked out well since we weren't in a rush and appreciated more cocktails. The mussels were slightly disappointing as I got the bouillabaisse mussels and the lobsters was overcooked and bits of the mussel shell were also floating around in the broth. Overall, the food was pretty good but not fantastic- I know of places with better/cheaper mussels if that's what I'm looking for. "
    Dined on 6/2/2014
  • "We redeemed a GILT city deal for 2 (2 main entrees, 2 sides, 2 cocktails). We got the croquet madame and the chicken and waffles. The chicken was super tender and moist and the skin was crunchy. The collard greens weren't mushy or under cooked. The gravy for the chicken was light. For sides, we got the cheddar grits (absolutely delicious flavor) and granola parfait (just fruit with granola sprinkled on top and a dollop of whip cream...eh. Wouldn't order that again. The granola was in between crunchy and chewy and in small granules.) For cocktails, we ordered a traditional mimosa and the pimm's cup. Both were delish! "
    Dined on 6/1/2014
  • "I read the yelp.com reviews on this prior, and it is not exactly accurately described, a first for me and yelp.com. Way overcrowded and not as cool as I thought it would be. The food was good and our server was really good, but it just wasn't my scene."
    Dined on 5/31/2014
  • "I really like the casual feel and the historical themes that fit the neighborhood so well. The menu is not immense but nicely balanced. My grilled pork leg was even better than the server's encouraging recommendation. The beet salad was good sized, nicely presented, and delicious. By the time our foursome left the downstairs was full -- about nine p.m. -- and the noise level made conversation impossible. I guess we've always eaten early or on less busy times because I never noticed the sound level previously."
    Dined on 5/30/2014
  • "A group of 7 went to this restaurant to celebrate a friend's upcoming nuptials. The vibe of the restaurant was good. I wasn't a fan of the seafood entrees. Everyone who had them weren't completely happy, however, the other members of the party who had other menu items, raved about the chicken and waffles as well as the shrimp and grits. Our waiter was nice and attentive and recommended a really good red wine for the table. I'll definitely come back, I just won't be ordering seafood."
    Dined on 5/25/2014
  • "the rooftop was extremely loud, dirty and not worth staying, we decided to go inside to sit at the bar, the drinks selection was very small, some drink offerings were not available and the food was not fresh, we ordered salads and the lettuce was old. Not going back"
    Dined on 5/18/2014
  • "Good brunch spot on U street. Enjoyed the mix of traditional brunch classics with a Belgian/French flare. Service was a tad slow but didn't take away from our great food. The waffle sandwich is awesome!! So are the fries!"
    Dined on 5/18/2014
  • "Fantastic food, and terrific music. A bit loud but food worth it, service was average , nice server but completely uninterested."
    Dined on 5/16/2014
  • "We enjoyed good food and drink, and a nice mix of people. The place is incredibly noisy, however."
    Dined on 5/16/2014
  • "Delicious soul food and excellent service. This place was recommended to me while I was on a conference in DC. I was surprised at how good the food was. They also have a rooftop bar area that had pretty unique drink specials and a trendy vibe. I come here every time I visit the area. I highly recommended this restaurant."
    Dined on 5/14/2014
  • "Please write a review that is at least 50 characters in length"
    Dined on 5/11/2014
  • "This was our first visit; we heard about it while scouting for a speakeasy and the description intrigued us. There's a big, beautiful pic of Gaye on the one of the walls! The cuisine is described as Belgian soul (Marvin spent a couple of years in Belgium). My wife had the Brussels sprouts appetizer which she found passable while I had the shrimp and grits which I really liked. For entrees she had the steak frites and I the fried chicken & waffle. My wife found hers to be "OK" while I, again, liked mine. While they've made some noise reduction improvements, it was pretty loud, especially considering we had an early reservation. Also, not a single Gaye song played. I'd go back, but I'd be hard pressed to get my wife to join me."
    Dined on 5/10/2014
  • "Great vibe to the place, kinda understated but warm and welcoming. Great food. My husband had the chicken and waffles, delicious. And word of advice, I had the shrimp and grits (dinner portion, just ask for it since it's only listed as an appetizer on the menu). I will add the shrimp still had a "face". I am slowly coming around to seafood, so while I believe this is a sign of a "foodie" approved dish - I was a bit scared of my plate for like 5 minutes. Once the faces were removed, I devoured the whole thing. Great experience all around. Eating great food and listening to "Love and Happiness” playing through the speakers....don't need much more. We did not have time to enjoy the rooftop but I am sure we will be back very soon."
    Dined on 5/9/2014
  • "Sheldon Scott has done an amazing job with the place and no wonder I have yet to meet anyone who does not rave about Marvin. Our server was Nicole and our entire table LOVED her! "
    Dined on 5/4/2014
  • "Had brunch here on Sunday. Was a good meal, nice ambiance, and a good vibe. Had the chicken and waffles, and was very pleased with my choice. Def a good spot, and would recommend it."
    Dined on 5/4/2014