MENU/MBK
MENU/MBK

MENU/MBK

  • Dining Style: Casual Elegant
  • Website: http://www.menumbk.com/
  • Phone: 2023477491x
  • Hours of Operation:
    Dinner Monday - Thursday 5pm - 10pm; Friday - Saturday 5pm - 11pm
  • Payment Options: AMEX,Discover,MasterCard,Visa
  • Cuisine: European, Bistro
  • Executive Chef: Frederik De Pue
  • Dress Code: Smart Casual
  • Accepts Walk-Ins: Yes
  • Additional Details: Bar Dining, Beer, Counter Seating, Farm to Table, Full Bar, Late Night, Non-Smoking Restaurant, Private Room, View, Wheelchair Access, Wine
  • Special Events: Available

Getting there

  • Cross Street: 8th & D Street
  • Public Transit: Gallery Place Chinatown Metro/ Judiciary Square Metro/ Archives Metro
  • Parking: Valet
  • Parking Details: Valet parking is available Thursday - Saturday, and is offered for $12 per vehicle.
A word from MENU/MBK
MENU/MBK is a casual gathering place boasting thoughtful bistro fare and a diverse menu of beer, wine and cocktails. During the day, enjoy coffee or lunch purchased from the market and enjoy our free Wi-Fi.
Continued
Foodspotting photos
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MENU/MBK reviews from OpenTable diners
74 reviews since June 24, 2014
Overall Rating3.5
  • Food3.5
    Service3.6
  • Ambiance3.7
    Noise LevelModerate
62% of reviewers would recommend this restaurant to a friend.
fit for foodies (27)neighborhood gem (20)special occasion (12)great for lunch (11)romantic (9)notable wine list (7)good for groups (7)hot spot (6)vibrant bar scene (6)great for brunch (5)late-night find (1)great for outdoor dining (1)Show More
  • OpenTable Diner Since 2003VIP
    Dined on 10/10/2014
    Service was awful even though the place was almost empty. Best way to describe the food is adequate.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Very nice place
    Camille
    Dined on 10/6/2014
    This place has something unique. Not only the food is very good but the design and fitting of the place makes it feel at home, yet only if we had a interior designer ! It is cosy, comfi... very nice !
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for outdoor dining
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • Good overall n'hood place
    DCfoodie1222VIP
    Dined on 10/1/2014
    I like MBK for it's ambience, quiet for lunch and with nice window views. I usually enjoy a nice Nicoise salad lunch however they changed the menu and although still call it nicoise, it is only tuna with arugula, green beans and tuna, olive tapenade on top. Hey, what happened to the anchiovies, potatoes, hard boiled egg, etc. that actually make it nicoise?! Greatly disappointed in my last meal there.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • Food could be so much more!
    WillSVIP
    Dined on 9/27/2014
    Don't get me wrong, we love Menu/MBK, especially the bar and all night happy hour. The market is awesome--particularly for an easy lunch (get their cookie). With all this, we had really high expectations for the restauarant or Bistrobar. I had the steak with frites and marrow sauce. The frites were amazing. Perfect. The steak was a cut good, cooked to order, but had a bit too much char. The roast chicken my husband ordered was pathetic. Well cooked and seasoned but barely any meat--very unsatisfactory for the price. The accompanying potatoes were a bit off too. The sauce had was earthy but had a metal tinge and not all the potatoes were cooked through. The dessert, like the cookies downstairs, were great. Get a negroni.
    Special Features:
    great for lunch, neighborhood gem, romantic
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Gilt City offer
    Melanie
    Dined on 9/25/2014
    Wanted to like MBK. Was delighted when the chef himself greeted me. (The one waiter wasn't available. Fine, but I was confused if I should seat myself or wait. Awkward.) Expected a menu, but the Gilt City was for soup, half sandwich, half salad. Only after I asked the waiter if I get a choice did he check what the chef was making. Shouldn't the waiter know that? Wasn't asked if I wanted anything to drink - when the meal arrived I asked for a soda. Would've been cool to see the beer/wine list, but was never offered it. Sandwich was DELICIOUS. Amazing bread. Soup was chilled something-or-other - also delicious. Salad was greens. Eh. Went out of my way to try MBK. Left disappointed. I'll definitely try again; everyone can have an off day.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • Abysmal
    OpenTable Diner Since 2004VIP
    Dined on 9/12/2014
    A very disappointing second visit. Our first visit was great, this time it was absolutely awful. After waiting for 45 minutes in a completely empty restaurant (there were only about 4 other tables occupied on a Friday night) we were served stale bread and cold butter. Then our extremely salty first course. I was on my way to tell the waiter to cancel our order when the manager intervened and managed to "expedite" our mains. They were ok. Then we waited forever on our check which was incorrect.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • Old location, new bites
    OpenTable Diner Since 2013
    Dined on 9/6/2014
    Basically the same interior from the Andres' days, but still trendy and cozy. For starters, caramelized sea scallops were amazing; asparagus flamande, what you would expect, eh! Seafood Vol au Vent a tasty signature dish full of fresh fish in a very satisfying broth topped by a pastry round; MBK Steak Frites wonderful; fabulous fries, but had to ask for a tomato aioli which should have accompanied the dish as a matter of course (did not want to insult the chef by asking for ketchup!). Beignet (enough for 3 to share) & Pot de Creme ended the meal on a happy note! Cocktails took a while to appear, but the manager and server were extremely apologetic and made every effort to defuse the annoyance! Anxious to return for brunch!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, hot spot
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Birthday Dining Disappointment
    lovebeingafoodieVIP
    Dined on 9/6/2014
    I really want to like this place, but after last night, it is going to be a while before I try it again. It took 30 minutes to get our cocktails - in a less than half-full restaurant. We finished our appetizers before the cocktails ever came. A table seated after us got their cocktails and wine before we did. Service was polite, but poor throughout. The food was pretty good... until the dessert. The Not-at-all-perfect ending was- a hard, stale and chewy lady finder on top of their de-constructed tiramisu. We really did enjoy ourselves here when we came with two other friends for our first time at MBK a little over a month ago, but it may be some time before we take a chance on subjecting ourselves to this kind of experience again.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Nice place to chill
    L84THATDINNERD8
    Dined on 9/3/2014
    This was my first time to Menu. Despite my over an hour delay due to technological malfunctions, this popular restaurant still honored my reservations. They even kept the bar and kitchen open for me, even when I was "THAT" person who arrived right before closing. The staff was very accommodating and did not make me feel the slightest bit rushed. I cannot comment on the list of entrees, as I didn't really order much from the main menu. I just took advantage of their happy hour/late night menu for the most part. They have a decent array of beverages and appetizers.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, neighborhood gem, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • OpenTable Diner Since 2010VIP
    Dined on 8/19/2014
    Hidden gem. Cool concept - market, lounge, bar, restaurant - all in one. Great food.
    Special Features:
    neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Disappointed
    THAITASTICVIP
    Dined on 8/18/2014
    Mussels were off tasting. To their credit, they offered to change to a different dish, which was fine, but not special. Bread was terrible.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • meh
    foodindc
    Dined on 8/15/2014
    Visited Menu MBK for the dinner during the restaurant week. Having read reviews and other coverages of the restaurant and the chef in the local media outlets, I had high hopes for the food. My dining companion and I shared escargot, caramelized scallops, moules frites, bass bouillabaisse, and beinet and clafouti for desserts. Probably the best part of the meal was the fries that came with mussels. Really good. Most foods were kinda lukewarm; it seemed like they had sat for a while before being served. Bouillabaisse was the reason I wanted to eat here but it was not the soupy bouillabaisse I imagined. It was just bass fillet sitting on a bed of cooked vegetables and a little soup on the plate. Overall good but nothing to write home about.
    Special Features:
    good for groups
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Cool setup
    Azay
    Dined on 8/14/2014
    Went here w/ my sister and cousin for a 'Europe Trip" planning dinner during restaurant week. The hostess was really nice as soon as we walked in. The bar scene was energetic and cozy with a co bartender! Food was delicious - get the steak frites!
    Special Features:
    romantic, special occasion, neighborhood gem, hot spot, vibrant bar scene
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • DCDinnerVIP
    Dined on 8/13/2014
    Restaurant was out of our first wine selection and our first appetizer selection. They took a long time with our steaks and the waitor finally came over and said they had to remake them. The atmosphere is excellent.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Disorganized but Good
    Jessica
    Dined on 8/13/2014
    Some friends and I came for restaurant and were not disappointed (except that they were out of a few of the items). Menu/MBK is an ambitious spot with a lot going on and good food. But I have to wonder if they are perhaps trying to do too many things with a market and a bar and a restaurant. A lot of the staff, as friendly as they were, seemed a bit stressed. Anyway, the food was good, even if it wasn't always at the right temperature. I had the escargot and the salmon with the pot de crème. The escargot was good but perhaps a little flavorless, and the grilled baguette (as well as the escargot themselves) was no longer warm when it arrived at my table. Same goes for the salmon. Menu/MBK really shines with its desserts. All were delicious!
    Special Features:
    hot spot, notable wine list
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Great little spot!
    OpenTable Diner Since 2008VIP
    Dined on 8/13/2014
    It is close dining so you will get to know the people beside you. The food was great. We went for restaurant week and no one had a bad dish. The guy beside me wasn't overly kicked up about his main entree, but I had the same thing and thought it was good. It was the mussells and while they weren't swimming in sauce I actually thought that allowed you to taste more of the mussel, which I loved. All in all it was a great dinner.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • sseatsVIP
    Dined on 8/13/2014
    Nothing special or memorable here. Waiter was knowledgeable about the dishes, but kept using "we" as in how are "we" and are "we" ready to order. That is irritating.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Best Steak Frites Ever!
    OpenTable Diner Since 2008
    Dined on 8/13/2014
    This is a unique place combining sit-down (rather fine) dining, with a bistro, and small market. Brilliant, really. Had the steak frites which I have enjoyed many times at Bistrot du Coin. This was better! It has something to do with the bone marrow reduction that they use. And the cows, I'm told, are happy cows (grass-fed, pasture raised without antibiotics or other hormones). This comes through in the flavor. Oh, and the mayonnaise (for the fries), is laced with garlic! It was a pleasant surprise :)
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for lunch
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Check MENU/MBK out
    OpenTable Diner Since 2008
    Dined on 8/1/2014
    We decided to go to MENU for a birthday dinner on a friday night. Initially we were a little worried about how empty it was, but our worry turned to amazement as we started our meal. The food, drinks, and service were all excellent. Once word of mouth starts to spread about this place, its going to be a hard to get reservation, so get in now. Be sure to save room for dessert!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • maryVIP
    Dined on 7/25/2014
    This is the second of two great meals at MBK Bistro in the last few months. The menu seems short but there are many great items to choose from. Highlights this time were a smoked cod salad with peas and pea pods, a wonderful pate, great fries and a lovely steak au poivre with green peppercorns. The wine and beer lists are interesting with many good choices by the glass. The service was great both times. Great place for before theatre.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, romantic, neighborhood gem, vibrant bar scene, notable wine list
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Flights of Food Fantasy...
    RestaurantWeekRWVIP
    Dined on 7/25/2014
    Wanted to try Menu/MBK since I'd heard great things about it and was not disappointed by lunch last Friday. After climbing up several flights of stairs to the third floor was delighted to find an intimate dining space and innovative menu with an appealing lunch special. My friends and I enjoyed tasty, creative food featuring fresh ingredients and both flair and flare. Don't know if it would be noisy at night but it was great for a quiet lunch catch up with busy friends. Would love to try the tasting table for 6 or book it for a special party. Enjoyed a chat with the chef and visit to the first floor gourmet market on the way out.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, special occasion, great for lunch, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Hidden Gem
    Jane
    Dined on 7/24/2014
    MBK is an excellent restaurant. The service is always topnotch and the food, drinks, atmosphere are great. We feel its better than a lot of the "foodie" hot spots. You can always get a table, because it is more of a hidden gem. This location has had several failed restaurants before MBK, and we hope it breaks the pattern. Love the market and the chef's kitchen, but the bistro, is warm, chic, and comfortable. Beautifully designed and the food is wonderful. Even the side dishes, which at some places are more afterthoughts, at MBK they were phenomenal. What sounded like a typcial mixed vegetable for the daily, was anything but typical. Kudos to the chef, our table at 4 of the sides and they were as great as our main course.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, romantic, special occasion, neighborhood gem, hot spot, notable wine list
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Menu /MBK = Oasis near the Mall
    tted117
    Dined on 7/22/2014
    Very hot day and I was parched and starving after long meetings. Booked a table for one and walked across the Mall. Menu/MBK is 4 floors, high end charcuterie on #1, sushi bar seating on #2, bar and lounge on #3 and table seating on top. (Don't take aged relatives for a sit down dinner, too many stairs). It is beautiful to look at and a lot of vertical space used to good effect. I was greeted and seated warmly. My server was prompt and friendly. She provided a tall cold glass of sparkling water and a perfect vodka tonic within a moment of request. Menu is seasonal bistro. I had a fantastic croque provençal with a little lightly dressed green salad on the side. In layman's terms it was the best grilled ham & cheese of my life. Eat here.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, romantic, neighborhood gem, hot spot, vibrant bar scene
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • small portions
    mpeano
    Dined on 7/18/2014
    Food was OK but very small portions. We have asked for a table of cheese with 3 that came with 2. We finished the donner hungry.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Great dinner
    TMacVIP
    Dined on 7/18/2014
    We enjoyed high quality, interesting food on a Saturday night in Penn Quarter without feeling rush to turn the table. Great steaks! We will be back.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • sseatsVIP
    Dined on 7/14/2014
    This place was quiet because we were the only diners. I don't know if it is noisy when others are there. The food was tasty, but nothing notable/must have again. A bit of a disappointment.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • OpenTable Diner Since 2012VIP
    Dined on 7/13/2014
    the service and atmosphere were great, the food was mediocre and overpriced for the quality.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Interesting- Not Sure Yet
    smilenenjoyVIP
    Dined on 7/9/2014
    The food was really good and interesting - presented well and flavorful. The restaurant itself is awkward to get to - there was no one downstairs on the entry level to greet diners and the staff behind the store counter didn't even take notice of guests wandering around and not finding where to go. Once on the second level the bar was so crowded it was nearly impossible to get to the restaurant level without disrupting and interrupting lots of cocktail-goers. Once in the restaurant area, the restaurant was casual an intriguing. The staff seems green, not sure of their menu, and barely able to speak to the menu.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Awesome
    MattVIP
    Dined on 6/28/2014
    Great service, amazing food, I would definitely recommend going there for a drink or dinner.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, romantic, hot spot, notable wine list
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Amazing food
    Marti
    Dined on 6/28/2014
    The menu does not do justice to the craftsmanship and execution of their food. The restau is a little pricey but the food is so incredibly fresh and perfectly cooked.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Gilt Deal Letdown
    ElBee
    Dined on 6/25/2014
    We used the Gilt lunch deal and were disappointed. Our menu was set with zero selection, which was unknown to us at the time of purchase. We were served a green gazpacho, which was fantastic, and a salad and croque monsieur which were pretty average. My take-away impression is that the place thinks too highly of itself to actually give you a choice with any kind of deal. MBK, don't offer the deals then. For a place so pretentious, the service was mediocre. The waitress initially served us sparkling water without saying anything. This was fine with me, but not with my companion. It was less fine when she mixed regular water into it. We also ate bread without any plates. Sloppy service at a high end place means I probably won't be back.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Ratings-Only Reviews
    Based on 43 ratings-only reviews submitted since June 24, 2014
    • Overall Rating3.6
    • Food3.6
    • Ambiance3.7
    • Service3.7
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • The following 26 reviews are from the MENU/MBK reviews archive.
  • Dinner Saturday evening
    Rally
    Dined on 6/21/2014
    The fame to claim of this restaurant is the Mussels & French fries. Always goood! Unfortunately there were not enough mussels left for our 7pm table of two. So one of us had the Bouillabaisse, which was good, well balanced, not too salty or greasy. Just the right way. The beer (belgian made in Canada) and wine (French) were excellent! The only weakness was the dessert. Advertised as a Tiramisu, was just a short uninteresting version of it.
    Special Features:
    neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Brunch with Flair
    SirBrunchALot
    Dined on 6/15/2014
    This place has real ambiance! You'll swear that you're in a friend's DC rowhouse. The tables in the bistro at the top level are extremely close together. We started off our brunch with a couple of Bloody Mary's. Blech. Tasted like tomato juice and vodka, that's all. No spices at all. Tried the sangria. Not good. Then we tried the mimosas, which were excellent! Just enough oj to give it color, without making it too sweet (or diluted!). I suggest going straight to mimosas! For our main course we chose the Corned beef hash with poached egg, and steak and eggs. Both were very under-seasoned. The meat was fork-tender, tho. The egg yolk was not runny like a correct poached egg, but rather sticky. Overall, a nice experience, but very pricey!
    Special Features:
    great for brunch, fit for foodies
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Not very crowded on a Friday...
    dceater82VIP
    Dined on 6/13/2014
    Read about this place on a few food blogs and expected more of a crowd on a Friday night. The food was OK but a little pricey for the portion size. Not sure I would visit again for dinner.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • Hits and misses
    OpenTable Diner Since 2002VIP
    Dined on 6/7/2014
    The biggest hit was perfectly prepared steak au poivre. The vegetable plate contained mostly peas (snap & shelled) with good truffle flavor. Boston lettuce salad w/walnuts, blue cheese, and watermelon radish was also good, just not $14 good. The seafood vol au vent contained mostly mussels and had a disk of puff pastry balanced on the top--good flavor, but odd deconstruction. The tiramisu was also oddly deconstructed, although tasty. The entree mussels were large and plump, but the broth wasn't savory enough to give them much flavor. Frites were small (2-3") and soggy. Beignet dessert got raves. Wine and beer selection good; Negroni Afrique also interesting, but mainly for cinnamon lovers. Service was pleasant & professional.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • LucyCVIP
    Dined on 6/7/2014
    Friendly, but inconsistent service (forgot our side dish, and to bring any bread). Bar area is really nice, but in desperate need of A/C. Could be a really great place, but needs more oversight.
    Special Features:
    romantic, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Great food, excellent service
    SaraT
    Dined on 6/6/2014
    The food is lovely. The food is very well done - I would recommend following the recommendations of the watistaff for drinks, food and dessert.
    Special Features:
    romantic, special occasion, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Nothing special for the price
    OpenTable Diner Since 2013
    Dined on 5/31/2014
    My group started with the smoked lamb and lentil appetizers. For entrees, I tried the porgy, my friend had the fennel gratin, and my fiance had the cod. The appetizers were much more interesting than the entrees themselves. The entrees tasted fine and they were presented well, but they tasted like something I could make at home with minimal effort. I was disappointed considering the prices they were charging. I would not go back.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Great option for drinks or dinner
    Brian
    Dined on 5/30/2014
    It's a space over a market, with both a creative bar and ample table space. Definitely try the bacon bread. They sell it downstairs as well.
    Special Features:
    romantic, vibrant bar scene
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • OpenTable Diner Since 2013
    Dined on 5/25/2014
    I came to Menu MBK for Brunch and would absolutely recommend it to anyone interested in a great new foodie place that is still a secret among DC Brunchers. MBK recently opened up and they do everything right. Chef Keith is an extremely talented artist and prepared exquisite pastries, homemade yogurt parfaits, deviled eggs, crepes, and lochs for the started buffet. The meal only got better with the second course options (The Steak and Eggs is rotating, but a must if offered when you are there). You finish off the experience with a dessert choice, which would wisely be concluded with the cheesescake. Please go here.
    Special Features:
    great for brunch, fit for foodies, special occasion, great for lunch, hot spot
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet