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  • Oyamel

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Oyamel
Oyamel

Oyamel Details

  • Dining Style: Casual Elegant
  • Website: http://www.oyamel.com
  • Phone: (202) 628-1005
  • Hours of Operation: Brunch: Saturday & Sunday: 11:30am - 3:00pm; Lunch: Daily: 11:30am - 4:00pm; Dinner: Sunday & Monday: 4:00pm - 10:00pm, Tuesday - Thursday: 4:00pm - 11:00pm, Friday & Saturday: 4:00pm - 12:00am
  • Payment Options: AMEX, Discover, MasterCard, Visa
  • Cuisine: Mexican, Tapas / Small Plates
  • Executive Chef: Jose Andres; Head Chef, Omar Rodriguez
  • Dress Code: Smart Casual
  • Accepts Walk-Ins: Yes
  • Additional Details: Banquet/Private Rooms, Bar Dining, Bar/Lounge, Beer, Counter Seating, Farm to Table, Full Bar, Gluten-free Menu, Happy Hour, Late Night, Non-Smoking Area, Non-Smoking Restaurant, Patio/Outdoor Dining, Personal wines welcome, Personal wines welcome (corkage fee applies), Private Room, Smoking Area, Takeout, Weekend Brunch, Wheelchair Access, Wine
  • Catering: Catering on a whole new level José Andrés Catering elevates catering and event planning to new heights in the Washington, DC area and beyond. Now you can experience the inspired creations of celebrated chef José Andrés at your own party or venue. Visit us for more information at www.joseandrescatering.com, or call us at (301) 913-0003.
  • Private Party Facilities: We offer a private dining room that accommodate up to 50 guests and cocktail reception up to 75 guests.
  • Private Party Contact: Felicia Perez (202) 638-0202
  • Special Events & Promotions: Our Butterfly Bar can accommodate groups of up to 20 guests. Oyamel also features a lovely private dining room that accommodates 50 guests. For large parties, full or partial buyouts of the restaurant, accommodating 175 guests, can be arranged.

Getting there

  • Cross Street: D Street
  • Public Transit: Archives/Navy Memorial/Penn Quarter on the yellow and green lines; Gallery Place/Chinatown on the red, yellow and green lines.
  • Parking: Street Parking
  • Parking Details: There are ample public lots in the Gallery Place/Chinatown/Penn Quarter area. Metered street parking is also available.
A word from Oyamel
Oyamel Cocina Mexicana combines Mexico’s rich regional culinary traditions with modern urban fare. Guests experience an array of antijitos—traditional Mexican snack or small plates—along with authentic tacos, ceviches and an impressive selection of cocktails and tequilas. This is like no Mexican food you have ever experienced. Under the direction of renowned chef José Andrés, Head Chef Colin King takes traditional ingredients and techniques and elevates them to deliver dishes and drinks with exceptional creativity and refinement.Continued
Foodspotting photos
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Awards voted by OpenTable diners
  • Diners' Choice WinnerMexican
  • Diners' Choice WinnerMost Booked
Diner Reviews
  • "First time after reading review of top 10 Mexican restaurants. Here on vacation with family, what a outstanding eating experience. Highly recommended."
    Dined on 7/21/2014
  • "Food was great and I highly recommend the guac, made fresh at your table to your spicy standards. One major downfall though, the waitress failed to ask about drinks, and when I asked, she took the order but came back after the meal was arriving saying she forgot to put the drink order in. The Margaritas final arrived 2/3rd of the way through dinner. Also, don't make the rookie mistake of ordering all your Tapas plates at once. They all arrive at once, even when there isn't enough room on the table to sit. Needless to say, we went somewhere else for dessert."
    Dined on 7/20/2014
  • "We would highly recommend this spot. Great food. Great service."
    Dined on 7/20/2014
  • "As far as the food is concerned( items with chicken) were just too bad.I had to text my wife who was on the other side of the table.. It was just too noisy."
    Dined on 7/18/2014
  • "Everything I ordered was incredibly spicy. Yes, I realize it's Mexican but it was so spicy that I only ate about 1/3 of anything. Flavors were good...I think...but way too heavy handed with the heat."
    Dined on 7/18/2014
  • "Our foursome really enjoyed the many small dishes we ordered. I'd say 80% we fantastic while the rest were OK. Service was very attentive. Drinks didn't seem to contain much alcohol though. The place is too loud for me. Conversation is tough. Maybe lunch would be a better time to partake."
    Dined on 7/18/2014
  • "I went to Oyamel knowing they were pricy and used the "small plate" concept that I'm not a huge fan of. Rather than try to pick a few dishes to comprise a decent meal, we opted for the "Oyamel Experience", in which the Chef chooses a selection of dishes. This was a very pricy option at $55 per person, but it was an occasion and expense was secondary to having a memorable experience. The meal we were provided was outstanding with fresh guacamole made table side, a couple of ceviche dishes, veggie dishes, meat/seafood dishes and salads. Every single dish was outstanding and included several we would never tried if left to choose ourselves. The service was also excellent. Outstanding experience, but pricy for regular visits."
    Dined on 7/17/2014
  • "The food is terrific, the service excellent, and the atmosphere is good though a bit noisy. The staff gave us a table in a slightly quieter location, as we requested."
    Dined on 7/17/2014
  • "Great tacos - servers are superb - table-side guacamole preparation is a popular request! Gotta go back."
    Dined on 7/16/2014
  • "Too noisy - fortunately we were able to eat outside. Food too similar to zaytina - although zaytiya is much better! Guacamole very good. Would they consider a couple items on the menu representing a meal for one person?"
    Dined on 7/16/2014
  • "With delicious small plates, Oyamel offers lots of great food and drink to try. Popular, though, so you need a reservation and can't have quiet chat."
    Dined on 7/15/2014
  • "The menu is extensive, lots of little bites, mainly familiar Mexican cuisine done with quality ingredients and some added flair. Service was prompt, cheerful, and attentive. If you are a fan of corn fungus the menu currently includes two huitlacoche dishes. The kids loved the quesadillas, but I found the cheese a bit overpowering, the rice dish is where the huitlacoche really shined. Speaking of excellent the tacos are top notch, with the braised beef and baby pig being two standouts. For a light, and inexpensive meal you couldn't go wrong with an order of table prepared guacamole and a couple of the tacos. Prices were reasonable (particularly for DC) and we would gladly go back."
    Dined on 7/14/2014
  • "My wife and I love all of José Andrés' restaurants and Oyamel is getting close to replacing Zaytinya as my favorite of all of them! I'm learning after repeated experiences that this is definitely a place to stretch outside of your culinary comfort zone, although I'm still working my way up to the tacos featuring chapulines (sautéed grasshoppers). This time we enjoyed the tuna confit w/ smoked tomato salad, seared scallops over salsa inglesa reduction, masa cakes w/ duck confit, and chipotle albóndigas (meatballs). The winner though was our waitress' dessert recommendation: Chiapas coffee ice cream, milk chocolate-coffee sauce, caramelized bananas, lime gelatin, and Mexican cinnamon shortbread. Will order two next time to avoid a fight!"
    Dined on 7/13/2014
  • "We absolutely loved our experience at Oyamel - I highly recommend ordering the chef's tasting menu!"
    Dined on 7/12/2014
  • "I love Oyamel, the food is always good. I admit that we have only been twice so we are not regulars, but both times that we dined there were service issues. The first time we got half way through our meal and had to wait 20 minutes for the other half. This occasion we ordered 2 cold dishes- salad and ceviche then 2 warm entrees and 2 tacos to share with my husband. Once we had our table side guacamole (the best) we realized that our table was so small that we were going to have issues with finding enough space for the food on our table. We received one of our hot entrees first quickly followed by the ceviche and then salad. We at our cold dishes first hoping that the hot entree stayed warm. We then waited 15 minutes for our tacos."
    Dined on 7/12/2014
  • "Delicious food and marguerites Service was attentive but not hovering. Excellent! Tab over $200 with tip for 4 people--only 3 alcoholic beverages, no coffee and no dessert. Somewhat pricier than I expected"
    Dined on 7/10/2014
  • "Very good food. It was loud (open table would not allow me to select the loudest option), but we had fun with good drinks and food."
    Dined on 7/10/2014
  • "Serving are small plates but the pork tacos are amazing!"
    Dined on 7/9/2014
  • "We choose to eat here every single time we visit Washington D.C. It has the best authentic Mexican Fusion menu I have ever encountered. Anywhere. And I grew up in LA and lived in Phoenix for 8 years. I love regional Mexican food, and this is simply the best I have ever had. I have never had a bad dish, ever. The service was perfect. We stay at the Ritz Carlton, and the service rivals that of the Ritz while being more personable. This last visit was for an anniversary, and every special request was accomodated with a smile. My spouse has a corn allergy, and they delivered a special menu from the chef to accomodate. And every suggestion by the waiter was simply perfect. One problem, you may not be able to eat Mexican elsewhere!"
    Dined on 7/7/2014
  • "Oyamel is one of my favorite DC restaurants! Great cocktail list, fantastic and unusual food, and everything tastes super fresh. I love their seasonal specials, and the free chips and salsa are very high quality. The mushroom tacos, and pretty much any quesadilla is a lovely option, as is the fresh guacamole. Ceviche is so good there! The dishes are pretty small, so ordering 2-3 per person is a good bet. This makes a meal a little pricey, but well worth it. Very recommended!"
    Dined on 7/7/2014
  • "Enjoyed a great group dinner. Fabulous food including guacamole and good margaritas. Very attentive and flexible waiter. Even have an allergy menu."
    Dined on 7/7/2014
  • "The most outstanding thing about the restaurant was the decor. It was too noisy to have a table conversation; the tacos were soggy and skimpy; and the wait staff was quick to recommend we order starters before we really looked at the menu--a sure signal to me that the restaurant hoped we would rack up a huge bill without thinking. The entire experience left a bad taste in my mouth."
    Dined on 7/6/2014
  • "There is always a good vibe at Oyamel with great food and you can't beat the Oyamel Margaritas with the salt foam."
    Dined on 7/5/2014
  • "We are fans of Zaytinya, so we were pretty excited to try Oyamel and it didn't disappoint. This place is tapas style, so you can order a bunch of different things and share. We started off with the margarita of the day and it was super tasty. The tableside guacamole was really good. It was a bit pricey at $13.50, but it was tasty and more than enough for 2 people. We ordered a total of 6 dishes plus the guac and that was more than enough food. I wish I would have saved some room for dessert because the menu looked good, but that means I'll just have to come back again."
    Dined on 7/5/2014
  • "My friends and I had a very nice time at Oyamel at Saturday Brunch. Our waiter, Sam, was very energetic, everything was "awesome," the food was good and we were comfortable."
    Dined on 7/5/2014
  • "We've eaten here on many occasions when visiting DC. Recently the space has been enlarged which has made it more attractive and improved the noise level and general ambiance. Our waiter Sam was appropriately attentive and things seemed smoother than usual. The food was interestingly flavorful and attractively presented."
    Dined on 7/4/2014
  • "From the service to the food, everything was great. Ordered 8 dishes, loved them all. Try the margaritas."
    Dined on 7/4/2014
  • "Our family ate dinner here on the 4th of July. Food was great! My 16 year old daughter ate her first bite of guac here and she loved it. Reservation with Open Table worked out well. We walked in and were seated right away. Loved everything except that they cleared our table the minute we put our forks down. No chance to sit back and relax before they hustled us out the door."
    Dined on 7/4/2014
  • "Decided to make reservations here due to all of the reviews on yelp and opentable... The food was over priced for the quality. It is obvious the owners are buying false "good reviews" for themselves."
    Dined on 7/3/2014
  • "Food was average. Service was good, but the menu is confusing and the waiter was hard to understand in the noise."
    Dined on 7/3/2014
  • "Small plates were unique and delicious -- not your Mother's Mexican restaurant. Drinks were also fab. Bonus was that we got to meet Jose Andres who happened to be in the restaurant that evening. Service was first-rate!"
    Dined on 7/3/2014
  • "we experimented a bit and didn't like the 2 "experiments" we ordered, though that is probably not because they were not done very well, but because they were just not to our liking. these were 2 salads - nopalitos (baby cactus, which i now think is pretty yucky), and a seasonal fruit salad (gazpacho something, surprisingly not very tasty). but, everything else was outstanding - the cocktails (La Rosa Ponche), the El Bajio ceviche, the 2 different pork tacos we got, the service, and the great restaurant decor. so, if you experiment, sometimes you don't like what you get, sometimes its a new favorite."
    Dined on 7/3/2014
  • "Best dining experience in DC. A bit loud and pricey, but worth it for the fantastic food and service. They gave us the front window table for my wife's birthday. She loved it."
    Dined on 7/2/2014
  • "Couldn't hear a word my friends were saying. The food was decent but pricey. Waitress was very sweet but she and the bus boys were driving us crazy trying to clear plates we obviously had not finished! The irritation of the combination of intrusive service and the inability to have a conversation detracted from the interesting food."
    Dined on 7/1/2014
  • "Food is consistently good. Tuna ceviche, chicharones quesadillas, and brussel sprouts, all outstanding. Service was a bit slow getting drinks and then whisked away our food without offering to box it up. Ask for the special habenero salsa if you like hot & spicy."
    Dined on 7/1/2014
  • "Authentic Mexican is finally blossoming in the US and I couldn't be happier. Stumbled onto Oyamel years ago while visiting DC with my kids and now that both of them are in school down there, i include a meal at Oyamel as part of every visit. This wonderful place, along with Superica in Santa Monica in CA, are my two favorite places to eat Mexican "street food" in the U.S."
    Dined on 6/29/2014
  • "Oyamel is always fun. Terrific guacamole, great chips, and excellent salsa, which my friends and I nearly always order. Many unusual and intriguing small plates makes dining fun. Exotic drinks, some more successful than others."
    Dined on 6/29/2014
  • "The waiter came to the table get my order for the other party had arrived. When the other party did arrive it was 15 minutes before we saw the waiter again. He brought out our hot appetizers before the ceviche and all that was before the drinks arrived. When I mentioned that service have been poor, there was no apology, just an "oh". For the price, I certainly expected more! I will not be returning."
    Dined on 6/29/2014
  • "The décor was very chic and inviting. We loved the butterflies in the ceiling, on the entrance door, and on the restroom door. The guacamole was outstanding. The idea of Mexican tapas was creative. Every dish was tasty and well-done."
    Dined on 6/29/2014
  • "Jose Andres has built an empire but this piece of it needs some attention. The menu is extensive and interesting but the food just seems...old. The patatas mole are wilted french fries -- and not very many -- with some cheese and sauce on them. Not particularly interesting or good. There are touches that shine -- fresh cilantro, delicious brussels sprouts, but nothing tastes to impress or delight. I will give a shout out to our waiter who realized we were ordering all vegetarian dishes and pointed out that the refried beans were cooked with pork fat. Well done! And the restaurant is beautiful inside. If only the food aspired to be the same."
    Dined on 6/29/2014