Potenza
Potenza
Reviews Coming Soon

Potenza

  • Dining Style: Casual Elegant
  • Website: http://www.potenzadc.com/
  • Phone: 2026384444x0
  • Hours of Operation:
    Lunch: Monday - Friday: 11:30am -3:00pm Dinner: Monday - Thursday: 5:00pm - 10:00pm Friday:5:00pm - 11:00pm Saturday:4:00pm - 11:00pm Sundays: 3:00pm - 10:00pm WEEKEND HOURS DURING CHERRY BLOSSOM FESTIVAL March 20-April 27th: Saturdays: 12:00pm-11:00pm Sundays: 12:00pm-10:00pm
  • Payment Options: AMEX,Diners Club,Discover,MasterCard,Visa
  • Cuisine: Italian
  • Executive Chef: Stephen Hartzell
  • Dress Code: Business Casual
  • Accepts Walk-Ins: Yes
  • Additional Details: Banquet/Private Rooms, Bar Dining, Bar/Lounge, Beer, Cafe, Chef's Table, Counter Seating, Full Bar, Gluten-free Menu, Happy Hour, Late Night, Non-Smoking Area, Non-Smoking Restaurant, Patio/Outdoor Dining, Personal wines welcome (corkage fee applies), Takeout, View, Wheelchair Access, Wine, Wine Bar
  • Catering: We offer catering from our bakery and restaurant. Please contact events@potenzadc.com for more information.
  • Private Party Facilities: This unique combination of old world charm and exquisite dining draws you into the surroundings and energy of the inviting room, the unique food and the matchless service.
  • Private Party Contact: Melissa Pinkerton 2026384444x1
  • Special Events: Potenza is happy to accomodate you event needs with Semi private dinning in our historic all accomodating parties up to 45 people for more information contact us at 202-638-4444 and aske for Events.

Getting there

  • Public Transit: 2 blocks from McPherson Square metro
  • Parking: Valet
  • Parking Details: Valet parking available at 5pm nightly for $8
A word from Potenza
Named for a scenic town in southern Italy, Potenza, DC's favorite new Italian restaurant, is an authentic Italian showplace. Prepare yourself for a place steeped in tradition, comfort and warmth. Located in the historic Woodward Building, architectural details have been meticulously preserved, incorporated into a space that houses an active open kitchen. It's a feeling of old world detail that you might expect to find in Foggia, Italy.
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Potenza reviews from OpenTable diners
  • Closing - service has already left.
    WillieVIP
    Dined on 8/16/2012
    What a disappointment! I had been to Potenza several times in the past and always found it good. I decided to take out of town friends there (since we couldn't get into Old Ebbitt Grill). We found out that Potenza is closing on 19 August (so this review will do little good to help others). They were out of several menu items. Our server seemed truly disinterested - getting a drink refill was difficult - getting more ice was impossible. We asked for more bread and were told they were out - only bake so much each day and didn't have any more! What kind of Italian restaurant runs out of bread? (one going out of business). Overall one of the worst dining experiences ever in DC. If you read this before it closes - go somewhere else!
    • Food
    • Ambiance
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    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • Potenza, we will miss you
    OpenTable Diner Since 2006VIP
    Dined on 8/16/2012
    Went here on the Thursday before they were closing down, and while they were already starting to run out of dishes, they were still able to accommodate my friend's gluten-free diet with literally the last bag of gluten-free pasta they had. They forgot she was vegetarian, however, and brought the dish out with sausage on it - so back it went to get reworked into another dish. Despite the wait, the dish was still very good and we appreciated their attempts to make it right. Potenza's bar area preserves the fabulous details of the historic building it's in, and I really hope the new owner will do so as well in his renovations. While the restaurant and their bakery/takeout are closing, their wine shop will remain open. I'll miss eating there!
    Special Features:
    vibrant bar scene, fit for foodies, notable wine list
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • This place was great. We
    OpenTable Diner Since 2011
    Dined on 8/14/2012
    This place was great. We got a $400 bottle of wine because they are closing down in the next week. I am really sad that they will not be around any longer.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, neighborhood gem, notable wine list, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Din't like the food, It was
    Elizabeth
    Dined on 8/10/2012
    Din't like the food, It was not tastefull and it was not nicely presented.
    • Food
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    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Awful watery pasta with no
    OpenTable Diner Since 2007VIP
    Dined on 8/10/2012
    Awful watery pasta with no flavor. Would not go back.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • The food was great, but the
    GADawgVIP
    Dined on 8/1/2012
    The food was great, but the service was awful. A simple dinner took over 2 hours. They got our salad wrong, and service was just generally slow and uncaring.
    • Food
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    • Noise LevelModerate
  • The salads and drinks were
    PennlawVIP
    Dined on 7/27/2012
    The salads and drinks were very good. The entrees less so. And there were not many options at all for vegetarians -- the waiter recommended I could get spaghetti marinara with some added vegetables, so I did that but it was not much tastier than something I could have made myself at home. And the dessert was not more than mediocre. So overall I was disappointed, though I have had the pizza here before and that was quite tasty.
    Special Features:
    good for groups, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
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    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Good food, services needs work
    EnjoyfoodVIP
    Dined on 7/26/2012
    The food as always was very good. A great choice of options very well prepared. The summer salads are worth noting. The pasta is fresh and well prepared. The eggplant tortolini deserves special mention. Unfortunately the service seems to have slipped. Even on a light lunch crowd, our server had several issues.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for outdoor dining
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Fantastic experience! Food
    OpenTable Diner Since 2009VIP
    Dined on 7/25/2012
    Fantastic experience! Food was amazing and service was top notch. We loved it!
    • Food
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    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • Always Consistent. A great
    OpenTable Diner Since 2008
    Dined on 7/25/2012
    Always Consistent. A great place to dine after working all day downtown.
    Special Features:
    good for groups
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • I have been in Potenza a couple
    OpenTable Diner Since 2010
    Dined on 7/24/2012
    I have been in Potenza a couple of times and always had a good experience. This time was different. The chicken carbonara was uncooked and cold. Service was bad and slow. I heard that the restaurant is going to close, but this is no reaon to bad kitchen and bad service.
    • Food
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    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • i had heard good things about
    OpenTable Diner Since 2010VIP
    Dined on 7/23/2012
    i had heard good things about it from someone who has been a few times. i had the steak salad but i have to say that nothing on the menu really grabbed me. the food was good not great. i would go back again but i wouldnt say it was anything especially interesting or innovative, just good.
    • Food
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    • Noise LevelModerate
  • The food was fine, but not
    OpenTable Diner Since 2010
    Dined on 7/19/2012
    The food was fine, but not memorable. The service was friendly, but very spotty (we sat for over 10 minutes, completely ignored by wait staff, when we arrived, and then proceeded to be served by three different people.) The hostess also initially told us that half-orders of pizza and pasta would be available for kids (there is no children's menu, which in itself is fine), but later one of the many waiters we saw (the one we actually persuaded to take our order) told us that half orders of pizza were not possible. Oh well. (P.S. This is the only restaurant I know where the wait staff is clad entirely in black polyester leisure suits, with 'Italia' written on the back, which doesn't quite go with the vibe of the place.)
    Special Features:
    vibrant bar scene
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Consistently Great!
    OpenTable Diner Since 2012
    Dined on 7/19/2012
    I've been to Potenza many times for lunch only, and the service, food and surroundings have always been great! I would recommend anyone who likes Italian food to enjoy their menu.
    Special Features:
    good for groups, notable wine list, special occasion, great for lunch
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Love this Restaurant, the
    OpenTable Diner Since 2012
    Dined on 7/18/2012
    Love this Restaurant, the bar is excelent they always have nice cold beer. And the food is outstanding.
    Special Features:
    good for groups
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • I like Potenza and I would
    OpenTable Diner Since 2010
    Dined on 7/18/2012
    I like Potenza and I would recommend it to a friend. I went there for lunch a couple of times. The service and the food are good. I specially enjoy the burrata salad, lemonade and the tomato soup (not always available). The reason why I didn't give more stars to this reataurant is because I find its lunch menu too pricey.
    Special Features:
    special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
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    • Noise LevelCannot Recall
  • So sad to hear that they are
    WannaBfoodie
    Dined on 7/17/2012
    So sad to hear that they are going out of business (owner's choice I hear) but I had to go at least once before they did. I was not disappointed. The entree was amazing (chicken ravioli) and the server convinced me to try their Panna Cotta al Limone (I was having a bad day) and it was perfect for a hot summer's day. It was a touch loud, but we were also nexgt to a big group celebrating a birthday and it was a packed lunch crowd. Hoping I'll be able to get there one more time before they close their doors forever.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for outdoor dining, romantic, special occasion, great for lunch
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Potenza always smells good
    HooperVIP
    Dined on 7/15/2012
    Potenza always smells good when you walk in with a nice variety of really good food and attentive wait staff. It works really well with groups and very family friendly.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, kid-friendly, neighborhood gem, great for lunch
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • GREAT LUNCH EXPERIENCE
    OpenTable Diner Since 2012
    Dined on 7/13/2012
    We were very happy with our service and the food. My friend who was with me is a vegan, and our server recommended to her what was available on the menu suitable to a vegan, even pointing out the particular kind of pasta that was not made with eggs! Everything tasted great, and the staff were all wonderful - our server, the host, and the people who bring out the food and refill water! Thanks!
    Special Features:
    great for lunch
    • Food
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    • Service
    • Noise LevelCannot Recall
  • We were traveling through
    OpenTable Diner Since 2009
    Dined on 7/12/2012
    We were traveling through DC and came upon the reviews of Potenza and decided to try it. The food was delicious. The service was a bit slow and unattentive but otherwise we thoroughly enjoyed our dinner.
    Special Features:
    vibrant bar scene, fit for foodies, great for outdoor dining, neighborhood gem, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • We always go there when in
    OpenTable Diner Since 2012
    Dined on 7/12/2012
    We always go there when in dc and are very sad the great place is closing in august.
    Special Features:
    good for groups, late-night find, notable wine list, special occasion, great for lunch, hot spot
    • Food
    • Ambiance
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    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • I had a shrimp salad which
    JasmineVIP
    Dined on 7/11/2012
    I had a shrimp salad which was good, but the portion was small, given the price. The bread was also good, but the waiter forgot to bring the additional bread that we requested. Also, fresh parmesan and pepper were offered for our salads after we had eaten half of them. I understand that the restaurant is closing soon.
    Special Features:
    great for outdoor dining
    • Food
    • Ambiance
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    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Potenza is one of my favorite
    threedsr1
    Dined on 7/10/2012
    Potenza is one of my favorite Italian outposts! How sad I was to learn that they will be closing mid-August. The food is interesting, unique & well prepared & the service is impeccable.
    Special Features:
    vibrant bar scene, fit for foodies, great for outdoor dining, notable wine list, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Just love this place. I'm
    FoodieWannaBe
    Dined on 7/7/2012
    Just love this place. I'm heartbroken to know they are closing in August. Hurry and go while you can. The food is great but the service is not to be matched. Ask for Princess - she's GREAT.
    Special Features:
    neighborhood gem
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    • Ambiance
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    • Noise LevelModerate
  • The food was better than we
    KarineVIP
    Dined on 7/6/2012
    The food was better than we expected, and our waiter was very good (bald, speaks many languages. Warning for the faint of heart: there is a hostess who wears weird, scary make-up.I gave a moderate noise rating even though the music we had to endure at the bar while waiting for our table was loud and shrill, so when we were taken to our table we asked the hostess (not the spooky one)if we would have to cope with that music, which was bad for pleasant eating and digestion. She said she would lower it. She actually turned it off in that room, which made our experience much nicer.
    • Food
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    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Made the reservation based
    OpenTable Diner Since 2004
    Dined on 7/4/2012
    Made the reservation based on the recommendations found on opentable. It really was not good. Granted it was the 4th. It was very noisy not a place to go if you want to have a conversation.
    • Food
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    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Two thumbs up on the roasted
    NancyVAVIP
    Dined on 7/3/2012
    Two thumbs up on the roasted pomodoro soup! I also enjoyed the salad with roasted shrimp and the cappucino puts Starbucks et al to shame.
    Special Features:
    vibrant bar scene, fit for foodies, good for groups, neighborhood gem, great for lunch
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • It was a good dining experience,
    lobsterdeal
    Dined on 6/30/2012
    It was a good dining experience, but hurry because they are closing by the end of summer.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, notable wine list, romantic, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • I love this restaurant and
    OpenTable Diner Since 2005
    Dined on 6/28/2012
    I love this restaurant and its cafe. I'm incredibly sad that it's closing in August - go now for bronzino on Weds before it closes.
    Special Features:
    vibrant bar scene, fit for foodies, great for outdoor dining, neighborhood gem, romantic, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • The service was great, and
    OpenTable Diner Since 2012
    Dined on 6/24/2012
    The service was great, and the food was better. Our best dinner in DC all week. Our waiter had a good working knowledge of the menu, and gave us great recommendations. Overall great dining experience, and a wonderful surprise.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, kid-friendly, neighborhood gem, notable wine list
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • The mussels were wonderful
    OpenTable Diner Since 2011VIP
    Dined on 6/24/2012
    The mussels were wonderful but otherwise, the food was good but not outstanding. The menu was limited. Would have liked to see at least some additional seafood options.
    • Food
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    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • It was just "OK" for the price
    FlyOrDrive
    Dined on 6/21/2012
    It was just "OK" for the price you pay, the portion size is very small and the food is not great, just OK. I'm not saying it was bad, just not "5 star" worthy. Maybe the staff feels they don't have to be 5 star since they may know they are closing this location at the end of July.
    • Food
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    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Don't miss Potenza!
    Reggie
    Dined on 6/20/2012
    This place is phenomenal! The starter bread sticks were home baked goodness with Parmesan and flakiness! Waiter, Randy, knows his stuff and has an amazing sense of what the table needs/wants. The other wait staff was incredibly attentive too. We ordered a wide array of Italian foods - sea food, pasta, pork, soup, veggies, etc. We shared around the table so everyone could try everything. Plenty of food to make you full for the evening. The desserts are NOT to be missed! Try the house banana dessert - to DIE FOR!!! Kudos to a wonderful ambiance too! There was lots of laughter and frivolity to amuse everyone!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, notable wine list, great for lunch, hot spot
    • Food
    • Ambiance
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    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Overpriced, average food
    OpenTable Diner Since 2002
    Dined on 6/19/2012
    I've dined here several times for lunch and dinner. This time I had lunch ouside at the sidewalk cafe. The waiter was just going through the motions and seemed annoyed when we said we just wanted water with our meal. We had to ask for more water during the meal. The food was average. The beef stuffed manicotti ($15) was light on the braised beef and the chicken stuffed ravioli (6 for $18) was tasty but needed herbs to enhance the flavor. For average food, the prices are very high at Potenza. The average pasta price is $20!!
    Special Features:
    great for outdoor dining, great for lunch
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Best Pizza
    OpenTable Diner Since 2006VIP
    Dined on 6/19/2012
    Absolutely love this place. It has some of the best pizza (fennel sausage and roasted garlic) and meatballs that I've ever eaten. Their wine list is wonderful and 1/2 price bottles on Monday. The wait staff is courteous and very knowledgeable. I'm really sorry to hear that it will be closing soon (due to the group who owns it is getting out of the food business). It will be greatly missed.
    Special Features:
    vibrant bar scene, fit for foodies, good for groups, great for brunch, neighborhood gem, notable wine list, special occasion, great for lunch, hot spot
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • I've been several times and
    OpenTable Diner Since 2005VIP
    Dined on 6/17/2012
    I've been several times and most times have had great service and excellent food. This last time the service was quite bad but, even though we hadn't complained, they gave us a complimentary dessert drink. I'm certainly going again, but have lowered my expectations a bit. That said, it's great ambiance, delicious food, and fun drinks and wine!
    Special Features:
    vibrant bar scene, fit for foodies, great for outdoor dining, notable wine list, hot spot
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • My friends and I celebrated
    DCFoodie
    Dined on 6/16/2012
    My friends and I celebrated my birthday with a dinner at Potenza. Per prior reviews, I agree that they definitely have an extensive wine list. We were satisfied with everything from appetizers - like, arancini and calamari, to entrees - like, manicotti and seared tuna, and most especially dessert! Tiramisu, tortelli, and nutella gelato were so delectable. We will definitely come back!
    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
  • We had eaten here last year
    OpenTable Diner Since 2011
    Dined on 6/16/2012
    We had eaten here last year and remembered it as being more Mediterranean with more antipasti on the menu. We struggled to find vegetarian dishes and the waiter wasn't too helpful either. It has a good atmosphere but the food was mediocre for the prices charged.
    • Food
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    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Good place in the middle of
    OpenTable Diner Since 2010
    Dined on 6/15/2012
    Good place in the middle of downtown, on a spot where there are no many restaurants
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for lunch
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • We enjoyed an excellent Italian
    OpenTable Diner Since 2006
    Dined on 6/14/2012
    We enjoyed an excellent Italian dinner last week at Potenza. My husband chose ceal scallopine; I went with pasta and three different kinds of meat balls. Both of us were more than pleased. We are senior citizens, both a bit deaf, but the staff did their best to give us a quiet-ish table, which we appreciated. Potenza is neither fancy nor pretentious. It offers delicious Italian food at reasonable prices served by cheerful waitstaff. Young friends who live in DC recommended the restaurant to us as one of their favorites. They and their friends go often, and we understand why. We had fun at Potenza.
    Special Features:
    good for groups, kid-friendly, neighborhood gem, great for lunch
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic