Central Michel Richard
Central Michel Richard

Central Michel Richard

  • Dining Style: Casual Elegant
  • Website: http://www.centralmichelrichard.com/
  • Phone: 2026260015x
  • Hours of Operation:
    Lunch: Monday - Friday: 11:30am - 2:30pm Dinner: Monday - Thursday: 5:00pm - 10:30pm Friday:5:00-11:00pm - Saturday: 5:00pm - 11:00pm
    Sunday: 11:00am - 2:30pm
  • Payment Options: AMEX,Discover,MasterCard,Visa
  • Cuisine: American, French
  • Executive Chef: David Deshaies
  • Dress Code: Casual Dress
  • Accepts Walk-Ins: Yes
  • Additional Details: Banquet/Private Rooms, Bar Dining, Bar/Lounge, Beer, Counter Seating, Full Bar, Happy Hour, Non-Smoking Area, Non-Smoking Restaurant, Private Room, Smoking Area, Weekend Brunch, Wine, Wine Bar
  • Private Party Facilities: Join us at Central Michel Richard for your next business meeting or special occasion. Our Jean Louis room is available for lunch and dinner and features a floor to ceiling glass wall that allows your group to see all the action of our open kitchen. It is also equipped with exceptional meeting amenities including a flat screen television and an independent sound system with ipod/cd/dvd/pc capabilities. We look forward to hosting your event.
  • Private Party Contact: pdr@centralmichelrichard.com 2026260015x
  • Special Events: Our Jean Louis private dining room accommodates up 16 people. It has exceptional amenities including a flat screen tv and a sound system with cd/dvd/ipod compatibility.

Getting there

  • Cross Street: 11th
  • Public Transit: walk from Archives/Navy Memorial, Federal Triangle, or Metro Center
  • Parking: Valet
  • Parking Details: Valet at night $8 starting at 5:00pm; self parking during the day
A word from Central Michel Richard
Michel Richard's modern American brasserie,and winner of the 2008 James Beard award for best new restaurant is located on Penn. Ave NW between the White House and the Capitol. We serve Michel's tribute to great American cuisine, both modern and classic, with a French accent. A vibrant bar scene with boutique beer and wines, and modern and classic cocktails.
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Central Michel Richard reviews from OpenTable diners
470 reviews since June 25, 2014
Overall Rating4.2
  • Food4.3
    Service4.1
  • Ambiance3.9
    Noise LevelEnergetic
89% of reviewers would recommend this restaurant to a friend.
fit for foodies (289)special occasion (167)great for lunch (131)hot spot (119)neighborhood gem (96)notable wine list (90)good for groups (88)vibrant bar scene (80)great for outdoor dining (70)romantic (52)great for brunch (27)late-night find (23)kid-friendly (16)scenic view (7)Show More
  • Great food - excellent risotto.
    OpenTable Diner Since 2008
    Dined on 3/30/2008
    Great food - excellent risotto. Pompous waiter with attitude to spare. Service is supposed to be about catering to your customer's needs...we didn't experience that. If the waiter had been as good as the food - we'd have had a great time. But we won't be back because of the service.
    Special Features:
    good for groups
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • We were very disappointed
    MerelVIP
    Dined on 3/30/2008
    We were very disappointed with the food, with the manner of preparation, and with the attitude of our server. They also serevd a wine that we didn't order (the wrong year) which they said was just a typo on the wine list. We sent it back after tasting it and they were not pleased. We also had to request proper size wine glasses, which should have been offered in the first place. It was a mediocre experience.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, hot spot
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • The "72 hour" short ribs were
    OpenTable Diner Since 2007
    Dined on 3/30/2008
    The "72 hour" short ribs were not cooked -- the meat was rare and tough, as though it had not been cooked for long. A steak knife was needed to cut it, and it was very chewy. Our first server was wonderful, but because we had to move to a larger table (our fault, one of our guests brought a friend), the second server was very inattentive. This was my third visit, and though I enjoyed the first two dinners, this third one makes me think I might not go back.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • The food was superb. The service
    DGdineVIP
    Dined on 3/29/2008
    The food was superb. The service was impeccable. Wow what an experience! Thank you.
    Special Features:
    notable wine list, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • A little bit of a disappointment
    ZenKitchenVIP
    Dined on 3/29/2008
    A little bit of a disappointment with the food given the status of Michel Richard. Ordered a side of green beans and they came drowning in a gravy type sauce -- not even edible. Wait staff was blase -- not unfriendly, but definitely just going through the motions. It was very busy and had a good vibe to it. Bill was $135.00 with two glasses of house wine and a beer -- one hamburger, one salad and a very fatty rib eye steak -- so much fat on it, that half of it was inedible. I would return, but maybe just for lunch in the bar area.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, neighborhood gem, great for lunch, hot spot
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • The food was not at all what
    FrankVIP
    Dined on 3/29/2008
    The food was not at all what it was hyped up to be. It wasn't bad, but we were led to believe it would be much better. It seemed more like a high class diner for old people who don't want to spend a lot for a halfway decent meal out.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Dessert was below average.
    OpenTable Diner Since 2006VIP
    Dined on 3/29/2008
    Dessert was below average. Expected more from Mr. Richard who started out as a pastry chef. The banana split was no different from Friendly's. Presentation was not there for the price range of the food.
    Special Features:
    vibrant bar scene
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • One of the best burgers ever!
    OpenTable Diner Since 2005
    Dined on 3/28/2008
    One of the best burgers ever! Amazing mussel chowder, fried chicken & mashed potatoes. Fries were good but not great. Our waiter forgot a couple of things & just had no personality @ all. Decor was OK but nothing special, but the open kitchen is a great touch.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, special occasion, hot spot
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Chef Richard has created a
    OpenTable Diner Since 2005VIP
    Dined on 3/28/2008
    Chef Richard has created a lively, happy atmosphere and an appealing, fairly-priced menu that combine to make a really enjoyable dining experiece! Well worth the effort to get in...
    Special Features:
    vibrant bar scene, fit for foodies, great for brunch, late-night find, neighborhood gem, notable wine list, special occasion, great for lunch, hot spot
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • We will be back. If we lived
    Stoker
    Dined on 3/28/2008
    We will be back. If we lived in the neighborhood, it would be hard to not go every weekend!! Our food overall was great, but a little heavy-handed with the salt. The drinks were good, but the bartender had run out of cherries for the Manhattan--however, the waiter did bring some from the kitchen two sips later. Everyone loved the wine which we will try to find around Virginia. The star for the evening would have to go to the baker and his bread--hot from the reheating oven with a crust that can't be beat.
    Special Features:
    vibrant bar scene, fit for foodies, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • We LOVED the food and the
    Fashionista
    Dined on 3/28/2008
    We LOVED the food and the service was phenomenal. It was rather loud. The food is definitely worth the trip.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, notable wine list, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Friendly, and helpful wait
    OpenTable Diner Since 2008
    Dined on 3/28/2008
    Friendly, and helpful wait staff. Gave us some excellent recommendations both food and wine. We brought our 11 and 12 year old with us and they were treated like adults. We live 9 hours from this restaurant, but my wife said she would be willing to make the drive just to eat there again.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, notable wine list, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • It was excellent says my son,
    AMDCRESTAURANTFINDERVIP
    Dined on 3/28/2008
    It was excellent says my son, "the chocolate mousse was exquisite"!
    Special Features:
    vibrant bar scene, fit for foodies, good for groups, kid-friendly, great for lunch
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Two of us had the infamous
    TinaB
    Dined on 3/28/2008
    Two of us had the infamous lobster burger and were both disappointed. Too much tamale in the burger which tended to make it fishy tasting. Our companions had the tuna burger and we all loved it. At $32/lobster burger I wished I had ordered something else. Waiter was fairly inattentive, forgeting one of our drinks and just not being available as we dined.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for lunch
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • The reviews are much better
    OpenTable Diner Since 2006
    Dined on 3/27/2008
    The reviews are much better than the actual experience. I've been a few times, usually on dates, the food is very good, but the environment makes me feel like I'm in a Fur's Cafeteria. All in all, not really worth the money and absolutely not worth the hype.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Good food. Bit creamy and
    OpenTable Diner Since 2008
    Dined on 3/27/2008
    Good food. Bit creamy and a bit salty but otherwise very very good. Reasonable price. Lovely wine list. Lovely service.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, notable wine list, special occasion, hot spot
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • It did not live up to the
    OpenTable Diner Since 2005
    Dined on 3/27/2008
    It did not live up to the hype. Would not go back.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • The simple menu doesn't reflect
    OpenTable Diner Since 2009
    Dined on 3/27/2008
    The simple menu doesn't reflect the complexity of the dishes. My fried chicken with a creamy mustard sauce was outstanding. The short ribs were super. The creamed spinach had cheese in it & was wonderful. There service was very attentive. Just an outstanding restaurant!
    Special Features:
    vibrant bar scene, fit for foodies, hot spot
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Very pleasantly surprised.
    OpenTable Diner Since 2006
    Dined on 3/27/2008
    Very pleasantly surprised. Food was outstanding, service was impeccable. Loved it. Wil go back many times.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for lunch, hot spot
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • I don't understand what all
    OpenTable Diner Since 2004
    Dined on 3/27/2008
    I don't understand what all the buzz is about. I returned to Central only because a friend wanted to try it. I've had several disappointing lunches there, and one good dinner. The food is nothing special and the service always disappoints.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • One could have tolerated the
    toughchefVIP
    Dined on 3/25/2008
    One could have tolerated the incredible noise level and poor service if the food been at least good. People looked happy; the result of good bar keeps and an affordable/interesting wine list. Risotto appetizer was undercooked and watery, served with mushrooms that were later the same mushrooms served with the loup de mer. At least the repeated flavor provided some taste to both dishes. The fish was over cooked, served with a drenched argula salad and swimming in an oil slick. The only flavor to the tuna carpaccio was the diced onion on top. I would never go back. Having lived in LA I am familar with Richard's early work: great! Citronelle and now Central are critic darlings for no reason other than his name. How sad. Felt used.
    Special Features:
    notable wine list
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • The food and the service were
    OpenTable Diner Since 2006
    Dined on 3/25/2008
    The food and the service were outstanding. I will dine there again.
    Special Features:
    special occasion, great for lunch
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Impeccably prepared, delicious
    OpenTable Diner Since 2007VIP
    Dined on 3/25/2008
    Impeccably prepared, delicious comfort food. It would be great if there were a couple more vegetarian options.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for lunch, hot spot
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Friendly reception, opentable.com
    OpenTable Diner Since 2008
    Dined on 3/25/2008
    Friendly reception, opentable.com reservation exactly right, knowledgeable waitress who provided excellent menu advice, food was superb with nice presentation. Very pleasant experience. I live in the Penn Quarter neighborhood and plan to return often to Central.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, neighborhood gem, great for lunch
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Portions here are enormous.
    OpenTable Diner Since 2008
    Dined on 3/24/2008
    Portions here are enormous. Share your plates! We ordered and wasted way too much food here. While the service was efficient, it was not personal like the other restaurants we went to (Tosca, Jaleo, Cafe Atlantico). Would go back, probably without kids, and share.
    Special Features:
    vibrant bar scene, fit for foodies, good for groups, kid-friendly, late-night find, neighborhood gem, notable wine list, special occasion, scenic view, hot spot
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Thank you so much for the
    OpenTable Diner Since 2008
    Dined on 3/24/2008
    Thank you so much for the vegetarian onion soup! I cannot eat meat, so it had been years since I had tasted my favorite soup. A small criticism of the goat cheese Caesar salad: the overabundance of dressing made the entire salad mushy. The soft goat cheese should be balanced by crisp greens or croutons. Unfortunately, the greens drowning in dressing and cheese were not terribly appetizing.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, special occasion, great for lunch, hot spot
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • - food was not ok, but not
    OpenTable Diner Since 2007
    Dined on 3/23/2008
    - food was not ok, but not great. - too much light. The atmosphere we did not consider great. cool to look into the kitchen, but the tables felt like in a waiting room - the places on the benches (way too soft and low) are claustrophic. I could not sit there, but would have prefered since otherwise you do not see the bar.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Our waiter was fantastic.
    OpenTable Diner Since 2008
    Dined on 3/23/2008
    Our waiter was fantastic. Brent acted as if we were his only costumers. HE is a true gem. Thank you for making out 2 year anniversary the best yet.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, notable wine list, special occasion, hot spot
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Highlight: The onion and lardons
    OpenTable Diner Since 2005
    Dined on 3/23/2008
    Highlight: The onion and lardons tart. Lowlight: Asian-style carpaccio - the fish is too delicate to stand up to the soy-based sauce.
    Special Features:
    vibrant bar scene, fit for foodies, romantic, special occasion, hot spot
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Food was very good! Fun evening.
    Alex
    Dined on 3/22/2008
    Food was very good! Fun evening. My espresso coffee was horrible; weak, lukewarm, no “crema”. I should have sent it back but it would have ruined an otherwise perfect evening for the table.
    Special Features:
    vibrant bar scene, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Met briefly with Monsieur
    OpenTable Diner Since 2008
    Dined on 3/22/2008
    Met briefly with Monsieur Michel Richard, he was absolutely friendly and it was an honor to have chatted with him for even a minute.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, kid-friendly, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • If you can get a table, book
    OpenTable Diner Since 2006
    Dined on 3/22/2008
    If you can get a table, book it! This was a terrific meal. Only complaint is the wine-by-the-glass list. VERY few options.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, hot spot
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Great Bistro with excellent
    OpenTable Diner Since 2005
    Dined on 3/22/2008
    Great Bistro with excellent menu and food. Usually the service is excellemt but our waiter was not quite there.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for lunch, hot spot
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • The food was excellent. The
    OpenTable Diner Since 2005VIP
    Dined on 3/22/2008
    The food was excellent. The whole experience was diminished somewhat by two things: the noise level (we seemed to be right under the music speakers) and the fact that the servers (not the waiters) did not speak good English -- so when one of our party switched seats and tried to explain to the servers that the food was being placed in front of the wrong people, the servers had no clue what she was saying. We would definitely return, though -- and ask again for a quiet table.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • I was not sure if it was a
    OpenTable Diner Since 2004VIP
    Dined on 3/21/2008
    I was not sure if it was a nice French place or a loud American restaurant, I guess you could call it fusion.
    Special Features:
    hot spot
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Delicious food without pretension,
    SanFranManVIP
    Dined on 3/21/2008
    Delicious food without pretension, served beautifully with delicious wine.
    Special Features:
    vibrant bar scene, fit for foodies, notable wine list, hot spot
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • We sat near the kitchen which
    Namastai
    Dined on 3/21/2008
    We sat near the kitchen which was great - good cooking show and less noise. The main restaurant was VERY noisy and I would have had less of a positive experience if we'd been seated there. LOVED being by the kitchen.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, notable wine list, special occasion, hot spot
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Loved Central Michel Richard!
    OpenTable Diner Since 2006VIP
    Dined on 3/21/2008
    Loved Central Michel Richard! Great food and vibe.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, hot spot
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Used open table to make a
    OpenTable Diner Since 2007
    Dined on 3/21/2008
    Used open table to make a lunch reservation. The only available time was 2:30pm. I accepted that, but when I arrived at the restaurant, I was told they stop serving lunch at 2:30. They did grudgingly accept the reservation but made it very clear we were putting them out. The food was lovely, service, less so. Very disappointed in the desserts. There was nothing new or interesting to try. The Kit Kat dessert was fair tasting, but the presentation was uninspired at best.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for lunch
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Great food. Only thing that
    OpenTable Diner Since 2011
    Dined on 3/20/2008
    Great food. Only thing that is not very good is the light. There is too much light and it does not make the place cozy
    Special Features:
    neighborhood gem, hot spot
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate