Roof Terrace Restaurant & Bar
The John F. Kennedy Center
Washington, DC 20566Neighborhood:
Contemporary AmericanPrice: $50 and over
Roof Terrace Restaurant & Bar
- Dining Style: Casual Elegant
- Website: http://www.kennedy-center.org/visitor/restaurants/
- Phone: 2024168555x
- Hours of Operation:
Open before evening performances in the Kennedy Center Concert Hall and Opera House only. We do recommend to book your reservation 1.5 hours to 2 hours prior to the show.
Dinner: Reservations from 5:00PM to last seating at 6:45PM, Bistro and Lounge section available with no reservations. Hours vary according to the shows.
Sunday Brunch: Reservations from 11:00am to the last seating at 1:00pm (Hours for Special Events, such as Easter and Mother's Day may differ)
- Payment Options: AMEX,Carte Blanche,Diners Club,Discover,MasterCard,Visa
- Cuisine: Contemporary American
- Executive Chef: Joe Gurner
- Dress Code: Business Casual
- Accepts Walk-Ins: Yes
- Additional Details: Banquet/Private Rooms, Bar Dining, Bar/Lounge, Beer, Full Bar, Non-Smoking Restaurant, Personal wines welcome, Personal wines welcome (corkage fee applies), Private Room, View, Weekend Brunch, Wheelchair Access, Wine
- Catering: On performance nights, we can host a wonderful pre-show dining experience for up to 90 people in our Main Dining Room. On non-performance nights the entire dining room can captivate up to 250 for dinner with spectacular skyline views from Georgetown to the Monuments. Smaller parties can enjoy a more personal setting in the Private Dining Room, which can seat 30. We offer three and four-course dinner menus.
- Entertainment: Our Sunday Jazz Brunch features live Jazz nearly every Sunday from 11:00AM to 2:00PM. Our New Year's Eve dining will feature live Jazz from 5:00PM until after midnight.
- Cross Street: Virginia Avenue NW
- Public Transit: Foggy Bottom Metro on the Orange & Blue Lines. Kennedy Center provides free shuttle to/from Foggy Bottom Metro.
- Parking: Public Lot
- Parking Details: Three levels of garage parking is available under the Kennedy Center. Very limited street parking is available in surrounding area.
A word from Roof Terrace Restaurant & Bar
Enjoy a fantastic culinary experience and unequalled skyline views through two-story windows high above the Potomac River. The contemporary interior features chrome, glass, suede, and wood with accents of granite. Check out the critically-acclaimed Sunday Kitchen Buffet Brunch. The Roof Terrace Restaurant & Bar is located on the Roof Terrace level of the Kennedy Center above the Hall of Nations.Continued
Foodspotting photosSee all photos
Awards voted by OpenTable diners
- Diners' Choice WinnerScenic View
Roof Terrace Restaurant & Bar - Best Restaurants in Foggy Bottom ›
Roof Terrace Restaurant & Bar reviews from OpenTable diners
314 reviews since June 22, 2014
- Ambiance3.8Noise LevelModerate
scenic view (198)special occasion (182)great for brunch (70)fit for foodies (69)romantic (64)good for groups (53)kid-friendly (33)notable wine list (22)great for lunch (19)neighborhood gem (15)hot spot (7)vibrant bar scene (4)late-night find (3)great for outdoor dining (1)Show More
- not the best value for the priceOpenTable Diner Since 2012Dined on 10/16/2014We chose this restaurant because w had theater tickets, so it was very convenient. However, you pay for that convenience. The food and service were fine, but nowhere near worth the $200 dollar bill. I'd you plan to go to the Kennedy center, add extra time before your seating and go somewhere else.Special Features:
- Dining convenient to Kennedy CenterBobSVIPDined on 10/15/2014The Roof Terrace has always been a fairly good, but overpriced restaurant. Since it's so convenient when seeing a show at the Kennedy Center, it's always busy. In the past couple of years the food has improved almost to where it was around 15 years ago. The Tenderloin with frites is excellent, as is the rainbow trout. We love the spicy tuna tartare appetizer. The rolls are not as good as the nut rolls of years past, but they are excellent. Service is attentive, but I resent having the waiters pushing the entrees that management has told them to push. We overheard several waiters recommending the same entrees.Special Features:
- OpenTable Diner Since 2014Dined on 10/14/2014Everyone was friendly, we were seated immediatly. No problem with our reservation. Waiter was attentive. My wife had a caeser salad and I had the gazpacho, we both had the grilled Branzino (fish) for the main course. Food/wine was good. I thought the prices were comparatively high based on the overall experience. However, I don't get to DC much so this may be normal. If I were to compare this to Emerial's New Orleans I would not rate it high. Still OK but not the same based on overall experience.Special Features:
- Music LoverOpenTable Diner Since 2014Dined on 10/14/2014The best place to eat before a theater event at the Kennedy Center. Park, relax and be sure to get to the show on time without last minute traffic hassles. The menu is varied enough to suit almost anyone. They could change it more often however. This is my third or fourth time to eat there and I think the menu has only changed once. The table for four was on the small side and somewhat crowded. I have enjoyed the table for five which is much more spacious. The drinks were good as was the food and the service. I plan to return.Special Features:
- Great Sunday BrunchAmklDined on 10/12/2014We went for brunch before a performance and it was perfect. Great food and we had time to sroll before the event.Special Features:I would recommend this to a friend.
- Good ValueWillimVIPDined on 10/12/2014$39.95 per person for buffet Sunday Brunch, with tax/tip call it $50 each. This is a great value for all you can eat: oysters on the half shell; boiled & spiced shrimp; king crab legs; mussels; clams; smoked salmon and other fish with all the condiments; Eggs Benedict; sausage & bacon; waffles; pancakes; potatoes; salads galore; prime rib; assorted pastries and rolls; omelets made to order; gorgeous dessert bar with lots of choices; and more. The price includes one Mimosa or glass of Champagne. Table service for coffee and drinks. Best time to go is early when they open, so as to avoid crowds which can build as you get closer to curtain times. The Potomac River cannot be seen from the Roof Terrace Restaurant, but you can walk outside.Special Features:I would recommend this to a friend.
- A good choice before the showJackVIPDined on 10/11/2014Nice menu options, well-prepared and presented and an elegant setting. Overall, a good (and very convenient) dining option for Kennedy Center events. Our server was very warm and friendly and we really enjoyed our "French Connection" sampler dessert.Special Features:
- lc01Dined on 10/10/2014Easiest way to dine before a Kennedy Center performance. No parking hassle or worry about making it on time to the performance.Special Features:I would recommend this to a friend.
- OpenTable Diner Since 2013Dined on 10/10/2014the food was acceptible but not that interesing given the price and location. Could do more to make it a special occasionSpecial Features:I would recommend this to a friend.
- Great pre-theater dininggw77Dined on 10/9/2014Ahi tuna appetizer was amazing, and the service was excellent.Special Features:
- Good Dining ExperienceWNT1Dined on 10/9/2014We chose the Roof Terrace Restaurant because we were going to a 7:30 performance at the Kennedy Center. We enjoyed a leisurely dining experience. The service was excellent and the food was delicious. We can recommend the beef tenderloin, the grilled asparagus, and the leche quemada for dessert. We missed the variety of breads we enjoyed on a previous visit, but the bread we had was very good.Special Features:I would recommend this to a friend.
- DeliciousgudfudDined on 10/9/2014Best crab cake ever! Excellent service and delicious food!Special Features:
- Relaxing pre-show but won't be backtype2dineDined on 10/8/2014We were going to a show at 7:30 pm at the Kennedy Center, and thought the occasion deserved a special dinner. We didn't want to rush or be concerned with directions and parking, so we settled on the Roof Terrace for both convenience and the caliber of the restaurant. We don't often splurge on special dinners; we won't come here again when we do. The seating is a bit cramped, close in to neighboring guests. Order the bottle of wine if you go; the glass is really only 1/2 a glass and you will want more. The crab cake was excellent, but did not come with a side at $38. The steak and fries were also excellent. We skipped the uninspired desserts. Overall I am happy we went, but they have not lured us back with their food or ambiance.Special Features:
- Juan-GiovanniOpenTable Diner Since 2004Dined on 10/8/2014Overall an enjoyable experience, with fantastic service, and, finally, proper wine glasses! The view is spectacular and the perfect place for dinner if attending a show at Kennedy.Special Features:I would recommend this to a friend.
- A Must for Pre ShowSMCIrishDined on 10/7/2014This was our second Pre-theatre dining experience and I plan to do it again for our next show. Even though this is a popular venue, we were treated as if we were the only diners. The staff is professional and friendly. Food was excellent and the prices, for D.C., were good.Special Features:
- Food missed the markSuzieVIPDined on 10/7/2014Service was excellent. However, the food missed the mark. The crab cakes were all filling and the desert was awful.
- Delicious branzinofoodieforeverVIPDined on 10/5/2014After having been to the Kennedy Center numerous times for performances, we decided to dine for the first time at the Roof Terrace. We were prepared for the high prices and the scenic, but not spectacular, view. We were fortunate to be seated by the window, and our server was polite and efficient. We both ordered the whole grilled branzino with fingerling potatoes and fennel which was perfectly prepared and delicious (even though the small bones were annoying). We thought that the apps, desserts and wine were even more overpriced than the entrees and therefore limited ourselves to just entrees and a glass of wine. Overall it was a pleasant experience.Special Features:I would recommend this to a friend.
- Just OkayOpenTable Diner Since 2009Dined on 10/4/2014though this location can't be beat and the wait staff are truly curteous and attentive, the food was simply average. my meal was overdone and unappealing and for the price - that was very disappointing.Special Features:I would recommend this to a friend.
- NonamereviewerVIPDined on 10/4/2014This is certainly convenient for attending a show at the Kennedy Center and the food is pretty good, but the service can be very slow. Although they always get you to the show on time, sometimes it makes you a little nervous because there are long gaps between your waiter's appearance.
- ExpensiveOpenTable Diner Since 2014Dined on 10/4/2014I know it's supposed to be expensive but... My main gripe is the menu was heavy on seafood leaving only chicken or steak as an alternative with no specials. The chicken was nothing special and was rather dry at that. It would be nice to have a choice of veggies as well. The bread was fine but had to ask for butter. The butter salad was interesting but the lump of cheese was pretty salty. I'm not a big fennel fan either. The cote d'ivoire finish was very good/rich.Special Features:
- Great Wedding Anniversary NightAndyMDDined on 10/4/2014Everything went perfectly. The server was attentive without being obtrusive and immediately asked for our Showtime. The salads were well prepared, fresh and chilled. Entrees were well portioned leaving just enough room to share a terrific Creme brûlée. Can't imagine a better forerunner to Evita!Special Features:I would recommend this to a friend.
- Not as good as it used to betheaterloverDined on 10/4/2014For years we dined with the Roof Terrace before going to the theater. It has always been a treat and we could expect great service and great food. The service remains excellent. The food is highly mediocre. For two people our bill was $270 including dinner, drinks and tip. This is not an inexpensive evening. The selection is limited from the appetizers to the desserts. The menu is too avant garde and does not lend to a family experience. For years I brought my children for fine dining experience. I would not consider taking my grandchildren. The drinks were the highlight of the evening. Perfectly made - kudos to the bartender. This is the second time I have come to this restaurant and was disappointed. We will not come back.Special Features:
- OpenTable Diner Since 2002VIPDined on 10/4/2014Convenience to the theater and excellent service are the restaurant's highlights. The beet salad is indeed well presented and very tasty. The scallops were perfectly cooked.I would recommend this to a friend.
- Good pre-theater diningcfullerVIPDined on 10/1/2014We've been here many times prior to shows at the Kennedy Center. This is not the greatest restaurant in town. The prices are high, especially the wine, but you just can't beat the convenience of leisurely dining and then taking the elevator down to the show. This time, 3 of us shared the mussels as an appetizer, but I was disappointed that 5-6 of them hadn't opened and there was no accommodation for this poor showing except regret by thew waitress who was very good. The lobster and risotto was excellent, the Branzino good, and the gnoccis ok but bland. The chocolate mousse was excellent. Usually, 5:45 is fine for a 7:30 show, but this Wednesday the restaurant was packed and we had to push a bit to get down in time.Special Features:I would recommend this to a friend.
- GoodfoodandambianceDined on 9/28/2014I was looking for a dining experience with a view while visiting my son in DC. I stumbled upon the Roof top Terrace on the web. We four. (Mom, dad, son 28, daughter 27,) were all happy to be at this overlooked gem! The food was bountiful and delicious! The servers were pleasant and attentive. We coupled this meal with the free tour of the Kennedy Center which concluded with the 360 degree rooftop views of DC. The only downside for me was the brunch buffet delivery. (I can get turned off by the germ factor involved in sharing a serving spoon with all who have gone before me). Perhaps they could have station servers. There were certainly enough employees around.Special Features:I would recommend this to a friend.
- charmcityredDined on 9/26/2014Convenient if you have tickets for the Kennedy Center, but the food seems to be going downhill.
- Kennedy center diningMicheleVIPDined on 9/26/2014My husband is recovering from foot surgery and is in a wheel chair. Had tickets for the opera. So, not going far and for the first time went to the restaurant at the Kennedy Center. I had never gone since I figured the food was terrible - but the food was very well done. Small menu, good selections. I had a salad and the grilled branzino. Fish was perfectly cooked. The waiter was excellent and got us in and out in plenty of time for the performance without us feeling rushed.
- Excellent pre-theater mealoperagourmetDined on 9/22/2014Quality of the food was excellent, and the service was courteous and efficient. Prices, while not cheap, were reasonable given the location atop Washington's Kennedy Center. I enjoyed the grilled Branzino very much indeed, although I noted that the choice of non-seafood entrees was very limited. The dining room is large and appropriately formal, but would not appeal to someone seeking a more intimate space.Special Features:I would recommend this to a friend.
- Not a particularly good restaurant!MichaelDined on 9/20/2014Actually, this restaurant's only saving grace is that it is conveniently located for folks who have Kennedy Center tickets. Otherwise, the food is quite overpriced, the waiters are a bit in need of fine-tuning, and the ambience is lacking.Special Features:
- Mediocre , overpriced.UnseenteethDined on 9/20/2014My girlfriend and I dined at the Roof Terrace prior to watching 'Florencia in the Amazon' in the opera house below. Our server was relatively cold, and unfriendly, noting that 'we should have showed up earlier' because of our showtime ( we were over an hour early, and finished with 30 minutes to spare, so I don't know what he was smoking). The food was traditional american fare, I opted for a steak. It wasn't bad, but certainly didn't do much to justify the rather massive bill. In all, I would not recommend this restaurant to anyone. If you happen to be going to a show at the Kennedy center , you would do a lot better finding food elsewhere before heading there.Special Features:
- Pleasant surprise.BruceDined on 9/20/2014I've read mixed reviews on this restaurant. We were taking my visiting cousin to the opera and decided to go there for the convenience of it's location. I was pleasantly surprised by the food quality as were all in the party. Prices were a bit high though. Some reviews mentioned the wonderful vistas. We had a window table but could not see beyond the railing and shrubbery... one would have to walk out onto the terrace for a panoramic view of the city. All in all pleasant experience and would recommend it.Special Features:I would recommend this to a friend.
- Surprised!GreatDined on 9/14/2014We were all surprised how good the food and service was! The reviews weren't that great, but it's convenient if you're going to a show at the Kennedy Center. We would absolutely go back again and we had a party of 6.Special Features:
- before the showdepazDined on 9/14/2014What a lovely place!! The food was good, and it was great to be right there for our show.Special Features:
- Good before a showTerryDined on 9/14/2014Always good to stop in for dinner before a show, because you can arrive early, park and be in the building. It is expensive but convenient.Special Features:I would recommend this to a friend.
- Incredible BrunchDrewDined on 9/14/2014The view is only upstaged by the food! Great quality at an unlimited quantity!Special Features:I would recommend this to a friend.
- Great Brunch with a viewToshDined on 9/14/2014I went here for brunch in September and it was a great experience. The brunch is a self serve style with an omelet and dessert station. The dinning room is inside with glass walls which allows a lot of light in, however, you will not have a great view while you dine because the ledge is too high. The dining hall is a bit dated but it is the Kennedy Center. After we finished this all you can eat brunch, we strolled around the rooftop outside which had amazing views. My only suggestion for this place is to allow outdoor seating on days with great weather.Special Features:I would recommend this to a friend.
- $50 including tip a stealrufkdlkDined on 9/14/2014i thought the service was good for a buffet but didn't understand kitchen concept, since what was in kitchen might as well have been out front, omelette station was almost a disaster when chef caught cloth napkin on fire. Liked biscuits but very small, ditto bacon, i thought the desserts also were way too small, even three were less than a cup of berries, mousse, etc so that could be improved for sure. Guests seemed to be seated too close together for my taste particularly since waiters weren't serving them, they were helping themselves to the buffet. Beverages were good though.Special Features:
- Cold, bland foodVAFoodieDined on 9/13/2014The view and convenience of the Roof Terrace Restaurant makes dinner before a show at the Kennedy Center special. However, the cold bland food is hardly worth the expense.Special Features:
- OpenTable Diner Since 2014Dined on 9/13/2014I was expecting a nicer setting. Tables outside would be nice and the décor for the Kennedy Center seemed a bit lacking. It was convenient for the show that followed, but not as nice as I expected by any means.Special Features:
- Perfect for a Night at the TheaterSteveDined on 9/13/2014Can not be beat for a delightful evening of fine food, and fine wine to accompany a night of theater at the incomparable Kennedy Center.Special Features: