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  • Roof Terrace Restaurant & Bar

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Roof Terrace Restaurant & Bar
Roof Terrace Restaurant & Bar
  • Address:
    The John F. Kennedy Center
    Washington, DC 20566
    Neighborhood:
    Foggy Bottom
  • Cuisine:
    Contemporary American
    Price: $50 and over

Roof Terrace Restaurant & Bar Details

  • Dining Style: Casual Elegant
  • Website: http://www.kennedy-center.org/visitor/restaurants/
  • Phone: (202) 416-8555
  • 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.

Getting there

  • 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
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Awards voted by OpenTable diners
  • Diners' Choice WinnerScenic View
Diner Reviews
  • "Looking to catch a bite to eat prior to watching Lion King we thought we would give Rooftop Terrace a try. Really wish we hadn't. The food was sub-par and not of the quality you would expect from the Kennedy Center. The food reminded me of something you would get from a cafeteria. Not to mention that for two adults and two children our bill was almost $200. Save your money and give yourself extra time to have dinner in Georgetown."
    Dined on 7/8/2014
  • "I absolutely enjoyed my experience at this restaurant. The food was fabulous. The waitress was attentive but not hovering. The atmosphere was pleasant. A true gem of a fine. Will definitely return."
    Dined on 7/8/2014
  • "the food was very tasty welled seasoned and the servers were very curteous and friendly."
    Dined on 7/5/2014
  • "You have to be an "in" person to get a table at the window. Not worth it unless you are going to a show."
    Dined on 7/1/2014
  • "Great place to take visitors. However, I've been here twice and the service has been slow."
    Dined on 7/6/2014
  • "I took my good friend and her daughter to brunch on Sunday as a precursor to seeing the Lion King at the Kennedy Center, we arrived earlier than our 11:30 am reservation, got seated immediately and were brought Mimosas right away, she was very impressed with the whole experience, we got a seat by the window overlooking DC. The buffet had both breakfast and light lunch fare so she was able to find a lot to eat. Her daughter is 7 and was able to eat the shrimp and fruit. The buffet is all you can eat so you do get your money's worth. We did not have to eat anything else the rest of the day. It put us in a great mood to see the Lion King!"
    Dined on 7/6/2014
  • "My husband and I work very hard. I am a nurse who spends a lot of her time taking care of others. The Rooftop makes me feel like I am being taken care of."
    Dined on 7/5/2014
  • "Convenient for the performance at Kennedy Center but otherwise very ordinary. We were rushed by our waiter though we purposely came early. He wrongly described dishes we asked about, both entree and dessert. Food was mediocre. We have tried the restaurant twice, will not return."
    Dined on 7/2/2014
  • "Of course we went for the convenience of dining before theater but hadn't been there in years. Food was okay but very expensive. Our waiter seemed to forget about us after the main course, at least we got that. Overall it was just average when it used to be amazing. I remember feeling special there, caught up in the wonder of one of my favorite DC landmarks. But then I still think people should dress nicely at a place like that too."
    Dined on 7/3/2014
  • "Pleas remind that people under 21 can not be customers of this interesting place"
    Dined on 7/3/2014
  • "Great place to go before the show. The wait staff really "gets it" when it comes to serving you at just the right pace to get you to the show on time, yet not too rushed. The food is great, too."
    Dined on 6/26/2014
  • "View is nice, Server not attuned to patrons needs and not very kid friendly. overpriced as paying for view/location."
    Dined on 7/1/2014
  • "Such a convenient treat if you are seeing a matinee at the Kennedy Center. I have thus far opted for the Brunch Buffet and it does not disappoint with a large selection of breakfast items, cheese and fruit, vegetable salads, seafood on ice and prime rib. Solid bang for buck with a mimosa included for good measure."
    Dined on 6/29/2014
  • "The primary benefit this restaurant provides is the proximity to the theatres. The wine we were served tasted of very low quality. Food was OK but ridicouly overpriced. I ordered a chicken breast at $27 dollars and had to pay an extra $3 to subsitute mashed potatoes for fingerlings. That seemed to be a very unnecessary additional charge. We will not be returning."
    Dined on 6/29/2014
  • "The Roof Terrace is fabulous if you're planning to dine prior to a JFK theater event. They understand that the traffic is horrid, and you've suffered to get downtown. The excellent staff will rush some great food your way, and make sure you're going to make the show on time. Always a delight."
    Dined on 6/26/2014
  • "We took our grandson to Lion King. He surprised us when went back for seconds of fresh oysters. Good value when compared to other Washington options for brunch and the ambience and view of Washington are priceless."
    Dined on 6/29/2014
  • "Me and my boyfriend went here and got the tartare, chicken, and the salmon. Everything was EXCELLENT! It was the best tasting chicken I have ever had."
    Dined on 6/28/2014
  • "The food was beyond excellent. The waiter was very helpful. We had a variety of food - there were 4 of us. The only reason I didn't give it 5 stars is the cost. The food was good but maybe a prix-fixe menu would work better with all courses included. The chocolate dessert (which we all shared) was to die for -very rich."
    Dined on 6/28/2014
  • "This is one of my favorite vices. I love, love, love going to Roof Terrace Restaurant before a show. They spoil your palette with delicious foods and drinks. It will cost you some coin but well worth it. Especially on a special night."
    Dined on 6/28/2014
  • "This was my first time at this restaurant and I thoroughly enjoyed the food and atmosphere. It is conveniently over the Kennedy Center, which made for a perfect "one stop shop." I would definitely recommend this restaurant for anyone looking for taste food with a French flair."
    Dined on 6/27/2014
  • "The restaurant is obviously convenient to shows at the Kennedy Center. I think, for the prices, that the service could be better and the menu more varied. It is too bad that the KC only offers a cafeteria and the Terrace. It needs a mid-level. While I don't argue with the Terrace prices, I feel that the offerings could offer better executed. dishes."
    Dined on 6/27/2014
  • "I'm new to town and had wanted to go to Kennedy Center so when I got tickets to see Shear Genious I thought we would try out the Roof Terrace Restaurant and Bar. I expected pricey but thought, worth it for a great atmosphere and view. We checked out the menu online before going-my mouth was watering! We were about 45 minutes earlier than our reservation and were able to be seated right away which was great... I was definetely a little underwhelmed by the ambiance in the dining room and unfortunately most of the seats are nowhere near the windows to take advantage of the great view. The food was decent but overpriced for sure. Service was good.. not a bad experience but I was annoyed that I paid so much for a "just ok" experience and meal."
    Dined on 6/20/2014
  • "This was my first dining experience at the Kennedy Center. I made dinner reservations for two, mainly because we had Lion King tickets for that evening and it was a matter of convenience. It was a delightful dinner. The waiter and servers were efficient and the food was delicious. We ordered the beef filet and scallops and split the dishes for variety. Very very tasty!!! Everything was served in a timely manner so we were not late for the show. I had read some recent reviews about the Roof Terrace Restaurant being too expensive for the quality of food. In my opinion, the menu prices are not any more than a steak house or other favored restaurants. The prices were very reasonable and definitely worth the quality of food and service."
    Dined on 6/25/2014
  • "I've eaten at the Roof Top Terrace Restaurant several times before and had always had very good food and service. However, this time was different. The food was still very good, but the service was terrible! The waiter would disappear for long periods. He brought us the desert menu, but took forever to come back and take our order. He finally did take our order, and the food came out fairly quickly (our waiter didn't bring it out). But, they didn't bring the coffee we ordered. It took forever to get our check, and then I had to send it back to get the coffee we didn't get removed. For what it costs, I expect good service. I hope this was an anomaly and not a new normal."
    Dined on 6/24/2014
  • "This was our granddaughters 16th birthday celebration. They treated us with great attention and wonderful service, we had a special meal request and without hesitation they accomadated our request. they were able to make this evening a memorable event in addition to the wonderful production we attended."
    Dined on 6/24/2014
  • "I had guests arrive unexpectedly and got last minute tickets to a show at the Kennedy Center. We chose to eat at the Rooftop Terrace restaurant to avoid missing the show. The restaurant was nicely appointed. The food was delicious and presentation was superb. I had the beef tenderloin and the otheres had the crabcake. The beef was prepared as requested and extremely tender. The crabcakes were true Maryland style with mostly lump crab and very little filler. The waitstaff were friendly and courteous. Our guests had a wonderful time. We had a 5:45 reservation before a 7:30 show. THe meal was relaxed, not rushed and we had plenty of time to walk to our theater and get seated before it began."
    Dined on 6/22/2014
  • "This restaurant had tepid food and poor service. But for its convenient location there is no reason to go there. It is also expensive, particularly for the quality and a quantity of food it offers."
    Dined on 6/22/2014
  • " Sunday brunch at the Roof Terrace before, enjoying The Lion King with the family, was perfect for celebrating our wedding anniversary. The buffet choices were varied and tasty, and the festive mood was enhanced by the pleasantly animated ambiance, the impressive view, and, above all, the attentive service."
    Dined on 6/22/2014
  • "Having dined at the kennedy center before, i had solid hope that sunday brunch there would be a great meal. i come from a brunch tradition with my family, and was taking a friend to a first brunch. it was a great time for both of us. we're still talking about it two days later, not as much as the show, but close!"
    Dined on 6/22/2014
  • "the rooftop terrace is a place for families or large groups to eat. Its very noisy, and the wait staff is definitely overworked. However, food is very good. I find the prices hi for that type of dining experience."
    Dined on 6/22/2014
  • "The young lady who seated us was rude. I asked for window seating when I made the reservations and I was told no problem. When we were seated I mentioned this to the person who seated my husband and I immediately said no she could not seat us by the window. I immediately asked for the manager in which she indicated she would apply to this request, however, no manager ever came over to discuss anything which lead me to believe either she never asked him to speak w/ us or the manger just refused to come over to our table. After dinner which the food was barely luke warm, I asked the very same person who seated us why the manager never came to our table and she responded as if she had no idea."
    Dined on 6/21/2014
  • "This restaurant service a specific purpose, which is to feed alot of people prior to a show at the Kennedy Center. This is cafeteria style dining, approx 100 tables (albeit with tableclothes) in a large room, loud, lots of kids running around ( pre show of Lion King ). Great views over the Potomac river, food was above average, but we were somehow lead to believe this was going to be a fine dining experience. within 15 minutes of showtime the restaurant emptied out and we were one of two tables out of 100 remaining. the only saving grace is that the food was good and the wine choices equally reasonable. PERFECT restaurant if you are going to a show, NOT worth a special trip to Kennedy Center."
    Dined on 6/19/2014
  • "The food is good. The waiter asks you when your show starts so that they can make sure to serve your food in a timely manner. The chocolate mousse dessert is amazing."
    Dined on 6/5/2014
  • "Remodeled in August 2013, the Rooftop now feels like a modern, upscale restaurant that contributes to the classiness of the Kennedy Center. My only complaint is, I believe at the price point of the Rooftop, food should be prepared when it is ordered. It was clear that our spicy tuna tartar was prepared some time before we ordered given the loss of crispness of the chips where they had been placed in the tuna (and overall). The salmon was a bit overcooked and dry as though it had been precooked and reheated. What I will stress is despite these concerns which are merely speculation, the flavors were good and we will be back. Service was over the top excellent. And the drinks were superb."
    Dined on 6/20/2014
  • "This restaurant is special because of its convenience when visiting the Kennedy Center. It is a very pricey restaurant for food that is good, but not excellent. Salads and desserts were good and artistically presented. There was very little flexibility with the menu. When we asked to substitute mashed potatoes for french fries (both items listed as sides on the menu), we were told that there would be an additional $3 charge. This was the second time that we had dined here recently. Unlike our first visit when service was very poor, servers were very attentive this time."
    Dined on 6/19/2014
  • "We were disappointed with the ambiance - it felt like a cafeteria for some reason - and rather dated. In addition, we wondered why there were no tables outside. The terrace and views are magnificent; why not take advantage of that? The service was slow and spotty and the food was mediocre, considering the prices. Even the amount of wine per glass was stingy and my husband's pinot noir had quite a bit of sludge in the bottom of the glass, a surprising lack of attention to basic detail. We ordered cappuccino after dinner and didn't have time to drink them because it arrived so late. We have no plans to return."
    Dined on 6/19/2014
  • "You'll need to spend generously to fill your tummy, but if you don't mind the expense then you'll likely be pleased with the experience. When you add the $22 parking fee (evenings), there's no reason to dine here rather than elsewhere unless you're attending a Kennedy Center show."
    Dined on 6/17/2014
  • "It had been 20 years or more since I was last at the Roof Top Terrace and I was looking forward to returning. I remember it as being on bit on the luxurious side---my memory failed me. The color scheme is institutional (beige and blue), but the chairs were comfy. It's convenient when you're seeing a show at the Kennedy Center, but I have to say the expense wasn't worth the food. I had the filet and my husband had the scallops. The filet was overdone (I had asked for medium rare--it was medium) and the scallops were gritty. :( Next time we see a show there I plan on packing a picnic as outside areas are quite lovely."
    Dined on 6/17/2014
  • "We are from out of town so location for a theater night was paramount. Our reservation was for 6:30 and we were able to be seated with no waiting. Our waiter was attentive and knowledgeable. My pork chops were excellent, presented nicely. We were concerned about the timeline, but these folks are use to serving lots of people and getting them to the theater on time."
    Dined on 6/17/2014
  • "They have the best food selection for Sunday brunch I've ever seen and it's of an excellent quality. Great view as well."
    Dined on 6/15/2014