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Local Favorites: The 20 Best Restaurants in Washington, D.C.

The OpenTable team

There are lots of things to be proud of in our nation’s capital: the rich sense of history, the architecture, the countless landmarks and monuments—and now, even more so than ever before, the food. But where are the smartest, savviest diners eating out? We’ve pulled data from thousands of restaurants to find the top spots among OpenTable's most expert, seasoned diners. You’ll find everything from neighborhood gems to sprawling French bistros, legendary Indian spots to not-so-classic diners—all vetted by the types of tastemakers who know the best spots around the city. You'll want to follow their lead.

Restaurants:Le Diplomate, Zaytinya, Oyamel
Price Range:$$ - $$$
Cuisines:French, Mediterranean, Mexican
Neighborhoods:Logan Circle, Penn Quarter
For 2 people today
Party Size
For 2
Date
Today
Time
7:00 PM

Le Diplomate

$$$$·French·
Logan Circle
8,243 reviews
  • Good for a Date
  • Special Occasion
  • Good for Anniversaries
Le Diplomate, a pitch-perfect French bistro in Logan Circle, is undoubtedly one of the greatest spots to brunch in the city. (Ask anyone from DC and they’ll agree.) You can’t go wrRead more
96% recommended
French in Washington, D.C. Area
218 people mentioned the Mushroom Tart
There aren’t any available tables for 2 today at 7:00 pm
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Zaytinya

$$$$·Mediterranean·
Penn Quarter
14,974 reviews
  • Tapas
  • Creative Cuisine
  • Fit for Foodies
Chef Jose Andres is a DC legend, with restaurants of all types delighting diners around the city. Zaytinya is his Middle Eastern spot, with a myriad of dips and salads and meats anRead more
95% recommended
Mediterranean in Washington, D.C. Area
479 people mentioned the Mezze

Oyamel

$$$$·Mexican·
Penn Quarter
8,464 reviews
  • Tapas
  • Fun
  • Creative Cuisine
Oyamel is one of those restaurants that manages to be elegant, refined, and a whole lot of fun. You’re here for upscale versions of Mexican street food—think tacos, ceviches, and tRead more
94% recommended
Mexican in Washington, D.C. Area
199 people mentioned the Guacamole

Unconventional Diner

$$$$·American·
Shaw
1,201 reviews
  • Fit for Foodies
  • Great for Brunch
  • Creative Cuisine
Unconventional Diner is, in fact, an unconventional diner; it’s a place you’ll find dishes like “French dip” pappardelle, sriracha-glazed meatloaf, foie-gras PB&J, and shiitake sprRead more
93% recommended
American in Washington, D.C. Area
24 people mentioned the Chicken Parm
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Central Michel Richard

$$$$·American·
Penn Quarter
7,118 reviews
  • Great for Lunch
  • Fit for Foodies
  • Good for a Date
Since it opened 10 years ago, Central Michel Richard has been serving French-American food that is both elegant and low-key, winning accolades from all over the country. We particuRead more
88% recommended
479 people mentioned the Fried Chicken
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China Chilcano

$$$$·Peruvian·
Penn Quarter
2,527 reviews
  • Creative Cuisine
  • Fit for Foodies
  • Good for a Date
China Chilcano is a Jose Andres restaurant specializing in the food of Peru—specifically chifa, the Chinese-influenced Peruvian cuisine, and nikkei, the Japanese-influenced traditiRead more
92% recommended
Fit for Foodies in District of Columbia
91 people mentioned the Pisco Sour

The Smith – Penn Quarter, Washington, D.C

$$$$·American·
Penn Quarter
1,648 reviews
  • Casual
  • Good for a Date
  • Good for Groups
The Smith in Penn Quarter is the first DC outpost of the Manhattan group of restaurants, serving classic, crowd-pleasing American food in a fun, lively atmosphere. The food is simpRead more
83% recommended
20 people mentioned the Mac Cheese

Arroz

$$$$·Spanish·
Shaw
900 reviews
  • Fit for Foodies
  • Creative Cuisine
  • Good for a Date
Mike Isabella, a former Top Chef contestant, has amassed quite the restaurant empire here in DC. Arroz is his foray into Spanish cuisine, with hints of Portuguese and Moroccan inflRead more
88% recommended
25 people mentioned the Sangria
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Convivial

$$$$·French American·
Shaw
684 reviews
  • Fit for Foodies
  • Neighborhood Gem
  • Special Occasion
At Convivial, chef Cedric Maupillier is cooking American food with a French touch: you’ll find fried chicken alongside leeks dijonnaise, bouillabaisse next to burgers. This approacRead more
93% recommended
33 people mentioned the Coq Au Vin
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Rasika

$$$$·Indian·
Penn Quarter
8,609 reviews
There are few people in the country who cook Indian food like James Beard Award–winning chef Vikram Sunderam, and we’re lucky to have him in DC. The atmosphere is upscale but comfoRead more
592 people mentioned the Chaat
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Farmers & Distillers

$$$$·American·
Mt. Vernon Square
5,212 reviews
  • Comfort Food
  • Great for Brunch
  • Casual
Farmers & Distillers is a restaurant owned by farmers themselves; it’s a collaboration between restaurateurs Mike Vucurevich and Dan Simons and the 47,000 farmers of the North DakoRead more
88% recommended
Most Booked in Washington, D.C. Area
121 people mentioned the Dumplings

Centrolina

$$$$·Italian·
Downtown
1,450 reviews
  • Fit for Foodies
  • Creative Cuisine
  • Good for a Date
Tucked into the swanky CenterCityDC development is Centrolina, chef Amy Brandwein’s bright, buzzing Italian restaurant. Here, you’ll find dishes like buckwheat spaghetti alla chitaRead more
90% recommended
Italian in Washington, D.C. Area
28 people mentioned the Gnocchi
Table for 2 today

Ghibellina

$$$$·Italian·
Logan Circle
975 reviews
  • Fit for Foodies
  • Neighborhood Gem
  • Vibrant Bar Scene
Ghibellina is a dark, sexy Italian restaurant, a place that’s as enjoyable for happy hour as it is into the wee hours of the evening. Order a few rounds of pizzas, pastas, and any Read more
92% recommended
20 people mentioned the Gnocchi
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Founding Farmers - DC

$$$$·American·
Foggy Bottom
27,864 reviews
  • Comfort Food
  • Casual
  • Local Ingredients
From the same farmer-owned group behind Farmers & Distillers is Founding Farmers, a—you guessed it—farm-to-table restaurant in downtown DC. Expect crowd-pleasing dishes like pastasRead more
84% recommended
Most Booked in Washington, D.C. Area
647 people mentioned the Beignets

The Salt Line

$$$$·Seafood·
Navy Yard
1,059 reviews
  • Waterfront
  • Great for Outdoor Dining
  • Scenic View
On the waterfront near the Navy Yard you’ll find The Salt Line, a seafood restaurant that celebrates the cooking traditions of New England and the Chesapeake Bay. This means there Read more
91% recommended
Seafood in District of Columbia
26 people mentioned the Raw Bar

Succotash - Penn Quarter DC

$$$$·American·
Penn Quarter
1,730 reviews
  • Comfort Food
  • Special Occasion
  • Good for a Date
Succotash is a breathtaking restaurant in every which way: the 9,000-square-foot-space is marbled and gilded in every which way, the bronze-plated glass atrium sparkles, and the foRead more
92% recommended
Most Booked 1000-Point Tables in Washington, D.C. Area
35 people mentioned the Shrimp Grits

Osteria Morini DC

$$$$·Italian·
Navy Yard
2,000 reviews
  • Waterfront
  • Great for Outdoor Dining
  • Fit for Foodies
Osteria Morini is New York–based chef Michael White’s first foray into DC, and he hits all the marks. This is the kind of neighborhood Italian restaurant that you could frequent alRead more
93% recommended
26 people mentioned the Squid Ink Pasta

Iron Gate

$$$$·Mediterranean·
Dupont Circle
1,564 reviews
  • Romantic
  • Good for a Date
  • Special Occasion
Iron Gate, a cozy, romantic restaurant in Dupont Circle, has a lot going for it: the wood-fired hearth and rotisserie, the red leather banquettes, the wisteria-lined patio. Tuck inRead more
92% recommended
Mediterranean in Washington, D.C. Area
24 people mentioned the Gnocchi
Table for 2 today

RPM Italian - DC

$$$$·Italian·
Mt. Vernon Square
3,228 reviews
  • Good for a Date
  • Special Occasion
  • Good for Anniversaries
For excellent Italian food in a sleek, sexy setting, head to RPM Italian, the DC outpost of the Chicago classic. You’ll find delicate crudos, excellent antipasti, and great versionRead more
95% recommended
Italian in Washington, D.C. Area
63 people mentioned the Garlic Bread

Kapnos

$$$$·Greek·
U Street Corridor
1,337 reviews
  • Fit for Foodies
  • Good for Groups
  • Neighborhood Gem
If you’re not hungry when you walk into Kapnos, you certainly will be once you see chef Mike Isabella’s open kitchen, with spit-roasted meats getting bronzed before your very eyesRead more
93% recommended
43 people mentioned the Baklava
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