Washington DC's Most Iconic Restaurants

The OpenTable team

Seasons change, trends come and go, but these restaurants have withstood the test of time—and have become integral parts of the Washington, D.C. dining scene. Here are Washington, DC’s OpenTable Classics: the places that continue to excel after 10+ years. There’s a reason they’re still around: they keep giving us a reason to come back.

Restaurants:Zaytinya, Oyamel, Central Michel Richard
Price Range:$$ - $$$
Cuisines:Mediterranean, Mexican, American
Neighborhoods:Penn Quarter

Zaytinya

$$$$·Mediterranean·
Penn Quarter
15,873 reviews
  • Fit for Foodies
  • Tapas
  • Good for a Date
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

Oyamel

$$$$·Mexican·
Penn Quarter
8,892 reviews
  • Fit for Foodies
  • Tapas
  • Good for a Date
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
92% recommended
Mexican in Washington, D.C. Area

Central Michel Richard

$$$$·American·
Penn Quarter
7,402 reviews
  • Fit for Foodies
  • Great for Lunch
  • Pre/post Theatre
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
89% recommended
American in District of Columbia

Rasika

$$$$·Indian·
Penn Quarter
8,652 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
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Jaleo DC

$$$$·Spanish·
Penn Quarter
8,983 reviews
  • Tapas
  • Creative Cuisine
  • Fit for Foodies
Chef Jose Andres is an integral part of the Washington, DC food scene, and with Jaleo—a modern tapas bar in the Penn Quarter—it’s easy to see why. Couple the top-notch food with imRead more
96% recommended

Bombay Club

$$$$·Indian·
Downtown
4,491 reviews
  • Special Occasion
  • Good for a Date
  • Business Meals
It’s hard to believe that Bombay Club has been around for thirty years; the food at this posh Indian restaurant still feels exciting and new. Don’t miss dishes like the green-chiliRead more
89% recommended

Tosca

$$$$·Italian·
Downtown
3,769 reviews
  • Special Occasion
  • Business Meals
  • Fit for Foodies
Tosca Ristorante is where the power-lunch-and-dinner types come for delicious Italian food, served in a handsome, stately room. The pastas, in particular, are excellent, as well asRead more
97% recommended
Best Food in Washington, D.C. Area
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Blue Duck Tavern

$$$$·American·
West End
6,849 reviews
  • Special Occasion
  • Fit for Foodies
  • Good for a Date
The Blue Duck Tavern, which can be found in Georgetown’s Park Hyatt Hotel, isn’t your average tavern—it’s a classy, upscale variation on the genre, with cooking to match. Try disheRead more
86% recommended
American in District of Columbia

Old Ebbitt Grill

$$$$·American·
Downtown
23,728 reviews
  • Special Occasion
  • Good for a Date
  • Great for Lunch
There are few restaurants in DC as entrenched in the political scene as Old Ebbitt Grill, where politicos of all stripes come to hang out and unwind. You’ll find a menu of AmericanRead more
95% recommended
Most Booked in Washington, D.C. Area

BlackSalt

$$$$·Seafood·
Palisades Northwest
6,058 reviews
  • Neighborhood Gem
  • Good for a Date
  • Special Occasion
For a night of gorging on some of the freshest seafood in the city, head to BlackSalt, a DC institution in the Palisades neighborhood. We particularly love the clam chowder, crab cRead more
96% recommended
Seafood in Washington, D.C. Area