Proof Restaurant

4.4
3583 reviews
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$50 and over
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Contemporary American
Proof is a Wine-entric restaurant serving Modern American cuisine.

The casual, elegant feel to this Penn Quarter destination is reflected throughout Executive Chef Johanna Hellrigl menu. Proof showcases the best local, organic and sustainable ingredients in clean, beautiful preparations, an extensive international selection of cheese and charcuterie, as well as a wine list containing over 40 by-the-glass selections and 1,000 different bottles.
What 3583 People Are Saying
Overall ratings and reviews
Reviews can only be made by diners who have eaten at this restaurant
4.4based on recent ratings
4.4
food
4.4
service
4.3
ambience
3.9
value
Noise · Moderate
87% of people would recommend it to a friend
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JR
Washington DC
10 reviews
Dined 4 days ago
Overall 4food 4service 3ambience 3

We've been enjoying Proof for years, and the kitchen is still very good. Our server this week was terrific, but the wine situation was disorganized, not our usual experience. The bottle we ordered first proved out of stock after a lengthy wait while, I guess, they were searching for it. We placed a second order, but then our food came before that was found either. So we cancelled the bottle and just got glasses of the house wine to speed things up. Still took a while. Hopefully, just an off night, but a spot that touts its wine list needs to keep it current for credibility. And not to deliver the food before the red wine.

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OT
Washington DC
11 reviews
Dined 6 days ago
Overall 3food 2service 2ambience 2

Food was overly salty. Wine was great.

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NG
Washington DC
3 reviews
Dined 7 days ago
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

always excellent service and food. We also appreciate the nice by the glass wine selection.

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TL
Washington DC
120 reviews
Dined on January 9, 2019
Overall 4food 5service 5ambience 4

Once again, a quiet setting to visit with a friend over very good food. I was happy to see new salads appear on the menu, and loved mine.

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RD
Washington DC
1 review
Dined on January 9, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

This was my first time at proof. I took my girlfriend there for an upscale, but not white table cloth dining experience. The flavors were well developed, and the techniques were well executed. Chef Matt has his team executing well!

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RT
Washington DC
1 review
Dined on January 6, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Food was amazing. Started with the beef carpaccio, which was seasoned to perfection. Nice touch with the crisp shaved garlic and nuts. I had the gnocchi which was very tasty. The ragu had chunks of meet that melted in your mouth. My husband had the rack of lamb with the pea puree. I think that was the best of the two entrees. The crust on the lamb was scrumptious and the pea puree had a very nice flavor to it that paired well with the lamb. We ended our meal with the Proof is in the pudding. That was delicious. The salted hazelnut croccante was just enough salt to the sweet desert. Only negative is the corkage fee. $40 seems a little too much for corkage fee. A lot of restaurants in the area are $25.

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J
Washington DC
12 reviews
Dined on January 4, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Great wines, high end. Cheese board was amazing

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u
Washington DC
14 reviews
Dined on January 1, 2019
Overall 3food 3service 3ambience 4

Great to see that Proof is still holding its own in downtown DC. The atmosphere on NYE was quiet and hospitable with really fun retro soul music playing in the background. The five-course tasting menu with an amuse bouche of fennel soup and a rack of lamb entree was good enough for the price point. Wine offerings continue to impress and complement the menu well. Was a little surprised to see that there was no valet parking, but fortunately there were actually several empty spaces on Eighth Street, and there is a garage right up the block. Thanks to all for an enjoyable, low-key evening out.

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OT
Washington DC
6 reviews
Dined on December 31, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

We had the wine pairing with the first seating for NYE and everything was amazing! The wine pairings were spot on. The amuse buche of fennel sambuca soup was the perfect intro to the meal - light, fresh, and a bit rich all at the same time. The cheese and charcuterie board was served with perfectly toasted baguette (thank you for forgoing nutty/fruity bread!) with a nice selection of cheese and meat. The second course of duck fois gras ravioli was to die for - the broth was SO amazing, we wanted a cup of it with bread and are still talking about it the next day. And for the main, we had the lamb chops and deconstructed caponata. Both were delicious and the parsley purée with the lamb was incredible. Service was great too! The whole evening was perfect and we’d do it again in a heartbeat. Getting good food and good service on NYE (like Valentines Day) is difficult to come by and at Proof, they have it nailed.

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OT
Washington DC
1 review
Dined on December 30, 2018
Overall 2food 2service 2ambience 2

Been to Proof multiple times. Usually great food and service and ambiance. Went with my kids on a teen with parent night out...the service was slow, the food was mediocre, the giant screen from Capital One Arena was blasting light into an otherwise dimly light dining area (close the blinds maybe?).

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KS
Washington DC
1 review
Dined on December 28, 2018
Overall 3food 1service 2ambience 3

Unfortunately and unexpectedly, had a terrible meal at lunch on Friday. Everything on the table was bad. Grilled cauliflower was overdressed in tahini. Tuna in seared tuna salad was inedible and farrow salad was coated in a dressing that was too acidic. Really disappointing as this is typically a lovely lunch spot.

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P
New England
9 reviews
Dined on December 26, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

We really enjoyed our dinner for our daughter's birthday. Everything was delicious, and service was excellent.

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A
Washington DC
2 reviews
Dined on December 23, 2018
Overall 4food 5service 2ambience 4

Nice wine, slow service, nice atmosphere. Cozy, romantic, nice for couples.

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A
Washington DC
13 reviews
Dined on December 22, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Incredible and unforgettable experience to celebrate our anniversary. From the hostess to the sommelier to the waitress, it seemed as though the entire restaurant stopped in their tracks to make our night amazing. I’m so grateful to the magic that Proof is and for all the hands that make it possible.

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JM
Miami
3 reviews
Dined on December 14, 2018
Overall 3food 3service 4ambience 4

Delicious food for the most part, but the pate wasn’t quite as tasty as in previous visits and it was served without the promised pickled red onions and with only a measly two small cornichons. For $15 not great value. The lamb was quite delicious but the ratio of fat to meat was quite disappointing. For $37, the amount of bone and fat left on the plate made this a very poor value indeed. The prosciutto wrapped dates were amazing, as was the Cauliflower.

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O
Philadelphia
1 review
Dined on December 13, 2018
Overall 4food 4service 5ambience 5

I would go back again, no doubt. Very accommodating, knowing that we were going to a show after dinner.

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OT
Washington DC
3 reviews
Dined on December 7, 2018
Overall 1food 3service 3ambience 3

I’m a long time customer. But when the owner starts to scan you run for the hills. First of all there’s the cheese plate. They give you a sliver of cheese not enough to fill an eye tooth and they charge you $4. Rip off city. But here’s the worst and read this twice. Their wine list for the wines they are promoting includes two prices for each wine. Ask any customer on the planet and they’ll say the first price is for a glass and the second price is for a bottle. So I saw 10$ and 40$ and thought wow proof is actually being reasonable for a bottle of wine. Not too mention the lighting in a notch above completely dark so you can imagine how hard it was to read the menu. Anyway the wine was actually crap and I told them so and the waiter tried to give me some bs about the wine and the terroir. Complete bs but I figured For $40 suck it up and eat some food and it’ll be ok. So roll forward to getting the bill. Turns out that $40 price was for something else I don’t know. But they charged me $160 for that crap bottle. Don’t go to this restaurant. I asked to email the owner about this and I got nothing but silence.

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C
Washington DC
5 reviews
Dined on December 5, 2018
Overall 4food 5service 3ambience 3

The lights are so dim that it was actually quite difficult to read the menu. Waitstaff should have made it clear that the wine was 38 dollars per glass. It would have been easy to choose a more reasonably priced wine if he had done so. They have a large selection of wines but some are very very expensive. 13 bucks for a two ounce pour. It’s a nice place but read the menu carefully!

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DF
Washington DC
8 reviews
Dined on December 3, 2018
Overall 3food 3service 5ambience 4

Service was excellent. wine list impressive. However they were out of scallops and two desserts, Not happy about that!

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MH
Washington DC
20 reviews
Dined on December 1, 2018
Overall 3food 4service 3ambience 4

Cons: Hostess was unfriendly and unhelpful. Service felt rushed, we were done just under an hour from arriving and ended up ordering more food and drinks to prolong the evening. Certain things felt overpriced for what they were. Went for a birthday, which was not recognized despite being in the reservation and mentioned.

Pros: Our server was great. Somm was helpful. Food was very tasty.

Overall I was disappointed with the evening but perhaps I had too many high expectations going in.

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SL
San Francisco
1 review
Dined on November 25, 2018
Overall 5food 4service 5ambience 5

Overall very pleasant experience. Service was wonderful. Deducted one star because gruyere foam on scallops did not add anything, though to be fair, it did not interfere with flavor of scallops. Really enjoyed salad with prosciutto and hangar steak.

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B
Minneapolis
10 reviews
Dined on November 21, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

We were well attended in time to get off to the hockey game across the street! Great food!

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OT
1 review
Dined on November 17, 2018
Overall 4food 5service 5ambience 5

We had a reservation for 6 but were 20 min late because of awful traffic. The restaurant was still able to seat us quickly and brought us each a glass of champagne because it was our anniversary. The food was outstanding (we spit the gnocchi and flank steak) but was very slow to come out. We would highly recommend this place, but when we go back we probably wont go before a show or leave extra time. We were there for a little more than 90 min.

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OT
Baltimore
4 reviews
Dined on November 17, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

The atmosphere was excellent. The service was amazing. I have a weekly date with my husband and I think we just found OUR SPOT! Beautiful!

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KK
Washington DC
2 reviews
Dined on November 16, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Has never wavered from a culinary high bar, and the wines by the glass are to be enjoyed.

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OT
Washington DC
7 reviews
Dined on November 15, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

Our waiter was great! Very helpful and friendly

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M
San Francisco
15 reviews
Dined on November 11, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Great place with extensive wine list. Great place with extensive wine list. Great place with extensive wine list. Great place with extensive wine list. Great place with extensive wine list.

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W
Washington DC
10 reviews
Dined on November 8, 2018
Overall 4food 5service 4ambience 4

One of the best lunch deals in the city. I enjoyed my meal and the waiter was really attentive. I would have given service 5 stars but the hostess was surly and condescending. She's the first rude employee I have ever encountered at Proof in the many years I have been a customer.

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MC
1 review
Dined on November 7, 2018
Overall 4food 4service 5ambience 3

The wine was the most impressive aspect of this restaurant. The food was good but not outstanding. I would return but there are other DC restaurants I would go to first.

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OT
Washington DC
1 review
Dined on November 6, 2018
Overall 1food 1service 1ambience 1

One of the worst most awkward dinning experiences I’ve ever had.

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OT
New England
1 review
Dined on October 27, 2018
Overall 4food 4service 5ambience 5

Wine selection is great. Menu options are varied and sounds delicious. Octopus app is delicious, worth trying. Duck was tasty but not a good value. Lamb was very well cooked but the pea side was disgusting. Locations great, can stop at portrait museum right across the street.

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JD
Washington DC
11 reviews
Dined on October 27, 2018
Overall 3food 4service 5ambience 3

Wait staff was attentive. Food was good, just expensive with small portions. Coquilles Saint Jacques was non traditional but good. Gnocchi with duck very tasty.

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FL
Tampa
12 reviews
Dined on October 26, 2018
Overall 4food 5service 3ambience 3

Overall enjoyed our evening very much. Appetizers and drinks came out fairly fast, but then dinner/entrée service was exceptionally slow.

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MA
Mexico City
1 review
Dined on October 23, 2018
Overall 4food 4service 5ambience 3

Incredible food, but since it was on a monday night, the place was practically empty.

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BS
San Francisco
2 reviews
Dined on October 21, 2018
Overall 2food 2service 1ambience 2

Duck was overcooked and lamb was overcoocked. Service was very-very slow.

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t
Baltimore
13 reviews
Dined on October 19, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Eat at Proof several times a year and always consistently good. They change the menu regularly so there are always great items.

This meal we split a gnocchi pasta appetizer with a lamb ragout. It was amazing. Decided to go back soon just to get again. All of the entrees are excellent and they have a substantial wine list by bottle and glass.

While always excellent, it is not an inexpensive place to eat; however, I are always found the food, service, and ambiance worthwhile. Made the comment not as a criticism but to be transparent for other diners expectations. I believe it is a top tier DC restaurant and been impressed at how long they have been able to keep up the consistent quality and service

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OT
Washington DC
39 reviews
Dined on October 14, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 4ambience 4

Great except for one drunk redskins fan at bar trying to keep entire restaurant amused

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G
Washington DC
39 reviews
Dined on October 13, 2018
Overall 3food 4service 4ambience 4

Delicious food, especially the Tuna appetizer that was paired by our terrific sommelier with a splendid Riesling. The wine pairing with the fish entrees was also perfect.

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OT
Washington DC
1 review
Dined on October 13, 2018
Overall 1food 4service 1ambience 2

I hate to give it such a low rating as we have been to Proof many times and loved it. This time was a serious disappointment! I booked reservations for 5:00 before the 7:00 hockey game on a Saturday. That has always been plenty of time in the past. We were running a bit late but called to let them know. We got there at 5:15 and were seated promptly. We placed an order for drinks and appetizers which came fairly quickly and I must say the cheese stuffed figs were delicious. I’m glad they were because we then waited and waited... We placed the order for the main course before the appetizers arrived, I believe around 5:30. By 6:30, appetizers long finished, our food had still not arrived. The waiter assured us that the kitchen was backed up but the food would be out in time to get to the game. By 6:35, the table behind us who ordered entrees after us were presented with their meals one of which was the gnocchi, the same thing I ordered. We then told the waiter to cancel our order and bring us the check. He said the food would be right out. I explained that we would have to rush through our meals in order to make it to the game and their food is not the type I want to rush through. He brought us the check, we paid, and left. I am glad we did because with the lines to get in were long. We made it to our seats just in time for the national anthem. Had we waited I think we would have missed the first period. I don’t know where the breakdown was but an hour to wait is just too long, and it wasn’t just us waiting. All the tables around us were clearly waiting far too long. I believe the manager should have been coming to all the tables to apologize and offer some explanation.

I’m not sure when we will go back but it will be a while. Maybe then they will work out their kitchen issues.

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TD
Washington DC
7 reviews
Dined on October 12, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Proof is our go-to restaurant for our less-than-frequent date nights. The food is always excellent, and the menu changes frequently. It is located near the National Portrait Gallery (which is open until 7 pm!), the Caps Center, and a movie theatre, so you can squeeze in a great meal and a lot of entertainment in a small radius.

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