Mussel Bar & Grille - Bethesda

4.5
727 reviews
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$30 and under
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Belgian
Here at Mussel Bar & Grille, sustainability meets affordability.
We serve incomparably fresh fish and seafood from around the region and the world, including the best mussels in the region — and the beauty is you don’t have to make it an occasion to dine with us!
Because our volume is so high, and because of the buying power that comes when a prominent chef owns multiple, acclaimed restaurants, we’re able to keep our prices low — making Mussel Bar Bethesda a destination where you can go gourmet every day.
Join us daily for happy hour, oysters, great specials, and our selection of — count ’ em — nearly 160 beers (including the fineest Belgians in the world). Check out our Facebook page for our wildly popular Oyster Fests and pig roasts.
Mussel Bar & Grille is a RW Group restaurant. www.rwrestaurantgroup.com
What 727 People Are Saying
Overall ratings and reviews
Reviews can only be made by diners who have eaten at this restaurant
4.5based on recent ratings
4.6
food
4.3
service
4.2
ambience
4.1
value
Noise · Moderate
93% of people would recommend it to a friend
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VB
Washington DC
1 review
Dined on May 12, 2019
Overall 3food 3service 5ambience 2

When I wrote that service was outstanding, I am referring to the waitress who was extremely helpful. However, the man who seated us, basically lied to me. I asked if we could change to a booth -- we saw at least one empty booth - and he said they were all reserved for parties greater than two. This would be fine but a few minutes later, it was obvious that the restaurant would not be filled, that there would be open booths. So I asked the woman (who must have taken the man's place) and, sure enough -- absolutely no problem. She immediately moved us to a booth. There were lots of empty tables by this time, by the way.

As for the food, the oysters were very good, the mussels (I got Provençal mussels) were just so-so. But my husband loved the hamburger.

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ES
Washington DC
127 reviews
Dined on May 8, 2019
Overall 3food 3service 2ambience 3

Fine choice for a mid-priced restaurant in this area. Nice menu. My steak arrived just warm but the frites were perfect - maybe over salted for some. We were not greeted warmly by the maitress d' - we asked for a booth seeing two were empty but had to talk her into it. Our server was pleasant but our order was mixed up with another table which caused delay and some confusion. And this was not a busy week day night. Very noisy even tho we were in a booth and the restaurant was half empty. Wont rush back.

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FR
1 review
Dined on May 8, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

The service was great. With so many beers our server seemed to be able to point our guests in the right direction. Mussels were perfect as usual and the flat breads were a hit for the table. Big fan of the Kennett Sq mushroom selection. This was a relaxed business meeting. Perfect location.

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OT
Washington DC
1 review
Dined on May 5, 2019
Overall 2food 4service 2ambience 3

Server was very nice but was not well informed about the menu. He described a dish that cane out nothing like what ha described (and I would not have ordered) then I had to wait 15 minutes while my friends all ate until they brought out my replacement.

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MA
Washington DC
3 reviews
Dined on May 4, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Excellent food and service! Will definitely return.

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SS
Philadelphia
3 reviews
Dined on May 3, 2019
Overall 4food 5service 4ambience 4

Mussels, frites, beer were fantastic. We sat outside, which was lovely and fun, so I cannot really comment on noise level inside, though it didn't seem loud the brief time I was in there.

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YR
Washington DC
1 review
Dined on May 3, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

The server went above and beyond to make our son's prom dinner exceptional. They even gave them a complimentary fancy mocktail to start their evening off! Thank you!

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NB
Washington DC
1 review
Dined on April 27, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

The Mussels are the best in Metro DC area, the service was excellent! The host was very accommodating, and the waitress was very attentive and fun! We had a wonderful time!

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DC
Atlanta
1 review
Dined on April 26, 2019
Overall 3food 2service 2ambience 4

Average food and service. Decent apps and great beer menu. Worth a visit for beer selection. Go to DuPont for better mussels and service.

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s
New York Area
24 reviews
Dined on April 23, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

Super selection of mussels. Limited other menu but all was good.

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ST
Washington DC
27 reviews
Dined on April 20, 2019
Overall 3food 3service 3ambience 3

Clam linguine was delicious broth however it was gritty and sandy hence the clams were not CLEANED

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OT
1 review
Dined on April 18, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

No complaints! Food was delicious, our server Cole was on point and we can’t wait to go back. Give Cole a raise!

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PR
1 review
Dined on April 18, 2019
Overall 4food 5service 4ambience 5

Good bar. Nice outdoor seating. East coast oysters were delicious. Great day for outdoor seating.

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S
Washington DC
6 reviews
Dined on April 13, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Mussel Bar is an old-world Belgian roadhouse & whereas there mussels are the best in the DMV they also have a delicious array of entrees and an awesome beer list.

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OT
Washington DC
12 reviews
Dined on April 13, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Gracious and accommodating service for a mama and 3 kids (9, 11, 12). Menu has selections for all, careful about a nut allergy, and beer selection a welcome respite for said mama

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D
Washington DC
23 reviews
Dined on April 12, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 3ambience 4

Always good, never great. What used to be good flatbread is now smothered in cheese. Don't order the beet salad - it's very small.

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RW
Washington DC
3 reviews
Dined on April 7, 2019
Overall 4food 5service 4ambience 3

The food was excellent-we shared the mediterranean mussels and all had salmon burgers. Great fries, too. We sat outside, so it's hard to control ambiance and noise on a crowded sidewalk.

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MB
Washington DC
2 reviews
Dined on April 7, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 2ambience 5

A great place for mussels and mimosas for brunch with outdoor seating.

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N
1 review
Dined on April 5, 2019
Overall 4food 5service 3ambience 3

Untrained server but very nice.
Presented the bill while we were in the middle of eating dinner. Didn’t get proper utensils to eat food until fools got cold.
Ordered bottled water that took a long time.

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MC
Washington DC
7 reviews
Dined on March 30, 2019
Overall 4food 5service 5ambience 5

Traffic was horrible and they were gracious about seating us as soon as we arrived. Restaurant is lovely. Waitstaff was attentive helpful and efficient.
We ordered mussel main courses which were all prepared beautifully. For appetizers I wasn’t really fond of the calamari but it might be my personal taste.
The evening was during March madness so the loud room may be due to the games

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W
Washington DC
6 reviews
Dined on March 27, 2019
Overall 3food 5service 2ambience 3

An OK experience. The food (mussels, oysters and cioppino) and drink (local beers, excellent cider) was the highlight. Server was pleasant, but not attentive. We sat with empty glasses (both water and alcohol) for much of the meal. More critically, given our food choice, we didn’t get any bread (multiple requests) until we had finished the seafood. Very noisy.

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WT
Washington DC
41 reviews
Dined on March 22, 2019
Overall 4food 5service 3ambience 3

Loved the mussels, branzino, and salad. Great food! Our waitress was a bit forgetful and slow to respond, but otherwise, it was a nice dining experience.

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S
Washington DC
7 reviews
Dined on March 16, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

Has been a favorite from the day they opened in 2010!

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G
Fargo
1 review
Dined on March 15, 2019
Overall 4food 5service 5ambience 3

Food and beer selection is great. The mussels seem even better than big brother Brasserie Beck downtown. This is a fun place for informal dinner with friends. However, the noise level seems to grow each time we have gone. Needs to be toned down a bit if you want to converse with guests.

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a
Washington DC
1 review
Dined on March 10, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Went for an early dinner Sunday evening. Cheyenne was amazing and perfectly attentive without being overbearing. She was accommodating to my dislike of peanuts and allowed me to modify the Thai curry mussels. Everything was delicious. Definitely will be back

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P
Washington DC
5 reviews
Dined on March 8, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Our server, Brandon, was exceptionally attentive. The entire staff was very good, too! Food, atmosphere, noise level were all just right. Perfect evening. I recommend the Brussel sprouts appetizer. Of course, sweet potato fries are almost obligatory. Mother's Milk stout is very smooth.

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SC
Washington DC
3 reviews
Dined on March 2, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Great food! Fantastic beer menu! Reasonably priced.

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F
Washington DC
4 reviews
Dined on March 2, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

My new favorite restaurant/bar in Bethesda. Tough to find a place that has this kind of incredible beer selection AND amazing food. The waiters and bartenders actually enjoy talking about the beer choices and seem to take a good deal of pride and joy in matching you with a selection you'll specifically love. The menu items - every single option looked "must try". Ambience was pretty good, yet casual. The kind of place you could go often, feel like you fit in, and have plenty of items to keep trying.

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OT
Richmond
2 reviews
Dined on February 28, 2019
Overall 2food 3service 1ambience 2

Service was slow and horrible. Waitress forgot us on multiple occasions. Food took over one hour to come out

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M
Washington DC
27 reviews
Dined on February 27, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

This was my first visit.I tried the Thai Curry Mussels and they were delicious. The waiter also brought me some bread, which was wonderful to dip in the sauce. They have an enormous beer menu, and the waiter guided me through the list and made suggestions, one of which I tried and enjoyed. Another member of our party had the short ribs and said they were outstanding. We will be back.

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p
San Diego
14 reviews
Dined on February 24, 2019
Overall 4food 5service 5ambience 4

I include Mussel Bar every few months when I travel to Bethesda from the West Coast. The mussels are great meal and never disappoint.

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OT
Washington DC
8 reviews
Dined on February 16, 2019
Overall 2food 2service 3ambience 3

WE have been to the Mussel bar a couple times before and had just mussels, which were fine.
This time we were in the mood to try beef dishes. We ordered short ribs and were very disappointed. More then half of the beef piece was just a slab of pure fat. We could not eat it. The manager said 'Oh sorry'. We are saying 'Oh sorry, we are not coming anymore...' . Also the wait for that piece of lard was very long.

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OT
Washington DC
1 review
Dined on February 15, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

Great service and as always the mussels are fantastic

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OT
Washington DC
1 review
Dined on February 14, 2019
Overall 2food 3service 1ambience 2

My finance and I came here for Valentine’s Day and it was packed (like most restaurants). All the larger tables were pulled apart for 2 tops. Makes sense cause it will mainly be couples out. My table was right next to 2 other couples with little room walk or move around. The lady behind me kept bumping into my chair. After 10 minutes of being seated, my server finally came. After order, we never saw him again until the food came out. I asked a couple times for more water and never got it. The food was good as always. I asked for a dessert menu but never saw the server again for 15 minutes so we decided just skip dessert. Pretty disappointed. Overall, the experience wasn’t great. If they cannot handle so many customers, they shouldn’t seat them all. We will not be going again for Hallmark holidays.

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JE
Washington DC
2 reviews
Dined on February 14, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 5ambience 3

As usual, the steak frites (with truffle fries, of course) were outstanding. The mussels in white wine as a starter were great as well. The beer list is phenomenal and the drafts are tasty. Service was friendly and attentive. The tables are a bit cramped and the place is a bit loud on the non-booth side, but it is a bar and grille. Still one of my go-to places for happy hour or otherwise.

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JD
Denver
6 reviews
Dined on February 14, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Already professed my love for this place and I know they read these reviews. Just to let you know, Mussels got even better. We did Valentine's Day there and, though they have a very large and impressive beer list, we love the Old Fashioneds (rye please). Last time we went they used cubes in the drinks and cubes tend to melt too fast and dilute the taste. This time they used one large sphere and the taste was amazing! Keep it up Mussels! Love the place. Had a great time.

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j
Washington DC
2 reviews
Dined on February 9, 2019
Overall 4food 5service 1ambience 5

The start was rough as the hostess told us that we were too early for our reservation (13 mins). I noted that a booth was open and asked if we could have it. He said no it was being held for another reservation (same time). I still don’t know the logic because we waited and then the manager sat us at that very table with a snide sarcastic remark that we were ‘adamant’ about sitting there. Very unprofessional. The waiter and the food saved the evening as everything after that was excellent.

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f
Washington DC
28 reviews
Dined on February 9, 2019
Overall 5food 4service 3ambience 3

Have heard of this place for awhile and decided to try it out for a date night. Very crowded, but had a reso and were seated right away. Service was fast and attentive. The beet salad is a must and the calamari with tomato and bacon - so good. We had the thai spicy curry and mediterranean mussels. The chorizo in the med mussels was very good. Make sure to ask for bread to soak up the extra sauce! Truffle frites - we had three orders. Dessert - butter cake - best I've ever had. Caramel sauce on the bottom and toasted just a bit. Huge selection of beers.

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HK
Washington DC
23 reviews
Dined on February 8, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 4ambience 4

We had a very good meal, with good service. BUT it was very loud - found it difficult to communicate across the table.

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EO
Washington DC
27 reviews
Dined on February 2, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

This is my second review of Mussel Bar. The first time we loved everything but the noise level. This time we were seated in a booth in the corner of the restaurant which made a huge difference. We were able to enjoy the great food and hear one another. All four of us loved our dishes (cioppino, linguine with clams, mussels in white wine and mussels Mediterranean style.) The selection of beers is extensive and the waiters are able to make good suggestions depending upon your preferences.

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