Terrain Cafe - Bethesda

4.3
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239 Reviews
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$30 and under
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Contemporary American

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Good Vegetarian Options
Terrain Cafe celebrates the cycle of the seasons and the bounty of the land. Using hand-selected local produce, meats and dairy products, our team takes pride in crafting menus from the seasonal harvest of farmers we know and trust. We work tirelessly to craft an environment that aesthetically and gastronomically reflects the best of our local communities.

Specials

Valentine's Day Special Menus & More

Brimming with a beautiful ambiance, Terrain Cafe is the perfect place to celebrate Valentine's Day weekend. Make your date night one to remember by trying our four-course prix fixe menu available from Friday, 2/14 through Sunday, 2/16. $65 per person, reservations recommended.

Friday, February 14, 2020

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Sun 5:00PM - 8:00PM
Mon - Tue 10:00AM - 11:45AM 12:00PM - 1:00PM
Wed - Fri 10:00AM - 11:45AM 12:00PM - 1:00PM 5:00PM - 8:00PM
Sat 5:00PM - 8:00PM

What 239 People Are Saying
Overall ratings and reviews
Reviews can only be made by diners who have eaten at this restaurant
4.3based on recent ratings
4.3
food
4.1
service
4.4
ambience
3.9
value
Noise · Moderate
84% of people would recommend it to a friend
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AK
Washington DC
7 reviews
Dined on January 12, 2020
Overall3food3service2ambience2

The wine our was very small, did not feel the waiter was attentive and took a while with drinks, bread, needed to ask if I could exchange potato with avocado..instead of let me see... He said "no" then said "but let me ask" children breaking dishes and tables too close. We are in Bethesda, not Europe. If you want to make it more "European" there are ways to do so but not half assed.

OT
Washington DC
1 review
Dined on January 10, 2020
Overall5food4service5ambience5

The waitress was very nice and incredibly accommodating for such a large group!

LC
Charleston
25 reviews
Dined on January 6, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

First visit. Delicious grilled cheese plate. Attentive service and welcoming setting. Will return!

k
Washington DC
39 reviews
Dined on January 5, 2020
Overall5food5service4ambience5

First time eating here. Went to Sunday brunch. Amazed by the freshness and taste of the food. Loved the ambiance. Will definitely return for dinner one day - as I noticed a hot wine list!

AR
Washington DC
8 reviews
Dined on January 5, 2020
Overall2food2service2ambience2

Made a reservation and marked that it was for a birthday (brunch). Food was ok. The "brioche in a flower pot" is like wonderbread; omelets same as anywhere else. We were brought the check when they cleared the plates - no one asked if we wanted dessert. Interesting - usually a birthday means you order dessert. We decided they seemed more interested in turning over the table then giving us the chance to order.

n
Washington DC
10 reviews
Dined on January 3, 2020
Overall2food2service3ambience3

The autumn squash socca stuck in our throats. We couldn’t drink enough water to wash it down. Ugh!

JB
Washington DC
10 reviews
Dined on January 2, 2020
Overall4food5service4ambience5

The food is delicious, service could use a bit of work, I was there twice last week & both times the sever forgot something.

RG
Washington DC
44 reviews
Dined on January 1, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

We had a lovey New Year's day brunch at Terrain. We had a tough time choosing from an unusual menu, but were very happy with the selections we made from brunch items and salads and some unusual tea/juice drinks. Our server was very helpful and gracious. We recommend Terrain and will be back again soon.

F
Washington DC
15 reviews
Dined on December 28, 2019
Overall4food5service5ambience5

Excellent food. Service was as expected. Waiter was very attentive.
Coffee could was not hot. Could have been a tad hotter.

CD
Washington DC
6 reviews
Dined on December 22, 2019
Overall3food5service2ambience4

The menu is small, but the food is very good. My only complaint was the service, which for the money was sub-par. Our water glasses were never refilled, our server did not check-in to make sure we received our orders, and when he did check in he only ever addressed half the party. My niece arrived a few minutes before me and her drink order was taken, however, when I arrived I was completely ignored. I placed an order for a drink when the waiter came to take our lunch order, and then we had to flag him down 30 minutes later after our appetizer had come and gone and my drink had still never arrived. The restaurant is small, so even at its busiest, I find it hard to excuse such neglectful service.

While the food was great, I'm hesitant to recommend the cafe due to the poor service.

T
Washington DC
42 reviews
Dined on December 15, 2019
Overall3food5service5ambience5

BEAUTIFUL ambiance! Love the look. Would go just to sit and enjoy. Excellent food and great service. As its local and fresh based it's a very limited menu, though.

OT
San Antonio
7 reviews
Dined on December 8, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Brought my sister here for a quiet birthday dinner and couldn’t have been happier. The food is delicious (highly recommend the mushroom soup) and the ambience enchanting. Great service too! Can’t wait to go back.

DD
Washington DC
9 reviews
Dined on December 7, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

I have been to Terrain many times since it opened and always enjoy the food, wine selection, coffees, and dessert. But my meal this past Saturday was especially wonderful! The ricotta and fig appetizer was delicate in flavor and also a nice light way to start. Terrain's chicken is always perfectly cooked and the entree with chicken, barley risotto, and brussel spouts was delicious! And, the caramel cake was amazing -- especially when accompanied by Terrain's coffee. The restaurant, with its lights, always looks beautiful at night but there were special additions for the holidays. It was a wonderful evening! I can't wait to go back!

OT
London
4 reviews
Dined on December 6, 2019
Overall4food5service3ambience4

Very nice simple and trendy restaurant. Food is gorgeous, burger fabulous. Service okay-ish. Overall I’d recommend a visit. Lou

NL
1 review
Dined on December 6, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience4

We dine in Bethesda often, but this was our first time dining at Terrain Cafe -- and the food, staff and ambiance were all a wonderful surprise! Brandon, the Asst Gen Manager, is just terrific -- a delight to chat with, and ensured our dinner was flawless. Servers Elami and others were absolutely lovely -- efficient, helpful and lovely. And the food was delicious. We highly recommend this wonderful restaurant, and look forward to returning soon.

G
Washington DC
62 reviews
Dined on December 6, 2019
Overall3food2service5ambience4

Prices too high and menu items not wonderful. Wish they'd lose the mason jar drinking glasses.

TM
Chicago
5 reviews
Dined on December 6, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

I made a reservation for 8 and last minute had 10. Very accommodating. Wrapped up all food. effortless service. Helped foster a welcoming and fun experience.

OT
Washington DC
8 reviews
Dined on December 1, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Always an AMAZING and tasty menu. Cocktails are great and always love the fresh bread with the honey butter. I drive in from Pennsylvania and make sure we stop at our favorite cafe. Keep doing what your doing!

BC
Washington DC
30 reviews
Dined on December 1, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Terrain Cafe always delivers. Great dishes (try the mushroom soup) from fresh ingredients with great service in an inspiring (design) environment. One of our favorites- and we come across the bridge from NoVA to eat here.

OT
Washington DC
3 reviews
Dined on November 29, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

The design by live plants and wood make a pleasing atmosphere and care for plants and environment. Food and service was flawless. Friendly and good crew.

F
Washington DC
11 reviews
Dined on November 21, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Nice wait staff. Yummy food!

5
Baltimore
3 reviews
Dined on November 20, 2019
Overall3food2service2ambience4

I will give it another try. Service was extremely slow but friendly. Nice ambience except for the two toddlers nearby who screamed on an off for the duration. The highlights were the interesting & delicious food choices and the setting. Every time the door opened a freezing gust of wind filled the restaurant and the chilly metal chairs could use some cushions to warm it up a bit.

r
Washington DC
15 reviews
Dined on November 19, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience4

Pleasant ambiance, with attentive service. Food was fresh, healthy and tasty. Fresh brioche and flavoured butter as a nice touch. Interesting homemade syrups for spritzers but the pear one i tasted was not very flavourful. Overall an enjoyable lunch and will return.

ES
Washington DC
5 reviews
Dined on November 16, 2019
Overall3food3service2ambience4

Service was poor. Food was average.

l
Washington DC
8 reviews
Dined on November 15, 2019
Overall4food4service3ambience4

Very pleasant and welcoming, cozy space, that is not noisy even when busy. The menu is limited, but offers good, healthy choices and lighter as well as more robust fare. Wine list and cocktails are lovely. The "seasonal" mimosa was excellent, and the grain bowl is one of the better ones I have had. nice spot to dine with a friend, especially after a little shopping in Bethesda!

MC
Washington DC
8 reviews
Dined on November 15, 2019
Overall4food4service3ambience5

Food and ambiance is great. The server was "too nice", to the point that it can be a bit too interruptive, asking every other minute if we needed something else. Otherwise, great spot!

AC
Washington DC
11 reviews
Dined on November 15, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Great experience. Fantastic brunch!!

JS
Washington DC
25 reviews
Dined on November 14, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

This restaurant is really lovely. Food is so good. Service is great. My only feedback is how expensive it is for the quantity of food. It’s at least $30 per person without alcohol.

SY
Baltimore
3 reviews
Dined on November 9, 2019
Overall1food2service1ambience1

If you ever been to Terrain in PA, you are not going to enjoy this one in Bethesda. The store is limited to a shed out space in the corner of anthropologie store, with just candles and wreaths.
The croquets were undercooked and just bad. The service was awful. I am not coming back.

SS
Washington DC
43 reviews
Dined on November 8, 2019
Overall4food4service4ambience4

My first time at Terrain really enjoyed it.

A
New York Area
7 reviews
Dined on November 2, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Lovely atmosphere and delicious experience. Perfect for a light Saturday luncheon. Apple Pie Chai Latte is a must for the season.

P
Washington DC
133 reviews
Dined on November 1, 2019
Overall2food3service1ambience4

Very disappointing after several great dining experiences.

MC
Washington DC
4 reviews
Dined on October 23, 2019
Overall5food5service4ambience4

Me and my friends ordered the mushroom soup and the avocado toast. These alone are a good combination. We enjoyed it very much.
I also ordered the Terrain Hamburger and the taste is just okay for me. I might try some other menu next time.
We also had a great server.
We'll definitely come back for more of their menu.
Thumbs up!

u
Washington DC
18 reviews
Dined on October 20, 2019
Overall2food2service5ambience3

Food is mediocre. I have done here 3 times for dinner and once for brunch. I really wanted to like it but items are as interesting as they sound. Coffee was cold. We had to ask server for bread which is supposed to be included and he only brought enough for 1 person (we were 3 and a baby).

JL
Washington DC
3 reviews
Dined on October 20, 2019
Overall4food4service5ambience4

Wonderful service. Hood food. Hard, uncomfortable chairs

n
Washington DC
92 reviews
Dined on October 17, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience4

Their seats are hard as a rock, downright uncomfortable. Otherwise, Terrain is a special place. The food is creative and delicious. The service was excellent. The design of the cafe/bistro is charming, with lots of plants and unique decorations. I recommend it highly ... just bring something to sit on.

SB
Washington DC
1 review
Dined on October 10, 2019
Overall4food3service2ambience4

Wait staff friendly but need better training. Waitress brought me warm can of Diet Coke, put on table, walked away. How about some ice maybe?
I’ve been to Terrain/Devon PA. Better vibe, trained staff, better service.

PJ
Washington DC
1 review
Dined on October 10, 2019
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Inventive menu; lovely staff; most enjoyable ambiance.

LT
Washington DC
2 reviews
Dined on October 7, 2019
Overall3food2service5ambience5

Service was great, atmosphere is wonderful, food...meh. I had the large breakfast- 2 eggs, sourdough bread, salad, home fries, bacon and sausage. I think I ordered the wrong thing. This was just ok and the sausage was questionable. Didn't seemed cooked thru and the maple flavor was just too much. The eggs are on top of the bread which is large and toasted and the salad is on top of that....it was a balancing act of food and it is presented on a cutting board so just not great for eating...visually I guess it was cool but really not an easy dish to take apart and get to. UUUGH...too hard to eat and messy....a bit frustrating. Everything was mixed up. Eggs were slightly undercooked for my taste. I ordered over easy and they were a bit runny. Nothing really tasted amazing. Considering the atmosphere and service which was AMAZING I had high expectations on the food. If I were to give this place another shot I would get something else. Maybe the cheese board....My advice...stick to small plates and apps...If you are going to charge 18-26 for a plated dish it has to taste good and you have to be able to eat it.

OT
Washington DC
2 reviews
Dined on October 5, 2019
Overall3food4service2ambience4

Service was poor with delays and confusion about who ordered what.