This restaurant added safety precaution details

This includes info about cleaning, sanitizing, social distancing, and usage of personal protective equipment. Learn more.

Unconventional Diner

4.7
1612 Reviews
$30 and under
American

About

Unconventional Diner serves inspired dishes that blend soulful comfort with haute technique. The menu is studded with imaginative delights that echo the restaurant's name, from French fries with "sexy sauce" to spring rolls with "Franch" dressing to a meatloaf "nothing like anyone's mom's.” Chef David Deshaies, a much-praised protege of Michel Richard, is the culinary force behind this highly acclaimed spot in Shaw. Craft beer and cocktails add to the alchemy for diners looking for an entertaining (and delicious) culinary experience.

For parties larger than six, please contact the restaurant at 202.847.0122.

Reservations are strongly encouraged and available up to 60 days prior to date of dining.

We encourage all complete parties arrive on time as we are only able to hold your reservation 15 minutes beyond your reserved time.

Safety precautions

Cleaning & Sanitizing
  • Surfaces sanitized between seatings
  • Common areas deep cleaned daily
  • Digital, disposable or sanitized menu provided
  • Sanitizer or wipes provided for customers
  • Sealed or wrapped utensils used
Social Distancing
  • Limited number of seated diners
  • Distancing maintained in common areas
  • Extra space between tables
  • Sick staff prohibited in the workplace
Personal Protective Equipment
  • Waitstaff wear masks
  • Diners must wear masks unless eating or drinking
What 1612 people are sayingWrite a review
Overall ratings and reviews
4.7based on recent ratings
4.7
food
4.5
service
4.5
ambience
4.5
value
Noise · Moderate
97% of people would recommend it to a friend
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k
vipkgindc
Washington DC
128 reviews
Dined on September 15, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Absolutely superb. Great food, great service, great adherence to social distancing and cleanliness requirements.

OT
OpenTable Diner
1 review
Dined on September 13, 2020
Overall4food3service5ambience3

Server was great. Black male (didn’t get his name). Food was alright and the cost was much higher than I’d expected

LL
LeticiaL
1 review
Dined on September 13, 2020
Overall5food5service4ambience5

By some reason our reservation was cancelled a couple of minutes before we arrived. Beside that, our experience was great!
The cauliflower salad is amazing!

OT
OpenTable Diner
Washington DC
11 reviews
Dined on September 13, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

The food, service and noise level was excellent!

OT
vipOpenTable Diner
Miami
1 review
Dined on September 12, 2020
Overall5food5service3ambience4

Good brunch

DC
vipDCDiner
Washington DC
9 reviews
Dined on September 12, 2020
Overall5food4service5ambience5

Presentation of the food was wonderful! The place lived up to his name, everything was Unconventional in great way.

OT
vipOpenTable Diner
Washington DC
2 reviews
Dined on September 12, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

The dining experience and service was great in spite of the pandemic. The food was delicious. I’m looking forward to going back again soon.

m
vipmacattack
Washington DC
22 reviews
Dined on September 11, 2020
Overall5food3service5ambience5

Staff was so nice to my dogs. Thank you!!

L
Lisa
Washington DC
1 review
Dined on September 11, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

LOVED Unconventional Diner! The waiters were so accomodating and checked on us often. The food was beautiful and so good - I had the french toast and side of fries (highly recommend)!

SB
vipSB15
Washington DC
6 reviews
Dined on September 9, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Server was great!

OT
vipOpenTable Diner
Washington DC
9 reviews
Dined on September 8, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Best Mezze ever, the Pappardelle French Dip was a big step above great Stroganoff and the Baked Brie appetizer was the most incredible ever

DC
DCGuy
Washington DC
21 reviews
Dined on September 8, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Great food and really prepared for serving during the pandemic.

J
Juanfmeneses
Washington DC
1 review
Dined on September 7, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Great food and service. The cheeseburger was superb

SJ
SteveJ
New York Area
1 review
Dined on September 7, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience3

The best Shrimp & Grits I've ever had. The host was very stressed and not particularly friendly. Our waitress Ashley was very nice. We sat outside and it was fine.

OT
vipOpenTable Diner
Washington DC
5 reviews
Dined on September 7, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Great Covid protocols and outdoor dining was comfortably in the shade during AM. Food was excellent. Our Server, Ashley, was wonderful. Can’t wait to go back.

B
Breezey
Cleveland
4 reviews
Dined on September 6, 2020
Overall5food5service4ambience4

Tasty twists on some traditional and not so traditional brunch items. We would go back !

OT
OpenTable Diner
1 review
Dined on September 6, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

The atmosphere was great. The food was amazing. The service was impeccable.

MF
MissFord
Chicago
1 review
Dined on September 5, 2020
Overall4food4service5ambience5

The food was truly unconventional, I seen pleasant of interesting dishes exit the kitchen. Only thing I would say I didn’t approve of is my dirty Caesar salad which had iceberg as it base green. However the squid ink croutons, what can I say unconventional and delicious. I would definitely go again.

OT
OpenTable Diner
Washington DC
1 review
Dined on September 5, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

It was cute inside! They have plexy glass around the tables to ensure the safety measures. 11/10

d
vipddda
Washington DC
11 reviews
Dined on September 5, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Food and service was awesome! I went for brunch and everything was great!!

BE
vipBostonEats
New England
7 reviews
Dined on September 3, 2020
Overall3food3service5ambience4

Very attentive service. Everyone was was warm and make sure I had everything I needed. My water glass was always refilled. The food was fine. The crab hushpuppies were too dense and not crisp enough. The chicken parm was fine. The spaghetti on the side needed something. It was too bland.

OT
OpenTable Diner
San Francisco
28 reviews
Dined on August 30, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Fun and delicious food. Service was very good and friendly, too.

a
ajz14
1 review
Dined on August 30, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

My waiter was Kyle. He was awesome! He was very cool to talk to and was super nice. The food was outstanding. I definitely recommend the brussel sprouts; either the brunch or dinner option. Definitely coming back here again!

LC
LuciaC
Atlantic City
2 reviews
Dined on August 30, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Great place great food and great service

k
km18
Charlotte
1 review
Dined on August 30, 2020
Overall5food5service4ambience5

The service was slightly slow, but the food was amazing and the ambiance was great! I would highly recommend!

S
Skim88
Washington DC
1 review
Dined on August 29, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

UD is doing a fantastic job keeping everything really clean and safe feeling with COVID. The food was as well done and creative as usual! Will definitely be back.

M
Martin
1 review
Dined on August 29, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

You must try the Lebanese Fried Rice and the Brussel Sprout Eggs!

OT
vipOpenTable Diner
New Orleans
13 reviews
Dined on August 27, 2020
Overall4food4service5ambience4

We went to this restaurant with a few friends and the staff were very courteous and kept their eye on our needs throughout the entire meal. The food was well made and tasted good as well. I’d recommend this restaurant as a chill night out kinda place with friends.

OT
vipOpenTable Diner
Washington DC
4 reviews
Dined on August 24, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Incredible food! Cute atmosphere accommodated outside seating. Service was attentive. Cocktails were original and delicious. We came for restaurant week but this will easily become a new favorite!

VM
vipVeronicaM
Washington DC
9 reviews
Dined on August 24, 2020
Overall2food1service4ambience2

I dont know if the cook was off but the food wasnt great. I ordered the crab hush puppies and they were cold in the middle. I also got the chessburger and there was so much black pepper on the meat I could barely finish it. I couldnt taste anything but pepper. the dessert was the only upside

m
vipmonicab
Detroit
17 reviews
Dined on August 23, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

We had a fabulous experience Sunday night and all had the restaurant week menu. We went for the chicken parm and it did not disappoint. What a great selection of dishes for restaurant week too! Excellent service, food AND cocktails to be had at Unconventional Diner. And comfortable outdoor seating and all Covid rules being followed.

NC
NamesCharlie
Washington DC
3 reviews
Dined on August 23, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Our first time dining out since the pandemic hit and we felt extremely safe here. We opted for outside seating for personal comfort reasons. Not only were many safety measures taken but the level of service remained top notch. James and Dino really made sure were taken care of and support staff did a great job as well. Thank you for making it a special night and for putting us at ease.

JP
vipJadePlant
Washington DC
22 reviews
Dined on August 23, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Brunch was so delicious. Server was so great and other staff did a great job! I love the new plexiglass panels between the tables... I hope they leave them up always!

SF
vipSoulFoodie
Washington DC
3 reviews
Dined on August 22, 2020
Overall5food5service4ambience4

To me, Restaurant Week is about trying new places and even though I'd been to Unconventional Diner right before the pandemic broke out, all of the mayhem deleted it from my memory. So my family and I cautiously ventured and were happy to see the measures UD has taken to protect its staff and guests (including plastic partitions, which allowed me to actually relax and enjoy the experience). The double cheeseburger is a national treasure and the crab hush puppies are little balls of joy on a plate. Also, the chocolate cake is delightful. Highly recommend.

OT
OpenTable Diner
Austin
1 review
Dined on August 22, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

One of the best breakfasts I’ve had in a very long time.

SG
StaciaG
1 review
Dined on August 20, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Our meal inside was terrific, service was great and social distancing measures were clearly in place. We felt very safe and also had a really enjoyable dinner. The dining room noise levels were well below pre-COVID, and honestly we prefer the quieter experience.

LJ
LisberthJ
San Francisco
3 reviews
Dined on August 20, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Everything on this menue is good. Literally.

ND
NiaD
1 review