Unconventional Diner

4.7
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1480 Reviews
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$30 and under
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American
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.
What 1480 People Are Saying
Overall ratings and reviews
Reviews can only be made by diners who have eaten at this restaurant
4.7based on recent ratings
4.7
food
4.5
service
4.5
ambience
4.4
value
Noise · Moderate
97% of people would recommend it to a friend
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OT
Washington DC
6 reviews
Dined 2 days ago
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Kelly was great in making sure we had everything we needed. The food was great.

OT
1 review
Dined 2 days ago
Overall5food5service5ambience5

First class from the moment we came til the moment we left.

MM
1 review
Dined 2 days ago
Overall5food4service5ambience5

Inspired plate presentation. Excellent Taste. Kind service. Great vibes. Well done. A person in our party said, "The food is Rich." Not a strike against. Quite tasty.

OT
1 review
Dined 3 days ago
Overall5food5service5ambience5

The food was very flavorful and eclectic. My wife had a nice birthday experience.😘

OT
Washington DC
1 review
Dined 4 days ago
Overall5food5service2ambience5

Server did no intro. Came to the table and said “what can I get you?” We ordered a bottle of wine and there was no presentation. We ordered an app and never got it. We’ve been a few times and the server just was not there mentally. Food is always amazing, but I do appreciate feeling appreciated. We be back, but....

OT
Washington DC
17 reviews
Dined 4 days ago
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Another fabulous dinner at Unconventional Diner!
All 3 of us loved our meals, and the service was attentive and friendly as always. Unconventional Diner keeps knocking it out of the park as a place with a fun high energy vibe, and consistent good service and fabulous food.

TL
Washington DC
28 reviews
Dined 4 days ago
Overall4food4service5ambience4

George is a pleasant face to see as soon as you enter the restaurant. I loved the service provided by James. Thank you both for another good business lunch at the restaurant.

p
Washington DC
25 reviews
Dined 5 days ago
Overall4food5service4ambience4

The food is very good, and I love the concept of elevated diner food. The service was okay, not as attentive as I would have liked, but no major issues. I’ll return, as I enjoyed my meal.

OT
Washington DC
1 review
Dined 5 days ago
Overall5food5service4ambience4

When in doubt, eat at the Unconventional Diner. Just the right amount of choice and always delicious.

c
Washington DC
1 review
Dined 6 days ago
Overall5food4service5ambience4

Very nice staff and service. Food was very good and price was reasonable. Great location and happy they took reservations.

MT
Washington DC
1 review
Dined 6 days ago
Overall5food5service5ambience5

I'm planning on making a reservation in March when my college friend gets here.

OT
Washington DC
1 review
Dined on February 9, 2020
Overall2food4service1ambience4

Our server was not interested in making sure we had a nice experience. Bare minimum to take care of our table. Food was good and the restaurant is pretty so it’s unfortunate our dining experience did not match.

D
Washington DC
5 reviews
Dined on February 9, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Modern take on diner favorites. Even the most picky of eaters will find something on the menu.

AS
Washington DC
11 reviews
Dined on February 9, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Great place for brunch! Great service too! Everything we are was very good

OT
1 review
Dined on February 8, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Absolutely delicious!

RM
1 review
Dined on February 8, 2020
Overall2food4service1ambience3

The food at Unconventional Diner is outstanding--and is the reason I keep coming back! However, almost every time I go to Unconventional Diner the service I receive is atrocious. While the food is good and the location is very convenient for me, considering how expensive Unconventional Diner is and how poor the service consistently is, I would not recommend Unconventional Diner.

E
Washington DC
3 reviews
Dined on February 8, 2020
Overall4food5service3ambience3

After happily eating at UC numerous times in the past but not for several months I felt the table service slipped a couple of notches. The server seemed inexperienced, placing things awkwardly in wrong spots and over people's heads although there was ample space to deliver plates and tumblers alongside guests. In contrast UC used to have competent servers.

JP
Washington DC
10 reviews
Dined on February 8, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience4

Great food. Great service.

OT
Portland
3 reviews
Dined on February 8, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Amazing!!!!

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OT
Washington DC
1 review
Dined on February 8, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Great place to eat

ME
Memphis
2 reviews
Dined on February 7, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

One of my favorite DC restaurants. The portions are large for the prices and the food and cocktails are always good. The dirty Caesar is one of my favorite salads in the area.

t
Washington DC
10 reviews
Dined on February 7, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Unconventional Diner is the best hidden secret in DC! The service and food is ALWAYS to perfection. I enjoy having business meals and personal meals there.

OT
1 review
Dined on February 6, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Superb food and service. Will be back again

PS
New York Area
10 reviews
Dined on February 5, 2020
Overall4food4service4ambience4

Very diverse menu of flavorful food. Lebanese fried rice was excellent! I also recommend the fish sticks starter. Hand cut breaded and more meat (fish) than breading. Overall a great dining experience!!

JS
Columbus
2 reviews
Dined on February 4, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Unconventional Diner was fantastic! We all left so satisfied and full of delicious food. Each meal was done wonderfully. It was classic food with a little twist. We can't wait to go back again.

RW
1 review
Dined on February 3, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

The food was incredible. The brussell sprouts and eggs might be the best bkfst I’ve ever had and I’m no spring chicken. Our server, Amber, made our time there feel like being home. Great!!!

M
Washington DC
18 reviews
Dined on February 2, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

What a fun place! Delicious, unique and you leave with a smile on your face. We were there for brunch. Best chicken and waffle I’ve ever had. My vegetarian guests were delighted with the choices and loved their selections.

c
Washington DC
3 reviews
Dined on February 2, 2020
Overall4food4service4ambience4

Unique, delicious, quality brunch. Service was great, felt attended to but not rushed, and we had plenty of space between our table and the next.

L
Washington DC
22 reviews
Dined on February 2, 2020
Overall3food2service2ambience2

Good brunch menu. Nice presentation of food, but blueberry pancakes very very dry

A
Toronto
5 reviews
Dined on February 2, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience4

Food was delicious, different spin on traditional brunch classics! Also both healthy and not so healthy options to satisfy every craving. The service was also great, especially considering how busy the restaurant was.

m
Washington DC
54 reviews
Dined on February 2, 2020
Overall5food4service5ambience5

A very lively brunch scene! We had traffic issues and called to say we were behind and they graciously held our table. Excellent service!

OT
Richmond
29 reviews
Dined on February 2, 2020
Overall5food4service5ambience3

Blueberry pancakes were outstanding. Shrimp and grits a great new twist on a classic.

M
Philadelphia
1 review
Dined on February 2, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Everything was freshly prepared, served promptly and delicious.

B
Charleston
12 reviews
Dined on February 1, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Everything we’d heard about this place was true. Our server, Tyler was very knowledgeable. The broccolini/okra stir fry was outstanding. Loved the Peruvian soup and the crab linguini had great flavors! Loved the Sunnyside and bacon dessert. Highly recommend!

NB
Washington DC
4 reviews
Dined on February 1, 2020
Overall5food5service4ambience5

We go for brunch all the time, and enjoy it!

CS
Washington DC
3 reviews
Dined on January 31, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience4

It was a fun place to meet up with an old friend. The atmosphere is a little noisy, so I would choose differently for a romantic date. Food delicious!!

A
Washington DC
7 reviews
Dined on January 31, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience4

Great time per usual and the accommodated my crutches needs. Very quick service and big portions.

NM
Calgary
1 review
Dined on January 31, 2020
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Loved the breakfast “shezzy” sandwich, bacon was crisp as I like it. Cheese grits were hot and delicious.

H
Dallas
15 reviews
Dined on January 30, 2020
Overall2food4service1ambience3

Very poor service.

JF
Washington DC
53 reviews
Dined on January 30, 2020
Overall4food3service3ambience4

My 3 yr old daughter and I went to Unconventional diner for lunch before going to the DC Auto show. Very handy location for the convention center. Reviews said the restaurant was good for kids, so I was surprised there was no kids menu. I was also surprised that they were serving their brunch menu on a week day. Food was good, but nothing different that would draw me back.