Rustico - Ballston

4.2
964 reviews
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$30 and under
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American
Rustico is the quintessential neighborhood pub in the heart of Ballston in Arlington, Virginia. The menu features seasonal, hearty American fare from a wood-fired oven and grill, including pizzas and rotisserie meats, along with other rustic cuisine using the freshest local ingredients available. There"s also no mistaking Rustico's love for barley & hops! The bar's focal point is a custom galvanized bar with 40 brilliant taps book-ended by two massive coolers holding more than 400 different types of ales, lagers, ciders and stouts.
What 964 People Are Saying
Overall ratings and reviews
Reviews can only be made by diners who have eaten at this restaurant
4.2based on recent ratings
4.2
food
3.9
service
4.1
ambience
3.9
value
Noise · Moderate
90% of people would recommend it to a friend
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MK
Washington DC
2 reviews
Dined 6 days ago
Overall 3food 3service 3ambience 3

Probably shouldn't rate it this low as i have had much better experiences at Rustico in the past. This time, we waited almost 20 minutes with a reservation. No one came to our table for at least another 10 minutes. I ordered the pumpkin ravioli and it was dreadful - very overcooked and dry - only the filling made it palatable. If I had not been there with others, I would have sent it back. Others enjoyed their fish of the day and the carrot hummus was pretty good. Service improved slightly but was never great. I hope it was an off night and I will give it a second chance.

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OT
Washington DC
21 reviews
Dined on February 15, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

They have an incredible lunch deal! $15 for soup, salad, and sandwich. Amazing plus their outstanding carrot hummus can count as a sandwich if you want. I couldn't be happier!

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OT
Washington DC
5 reviews
Dined on February 15, 2019
Overall 4food 5service 3ambience 4

Great food. The service was on par for a very busy night. No stop by a manager, but again, it was slammed for Valentine’s Day.

I would come again with hopes to have more attentive service.

P.s. the donuts were amazing!

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DL
1 review
Dined on February 11, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Carlos was a great waiter. We had never eaten here but it was recommended to us and we appreciated being able to converse without loud background noise.

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OT
Washington DC
1 review
Dined on February 8, 2019
Overall 4food 5service 5ambience 5

The only reason we gave 4 stars and not 5 is because my husband couldn’t get the beer he wanted. Such a first world problem. Brussels sprouts and cauliflower are to die for.

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OT
Washington DC
21 reviews
Dined on February 8, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 4

Great pizza, beet salad and wine list. Stumbled upon this place while visiting a dr in Clarendon. Very nice casual dinner! Recommend for an easy dinner.

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

The pumpkin ravioli was over cooked and dry with no sauce. My son did love the wings and fries. The fried Brussel sprouts were delicious. Our waiter was not good. He would disappear for a long time. He told me of happy hour wine prices and I ordered one but by the time he came back it was past happy hour and I got charged full price. Took us 15 min to flag him down at end for a check.

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JK
1 review
Dined on January 29, 2019
Overall 1food 1service 1ambience 1

Made a reservation and the restaurant was closed. You could email, phone to say the restaurant was closed or update your website.

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e
Washington DC
3 reviews
Dined on January 20, 2019
Overall 1food 1service 1ambience 1

Gave low rating due to water main break at restaurant and was not informed immediately. Understand things happen, but you could have notified customers who made reservations ahead of time - info was provided (name, phone, email).

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LG
Washington DC
67 reviews
Dined on January 20, 2019
Overall 1food 1service 1ambience 1

It was closed. We were so disappointed. We made an OpenTable reservation, which was accepted and confirmed and then when we made our way there on a rainy, cold night, it was closed due to water damage and apparently had been for days. Why would OpenTable accept and confirm our reservations for a restaurant that was closed?

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s
Toronto
6 reviews
Dined on January 9, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 3ambience 4

Food was excellent but server inattentive.

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a
1 review
Dined on January 7, 2019
Overall 5food 4service 5ambience 4

Our waiter was quite patient with us as we took a long time to decide what we wanted to eat.

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IH
1 review
Dined on January 5, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

It was a last minute booking for dinner on a Friday night and they were able to fit us in for a late dinner. It was a nice restaurant the food was decent although the menu was a bit limited.

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

Went for the Maine Beer co tapping. Awesome event!

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PK
Washington DC
1 review
Dined on December 31, 2018
Overall 3food 5service 1ambience 5

We and several other parties arrived for 6:00 PM reservations on New Years Eve - only to be informed the restaurant was closing from 6:00 - 9:00. No prior warning recieved and our reservations were accepted online by Open Table. Previous non-holiday visits have been good-to-excellent.

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OT
Washington DC
1 review
Dined on December 27, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Wonderful service and the food was delicious. We had the spinach salad, which was very tasty, and the Greek salad pizza, which was absolutely delicious!

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LS
West Virginia
21 reviews
Dined on December 26, 2018
Overall 4food 4service 5ambience 4

We were in the area to visit family and stopped in for dinner at Rustico. The restaurant creates a very relaxed and friendly atmosphere with well prepared comfort food. Delicious burgers, fish and chips and unique brews.

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b
Washington DC
2 reviews
Dined on December 22, 2018
Overall 3food 3service 3ambience 4

Mostly everything was good. The person who brought out entrees had to be told that women should be served first (3 of us ordered the same thing) by someone in our group. Pretzel and beer cheese was just not good at all. Pretzel tasted like it came from a frozen box and the dip was watery. I thought the steak was good but probably should include a vegetable as well for $27 instead of a massive amount of mashed potato. The menu was slightly peculiar with sides and salads grouped together with no option to add meat to salad. Probably would go back again for everyday dining.

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JL
Washington DC
1 review
Dined on December 21, 2018
Overall 4food 4service 2ambience 5

Our server was friendly but took way too long to check on us or bring us anything. They may just need to hire more wait staff. The food was very good, but I thought the entree portions were a bit small. Stylish interior made for a good ambiance.

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OT
Washington DC
1 review
Dined on December 19, 2018
Overall 2food 3service 1ambience 1

Appetizers were decent, but very over priced. Service was terrible. Will not be returning

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AC
Richmond
1 review
Dined on December 19, 2018
Overall 1food 2service 2ambience 2

Terrible hostess who was rude and ignored the fact that we had a reservation. She was rude and not helpful. We felt rushed and unwanted.

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SF
1 review
Dined on December 11, 2018
Overall 4food 4service 2ambience 4

Service was not good. Food was good. We had a group of 6 and it took forever for the server to take our orders. We were going to stay for dessert but because it took so long we just got it to go.

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a
Washington DC
1 review
Dined on December 10, 2018
Overall 3food 2service 4ambience 4

This is convenient to work and the food is acceptable. Two of us had the fish special which was two scallops & two shrimps around a serving of utterly plain white rice: skimpy, bland, overpriced. Better option would have been pizza. Nice beer selection.

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RA
Columbus
23 reviews
Dined on December 8, 2018
Overall 4food 5service 4ambience 3

We always enjoy Rustico whenever we visit DC. Good food, friendly staff and fair value.

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AM
Charleston
13 reviews
Dined on December 7, 2018
Overall 4food 4service 5ambience 5

Extensive beer list. Food was delicious. Told our server when we sat down that we had a movie show time in an hour and he made sure we were quickly served. Very efficient and pleasant too! We will be back!

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OT
New York Area
1 review
Dined on December 1, 2018
Overall 1food 1service 1ambience 2

Bad service, server forgot he took our order, then forgot we ordered a beer from their extensive list, said they were pulling it from the cellar and chilling it, 20 minutes later still nothing, we asked about it he said “oh right” walked away and then came right back and said what did you order again?

My burger was good, but the steak that the other person ordered was not cooked at the right temperature, tried again, and still not right. At this point I was already done eating. Spoke with a manager who seemed to care less, and said ask for me next time I’ll take care of you. No business card and when we asked about that she said I’m always here I basically live here.

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EO
Washington DC
1 review
Dined on November 29, 2018
Overall 2food 3service 3ambience 3

We booked a table for my husbands birthday. The waitress was very nice and told us that red and white wine was on happy hour for 5$ per glass. I asked for Chardonnay. I got a refill. When we got the bill, I was charged 12$ per glass.- 24$ total Waitress said Chardonnay was not on happy hour. I was annoyed but I did not want to say anything at the time.

Also my pumpkin ravioli was dry- I understand that is it supposed to be seared on one side, but it seemed that it had been left under the warmer for too long. The sage was scorched, and the ravioli very dry. there was no

My husbands steak was fatty and rubbery.

We lived Rustico and eat there frequently. But this time it was very disappointing. Our bill with our teen kids was $160 and we felt really frustrated.

Thank you

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CC
Washington DC
100 reviews
Dined on November 17, 2018
Overall 4food 5service 4ambience 5

Delicious butternut squash ravioli and flat breads were good but a bit pricey!

Love the ambiance - very romantic with real candles and dim lighting.

Service is pretty fast and this place fills up fast!

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JH
Baltimore
12 reviews
Dined on November 17, 2018
Overall 3food 4service 2ambience 3

Food was ok. Appetizers and mains arrived at the same time with no apologies. Made for awkward eating and crowded table of plates. NOISY! Slow service for drink orders.

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JC
1 review
Dined on November 12, 2018
Overall 4food 5service 3ambience 4

Good food, but pricey. $15 or so for a burger/sub is expensive, but they taste great and are loaded with meat. Up to you to decide whether it is worth it.

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KL
Chicago
35 reviews
Dined on November 6, 2018
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 4

I have dined at Rustico's a few times and the food is always good, service is very good and the atmosphere enjoyable. Its a great location near Ballston offering a variety of items. The bar is also fun after hours.

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LV
Washington DC
1 review
Dined on November 3, 2018
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 4

Little loud on a Friday night on the bar side, but if that’s the mood you’re looking for this is a great place for a group outing! The pizza is amazing and perfect for splitting.

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F
Chicago
9 reviews
Dined on November 3, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 4ambience 4

Excellent pizza, extensive beer list, cool vibe. Been here a bunch of times, there’s an excellent happy hour too

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LN
Washington DC
1 review
Dined on October 27, 2018
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 4

Rustico is a reliably good combination of comfort food and good beer. For the neighborhood, it's one of the few places for a decent pre-movie date night.

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s
Washington DC
1 review
Dined on October 20, 2018
Overall 2food 5service 1ambience 2

The food here is awesome--compliments to the chefs who are clearly very talented. However, the service is terrible. Our waiter was rude from the start; did not refill our drinks (water/Coke), and when brunch was over, he immediately put the bill on the table without asking if we want coffee or dessert. Again, the food is great, but service is terrible.

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OT
Washington DC
1 review
Dined on September 22, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

It was for my wife’s birthday. We really enjoyed eating delicious food!! Our server did a great job for us. We will eat there again. Mmmm

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MM
Los Angeles
2 reviews
Dined on September 11, 2018
Overall 3food 3service 5ambience 3

Service was good but food was meh and overpriced. Also, the AC was on full blast, it was freezing in there!

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L
Washington DC
107 reviews
Dined on September 9, 2018
Overall 2food 2service 2ambience 3

After several visits that were very good our brunch was not. Three of the seven meals came out either cold or undercooked, including bacon that was almost raw. There were several errors also, which was the server’s responsibility. Overall a poor dining experience.

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M
Miami
1 review
Dined on August 25, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 1ambience 2

The service is always poor however the food and value are good.

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D
Washington DC
1 review
Dined on August 22, 2018
Overall 3food 5service 4ambience 3

Music loudness made conversation difficult. Nothing happened when I requested the volume be lowered. If I want to go to a place to have a conversation, this will not be it.

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