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The Tulip Bistro + Bar

308 reviews
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$30 and under
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Top Tags:
  • Neighborhood Gem (543)
  • Fit for Foodies (418)
  • Special Occasion (302)

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The Tulip Bistro + Bar is a small treasure in the Chevy Chase Neighborhood. Chef Spencer van den Dool has worked in fantastic local restaurants such as Pacific Pearl and Emmett"s before going to Holland and working at a 2 michelin star restaurant called De Kastanjehof, where he fine tuned his French-American cuisine. The menu offers such things as Mussels, Fish and Chips to Curried Seafood & Short Ribs. There is something for everyone! Our wine list covers most of the world, while our martini list features old and new favorites, such as Tulip Margatini, Blue Goose and The Grand Cosmo.The Tulip will impress you and have you making a reservation for your next visit.
Dining Style
Casual Elegant
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American, French
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Hours of operation
Dinner: Monday - Thursday:4:00pm - 10:00pm, Friday & Saturday: 4:00pm - 10:30pm
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Phone number
(859) 367-6687
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Payment options
AMEX, MasterCard, Visa
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Dress code
Business Casual
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Executive chef
Spencer van den Dool
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Cross street
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Parking details
We offer parking in our lot or on the street.
Banquet, Bar Dining, Full Bar, Non-Smoking, Outdoor dining, Private Room, Takeout, Wheelchair Access, Wine
What 308 People Are SayingWrite a review
Overall ratings and reviews
4.3  based on all time ratings
Noise · Moderate
96% of people would recommend it to a friend
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vipOpenTable Diner (Louisville)
5.0  Dined on January 21, 2015

Tulip is always as good as you expect, great menu staples and nightly specials that are inventive and flavorful.

mo1975 (Louisville)
5.0  Dined on January 14, 2015

My new favorite restaurant in Lexington. Food is great and the service is perfect. The prices are reasonable and the menu is outstanding. Wish they were open for lunch!!!!

Kyadprof (Louisville)
4.0  Dined on January 9, 2015

We went for the special entrees with Carolina shrimp.. Fabulous goat cheese salad. Awesome ham-wrapped shrimp stuff with crab. Wonderful ravioli. Amazing she-crab soup. Excellent service.

MDet (Louisville)
4.0  Dined on December 30, 2014

My mother and her husband were in town and we decided to have a late dinner here. Our waitress was prompt, explained the specials and made us feel comfortable. The food was great! We were very happy with both the food and the service.

Mayorcooper (Louisville)
3.0  Dined on December 12, 2014

My wife and I love the food here but the accoustics are terrible. You can barely have a conversation in the place it is so loud. Great oysters along with a wonderful menu are worth the visit but I hope you have a quieter time than we have had.

Buncogals (Louisville)
5.0  Dined on December 12, 2014

This is a charming restaurant: attentive staff, delicious food, very comfortable.

TipofStanton (Louisville)
5.0  Dined on December 5, 2014

We love the oysters Rockefeller. Everything we have had there is awesome. The service is great.

Psych (Louisville)
5.0  Dined on December 5, 2014

I would highly recommend The Tulip and will certainly return. Our food and drinks were incredible, the host was very friendly and the waiter knew the menu inside out.

Pleasant (Louisville)
4.0  Dined on December 4, 2014

I always enjoy both the food and atmosphere at The Tulip. However, on this particular visit, the noise level was intolerable. We sat as far away from the bar as possible, but still could not hear to talk. If you go, be sure to have the she-crab soup. It is outstanding-a meal in itself. Highly recommend this restaurant for a casual night out.

OpenTable Diner (New York Area)
3.0  Dined on November 28, 2014

The only thing preventing me from giving four stars was the noise--I didn't expect it to be so noisy. Besides that it was a lovely dining experience--it's a very attractive restaurant and our food was excellent. We had the burger and a seafood special. Will definitely return but will ask to sit away from the bar. :)

tsx05 (Louisville)
5.0  Dined on November 12, 2014

Last night was the first time I dined at Tulip. Very nice menu. The food was superb! Kudos to the chef with the nice touch who graciously made some substitutions on the salmon special. The food and wine prices were more than reasonable. The manager/owner checked on us often and was most helpful. My only complaint in what was a perfect dining experience was the noise level - 2 nearby tables had very loud parties making it difficult for our group of 3 to converse. Other than that I wouldn't change a thing and will go back hopefully on a quieter night.

Jojo (Cincinnati)
2.0  Dined on November 11, 2014

Was so loud couldn't carry on normal conversation in restaurant portion. Service very slow. Was told the "special" of the day was $25 but when bill came was $35. Also dessserts were terrrible...Husband ordered a fruit tart type which was only whipped cream with a few berries on top. I ordered a pound cake type of thing with mascerated strawberries...cake was so dry could barely swallow and the berries were just a few sliced. They did take the cake off the bill when I asked.

loves2eat (Louisville)
4.0  Dined on November 8, 2014

The food is spectacular. The service varies on different nights. Would have received a 5 star if we would have been seated where the noise level wasn't on 100.

Bmccr (Nashville)
5.0  Dined on November 1, 2014

My wife and I love to come here on date night. The food and service are both equally fantastic. I'd highly recommend trying the short ribs they're fantastic!

vip1969paul (Atlanta)
4.0  Dined on October 27, 2014

1st trip through Lexington and glad to find this place. Very good food and great service.

OpenTable Diner (Louisville)
5.0  Dined on October 24, 2014

Varied menu with excellent choices. Food was perfectly prepared. We were there on a Friday night and had a difficult time conversing due to the high noise level.

vipTulip (West Virginia)
5.0  Dined on October 24, 2014

We love the Tulip! Food never disappoints. Bar can sometimes get too loud.

vipOpenTable Diner (E. Tennessee)
5.0  Dined on October 24, 2014

The service and food was outstanding the menu is outstanding when my wife and travel to Lexington KY this is our #1 place for dinner. Great job to the staff and management I recommended it to all my MSTATE alumni in Lexington for the football

Bdiner (Louisville)
4.0  Dined on October 23, 2014

Each item was well prepared and fresh. The wait staff sufficient. On the night we were there it was nearly impossible to hear each other.

vipyogaleigh (Louisville)
4.0  Dined on October 21, 2014

I've never been disappointed in the food at Tulip and I've tried lots of things. The salmon special this time was SO good. The burger is one of the best in town. However, parking is so tight there that we go less & less. The lot is tiny & Suggins customers fill it. This time the whole area was packed for some reason; had to drop my mother off and drive around and around before finally parking on the street a block away. One of the reasons I no longer live in San Francisco or Chicago is that I got tired of wasting my life hunting for parking, so I really resist going to a place around here that's that hard. We also generally go pretty early because Tulip gets very noisy when it's crowded but we were later this time and it was deafening.