If you like your food, you’ll love DC. This is a haven for food lovers, with an incredible array of different cuisines and experiences available. Whatever tastes you’re craving, from funky street vendor food to high-class restaurants, DC has got everything you need.
1) Rose’s Luxury
Some people say that Washington DC is the gateway to the American South. Rose seems to think so too, as the menu here is oh-so-southern, with dishes like smoked brisket and braised pork. They don’t take reservations, so sip a cocktail while you wait. For an extra special evening, ask for a seat in the roof garden, which takes 8 to 10 diners.
717 8th St SE, Washington DC. Tel: +1 202 580 8889.
Rasika means ‘flavors’ in Sanskrit, and this restaurant is certainly full of them. Rasika is one of the best Indian restaurants in DC, so popular that it has two different venues – one in Penn Quarter and one in the West End. Choose fresh dishes from the tawa, or griddle, or traditional Indian dishes with Rasika’s own individual twist.
Penn Quarter: 633 D Street, NW. Tel: +1 202 637 1222.
West End: 1190 New Hampshire Ave, NW. Tel: +1 202 466 2500.
Dining with friends or family? We’ve got just the place. Jaleo serves up classic Spanish tapas, and you can pick and mix lots of different dishes to suit everyone’s tastes. From classics like patatas bravas to big meals like paellas, it’s the real deal. Come along during Sangria hour (Sunday – Friday. 16:00 – 18:00) and wash it all down with a glass or two of liquid sunshine.
480 7th Street NW. Tel: +1 202 628 7949.
4) Pearl Dive Oyster Palace
Pearl Dive is a treat for all your senses, not just the palate. Check out the fantastic decorations, featuring all sorts of weird and wonderful objects. Then feast your eyes on the menu. From Old Black Salt Oysters to Kusshi Oysters and more, there’s plenty to tempt you, not to mention other seafood classics like gumbo and po’boys.
1612 14th Street NW. Tel: +1 202 319 1612.
5) Le Diplomate
Want some celebs to go with your meal? Come along to Le Diplomate and keep your eyes peeled. You might just spot a famous face or two. While you’re here, choose from classic French dishes like onion soup or bouillabaisse, and don’t miss the selection of mouth-watering crusty baguettes – they’re freshly baked in-house.
1601 14th Street, NW. Tel: +1 202 332 3333.
6) Birch & Barley
If you like good beer to go with your good food, then come down to 14th Street and grab a table at Birch & Barley, a self-described 'beer-centric' restaurant that offers 500+ artisanal beers, in addition to a seasonal menu specializing in 'new American' cuisine. Choose from the brunch, dinner, dessert and tasting menus and be utterly spoilt for choice.
1337 14th Street, NW. Tel: +1 202 567 2576
7) Dirty South Deli
Here’s a place that’s a bit out there. Literally. Dirty South Deli is a food truck serving up sandwiches packed full of ingredients like pulled pork, roasted carrots and shaved brisket. The menu changes every week. You’ll also find a Dirty South Café at the National Museum of Women in the Arts at weekday lunchtimes.
Food Truck: 1110 Congress Street, NE.
Café: 1250 New York Ave NW. Tel: +1 202 827 6884.
8) Basil Thyme
This food truck changes locale every day, so keep your eyes peeled, or check out their Twitter and chase them down! Nearly everything on the menu is made from scratch. Join the queue for generous portions of lasagne, ravioli and other traditional Italian treats.
9) Ben’s Chili Bowl
Everyone loves this spacial chili food stall, including Barack Obama, who used to eat here occasionally. Don't miss the chance to chow down on a chili dog, a bowl of chili con carne or chili burgers.
1213 U Street, NW. Tel: +1 202 667 0909.
10) Chatpat Truck
Chatpak Truck is a food truck offering a range of different indian dishes, and they’re all vegetarian. Fuel your sightseeing with masala dosas, pau bhaji, samosas or a traditional curry. The truck moves around every day, but you can hunt it down on twitter, or visit their café at 800 K Street.
11) Co Co. Sala
If you’re a chocaholic make sure to visit Co Co. From chocolate desserts to chocolate cocktails, everything comes with your favourite ingredient. Visit between 16:00 and 19:00 every day for the Chocolate and Bubbles Happy Hour, with special drinks and prosecco served with handmade chocolate.
929 F St NW, Tel: +1 202-347-4265