The Best Bars for Foodies in Washington D.C.

The OpenTable Team

Few areas in the country are more iconic than Washington, D.C., but America's capital isn't just the hub of politics—it's also home to some of the best restaurants in America. But where are the smartest, savviest diners eating out? Welcome to our Tastemakers List. We’ve pulled data from thousands of restaurants to find the top spots among OpenTable's most expert, seasoned diners. Whether in the mood for a good old-fashioned, all-American beer, or some sake, this list of best bars in D.C. has you covered.

Restaurants:O-Ku - DC, Le Diplomate, The Smith – Penn Quarter, Washington, D.C
Price Range:$$ - $$$
Cuisines:Sushi, French, American
Neighborhoods:Washington, Logan Circle, Penn Quarter

O-Ku - DC

$$$$·Sushi·
Washington
582 reviews
  • Fit for Foodies
  • Special Occasions
  • Good for a Date
O-Ku opened a few years ago and quickly won D.C. over with their commitment to genuine Japanese hospitality. They have a world-class upstairs bar and a full sushi and sashimi bar. Read more
97% recommended
Best Ambience in Virginia - DC Suburbs
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Le Diplomate

$$$$·French·
Logan Circle
9,372 reviews
  • Special Occasions
  • Good for a Date
  • Brunch
Le Diplomate dedicates itself to genuine French culture. They take extra care to extend this dedication to the drinks, which are steeped in French culture and tradition. The fruitRead more
94% recommended
Most Booked in Washington, D.C. Area
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The Smith – Penn Quarter, Washington, D.C

$$$$·American·
Penn Quarter
1,945 reviews
  • Casual
  • Good for a Date
  • Group Bookings
Located around the corner from the International Spy Museum, The Smith in the Penn Quarter is an offshoot of the popular NYC spot that specializes in all-American food and seasonalRead more
83% recommended

Dirty Habit

$$$$·Global, International·
Penn Quarter
946 reviews
  • Happy Hour
  • Good for a Date
  • Handcrafted Cocktails
The Dirty Habit is another addition to the Penn Quarter district and is steps away from all the major tourist destinations. They pair seasonal drinks with shareable plates, making Read more
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SEI restaurant & lounge

$$$$·Asian·
Penn Quarter
2,489 reviews
  • Fit for Foodies
  • Hot Spot
  • Special Occasions
SEI is in downtown D.C. and specializes in modern Asian cuisine. They also have specialty sushi that puts a modern spin on the classic Japanese dish. SEI, however, got their reputaRead more
93% recommended
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The Arsenal at Bluejacket

$$$$·Contemporary American·
Navy Yard
905 reviews
  • Great Beer
  • Comfort Food
  • Neighbourhood Gem
The building that houses The Arsenal at Bluejacket was first built back in 1919 and has since been retrofitted to house this bar and restaurant. The Arsenal specializes in “adventuRead more
95% recommended
Contemporary American in District of Columbia

RPM Italian - DC

$$$$·Italian·
Washington DC
3,607 reviews
  • Special Occasions
  • Good for a Date
  • Romance
This division of RPM specializes in Italian-American eats with pasta, seafood, and steaks. They also serve some of the best wines from various Italian regions in the world. At the Read more
94% recommended
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Macon Bistro & Larder

$$$$·Regional American (Southern)·
Chevy Chase
810 reviews
  • Neighbourhood Gem
  • Good for a Date
  • Pre/post Theatre
The Macon Bistro and Larder is one of the most unique bars in D.C. because they combine Southern cooking with a French-Creole flair. Best known among the locals, the Macon Bistro aRead more
91% recommended
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Brasserie Beck

$$$$·Belgian·
Downtown
4,697 reviews
  • Business Meals
  • Good for a Date
  • Great Beer
Located in the burgeoning McPherson neighborhood, Brasserie Beck is one of the only restaurants serving Belgian food in the area. It has a beer list with over 100 choices, making iRead more
86% recommended
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BlackSalt

$$$$·Seafood·
Palisades Northwest
6,057 reviews
  • Neighbourhood Gem
  • Good for a Date
  • Fit for Foodies
BlackSalt serves sustainable seafood that is typically locally sourced as well. The bar is more of an upscale tavern that complements the high-end dishes that are popular here. TheRead more
96% recommended
Seafood in Washington, D.C. Area
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Iron Gate

$$$$·Mediterranean·
Dupont Circle
1,808 reviews
  • Romance
  • Good for a Date
  • Special Occasions
The Iron Gate is a swanky spot that offers Mediterranean fare, specifically Greek and Italian fusion dishes. This is a preferred hangout spot in the nicer weather months because thRead more
92% recommended
Mediterranean in Washington, D.C. Area
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Jaleo DC

$$$$·Spanish·
Penn Quarter
8,982 reviews
  • Tapas
  • Creative Cuisine
  • Fit for Foodies
Celebrity chef Jose Andres brings his Jaleo concept to D.C., and the result is a Mexican fusion menu with a rotating selection of cocktails to complement the dishes. Jaleo has greaRead more
96% recommended

Matisse

$$$$·Contemporary French·
Tenleytown
1,238 reviews
  • Neighbourhood Gem
  • Quiet Conversation
  • Romance
Named after the French painter Henri Matisse, this restaurant specializes in contemporary French-Mediterranean fare. Matisse has an unrivaled wine list that offers a premier selectRead more
97% recommended

Café Milano

$$$$·Italian·
Georgetown
2,978 reviews
  • Special Occasions
  • Neighbourhood Gem
  • Good for a Date
This is one of the most casual dining offerings in D.C., which is important in a town that takes the tack of “sun's up, suits on.” Café Milano offers delicious pizzas complemented Read more
90% recommended

Joe's Seafood, Prime Steak & Stone Crab - Washington DC

$$$$·Seafood·
Downtown
5,986 reviews
  • Special Occasions
  • Good for a Date
  • Good for Anniversaries
With satellite locations in Las Vegas and Chicago, Joe's Seafood, Prime Steak & Stone Crab has become a D.C. favorite because of their incomparable surf 'n' turf and cocktails. ThiRead more
94% recommended
Seafood in Washington, D.C. Area
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BLT Prime by David Burke

$$$$·Contemporary American·
Downtown
1,915 reviews
  • Special Occasions
  • Romance
  • Notable Wine List
Located in the Trump Hotel DC, the BLT Prime by David Burke is best known for their top-of-the-line steaks and incomparable appetizers. The selection of cocktails is second-to-noneRead more
100% recommended
Best Ambience in Washington, D.C. Area

Kinship

$$$$·American·
Mt. Vernon Square
927 reviews
  • Fit for Foodies
  • Special Occasions
  • Romance
Kinship is another place that specializes in new American fare, meaning they do gourmet twists on classics like hamburgers and steaks. Kinship has a chic, minimalist decor, which mRead more
93% recommended
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RIS

$$$$·American·
West End
3,382 reviews
  • Fit for Foodies
  • Neighbourhood Gem
  • Special Occasions
Named after Executive Chef, Ris LaCoste, RIS DC is a neighborhood restaurant located in the heart of the West End district that serves seasonal American fare with a local vibe. LaCRead more
92% recommended
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The Source by Wolfgang Puck

$$$$·Asian·
Downtown
3,652 reviews
  • Fit for Foodies
  • Good for a Date
  • Special Occasions
Austrian-born celebrity chef Wolfgang Puck first came to prominence in the 1980s, when he opened Spago in Beverly Hills. With restaurants all over the world, his Source restaurant Read more
89% recommended
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El Centro D.F. on 14th Street - Permanently Closed

$$$$·Mexican·
Downtown
1,474 reviews
  • Brunch
  • Happy Hour
  • Good for a Date
El Centro D.F. is another creation by celebrity executive chef Ricardo Sandoval that specializes in authentic Mexican food. In addition to offering authentic Mexican street eats, ERead more
93% recommended
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