DC is home to over 2,000 restaurants in the metro DC area alone and, thanks to the extensive metro system DC uses, visiting most of these restaurants is super simple and convenient. The vast number of food options can make it difficult for travelers to pick and choose where to eat. But, fear not! I’ve been fortunate enough to try out tons of different restaurants DC has to offer, and I want to share my experience with you. From fancy and modern to simple and affordable, these are my 5 recommendations for the places you absolutely must eat when you visit DC.
My husband is a huge pizza fan. So, it’s a given anytime we go to DC that we stop by at 2 Amys. This restaurant is in the Cleveland Park area of DC, fairly close to the National Zoo. The restaurant is a classic wood oven pizzeria that makes fully authentic Neapolitan pizza. So authentic that they’re certified by the Italian government as being an authentic producer of traditional Neapolitan pizza! Their Norcia pizza is my personal favorite and it features salami and roasted peppers on their incredible dough. Give it a try and pair it with an Italian wine!
Closest metro station: Cleveland Park
If you’re in the mood for something elegant and fun, visit Rose’s Luxury for dinner near the Eastern Market. Rose’s Luxury has been making waves for its interesting take on American tapas and goodwill mission. The tapas they serve change based on the availability of locally sourced produce and ingredients. You’ll find a diverse melting pot of techniques and influences that pairs great with their extensive cocktail and wine selection.
Rose’s Luxury has a goodwill mission to help feed hungry children all around the world. Simply put, for every meal you have at Rose’s Luxury, they donate money to give a child a school meal and a take-home meal. So far, they’ve donated over $30,000 to the World Food Program USA!
Helpful tip, Rose’s Luxury is VERY popular so it’s a good idea to get to the restaurant early to avoid a huge line. They don’t take reservations, but they will take down your contact info and give you a call or text when your table is ready (which means you can roam around or grab a drink at their bar while you wait!)
Closest metro station: Eastern Market
Any DC resident will mention Founding Farmers as a must-visit restaurant. Founding Farmers in the Foggy Bottom area of DC is wildly popular and serves up classic American food and breakfast. This restaurant is actually owned by a collective of family farmers through the North Dakota Farmers Union, which means all the ingredients (and most of the alcohol) is contributed by one of the 47,000 farmers who co-own Founding Farmers. And let me tell you, the food is INCREDIBLE. Not only tasty, the portions they give you are truly farmer sized.
Closest metro station: Foggy Bottom-GWU
Most people think sushi and ramen when they think of Japanese food. For me, I think about Donburi, both the restaurant and the food. Donburi is a bowl of rice that’s topped with veggies, meat and sauce in one full bowl of delicious flavor. Rather than being fancy, the goal is to fill you up with amazing food for a low cost, and Donburi delivers. This restaurant is also near the National Zoo, near the Woodley Park metro station. For some simple comfort-style food go for the Karaagedon (fried marinated chicken on rice with pickled veggies and sauce), or if you’re a fan of sushi try the Sakedon (raw slices of salmon on sushi rice with pickled veggies and nori). Either way, you and your wallet will be VERY satisfied and full!
Closest metro station: Woodley Park-Zoo/Adams Morgan
The Eastern Market is a popular indoor farmers market beloved by all DC residents. Found in the Capitol Hill area, Eastern Market houses fresh produce, locally made cheeses, butchers and, most importantly, a selection of amazing prepared food! Especially popular for brunch, foodies will love visiting the Eastern Market and trying out interesting foods from the various options offered. Check out Ma’ Brown’s for their incredible baked sweets or Puddin’ for their southern comfort foods. If you want to eat something on the go while shopping, try B-Holes for their homemade bagel holes in a variety of flavors from sweet to savoury.
Closest metro station: Eastern Market
Author Byline: Kate Howard is a loving mother and wife who loves trying out new restaurants and spending time with her family. When she’s not eating, she’s also teaching pre-schoolers and helping new travelers and families plan their DC trip through her and her husband’s website: http://hotelsneardcmetro.com/