It’s no secret that the DC restaurant scene is making a serious name for itself among foodie heavyweights like NYC and Philly.
In the last two years, our restaurants have been racking up the Michelin stars, which indicate an establishment’s dedication to excellence and give a big tip to residents to go eat there as soon as possible. And in 2018 alone, 14 DC restaurants made the prestigious list. We’re here to tell you what to order at seven of them if you’re lucky enough to snag a reservation.
For those rare occasions when you want to splurge or if you’re looking to celebrate something extra special, check out the following spots and put that tax return to good use.
Why we love it: From the massive front doors to the glow of natural light, all the way down to the carefully-chosen, sleek decor, Blue Duck Tavern knows how to give a first impression. Their menu is seasonal, which means you’re getting the freshest ingredients—and the dessert selection will have you drooling before you even order your entrée.
What to order: Start with the spring pea salad with pea pods, sprouts, honey almond butter, pecorino, and ham. For dinner, try the pan-seared rockfish accompanied by a pickled green tomato, chili oil, and a crunchy vegetable salad. The frozen strawberry parfait is the perfect cap to your meal, with funfetti cake, bubblegum foam, and a strawberry crisp.
Why we love it: Kinship is ideal for that special occasion you’ve been waiting to celebrate all year. Every last detail here has been perfected, like the luxe black and white decor, cozy gas fireplace, and intimate seating areas that must have been designed with date night in mind.
What to order: The baked potato chowder is a great starter, richly made with scallions, bacon, and biscuits. Follow that up with the Kinship roast chicken with lemon garlic panade, pommes rissolées (also known as French browned potatoes), and a frisee salad. For dessert, don’t pass up the caramelized banana split that includes fudgy brownies, marshmallows, vanilla Chantilly cream, chocolate sorbet, and cherry and vanilla ice cream.
Why we love it: Opening its doors in 2016, Komi is new to the Michelin Guide, though its spot is well-deserved. The $150 prix fixe menu is full of Mediterranean-inspired dishes that are sure to impress, and it’s best for couples or small groups (reservations are capped at four). Dining here is an all-night event, so settle in and prepare to be wowed.
What to order: Because the menu is already set, just sit back, relax, and enjoy about a dozen Mediterranean and seafood dishes, like sea bass, octopus, and sheep’s milk dumplings. There are no cocktails here, but there is an Old World wine and beer list, so ask your server which drinks pair best with each dish.
Why we love it: Métier is another new addition to Michelin’s prestigious list, situated just a floor above Kinship, and is also helmed by chef Eric Ziebold. This French tasting room offers a seven-course prix fixe menu with impeccable service in a chic, minimalist space. Wooden barn doors, simply painted portraits, and a flood of white ensure there are no distractions so the food can take center stage.
What to order: The seven courses begin with asparagus fricassee with roasted tofu, black trumpet mushroom, and potatoes, then continue with dishes like porgy crab imperial and duck foie gras confit. For dessert, treat your palate to the key lime meringue and white chocolate tart with rhubarb sorbet.
Why we love it: This restaurant is so chic they have $40 soap in the bathrooms (yes, seriously). Their name combines the symbols for hospitality and elegance, and you’ll certainly find the perfect blend of those here. Pay a fixed price depending on your seating selection (dining room, chef’s counter, or bar), and get a 12-course meal that includes food, drinks, tax, and gratuity.
What to order: Your pairings are selected by the chef, but expect playful yet delectable dishes like an upscale PB&J with foie gras butter, hazelnuts, and cherry preserves, as well as classic fare like beef tartare and caviar.
Why we love it: Even your purse gets the five-star treatment here: as soon as you’re shown to your table, your server will pull out a little velvet stool just for your handbag. Located inside the Jefferson Hotel, Plume also has plenty of cozy nooks that are made for date night, and the roaring fireplace only adds to the elegant ambiance.
What to order: The Lobster Gratiné is quite popular with Plume’s patrons, as is the King Salmon with brown butter emulsion. If you have a sweet tooth, the Everything Chocolate is a must, consisting of a chocolate crunch bar and cocoa nib ice cream.
Why we love it: It’s not easy to get into Rose’s as they take a very limited number of reservations for larger parties only. It’s not uncommon for a line to form outside, but trust us, it’s worth the wait. To say the staff here are friendly would be a drastic understatement; they’ve even been known to send complimentary dishes to make your dining experience that much more enjoyable.
What to order: You can’t go wrong with any of the pasta dishes here, but if you want our advice, try the vegetarian-friendly stuffed “gnocchi” with blue cheese, maitake, and sherry. The desserts are as unique as they are delicious, but the coconut milk ice cream with lime and kiwi seems to be quite the crowd pleaser.