Stylish restaurants, celebrity chefs and fresh local fare are all on the menu in Washington, DC, a city whose "suddenly seductive" dining scene (New York Post) is no longer known primarily for power lunches and elegant State dinners.
You'll find restaurants with noteworthy chefs at the helm, including José Andrés, host of PBS' "Made in Spain," (and founder of acclaimed DC restaurants such as Zaytinya, Oyamel, Jaleo, minibar by José Andrés and the new barmini by José Andrés) and James Beard Award winner Eric Ziebold of CityZen. You'll also see on the scene fresh faces like "Top Chef" finalists Carla Hall as well as Mike Isabella at his popular DC outpost, Graffiato. With DC chefs finding celebrity on national TV, restaurants placing focus on all things green and a First Family sampling all that DC’s culinary scene has to offer, there’s no more appetizing time to visit the nation’s capital.
Moveable Feast: This three-hour nibble-and-nosh culinary tour offered by Washington Walks celebrates the locally grown and the locally invented. You’ll stay on the move as your guide serves up some favorite tales of gastronomic history along the way - from the inaugural party-turned-food fight to Mrs. Terrell’s quiet milestone in civil rights. The tour covers the heart of downtown, where nary a suit in the lunch-hour crowd realizes he’s swarming in DC’s former market neighborhood. These days think bubble tea, ginger scones and coffee roasted only a stone’s throw away.
DC Metro Food Tours: This tour company specializes in foodie-focused tours that concentrate on Capitol Hill in the District and Old Town Alexandria just outside the city. Explore Eastern Market, a grand and historic food market on the Hill in the Foods of Eastern Market Tour, opt for food tours of either the Hill or Old Town, or celebrate the end of a long day of sightseeing with a pub crawl.
The popular blog, book and subsequent popular summer movie "Julie & Julia" all ended with the same reward – a trip to Smithsonian's National Museum of American History to see Julia Child’s kitchen, now the centerpiece of its ongoing exhibit, FOOD: Transforming the American Table 1950-2000. Savor a tour of her legendary Cambridge, Mass., kitchen that was donated to the Smithsonian and explore videos, cookbooks, gadgets and utensils to gain insight into Julia’s great passion for food and for life.
Head out of town for the afternoon to sip around DC’s Wine Country. Just 25 miles outside of Washington, Loudoun County boasts more than 20 boutique wineries, rolling hills, meandering stone walls, horse country and historic towns. Sit back and enjoy the ride: Contact Reston Limousine to experience one of their tours visiting several wineries, or have them build one to your liking.
DC has been home to pioneers in the organic and sustainable movements for years. Nora Pouillon of Restaurant Nora was the first certified organic restaurant in the United States right here in 1999, and Ann Yonkers has been spreading the "gospel" of FRESHFARM food at markets that have sprouted up in neighborhoods across the city. But this year marked a special milestone in this movement, when First Lady Michelle Obama worked with her White House staff to create the first edible garden at the White House since the Victory Gardens in the 1940s.
Looking for a little inspiration? Destination DC and Bon Appétit magazine teamed up with experienced tour company epitourean.com to offer Hip & Hungry Getaways to DC. Build a custom visit to DC that fits your tastes, budget and timeframe - including lodging, city tours, cooking classes and all the right restaurant reservations.