DC continues to be a dining destination, welcoming global cuisine to the nation’s capital. Notable newcomers include Taqueria Xochi, born out of a furloughed employee’s dream of opening a fast-casual Mexican restaurant; Rumi’s Kitchen, specializing in Persian cuisine; Moon Rabbit, a modern Vietnamese restaurant named for the virtuous rabbit in the Buddhist Jataka tale; and Sharbat, introducing Azerbaijani gastronomy to Washington, DC. DC is also amid a bakery and food hall boom, welcoming more than eight new bakeries and four new food halls as 2020 closes out.
La Collina, coming to Capitol Hill before the new year and aptly named “the hill” in Italian, is slated to be a family (and wallet) friendly osteria. There will be a walk-up antipasti and panini window, and in the evening, expect homemade pastas, antipasti, salumi, cocktails and carafes of wine. To help with meal planning, prepared dinners and pasta kits will be available to take home.
A taqueria and mezcaleria, Paraiso will open in Capitol Hill in late fall. Touting creative cuisine inspired by the streets and home kitchens of Mexico, head chef Geovanny Beltran will delight diners with home made tortillas, large format dishes, endless taco options and, of course, a loaded bar with vast mezcal options.
Pennsylvania Avenue may be a famous address in DC, but it’s also about to become a culinary hub by the end of 2020 thanks to Western Market. Western Market offers a lineup of innovative dining concepts and restaurants, featuring DC staples such as Duke’s Grocery, Shouk and Elle, to name a few. The space will also be mixed-use and offer retail and office space.
James Beard award-winning chef Michael Schlow's newest upscale neighborhood concept, Glover Park Grill, will specialize in classic yet refined American fare featuring an expertly chosen wine & curated cocktail menu. Led by Schlow’s newest executive chef, Hamilton Johnson, Glover Park Grill will offer comfort food for the neighborhood by late 2020.
The Duck & The Peach is a two-in-one concept, landing in the Southeast DC neighborhood and is set to open late fall 2020. Think California-inspired with a touch of New England, offering kitchen counter service with quick breakfast and lunch items to enjoy on a spacious patio or on the go. Dinner options include a pre fixe menu and a house rotisserie showcasing nightly specials.
Chef Darren Norris and his wife, Candice Wise-Norris, brought the first Izakaya to Washington, DC. Now, they’ll debut another Japanese concept based on a traditional idea. Shabu Plus will offer an updated version of Japanese Hot Pot with top grade meats, organic poultry, sustainable seafood and delicious broths.
Bringing the dark and stormy along with an extensive rum list to Sherman Ave in late 2020, De Rhum Spot will make its mark on Northwest DC. Operating as a Caribbean kitchen, the eatery offers Caribbean street food and a drunken banana bread pudding, to complement rums, cocktails and “other ‘tings.”
Dauphine, a seafood bar and boucherie is set to open in downtown DC in spring 2021. Dauphine’s is inspired by the culinary culture of New Orleans and will be a collaboration between the team behind DC’s The Salt Line & New Orleans’ James Beard Award winning cocktail lounge, Cure.
Jane Jane – this Southern-inspired bar will reside in Liz, a mixed-use development on 14th Street, Northwest. Patrons will be delighted by well-crafted classic cocktails, Southern-inspired snacks and welcoming, inclusive hospitality. Expected late 2020.
Lolita Cocina and Tequila Bar – a Mexican-based restaurant on its way from Boston offers a wide variety of drinks and dishes with a twist . The dark, mysterious interior and artwork, similar to its Boston location, will open off 14th Street in late 2020.
City State Brewing Co. – located in the Bloomingdale neighborhood and expected to open in fall 2020, the microbrewery and taproom will have a 20-barrel system and a smaller, experimental five-barrel brewhouse.
Dig – a New York-based restaurant is getting a new space in Georgetown. The DC location will offer a veggie heavy menu, utilizing “stem to leaf” thoughtfulness and a variety of grain bowls and salads with a long list of sides for the healthy mind.
Diablo’s Cantina – MGM National Harbor is set to get a new restaurant. Think south-of-the-border dining and drinking with a dash of decadence. Diablo’s features freshly made salsas and guacamoles along with a selection of premium tequilas and signature cocktails. The Maryland location is the first iteration of Diablo’s off the Vegas strip.
The Ardent – the Capitol Crossing development near the Capitol Hill neighborhood will house a Mediterranean Spanish-style restaurant in late 2020. The restaurant will sport a large-scale wood-burning oven, Murano glass chandeliers and flashes of Mediterranean blue and sunset pinks that provide a warm backdrop for the cuisine.
Daru – a self-proclaimed spirit forward Indian restaurant, Daru is poised to bring the H Street corridor a concept based on casual Indian snack foods, dessert and spiced cocktails.
Chicatana Fine Mexican Cuisine – coming soon to the Petworth neighborhood, a cozy family-style spot promises authentic Mexican food, a patio and adult beverages.
Moon Rabbit – a modern Vietnamese restaurant located at InterContinental Washington D.C. - The Wharf takes an innovative approach to Vietnamese classics. The restaurant opened in late October 2020 and is named for the virtuous rabbit in the Buddhist Jataka tale.
Rumi's Kitchen – An Atlanta favorite, this high-end Persian restaurant now calls Mt. Vernon Square in Washington, DC home. The menu features a variety of traditional Khoresh dishes and aims to capture the authenticity and slow cooked flavors of Persian cuisine.
Taqueria Xochi – touting itself as 100% authentic Mexican cuisine, the U-Street carryout window is the talk of the town. Head Chef Teresa Padilla has seen her lifelong dream realized in Taqueria Xochi, introducing Cemitas, Puebla-style Mexican sandwiches, and other authentic Mexican dishes to DC.
Sharbat – adding a sweet spot to 18th Street in Adams Morgan, Sharbat is DC’s first Azerbaijani café and bakery. Specializing in cakes, the family run shop may be most well-known for its honey cake. But, those on a savory journey are pleased with personal xachapuri, a square pastry filled with beef or cheese.
Ghostline DC – a to-go food hall is now open in the Glover Park neighborhood. Options for dining include carry out, walk up windows and delivery only from startups and established DC chefs alike. No dining is allowed indoors. Vendors offer pre-batched cocktails, sushi, gourmet burgers, Detroit style pizza, cupcakes and baked goods, Tex-Mex, ramen and more.
Jônt – Chef Ryan Ratino debuted his 12-seat tasting counter above the Michelin-starred Bresca on 14th Street in late July. Jônt boasts an eight to 11 course progressive menu and an adjacent 35-seat lounge that highlights affordable caviar and high-end hot dogs, alongside the cocktail program. Like Bresca, Jônt will be carbon neutral.
Oyster Oyster – a new concept in Shaw stemmed from a sustainable project by vegetarians Chef Rob Rubba and owner of Estadio, Max Kuller. Opened in August, the menu concentrates on eco-friendly food and beverages.
Iron Age Korean Steak House – the Columbia Heights tabletop grilling restaurant opened at the end of June. DC’s second Korean Barbeque spot brings diners up close and personal with sizzling meats and veggies, has a soju bar and affordable all you can eat options.
Levain Bakery – the first stand-alone bakery outside of New York City has found a home on M Street in Georgetown. The New York shop is famous for its gooey chocolate chip cookies, cakes, pastries, breads and more.
La Famosa – A Puerto Rican eatery in the Navy Yard neighborhood serves lunch and dinner as well as an extensive coffee program and an eclectic rum menu. Trust us: order the pina colada.
Tatte – a beloved Boston brand has now opened two outposts in DC. Delighting Washingtonians with halva brownies and morning buns as well as all day menus, the famed Israeli bakery calls the West End and Dupont Circle neighborhoods home.
Roaming Roster – what began as an instant success and food truck has rapidly expanded to four food trucks and two brick and mortar locations across DC. This chicken spot offers free-range, grain-fed chicken served fresh every day and serves its chicken mild, medium and hot. The twice fried hand cut fries are also a can’t miss.
Moorenko’s Ice Cream – the Maryland based regional chain opened its first DC location in Eastern Market. The local brand started nearly 20 years ago, and promotes ultra-premium ice cream thanks to its suppliers and high quality natural ingredients.
New Food Halls:
Western Market (opening late 2020)