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Dining & Drinking

Diners at Requin by Mike Isabella on the Southwest Waterfront - Restaurant at The Wharf in Washington, DC

Washington, DC brings the heat with new restaurants featuring diverse cuisines this summer.


James Beard Foundation Award-winning chef and humanitarian of the year, José Andrés, brings yet another restaurant to his renowned mix in the nation’s capital just in time for summer. America Eats Tavern just moved into the space previously occupied by Old Glory in Georgetown. What originated as a pop-up in conjunction with the National Archives in 2011, followed by a move to the Ritz-Carlton in Tysons Corner, now sets foot in Georgetown with some charred and smoky flavor combos. 

DC’s newest coffee shop and wine bar combination, Ministry DC, will kick off the summer with a bang in late June. First-time restaurateur Elisa Bennaton says customers should anticipate “internationally inspired baked goods, fancy toasts, small plates, and sharing platters.”

Just north of Howard University, Sweet Sosumba Jamaican Vegan Cafe will join the Park View neighborhood with a Jamaican take on vegan eats. 

While DC isn’t regularly known for Tex-Mex, Christ Svetlik is bringing his Texas-style barbecue and Texas toast sandwiches to the nation’s capital with Republic Cantina, just in time for the toasty summer months. The new Truxton Circle cantina will offer kolaches and breakfast tacos in the morning and classic fajitas and enchiladas for lunch and dinner.

The Wharf continues to add more restaurants including the popular handcrafted fresh doughnut joint, District Doughnut and California-based chain, Blue Bottle Coffee. A few delayed openings will bring even more excitement to the waterfront neighborhood this summer. A three-story Italian market and eatery, Officina by Nicholas Stefanelli, will add to The Wharf’s roster, as will in-house rum distillery Potomac Distilling Company, Mediterranean-themed bar La Vie, and Belgian bistro Florentijn.

Still anticipated to come to Union Market is the second location of Brooklyn steakhouse, St. Anselm. Stephen Starr (Le Diplomate) will partner with New York restaurateur Joe Carroll to open the restaurant, which will feature “beefsteak dinners” allowing guests to gear up in aprons and eat with their hands from large meat platters.


All-Purpose Pizzeria Capitol Riverfront: The popular All-Purpose Pizzeria in Shaw opened its second location in Navy Yard, just in time for the Washington Nationals’ home opener in early April. The new location offers a different selection of pizzas with warm chocolate chip cookies crowned with gelato from Dolcezza.

Barrafina: Dupont Circle just added an upscale destination for Mediterranean-style cuisine featuring grilled fare found in parts of southern France, Italy and Greece.

Fix Bar: The companion outdoor bar to Morris Bar debuted in May, featuring five “fix drinks,” sour cocktails served over crushed ice. 

Kaliwa: A Southeast Asian restaurant from Irishman Cathal Armstrong (Restaurant Eve) offers both elevated sit-down fare and grab-and-go options.

Lupo Marino: Med Lahlou’s (Lupo Verde and Tunnicliff's Tavern) newest concept brings a pizzeria and Italian street foods to The Wharf.

Mi Vida: Roberto Santibañez (Fonda in NYC) brings modern Mexican street food and homey classics to DC.

Opaline: The Sofitel hotel’s newly opened French restaurant and bar serves an all-day menu in a sleek and regal setting. Opaline chef Doug Isleib, an alum of Barcelona Wine Bar, created a lineup of approachable French fare such as tuna tartare, a burger with gruyere and mussels.

Orchid: The new gay bar on Capitol Hill debuted in May with lots of booze, brunch and oysters paired with a groovy 1920s vibe.

Reverie: Johnny Spero, a veteran of Komi and Minibar by José Andrés in DC, Mugartiz in Spain and Noma in Copenhagen, returned to DC to open the 60-seat modern American. The restaurant features an a la carte and tasting menu on a pretty cobblestone street in historic Georgetown. It was previewed in April with a pop-up of five-course tasting dinners with drink pairings.

Supreme Core Cider: Washington, DC’s newest cidery will make West Coast style hard apple ciders with craft beer sensibilities. Located near the National Arboretum and blocks from Ivy City, you can enjoy flights of local ciders made onsite and food trucks.

Taco Bamba: Open for breakfast, lunch and dinner, this new taco joint stands out from the crowd in Chinatown. Various options such as The Royale and chivito torta make Taco Bamba a hit for locals.


Coconut Club: Chef Adam Greenberg (Barcelona Wine Bar & Restaurant) will open a new restaurant near Union Market later this year with a tapas experience and tropical cocktails.

Gravitas in Ivy City: Chef Matt Baker will feature two unique tasting menus, a Chef’s Tasting and a Vegetarian Tasting, in his modern American restaurant.

Rappahannock Oyster Company: The Richmond, VA-based Croxton family is set to crack hundreds of thousands of Virginia shells in a refurbished oyster shed.

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