Why Washington D.C. Was Named 2016 Restaurant City Of The Year
Look out NYC (and 2015 winner San Francisco) -- Washington D.C. foodies are coming for ya big time!
Each year, as part of Bon Appétit’s coverage of the 'best new restaurants in America,' the highly reclaimed magazine names a city that stands out amongst the rest for it's buzzing restaurant scene. They announced yesterday that Washington D.C. was crowned with the title, naming the Nation's Capital as Restaurant City of the Year for 2016. The announcement came right after they debuted 50 nationwide finalists that are in the running for the highly anticipated '10 best new restaurants in America' list (talk about a major compliment.) Nominations this year for the top 10 best included not one or two, but THREE restaurants in DC - Bad Saint, The Dabney, and Tail Up Goat.
How big of a deal is making it on this list? Back in 2014, BA named D.C's Roses Luxury as the #1 best new restaurant in the country. Two years later, lines to get a table at Roses Luxury are still forming hours before they even open their doors.
If you're passionate about food at all, this announcement probably doesn't come as much of a surprise. Anyone who keeps track of new restaurants they want to try (like maybe in the notes application on your iPhone) could tell you that the D.C. restaurant/bar scene was and still is booming. Writers, bloggers, foodies and hungry Washingtonians would probably all agree that for the past few months keeping up with new openings in the district has been harder than Keeping Up With The Kardashian's drama filled lives.
So now that The Dabney, Bad Saint and Tail Up Goat will have lines out the door similar to a Justin Bieber meet and greet, while they're keeping busy, check out some of the other awesome newcomers in 2016.
ALL-PURPOSE PIZZERIA | SHAW
Why: Magic happens when you get two big name restauranteurs to collaborate and open up a new restaurant. The head chef from The Red Hen and the owners of Boundary Stone run this place together. Recipe for success? Oh yea.
Try: Cossimo Pizza, Eggplant Parm, Fried Mozzarella, Antipasti Salad
FYI: Save room to try more dishes. The pizzas are a decent enough size to split between two people.
BONFIRE | DUPONT
Why: You can't really go wrong with dining out at DuPont's trendy new restaurant. They serve great food, innovative craft cocktails, and break-your-diet-worthy decadent desserts. Not to mention the interior and restaurant itself looks badass. What more could you ask for?
Try: The Duck Waffle, Bone Marrow Tots, Tuna Poke, Snow Bunny Cocktail
FYI: Happiest Hour is 3-8PM Monday-Friday
COLUMBIA ROOM | SHAW
Why: Technically Columbia Room isn't new-new, but the new location deserves some serious high praise on all counts. Owner and cocktail connoisseur Derek Brown opened up arguably the best outdoor garden patio in the city, there's a new cocktail tasting room, secret booths that you can't see from just walking in, and drinks that blow any other cocktail bar out of the water.
Try: Any of the seasonal cocktails on the menu
FYI: Last month we got to talk to Brown about Columbia Room, cocktails, and how he stays at the top of his game. His #1 advice for creating stellar drinks? "It's simple actually..a cocktail should be refreshing."
DUKE'S COUNTER | WOODLEY PARK
Why: Because Dukes Grocery opened up a second (and much bigger) location... HALLELUJAH! *inserts clapping hands emoji*
Try: The Proper Burger aka the. best. burger. ever.
FYI: ^ This is not a sponsored post, it really is that good. Buzzfeed has The Proper Burger as #8 on 21 Juicy Burgers That Will Ruin You For All Other Burgers
FARE WELL | H STREET
Why: An awesome new diner that serves lots of vegan options and is guaranteed to shut down a lot of veggie haters... because yes people, you CAN in fact be satisfied and full eating this way on occasion!
Try: Stromboli, Buffalo Cauliflower Dip, Polenta Fries, Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Cake
FYI: Don't let the word vegan scare you, minus the meat, FW serves carb heavy, innovative, diner classics
HAZEL | U STREET
Why: Ahh, the Neighborhood Restaurant Group, they've got one of the most impressive resumes in town -- Red Apron, Birch and Barley, Churchkey, Iron Gate, etc etc. Whatever their system may be to launch and run successful restaurants around town, it works.
Try: Duck Sausage, Zucchini Bread, English Muffins, Ducked Up
FYI: From the toughest (and most well respected) food critic in town, “Hazel feels like the right restaurant at the right time” -
Tom Sietsema, The Washington Post. Read the full review here