My wife and I will be in Washington DC for the first time, Oct. 16-20 inclusive.  We're staying at The Willard on Pennsylvania Ave. and are hoping to walk to most of the places we'd like to see/visit, during the day at least.

We intend to do all the expected tourist/historical stuff-- Smithsonian, Holocaust Museum, Vietnam Memorial, walk the Mall, etc. We've got a few things reserved-- National Gallery of Art, night tour of monuments-- but have a lot of unscheduled time. We're thinking of a trip to Arlington National Cemetery, but will book that closer to a date when we know what the weather will be like.

Any suggestions for day or evening activities or places of interest that anyone would recommend? Any local secrets that you know of?

Also, we haven't booked any restaurants yet, so looking for recommendations for these as well (we like pretty much all kinds of food). If anyone would like to meet up with us for a meal, that would be great also. My wife has taught me how to use a knife and fork, so I'm actually OK now in most nice restaurants. Plus, I'm prepared to tell lies for your entertainment pleasure and learned long ago how to avoid discussing politics.

Our one disappointment is that we can't go on a White House tour, as these have to be arranged by our Canadian embassy which no longer provides this service. As least we'll be able to walk past it a few times.


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You will have a great time, I am sure, with what you already have planned.  If you wanted to do a day trip out to Annapolis, or to Alexandria, that might be fun.  

Because I went to school at Georgetown, I always spend most of my time up there, in that neighborhood.  But for you I wouldn't recommend more than a couple of hours in that area, as there is so much more to see in Washington DC.


Sounds great!  You seem to know what you are doing. 

The monuments are gorgeous at night. Don’t neglect the Air and Space Museum in your Smithsonian travels. 

If you do go to Arlington, Nam Viet is a wonderful casual neighborhoody Vietnamese restaurant for lunch or dinner. (Miss Saigon in Georgetown is also great.)

My favorite restaurant in DC is Obelisk. Very nice but very casual Italian off Dupont Circle. 

My other favorite restaurant is Taberna del Alabardero.  Lovely, rich interior.  Elegant.  Really nice Spanish food.

I’ve always liked Zaytina and Jaleo (Jose Andres bustling small plates places) for what they are. The former being Middle Eastern / Mediterranean and the latter Spanish. Preference: Zaytina. 

It has been so long and I’m out of the loop but...



Are/were great (in descending order of greatness).


I hope you have a great time in our fair town, it is a beautiful city and October should be a great time to visit.  

If you love Italian wine, especially from around Montalcino, I would suggest that you go to Dino's Grotto (1914 9th St NW).  Food is not bad and the wine list is huge and very well priced.

I agree with Winetarelli's recommendations for Jaleo,  Zaytinya, and Taberna del Alabardero.  Corduroy is also very good, quite and wonderful food.  Good wine list too.  Equinox is not as good as it used to be however IMHO.  A favorite of mine is China Chilcano (another of Jose Andres' places) on 418 7th St NW.  

If you like seafood I would suggest Siren by RW in the Dabney Hotel in Logan Circle  or Fiola Mare at 3050 K St. NW in Georgetown.  Both have a Michelin star.  

Getting around DC is fairly easy.  As much as it is maligned, the METRO is a great way to get to a lot of places.  Just be sure to buy a fare pass before you use it since they no longer sell fare cards.  The concierge at the hotel can help you there.  Taxis are easy too and of course Lyft or Uber will get you anywhere.  You might also want to go down to the Southwest Waterfront if the weather is good.  Walk along the river and there are some very good places there to eat.  

Finally, if you are at all into Belgian beer, you have to try Brasserie Beck.  Good food and an amazing Belgian beer selection.

Have fun.   Dinwiddie


I'm going up in a couple of weeks for a quick weekend trip.  As I mentioned, I usually hit my old haunts in Georgetown.   But here are some recommendations for that area if you are interested:

1789 - classic American and French in a Georgetown townhouse very close to University.

The Tombs - Great GU bar and pub directly below 1789.

Filomena's - Massive Italian dishes just like grandma made in the Old Country.

La Chaumiere - French restaurant along M Street in Georgetown.

J. Pauls - a nice bar/restaurant in downtown Georgetown

Cactus Cantina - located up by the Cathedral, but great Mexican food and drink

Wow.  Not sure how I missed this thread.  Guess I need to spend less time working and perusing the "Random and off Topic," thread.  

For food, based on meals I've had this year:

Metier.  Eric Zeibold formerly of City Zen is a true master.  Book sooner than later.

Komi.  Modern Mediterranean.  Anyone who says they haven't had wonderful Greek food hasn't eaten here.  I'm talking to you, Board-O.  

Maydan.  Middle Eastern wonderfulness.  Most food is either cooked over an open fire or in a clay oven.  

Del Campo.  South American, with touches of Asia.  Really good.

Sfoglina.  Italian. Mario Trabocchi at the helm.  Nuff said.

Compass Rose.  International.  Menu varies.  Memorable.

Rasika/Rasika West End.  I've had equally wonderful meals at both.  Get the palak chat if you go.  You'll thank me.  Or the chef.  Or your lucky stars.

Kinship.  Modern American.  Expensive.  A splurge that's worth it.

Thip Khao.  Blue collar Laotian food.  Bobby, the owner is the front man and a good guide to the menu if you're unfamiliar with the food.  Been twice, and have been wowed both times.

The Salt Line.  Near Nat's Park.  Good place for a crab cake or lobster roll with a view of the Anacostia River.  Crowded weekends, although now that the Nat's are almost done, should be accessible. 

Dakiya.  Modern Japanese.  Fun and tasty ramen.

Blue Duck Tavern.  Haven't been here, but it's one of Meringue's favorites, and that's good enough for me.

Any of José Andres' places will delight on most nights.  Big fan of Jaleo and Zatinya for small plates.

Obviously there are tons of museums.  Check on what's happening during your stay.  DC's a really wonderful city.  A walk through Dumbarton Oaks is really memorable.

I'll let the non-posting locals know of your visit.  Maybe we can put something together.





Just got back from a quick weekend to DC.   Had dinners at 1789 and Old Ebbitt Grill.  Went to the US Botanical Gardens near the Capitol.  Bummed around Georgetown, as usual.  Weather was great.  Walked by the White House at night.  DC is such an awesome place.

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