Image: Audrey Hepburn and Gregory Peck in Roman Holiday (1953)
The week we reviewed a warhorse and added a falafel joint to the dining guide. The first full week of the year saw yet another restaurant opening of note and news that once-buzzed about place is dying in place. Here is the week in review from Washington, D.C.’s 3rd best dining guide!
Changes to the Recommended Restaurant List:
Taïm – The first outpost of this NYC-based small chain of falafel spots is in Georgetown. The balls are crispy and flavorful. Everything is super fresh. We think it is worth a walk out of the way to try.
The Source – Tom reports in his chat that The Source is being gutted and pared down. Sad to see this once mighty spot fade. We’ve removed it from the List for now.
Le Diplomate – We posted a review of this warhorse on 14th this week. The bread basket still shines and the food is crowd-pleasing. That said it is bit of a factory and the butter/salt/cream quotient is high.
Laura Hayes at WCP did a deep dive with Danny Meyer on his “Hospitality Included” model of compensation in lieu of tips. Speaking of compensation, how long will WCP be able to keep Hayes on payroll? Having done these weekly round-ups for several months now, it is clear she is the leading source of news on the DC food scene.
Hayes also reported that incubator Prequel, that gave a boost to several local success stories, is closing. The list of alumni is impressive, among them Kevin Tien, Hamilton Johnson, and Matt Baker.
The old Restaurant Nora space reopens this week as Annabelle. Ashok Bajaj brought in Chef Frank Ruta, formally of Palena and Mirabelle, to lead the project. One of the best meals I have had in D.C. was in the back room of Palena many years ago. I have great hopes that Ruta has finally found a stable and stabilizing forum for his gifts. I am excited also to have his consommé again. That said, I’d ditch the clunky sign they chose out front for something more sleek and subtle.
Does the freakish warm weather have you thinking of dining al fresco tonight. Check out our dining guide. There are more than 200 recommended restaurants listed. You can sort by cuisine, neighborhood, and/or rating! In both MAP or LIST format.