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Georgetown will take you back in time with its federal architecture and warm, ornate style. Stroll along the cobblestone pathways or by the riverfront after dining in a dimly lit tavern or upscale establishment, then enjoy dessert at a famed bakery. The ambiance and food go hand in hand, as the artisan, creative restaurants often compliment classic American cuisine. However, international eateries stake their claim as some of the greats as well. After exploring the iconic attractions in Washington D.C., come enjoy history, a drink with friends, and the best food in one of the coolest neighborhoods in the area, Georgetown.
For something that’s wholeheartedly classic Georgetown, visit the quaint yet richly elegant 1789. Inside an old federal building typical to the lovely neighborhood, history of the area is ever present, while the surroundings are quite upscale. The chef takes American cuisine and adds a local, creative spin. Grass-fed meats are uniquely marinated and paired with spinach tarts, pink mashed potatoes and other farm sourced goodness. Seafood, vibrant salads and fun desserts like a chocolate cherry blossom tree topped with cotton candy might outdo any dinner you’ve ever had.
Fiola Mare is just as sophisticated as the latter, but serves up favorites from Italy, with a strong focus on seafood. Dishes are downright striking and prepared in the most eye-catching way—the seafood tower consists of oysters, clams, mussels, Tiger Prawns, langoustines, Tuna Tartare, ceviche, lobster, urchin, sea scallop, Alaskan King Crab and is a signature menu item you won’t regret ordering. A fantastic brunch with seafood and breakfast offerings like French toast and crab eggs benedict is top of the line as well. Also using out-of-the-box ingredients, the bar delivers impressive, refreshing drinks, and the wine menu is appropriately diverse at the Italian eatery.
If the prices of the first two picks have you sweating, Chaia Tacos Georgetown is a sweet bit of relief. You can come and enjoy hyper fresh tacos with artisan ingredients without breaking the bank. You likely haven’t ever tried a smoky collard green taco with queso fresco, salsa and watermelon radish, or a creamy kale and potato variation with pepper jack, poblano cream, tomatillo salsa and pickled red onion. If you couldn’t tell, the focus is more on healthier veggie-based ingredients to fill the delicate handmade corn tortillas, so you can feel pretty good about stopping for tacos here.
Kafe Leopold masters German and European dishes like a killer schnitzel and colorful veggie displays. But the coffee and the pastries elevate the restaurant to another level. Perfected desserts and baked treats include items like the warm, sweet, apple strudel with melting ice cream draped over the top, and the banana split with an upscale twist, featuring vanilla ice cream with coconut panna cotta, caramelized bananas, coconut tuiles and caramel sauce. Breakfast is great, lunch and dinner present abundant authentic choices, and either has to be finished off with something sweet.
Every destination needs a great pizza place, and Pizzeria Paradiso fills the void in Georgetown by going beyond the typical pizza ingredients. Unexpected topping combos such as spicy garlic pesto, mussels, shrimp, spinach, red onions, Grana Padano, or tomato sauce, minced garlic, parsley, Grana Padano, egg and Bottarga come atop the Neapolitan style pizzas. Flaky, thin, and wood-fired, the crust is the perfect accompaniment for all the inventive ingredients. Grab a beer to go with your pie, because the selection is outstanding.
Falafel Inc. is a simple stop to grab a quick bite of Mediterranean favorites. While being very inexpensive, the simple menu contains a sandwich and bowl that can be dressed up with sauces and sides like tabouli, amazingly zesty fries and hummus. Ingredients here are fresh, sustainably sourced, and nothing contains preservatives. Falafel Inc. is a speedy, tasty, cheap place to eat amongst an area that can be pricey at times.
A charming little bistro with ultra-cozy vibes, Chez Billy Sud offers a range of authentic French cuisine, to more simplistic items like super cheesy onion soup, to elaborate fish dishes with colorful accents. Wine selections include many premium options, and the handcrafted cocktails are more than inviting. If your sweet tooth is calling, enjoy a coffee-infused ice cream sundae. Overall this a gem of a spot to snack and sip.
Clyde’s of Georgetown has been around for some time, for good reason. They’ve kept things classic, consistent and just over all above the bar when it comes to fast and service. The menu sticks to American fare, like perfectly executed, juicy burgers made from local beef, seafood and farmhouse cheese plates. The environment feels welcoming and homey, adding to the experience, and a cozy fireplace warms dining areas when it’s chilly out. An added bonus, a creative brunch is served on Saturdays and Sundays.