Capitol Hill in Washington, DC is the home to many fine restaurants where on any day you may rub elbows with a Senator or Member of Congress. The following are among the top restaurants in the nation's capitol and are located in the heart of Capitol Hill, within a short walk from the U.S. Capitol Building and the National Mall.
(Listed in Alphabetical Order)
Located in the heart of Barracks Row on Capitol Hill, Ambar showcases dishes from throughout the Balkan Peninsula with a modern twist. This is a chance to try unique dishes like Ambar's stuffed sour cabbage and Balkan-style flatbreads, and the small plates format lends itself to sharing. That's part of the reason diners head to this spot, thanks to the restaurant's "Unlimited Brunch" and "Bottomless Balkan Dinner" menus. If everyone on the table is on board, get an endless stream of dishes and drinks for a set price ($49 for dinner and $39 at brunch). That means poached pear waffles and egg BLTs at brunch and sliders and shrimp skewers at dinner.
523 8th St. SE.
This crowd-pleasing restaurant serves regional cuisine with a southern accent, showcasing fresh local ingredients. Comfort food options include crab deviled eggs appetizer, a juicy burger with pepper jack cheese and bacon jam for lunch, and fried Amish chicken thighs for dinner with buckwheat spaetzle, mustard greens and miso chicken jus. The setting includes outdoor patio seating, intimate banquettes, 16-foot rolling glass walls and contemporary lighting. Dogs are even welcome on the patio here, with a Pooch Patio menu for pups including Peanut Butter Banana Pup-sicles.
Liaison Capitol Hill, 415 New Jersey Ave. NW.
The cozy, contemporary French bistro is one of Capitol Hill’s favorite places for spotting politicos. The long-running Bistro Bis is a popular spot for fundraisers, and the menu is full of French classics like steak frites, duck confit, and tuna salad Nicoise. Wanting to save a bit of cash? The bar menu is easier on the wallet, with full meals like chicken club sandwiches.
Hotel George, 15 E. St. NW.
This French bistro has a romantic setting in a unique Victorian row house — and a very charming patio too. It's a great place to celebrate a special occasion, with vintage-inspired decor. Head here for French toast-filled brunches, lobster crepes for dinner, and crême brulée for dessert.
320 Massachusetts Ave. NE.
Charlie Palmer Steak
The upscale restaurant of world-renowned chef Charlie Palmer offers great steaks as well as game, fish and fowl. The location on Capitol Hill provides an ideal meeting place for power lunches and intimate dinners. It's a stylish spot to indulge a steak craving (splurge on an aged Angus Rib-eye "Cowboy" steak, for example). But there's plenty of seafood and pasta dishes here too to suit any taste.
101 Constitution Ave. NW.
The popular Irish pub has a great selection of beers and authentic fare such as Irish Beef Stew, shepherds pie, fish and chips, and a variety of daily specials. Live music is offered nightly and attracts a local and touristy crowd. Head here for a Guinness Stout or an Irish Whiskey and an order of fish and chips. The Dubliner even offers live music some nights, and of course this traditional bar goes all out for Saint Patrick's Day.
Phoenix Park Hotel, 4 F St.
This steak and seafood restaurant has been a favorite for members of Congress and Capitol Hill staffers since the 1960s. The Monocle is the closest restaurant to the U.S. Capitol building and Union Station, so don't be surprised if you see politicos and lobbyists here for lunch or dinner. This classic restaurant dates back to 1960, and photos of presidents who've visited line the walls. On the menu, find BLT salads, steaks, crab cakes, and salmon filets.
107 D St. NE.
Happy hour is bustling at this trusty wine bar on Capitol Hill, with so many selections of wine and bar snacks like fried Brussel sprouts. The restaurant and wine bar offer a cozy atmosphere in their convenient Capitol Hill location, right near the Library of Congress. The menu features wood-grilled meats and seafood, as well as smaller plates and cheese and meat boards. It's also a great casual date spot.
223 Pennsylvania Ave. SE.
You might see the line before you see the door at Rose's Luxury, an acclaimed restaurant that's snagged awards like a James Beard Award. Travelers include this restaurant on their D.C. bucket list, right alongside visiting the Smithsonian museums or the United States Capitol. The creative menu changes often, but some standouts include strawberry pasta with ricotta and red onion (it sounds strange but this pasta has so many fans). Other favorites include South Carolina brisket with "mustard-que," dill chips, and white bread or the lychee salad with pork sausage, habanero, and peanuts. Rose's Luxury's setting is homey, with exposed bricks and neon signs.
If you want a really, really special nice out, the reservations-recommended sister restaurant Pineapples & Pearls is nearby and serves artful meals in the dining room for $325 per person including all beverages.
717 8th St. SE.
A former hot dog shop is now the scene of some of D.C.'s most creative Asianb restaurants, served fast-casual style. The buzzy Chiko offers dishes like double-fried chicken wings, orange-ish chicken with candied mandarins, kimchi stew, and wok-blistered Chinese broccoli. Order a bunch of dishes to share (prices for entrees start at $9). Or you could try an interactive dining experience at the kitchen counter, with seatings at 6:00 or 8:30 for parties of 2 or 4. That costs $50 per person, excluding tax, tips, and beverages, and you can try everything the kitchen is dreaming up at the moment.
423 8th St. SE.