On any night of the week, you’ll find DC’s hip and hungry crowding into the restaurants and bars along the 14th Street corridor – which runs through the heart of Logan Circle. The neighborhood grew up organically as pioneering Washingtonians moved in to the up-and-coming area—and signaled to chefs that it was the next hot place to set up shop. A diverse mix of restaurants serving delicious dishes and creative cocktails from morning into the night makes Logan Circle a must-visit for any true foodie.
Around the World
Stroll down 14th street and you’ll notice that there’s a true moveable-feast vibe happening. Chefs are serving up fare from all over the world and giving even the most discerning diner a taste of something new. The full-bodied flavors of Southeast Asia are served at Doi Moi, a restaurant that juxtaposes a sleek, white dining room against the complicated flavors of Vietnam and Thailand. Estadio pays tribute to the tastes of Spain with a menu featuring contemporary takes on traditional dishes (we like the menu column dedicated to nothing but quesos).
You’ll truly feel like you’ve left DC and landed on the Champs Élysées when you dine at Le Diplomate. The wildly popular French bistro serves authentic French fare (think: onion soup gratinée, steak frites, assorted breads – and the Grand Plateau, a multi-tiered tower of seafood) is not to be missed. The owners of Ghibellina once shared a flat on Via Ghibellina in Florence, which inspired the business partners to open this Tuscan-inspired restaurant. The menu features rustic Italian dishes, including pizza served with pinking shears to cut your own slices. At Compass Rose, the menu isn’t limited to one locale, but instead serves up a dizzying array of authentic, international street foods that reflect the owners’ around-the-world travels. Pair the small plates with the equally internationally inspired cocktails for a glamorous global evening.
Brunch Hot Spots
Logan Circle is a popular late night spot—and many DC denizens also frequent the 14th Street strip for brunch (no doubt to gossip over the previous night’s outing). There are plenty of brunch spots to linger over in Logan Circle, including B Too, chef Bart Vandaele’s (of Top Chef fame) Belgian bistro with a truly creative menu of waffles – read: The Waffle of Shame, including fried dough, chorizo chunks, maple bacon syrup and chocolate chunks.
Ted’s Bulletin boasts homemade pop tarts, while Pearl Dive Oyster Palace offers, you guessed it, an array of locally sourced oysters. The recently opened Radiator aims to be your newest neighborhood hangout with an extensive small plates menu and crafty cocktails. For brunch, the restaurant serves up indulgent faves like Nutella French toast and bacon fat fries. And if you’re looking for some hair of the dog, ChurchKey has five casks, 50 drafts and 500 bottles of beer (on the wall), along with comfort foods like house-made tater tots and chocolate pudding.
Great for Groups
The fun and friendly vibe along 14th Street lends itself to the-more-the-merrier group outings. Luckily, there are a number of restaurants that make group dining an easy evening. Inspired by chef/owner Michael Schlow’s travels around Spain, Mexico and South America, Tico offers up an inspired menu in an equally inspired space (note the larger-than-life spray painted murals on the walls). Group tip: Skip the a la carte options and go for the “Full on Tico Experience” multi-course menu selection, featuring all of Schlow’s favorites for the whole table.
Chef Mike Isabella’s (another Top Chef alum) growing restaurant empire in DC includes modern Greek restaurant Kapnos, which features a “for the table” menu with filling options like whole lamb shoulder and salt-baked dorado. Pair with Mediterranean wines or inventive cocktails for the full experience. And the communal tables, creative small plates and whisky flights at Japanese restaurant Zentan make for a great evening with old (or new) friends.