5 Restaurants to Try (or Not to Try) in D.C.

Friday, August 7, 2015

Here are some places I do and do not recommend when looking for the best restaurants in DC.  Because, believe it or not, we did branch out and try some restaurants that were not Amsterdam Falafel.

Doi Moi, in theory, is a place I would normally love.  However, my experience here was subpar due entirely to the service (think: the type of wait staff who talks you out of what you really want to order, talks you into ordering a totally different meal, and then gets that order wrong).  Food has to be really good in order to trump bad service in my book...  The friends we were with made the evening an enjoyable one, but I’d pass on Doi Moi if I were you.  Thus, I have no photos of the restaurant or food to share, but here’s a pic of us with one of the aforementioned friends, notable only because the person on the far right looks nothing at all like my husband, yet is, in fact, my husband.

Ted’s Bulletin gets all the thumbs up, so much so that just typing this is making me hungry.  Talk about good service; this place was the opposite of Doi Moi, service-wise (and, everything-else-wise).   But let me back up: when I walked in, I immediately felt a bout of anxiety just looking at the menu.  Do you know that feeling, where you walk into a restaurant and everything looks so good that having to decide what to order stresses you out to the point you just want to leave?  I ultimately settled on ordering a blueberry pop-tart (all their pop-tarts are homemade and yes, they’re just as amazing as that sounds).  When I asked if I could get it served warm, with a glass of whole milk, 2 amazing things happened: (1) the woman serving me accidentally broke my pop-tart in half when she picked it up, causing the manager to instruct her to give me two pop-tarts instead of one and (2) the woman serving me told me they didn’t have whole milk listed on the menu, causing the manager to say, “But we have whole milk here, so just pour her a glass.”  I ate both pop-tarts and most of Joe’s brownie (sorry, Joe) (but I’m also not sorry because that brownie was incredible).  Not only do I recommend Ted’s Bulletin, but I recommend that you take me with you when you go.

I've heard that Pop's Ice Cream Company in Alexandria is an Old Town favorite, and the long lines and crowded dining area suggest just as much.  I’d been there once before, and hadn’t loved it, but I decided to try it again.  I think it’s pretty average as far as ice cream goes, but most people come for the old-timey décor and overall nostalgic vibe, which I get.  There’s an ice cream shop directly across the street from Pop's, though, and next time I’m in Old Town, I'll try it out instead.  

Joe and I walked into 2 Amy’s at 2:00 on a weekday and it was insanely crowded.  We almost turned around, but they were able to seat us immediately and the service was fast.  We decided to share an appetizer (the asparagus dipped in balsamic reduction),  a pizza (the Neopolitan), and an order of the arancini.  The appetizer and pizza were fine (nothing spectacular) but don’t get me started on the arancini (especially when dipped in the leftover balsamic reduction).  I would move to DC for that arancini alone, so yes – 2 Amy’s is recommended indeed, so much so that it even gets its own photo collage!

GoodStuff Eatery, I love you.  I’d been here once before and it only took one trip to get me hooked; the toasted marshmallow shake?  Oh, come on – that can’t be real.  I’ve never actually eaten a meal here because the shake is all I care about, but this time I upgraded to a shake and a chocolate chip cookie and I did not regret it.  Nope, I did not regret that one bit.  Joe and I walked to Good Stuff and were sweating from the heat, so we sat upstairs, watching tennis on the restaurant TV, just basking in the air conditioning and all our sugary glory.  My mouth is watering just typing this; it was that good.  So while I have no experience with any of the actual food, I can recommend the dessert menu, and I do so highly.

On our last morning in DC, we had brunch reservations at the ever-popular LeDiplomat.  Sadly, I ended up cancelling them so we could pack and get more organized for our flight later that day, but that just means we have even more reason to come back to DC (as if Amsterdam Falafel, Ted’s Bulletin, and Good Stuff’s toasted marshmallow shake weren’t reason enough).

Surprisingly, Monday’s post is not actually called ‘The Intervention: Joining Sugar Addicts Anonymous.’  On the contrary, in Monday’s post, we finally board our plane to the UK!  

Have a good weekend!
Alex said...

I appreciate your candor regarding food and service. I always judge a travel destination by how happy the food made me, so I can definitely relate. Also, I am so ashamed to say that I know way too much about 2Amy's from my many years of reading The Rockstar Diaries/Love Taza.

Jan said...

The cookies looked sooo good!!

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