Restaurants That Have a Spring in Their Step


People are out and about. City streets are filling up and people are making their way back into the office. There’s a vibration and restaurants are so ready. New dishes and winter menus are coming out and with that, innovative and delicious ways to serve you. A firm reminder to still be kind. Staff shortages and supply issues still plague our beloved restaurant industry. Patience isn’t just a virtue - it’s a necessity: 

1310 Kitchen & Bar (Vegan Alert)
1310 Kitchen & Bar has added more include more plant-based options to their menu. New dishes include tofu scramble, a kale and quinoa salad, and more. 1310 Wisconsin Avenue NW; 202.333.8232;

All-Purpose is launching a new menu style of pasta, salumi, entrees and more at the Capitol Riverfront location. The expanded menu includes the same Jersey-style, deck-oven pies the restaurant is known for, along with additions of a Fra' Mani salumi program, pasta, elevated antipasti, and new main dishes. 79 Potomac Avenue SE; 202.629.1894;

Annabelle (Brunch Alert)
Annabelle has a new 3-course Sunday supper that includes a 3-course menu, sourced from their local market and served under our Garden Room Sunlight. This three-course single-seating dinner is available every Sunday and begins promptly at 6:30pm. Book here

NEW:  Bastille (Lunch Alert) 
Bastille is bringing back its lunch offering. You have a choice of a three-course $39 prix fixe or a la carte option. Lunch will be served Wednesday-Friday days from 11:30-2 pm with Sunday brunch from 11-3. 606 N Fayette Street; 703.519.3776;

Brookland's Finest (Women's Month Alert)
Brookland’s Finest Chef Shannan Troncoso has partnered with the local, women-owned Denizens Brewing Co. and Republic Restoratives Distillery to offer special Women’s History Month menus featuring cocktails named after groundbreaking women athletes. The special menu features West Coast Mussels (PEI Mussels, West Coast IPA Beer Broth, Garlic, Leek, Cherry Tomato, Grilled Garlic Toast), the Borough Chocolate Brownie (Dark Chocolate Brownie with Borough Bourbon Sauce), and more. 3126 12th Street NE; 202.636.0050;

dLeña has added its annual Viva Abejas back to its menu for this spring and Earth Day. From next Tuesday, March 21, through Sunday, April 23, you are invited to indulge in the earth’s harvests at the Mount Vernon Triangle modern Mexican concept. Chef Richard Sandoval has developed food and beverage menus that demonstrate the importance of bees while highlighting Pachamama, the Incan goddess of Earth, planting, harvesting and fertility. Menu items include the enchiladas doradas ($25) with a Mexican calabacitas stew, honey-bell pepper sauce, queso fresco, crema, and corn tortilla, the Brazilian Bee ($16) with Sao Paulo Cachaça prata, coconut-infused honey, grapefruit, and lemon, and the Honey Lavender Margarita ($16) with Milagro Blanco Tequila, lime, honey, lavender, créme de violette, and triple sec. 476 K Street NW Suite D; 202.560.5999;
Dolce Vita

Dolce Vita has launched their "Daily Deals" just in time for the spring. Try their 3 course pre-fixe menu for only $35 with a glass of wine. On Tuesdays, they have half price bottles of select wines. On Wednesdays, they now offer Paella for two for $35 with the option of their Seafood Paella (Bomba Rice, Calamari, prawns, monkfish, mussels) or their Black Seafood Paella (Bomba rice, Calamari, Monkfruit, Sofrito Lobster Jus, Squid Ink). 1610 14th Street NW; 202.506.4872;

Esencias Panameñas
For a limited time only, Chef Yadira of Esencias Panameñas is dishing up delicious plates of fish plus your choice of two sides on Fridays for local pick-up at Tastemakers DC. Entree options include Corvina fillet (fried or in garlic butter sauce) or whole red snapper (fried or in escovitch sauce). For your sides, choose from patacones (twice-fried mashed green plantains), fried yuca, boiled yuca in mojo sauce, white rice, rice and pigeon peas cooked in coconut milk, fried sweet plantains, or a house salad. $16-$25. Place your order here

NEW:  Kappo Makoto
Kappo, a new Japanese restaurant offers an intimate dining experience and an eight-course tasting menu ($150 per person). You can expect innovative and delicious offerings like an Old Fashioned with Wagyu-fat washed Japanese Whiskey, an elevated Midori Sour, and complimentary mini highball cocktails served in frozen glasses. 4822 MacArthur Boulevard NW;

NEW: Lapis (Ramadan: Break the Fast)
Break the fast at Lapis, where the Afghan-run restaurant will offer a vegan/vegetarian menu and a meat menu for Iftar which will start on Friday (3/24). All of their meat is Halal across the restaurant as well as this special menu. 20% of their Iftar dinner menu proceeds goes towards helping women and children back in Afghanistan throughout the month of Ramadan. 1847 Columbia Road NW; 202.299.9630;

L'Ardente (Brunch Alert)
L’Ardente has begun serving brunch from 10 a.m.–2 p.m. Saturdays and Sundays, when you can enjoy a thoughtful collection of L’Ardente favorites from the lunch and dinner menus along with several dishes crafted specially for brunch. Try the Tiramisù Toast along with many other brunch favorites. 200 Massachusetts Avenue NW; 202.448.0450;

Le Fantome (Brunch Alert
Le Fantome recently launched its Sunday brunch service, which will be offered weekly from 11 a.m. till 4 p.m. with live music during the hours of 12 p.m. to 2 p.m. You can enjoy $7 Mimosas and Bloody Marys from the bar and have the option of ordering from Le Fantome’s line up of seven culinary concepts, many of which have added new brunch specials. The family-friendly menu includes dishes such as French Beignets and Crispy Chicken Biscuit sandwiches from Sonny & Sons, Croque Madame and Avocado Toast from Money Muscle BBQ, and Krusted PB&J sandwiches from the food hall’s newest vendor Vegan Junk Food. 4501 Woodberry Street; 240.667.2397;

NEW:  Milk & Honey Cafe
Milk & Honey has recently opened in colonial heights. Milk & Honey Cafe specializes in a New Orleans-inspired Southern brunch, with decadent favorites such as Award-Winning Shrimp & Grits, Rum Chata French Toast, and Jumbo Smothered Chicken & Biscuits. 168 Southgate Square;

NEW:  Nama Ko (Omakase Alert)
Nama Ko is launching a brand new Omakase experience. The Omakase Bar experience will showcase the extraordinary skill and creativity of Nama Ko's executive chef Derek Watson, who has honed his craft at Morimoto and Momotoro and has now brought his expertise to the US capital. Each course will be carefully crafted to highlight the season's finest ingredients, sourced locally and from Japan. 1926 14th Street NW; 202.815.9203;

Please Bring Chips (Pop Up Alert)
Embark on a culinary journey to the Riviera Maya with Ek'Balam, a five-week pop-up presented by Amparo Fondita and Please Bring Chips. This dining experience pays homage to the complex and unique flavors of Mexican cuisine, with a focus on its coastal regions and the family story of Chef Christian Irabién. This pop-up runs Thursday through Saturday nights from March 23rd to April 22nd. Buy tickets here

Rumi's Kitchen 
Starting March 21 and running for seven days, Rumi's Kitchen will be offering its annual Nowruz special. Chef Ali Mesghali's restaurant will be celebrating Persian New Year with a North American take on a traditional Sabzi Polo, a dish of American Red Snapper marinated in saffron and lemon juice, pan-fried, and served with herbed basmati rice. 640 L Street NW; 202.900.9106;

Serenata has created a special menu available on Saturdays and Sundays from 11:00AM to 4:00PM. The menu includes options like the Po' Chic poblano roasted chicken club, Chipotle Deviled Eggs, Serenata Choripan, and MLT adobo roasted mushroom sandwiches. Each sandwich is served with a side of plantain chips with aji amarillo aioli and priced between $7 and $16. 1280 4th Street NE;

NEW:  Shilling Canning Company 
Shilling Canning Company has added a new caviar service to its menu. From his time working under Chef Thomas Keller, Chef Reid developed a close relationship with and affinity for Regiis Ova caviar and their sustainability measures. Full caviar service comes with house-made brioche, crème fraiche, and house-made chips. 360 Water Street SE; 202.554.7474;

NEW:  Tom's Watch Bar
Tom's Watch Bar is bringing the ultimate sports-watching experience to the heart of the National Harbor. With dozens of taps, Tom's Watch Bar offers a wide array of domestic, imported, craft seasonal, and local micro-brews. The food menu will feature elevated sports-bar fare and signature dishes, including Tom's Watch Bar National Harbor exclusives, to satisfy any hungry sports fan.  Mohegan Sun Boulevardd; 860.862.8667;

NEW:  Wren 
Wren's seasonal menu specials include a limited-time cherry blossom-inspired cocktail. Spring highlights include an omakase bento box, maitake mushroom tempura, Japanese cheesecake with cherry ice cream, and caviar and champagne. Sip on a festive Petal in the Wind infused with strawberry roku gun and cherry brandy, Wren’s house-made Yuzucello, cherry blossom bitters and egg white garnished with flower petals. 965 Florida Avenue NW;