In case you missed me this morning
Restaurants by the Tidal Basin

Outdoor Dining

Ahhh...there's really nothing like having a nice casual dinner at your local restaurant with an outdoor dining area. Yesterday evening, while it was still nice and not raining, I took my wife for a quick dinner at Cafe Ole. It was so beautiful out, I just couldn't help it. I love to go to Cafe Ole, sit outside on their patio and have a glass of wine while eating a few of their Mediterranean tapas. The other place in my neighborhood I like eating outside at is Cafe Deluxe since they have a mighty fine Manhattan - although usually I'm ready for a nap after a couple of those and an hour or so in the sun...whiskey just does that to me.

That's Cleveland Park. In some other neighborhoods...

Adams Morgan has Straits of Malaya. Their rooftop deck is pretty nice and the food is even better.

In Georgetown you have Zed's, which I have yet to write a review of, but I certainly think their Ethiopian is the best in the city.

Downtown, you don't really have many choices. I'm totally blanking right now...bah!

I didn't have my most favorite meal there, but in Dupont Circle, Firefly has a nice outside terrace for dining.

Let's see, what else is there...

Bethesda...I remember after I saw Bend It Like Beckham with my wife at the Landmark Theater, I had an enormous hankerin' for Indian food so we went to Dhelhi Dhaba and we ate outside on the sidewalk. That really hit the spot!

Where do all of you like to go in your neighborhoods?

I really hope it's nice this weekend so I can eat outside some more.


Tom Bridge

For downtown, there's always The Bottom Line on I St, or that place across from the Harrington on E St. near the E St. Cinema.

For Clarendon, I love Boulevard Woodgrill, or Whitlow's.

In Ballston, Rock Bottom has great beer to sit outside with.

In Shirlington, Cap City Brewery.


I've been partial to both Levantes (Dupont Circle and Bethedsa). They have great flatbread.


In Alexandria, there is the neighborhood restuarant Monroe's. Nice simple Italian food with a great outside deck with plenty of seating.


Downtown during lunch has a ton of places with outdoor seating. Yesterday, it was great sitting out enjoying the perfect weather outside Naan & Beyond which has tasty and cheap tandoori sandwiches and biryanis.

Two nicer places Downtown that have outdoor seating (at least during the day) are the Occidental (good reliable American fare) and Les Halles (haven't actually eaten at this french bistro but hear good things) around the corner from the White House.


In Bethesda, not only is Olazzo a great place to enjoy a glass of wine and a salad outside on a beautiful day, but one of the best restaurants overall. Also, for a more bar-like atmosphere, Caddies on Cordell has a HUGE patio and upstairs deck. Best thing they have are four, two-ounce mini-burgers, served with beer-battered fries. Sometimes they run happy hour specials for half-off appetizers. Also, can't forget Tia Quetta with the upstairs deck (and apparently kick-ass wings).


Oooh. I forgot about Tia Queta. Great wings!


If you think Zed's in the best Ethiopian in DC, you've got to try one of the many new restaurants on 9th St. Sodere and Harambe are both excellent. They don't have outdoor seating though...


Experienced worst customer service ever in my life at Levantes last night. Yesterday was my 30th bday. After an illness in the family caused my initial plans to be canceled and work emergency of a friend caused the backup plan to be canceled, I did my best to salvage the day and called a few friends asking them to join me for dinner. I really wanted to have nice food outside. I called Levantes and, knowing many places don't take reservations outside, I specifically asked if I could. Whoever answered said yes and took the reservation. 12 of us arrived an hour before our reservation to have drinks at the bar--which, by the way had horrible service too. At 7:15, the time of the reservation, 7 of us went to sit down at our table. It was a table for 4 people (we were 7, the reservations had been for 6 people) jammed up into the corner, I mean really jammed up, even 6 people could not have sat there. I left and walked up to the manager and tried to explain what was going on. He just kept repeating "but we don't take reservations for outside" over and over again. Finally after I suggested they just pull two tables together he said he would not serve us at all and stormed away. He went over to my friends and rudely announced, "I WILL NOT SERVE YOU HERE!" It was one of the most embarrassing moments of my life and really put the cherry on top of an already tainted event. There were empty tables around us, we had already spent a few hundred dollars at the bar and had called earlier and specifically asked for a table outside which their employee had the wrong info. And this man refused to pull two tables together to serve us. I will never go back there and I will tell anyone I know about my horrible experience there.

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