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Jul 18, 2005



Hailing from Bethesda, I've eaten at a lot of these places. My favorite in the list is La Panetteria which is an above-average family Italian place. Go with a veal dish if they have it. Waitstaff have always been wonderful. Caddies on Cordell is a bar and has really good mini-hamburgers (4) that come with fries. I had pretty good food at Tragara, but service was unbelievabley bad for such a top-notch place. We never went back, though we found the '80s decor amusing. I always wanted to try New Orleans Bistro, which is where the old Oodles and Noodles place used to be. The new owner fixed it up real nice and it's gotten pretty good reviews. In terms of Ri-Ra, it's far more wise to order a pint from there than food. Go drinking, not eating. The Guiness is good; the meal was abysmal.


Considering that Bethesda has, like, 200 restaurants, this is pretty lame. Notable ommisions:


Yeah, the restaurant participation is pretty low. It seems kind of put together last minute to me.


i agree there are a lot of great restaurants missing- Black's especially...but my girlfriend and I tried Divino Lounge and Bistro Asiatique, both of which normally have entrees in the 20-25 range, and got a great 3 course meal at Bistro for 25 each, and a 4-course (mini tapas- chefs choice, plus salad, entree and dessert) at Divino for 25. not bad....


JON - Check out http://www.bccchamber.org/restaurants/restaurantweek.shtml. Grapeseed, Jaleo, Levante's and Raku are participating.


Nice to see those ommissions from last year participating now. Love Grapeseed. Love it.


I disagree with the assessment above of Ri-Ra Irish Restaurant in Bethesda. I have taken many guests from Paris and New York there in the past year and they have all fallen in love with it for the excellent food and service. I adore the traditional Irish breakfast there myself; in fact, I think it is one of the tastiest things I've had in DC.


You should go to the link. Grapeseed, Raku, and Jaleo are included.


I wanted to inform people about my less than "divine" experience at Divino Lounge. I'm usually not much of a critique of restaurants as long as I enjoy the food and the service is decent, but I have to say with respect to Divino Lounge, nothing can ruin a good time more than poor service. I tried to plan an event at Divino's for my best friend's birthday/5 year cancer free celebration and Divino was not accommodating. When I asked questions about people sitting with us who were not affiliated with our party or tried to set up balloons, the manager threatened to cancel our celebration. The service was not what I would have expected and if you want to have a nice evening I would strongly recommend you avoid Divino Lounge and try somewhere else. There are much better spanish/tapas restaurants in Bethesda.


Did you tell the restaurant ahead of time that you were planning an event or did you just make a reservation for a large party?

To be fair to the restaurant, it sounds like you poor rating of the restaurant is based on poor service of an event, and not necessarily poor food or service of that food. So unless people are considering this place for an event, they could probably still consider it for a normal dinner out.

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