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5 Must-Book Restaurants in Washington, D.C. This Spring

If you’ve been wondering where to dine in the district this spring, here is an expert glimpse into D.C.’s latest restaurant openings. From a bustling Parisian waterfront bistro to a modern American-meets-West African spot, here are the top five must-book restaurants in D.C. this spring.

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Christabel Lobo
5 Restaurants
Updated March 17, 2022
Restaurants:Dolce Vita, Era Wine Bar, Ciel Social Club
Price Range:$$ - $$$$
Cuisines:Mediterranean, Wine Bar, Tapas / Small Plates
Neighborhoods:Logan Circle, Mount Rainier, Mt. Vernon Square
A photo of Dolce Vita restaurant

Dolce Vita

$$$$
Mediterranean
Logan Circle
4.5
229 reviews

Posh Dolce Vita, the newest 14th Street hotspot from restaurateur Med Lahlou of the Lahlou Restaurant Group — and Lupo Verde fame — took over the former casual Ghibellina space in Northwest D.C. this November. An ode to Lahlou’s upbringing, the menu features dishes from the Mediterranean coast, specifically Spain, Greece, Morocco, and Italy. Diners can expect a unique selection of mezze, such as the gnocchi gallego with octopus, spicy ‘nduja sausage, and parsley cream. An eclectic array of wood-fired grilled meats and seafood includes a 14-ounce Colorado lamb shank and salt-crusted whole dorade. An expansive two-story indoor dining area, complete with murals of quintessential coastal landscapes, can seat over 150 guests. Inventive cocktails such as the ouzo mule, made with Lebanese arak, are not to be missed.


At the moment, there's no online availability within 2.5 hours of your request. Do you have another time in mind?

A photo of Era Wine Bar restaurant

Era Wine Bar

$$$$
Wine Bar
Mount Rainier
4.7
101 reviews

Though Era Wine Bar may be located just across the Maryland-D.C. border, an evening spent wining and dining here is sure to take you on an international adventure. This family-owned neighborhood spot, which opened its doors in early November, features more than 45 wines by the glass and a menu that’s noteworthy all on its own. The space’s contemporary interiors also house a wine cellar where regular wine tastings and talks are held. Dishes such as the chicken tagine and Swahili beef samosas are favorites from the owners’ family recipes and globetrotting adventures.


At the moment, there's no online availability within 2.5 hours of your request. Do you have another time in mind?

A photo of Ciel Social Club restaurant

Ciel Social Club

$$$$
Tapas / Small Plates
Mt. Vernon Square
0 reviews

Sweeping, 360-degree views of the district’s most famous sights, including the Washington Monument and Capitol Dome, make dining at Ciel Social Club, which opened in November, a must this spring. Perched atop the AC Hotel in Mount Vernon Triangle, the 3,200-square-foot space — with a double-height dining area complete with a 12-foot-tall brass chandelier, decor in teals, golds, and creams, and chic seating — offers plenty of indoor and outdoor dining options. With Instagram-worthy decor (the floating carousels behind the bar are especially attractive), a bevy of creative craft cocktails, and Mediterranean-inspired tapas that are perfect for sharing — not to mention photographing — dining at DC’s newest penthouse hotspot makes for a night to remember.


At the moment, there's no online availability within 2.5 hours of your request. Do you have another time in mind?

A photo of Melina restaurant

Melina

$$$$
Greek
North Bethesda
4.7
400 reviews

Opened in November in North Bethesda’s premier Pike & Rose development, Melina is the most recent modern Greek offering by the award-winning Cava restaurant group. Helmed by chef Aris Tsekouras, the restaurant showcases the freshness of Greek cuisine with a menu that’s equal parts meats, vegetables, and seafood dishes. Diners can expect artfully presented plates of mezze, such as the tuna tataki with cauliflower and raisin purée, as well as mains like the slow-roasted lamb neck, served with a side of crispy fried potatoes, pita, and a ginger mint tzatziki. Sophisticated interiors at this 80-seat restaurant feature floor-to-ceiling windows and moody lighting; a lush Koroneiki olive tree is central to the indoor dining area. You’ll also find a Greek wine list and craft cocktails with unique ingredients such as bee pollen, fennel, herbal teas, and mastiha liqueur. An outdoor patio is also available.


At the moment, there's no online availability within 2.5 hours of your request. Do you have another time in mind?

A photo of Bistro Du Jour restaurant

Bistro Du Jour

$$$$
French
Southwest Waterfront
4.4
163 reviews

The distinctive charms of Paris shine bright in this early November opening on the Southwest Waterfront, the district’s latest café by KNEAD Hospitality + Design. In addition to serving all-day Parisian bistro favorites such as steak frites, duck confit, and salad niçoise, Bistro du Jour also features freshly baked pastries from New York City’s Mah-Ze-Dahr Bakery and aromatic cups of La Colombe coffee. While diners can choose from lunch or dinner, for a true spring-in-DC experience, make a reservation for weekend brunch. Be sure to also sit outdoors — the French-style sidewalk patio directly overlooks the waterfront.


At the moment, there's no online availability within 2.5 hours of your request. Do you have another time in mind?

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