I love our nation’s capitol.
I love what it stands for- liberty, justice, freedom. I love the majestic beauty of its stately buildings and ornate architecture. And I loved the food.
The last time I visited Washington, D.C. I was a sophomore in college. Which meant I was on a sophomore in college’s budget, and with a sophomore in college’s interest in museums, restaurants, and national history. For me, that meant little-to-none in each of the aforementioned categories. Also, to be fair, at that time a salesperson with a red cart selling lukewarm hotdogs and day-old popcorn qualified as a food truck.
Wow, how things have changed. In fact, I would venture to say that I ate better in Washington D.C. than I did on my most recent visit to New York City. Washington’s food scene is highly underrated, and with the plethora of tastes I experienced- from blueberry buckwheat pancakes to a politically-motivated turkey burger, to decadent bacio gelato and Milky Way malt milkshakes- it was well worth the trip. In fact, I am already planning my next visit- even if all I get next time are these macaroons.
Here are some of my favorite stops. And when I say favorite, I mean, you must visit them or I will be offended. And trust me, I will know if you don’t.
In conclusion, your D.C. eats cheat sheet:
1. For a great burger: Good Stuff Eatery. I had the Michelle O’Bama turkey burger. Please do not mistake my support for the burger named after her and my political support. That burger was simply evidence that good food doesn’t have to have a political affiliation. Also, please order a Milky Way malt while you are there; the butterscotch and fudge ribbons down the side of your glass will make it all the more fun.
2. For a great dessert- See the above pictured gelato. If you have ever had Italian gelato, this will bring you back to the moment you first tasted it (I think I heard an Italian choir singing in the background). If you haven’t, it is worth a trip to experience what gelato made from local produce and grass-fed cows tastes like.
3. For a great family-style meal: Founding Farmer’s. Unfortunately, my steak with chimichurri sauce, side of spinach enchiladas and goat cheese and butter-roasted corn’s photo didn’t do the meal justice.
4. For a great start to your day: blueberry buckwheat pancakes at Market Lunch (Eastern Hill). Trust me, waiting in line will only make the food taste better.
5. For a great mid-day sugar high: Baked and Wired or The Sweet Lobby. The macaroons at the Sweet Lobby will literally knock your socks off- the texture is absolutely perfect. And the iced coffee at Baked and Wired was sweet and smooth- just how it should be.