Subscribe Now »

Special Holiday Deal

Give the Gift of the

Give one person a magazine subscription for $29.95, and get each additional subscription for just $19.95.

100 Best Restaurants 2010: Circle Bistro
No. 86: Circle Bistro
Reviewed By Todd Kliman, Cynthia Hacinli, Ann Limpert, Kate Nerenberg, Rina Rapuano
Comments () | Published January 1, 2010
100 Best Restaurants 2012 Happy Hour 100 Best Restaurants (2010)

Circle Bistro
Address: 1 Washington Circle, NW, Washington, DC 20037
Phone: 202-293-5390
Neighborhood: Foggy Bottom/West End, Downtown
Cuisines: Modern, American, Breakfast
Opening Hours: Open Monday through Thursday 7 AM to 10 PM; Friday 7 AM to 11 PM; Saturday 8 AM to 11 PM; Sunday 8 AM to 10 PM.
Wheelchair Accessible: Yes
Kid Friendly: Yes
Nearby Metro Stops: Farragut West, Foggy Bottom-GWU
Price Range: Moderate
Noise Level: Intimate
Reservations: Recommended
Best Dishes Potato-crusted oysters with bacon-chive crème fraîche; roasted-beet salad with walnut vinaigrette; lamb rib eye with ratatouille and olive tapenade; duck with celery root, spinach, and orange; brownie sundae with espresso ice cream and candied walnuts.
Price Details: Lunch appetizers, $7 to $10; entrees, $12 to $17. Dinner appetizers, $7 to $18; entrees, $19 to $27. Brunch entrees, $9 to $16. Three-course pre-theater menu (served until 7 PM), $35.
Special Features:
Wheelchair Accessible, Kid Friendly, Valet Parking Available, Party Space, Outdoor Seating, Breakfast
Happy Hour Details:
4 to 7 PM
Happy Hour Days:
Mondays, Tuesdays, Wednesdays, Thursdays, Fridays

Cuisine: After a rocky year, the kitchen seems to have stabilized with the arrival of Ethan McKee, a veteran of Equinox and Rock Creek at Mazza, whose French- and Mediterranean-influenced American menu runs to plates such as wild Alaskan halibut with chorizo, Swiss chard, and saffron butter.

Mood: Deciding where to sit can be hard. Will it be the teeming lounge, where you can nibble on snacks such as fries with fines herbes mayonnaise, or the conversation-friendly dining room done in shades of orange, yellow, and cream?

Best for: The Kennedy Center–bound—there’s a $35, three-course pre-theater meal from 5 to 7.

Best dishes: Crisp potato-crusted oysters with bacon-chive crème fraîche; roasted-beet salad with arugula and walnut vinaigrette; lamb rib eye with ratatouille and olive tapenade; duck with celery root, spinach, crispy leeks, and orange; a deconstructed brownie sundae including a dense, fudgy wedge of cake, house-made espresso ice cream, and candied walnuts.

Insider tips: There are lots of deals, including half-price cocktails, beer, and wine at the bar Monday through Friday from 4:30 to 7:30 and free bottomless mimosas at Sunday brunch.

Service: ••

Open Monday through Friday for breakfast, lunch, and dinner, Saturday for breakfast and dinner, Sunday for breakfast, brunch, and dinner. Moderate to expensive.

 

See all of 2010's 100 Best Restaurants

 

Subscribe to Washingtonian
Posted at 12:00 AM/ET, 01/01/2010 RSS | Print | Permalink | Washingtonian.com Restaurant Reviews