100 Best Restaurants 2012: Graffiato
At Graffiato, fried calamari works surprisingly well on pizza. Photograph by Scott Suchman.
Comments () | Published January 13, 2012
100 Best Restaurants 2014 100 Best Restaurants 2013 100 Best Restaurants 2012

Graffiato
Address: 707 Sixth St., NW, Washington, DC 20001
Phone: 202-289-3600
Neighborhood: Penn Quarter/Chinatown
Cuisines: Pizza, Italian
Opening Hours: Open Monday through Sunday 1:30 AM to 5 PM, Sunday through Tuesday 5 PM to 11 PM, and Wednesday through Saturday 5 PM to Midnight. *Kitchen closes at 11 PM *The bar and pizza oven are open late night after the kitchen closes
Kid Friendly: Yes
Nearby Metro Stops: Gallery Place-Chinatown
Price Range: Inexpensive
Dress: Informal
Reservations: Recommended
Special Features:
Kid Friendly, Valet Parking Available, Weekend Brunch, Party Space

_

The crowds may be drawn by the prospect of snapping a picture with tatted-up chef Mike Isabella, whose appearance on Top Chef emboldened him to open his own restaurant. Or by the prospect of mingling with the young, stylish patrons who flood the bar. What keeps us coming back is the zip of Isabella's small plates and pizzas, which seem tossed off but involve layers of work and detail. The cooking, at its best--the dishes that summon the chef's Jersey past--pulses with a big heart. With its exposed brick and industrial ceilings and floors, the restaurant looks like many trendy downtown DC spots, but the energy is different. This isn't dinner as theater--it's dinner as after-party.

What to get: Snap peas with goat cheese; cauliflower with pecorino and mint; pork ribs with coriander yogurt; chicken in pepperoni sauce; polenta with pork meatballs and egg; Jersey Shore and Classic pizzas; chocolate-hazelnut sandwich cookies.

Open Monday through Saturday for lunch and dinner, Sunday for dinner. Moderate.

Subscribe to Washingtonian
Posted at 12:00 AM/ET, 01/13/2012 RSS | Print | Permalink | Washingtonian.com Restaurant Reviews