100 Very Best Restaurants 2013: Rasika and Rasika West End
One of the star dishes at Rasika is a meltingly tender, slightly sweet cut of black cod marinated in honey, dill, star anise, and vinegar. Photograph by Scott Suchman.
Comments () | Published February 5, 2013
100 Best Restaurants 2013 100 Best Restaurants (2011) 100 Best Restaurants 2012 100 Best Restaurants (2010)

Address: 633 D St., NW, Washington, DC 20004
Phone: 202-637-1222 | 202-466-2500
Neighborhood: Downtown
Cuisines: Indian
Opening Hours: Monday through Friday for lunch and dinner, Saturday dinner.
Price Range: Expensive
Best Dishes Palak chaat; tandoori lamb chops; truffle-oil naan; apple beignet with cardamom ice cream.

The star of Ashok Bajaj’s impressive restaurant portfolio has long been this glittering Penn Quarter Indian hot spot, done up in the warm tones of a spice market. So when he set out to open a spinoff in a West End condo building, it wouldn’t have been surprising if he cloned the original. Instead, the new sibling has its own personality—all cool blues and quirky design touches (ask for a seat in one of the carriage-like booths).

The restaurants have different chefs, but both excel at deeply fragrant curries and creative tweaks on samosas and breads. Stick to the familiar and you’ll encounter a gold-standard chicken tikka masala, or branch out and discover, say, tender duck roasted with honey and ginger. If only the desserts lived up to the rest of the meal.Don’t miss: Ragda patties (spicy potato with chutneys); palak chaat—fried spinach with yogurt and tamarind; mango shrimp; avocado-and-banana chaat;scallops with honey and ginger; black cod with honey and dill; chicken makhani; shrimp masala; goat-cheese-stuffed kulcha; garlic naan. Open: Monday through Friday for lunch and dinner, Saturday for dinner. Expensive.

100 Very Best Restaurants 2013
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  • Vick

    After having read all the 5-star ratings I was really excited and stopped by on a Thursday evening. I was visiting DC and looking forward to something original. Upon arrival 10-minutes before 5PM the hostess indicated they would not be seating till 5PM and escorted us to the bar. This was fine as I was with a friend and decided to check out their bar menu. The service at the bar was great along with few interesting and unique cocktails.

    At 5PM the hostess escorted us to a near by table located within the bar area (front of the restaurant) We were quickly given menus and greeted by our server. We were still enjoying our drinks and looking over the menu. One thing which we could just not overlook was the seating arrangement and the tiny table. This could not be right, the table they sat us on could not even fit two proper plates let allow dishes and servings. We ordered up some food and asked the server to get us seated in a proper dinning area which was initially requested upon arrival to Rasika. Few minutes later the server returns with our food fully crowding the tiny table with more to come! I requested we move immediately as this would just not work. Apparently 'management' stepped in and stated that they were booked and no seats were available in the dinning hall. Well WTF I thought as the table we were seated at could not have been larger than a toilet seat cover. Seemed very deceitful way to do business. We decided to finish up our appetizers before leaving this place since having a proper dinner was out of the question. Nor did we want to indulge in a place with such poor management qualities. The food was subpar to say the least. Although the menu looks great, flavors were a BIG miss. Nothing original as I had initial anticipated. Only item which tasted interesting were the popcorns given to us at the bar.

    I would not recommend this resturant which A) Nothing original here in terms of food and its flavours + presentation B)Poor, poor, poor management

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