775 G St., NW
Washington, DC 20001
Neighborhood: Penn Quarter/Chinatown
Tuesday through Friday for lunch and dinner, Saturday through Monday for dinner.
Nearby Metro Stops: Metro Center, Gallery Place-Chinatown
Price Range: Expensive
Noise Level: Chatty
Vietnamese Wagyu-beef carpaccio; nonna-inspired chicken meatballs; pork confit; sweetbreads over a sauté of charred corn; meatballs with goat-cheese agnolotti; miso-glazed sablefish; perfectly pink duck breast with pomegranate vinaigrette
Reading the menu in the dark dining room here can be trying, but your server is ready to assist—by proffering a tiny flashlight. And if you think a bathroom ought to be a purely utilitarian space, pre-pare to be taken aback by the black-and-white erotica in the men’s room. But that’s Proof—an uncompromisingly personal restaurant, willing to alienate a little in order to establish its niche as a sensual escape for the discriminating foodie and the serious drinker (the wine list is among the best in the area, and the cocktail menu brims with invention).
Chef Haidar Karoum oversees a menu that branches off into a multitude of styles. In less skilled hands, this might spell disaster, but many dishes—such as foie gras with shortcake or a smoked-eggplant flatbread—are smartly conceived.
Open: Tuesday through Friday for lunch and dinner, Saturday through Monday for dinner.
Don’t miss: Tuna tartare; crispy pig’s head; meatballs with goat-cheese agnolotti; trout with potato confit; cavatelli with lamb Bolognese; almond cake; grilled banana with coconut sorbet.