Bistrot Lepic

This cozy, rustic wine bar/dining room is a date night favorite.

From January 2004

Its cheerful yellow walls and eastern light make the dining room at Bistrot Lepic one of the prettiest in Washington. It's perfectly suited to chef/owner Bruno Fortin's cooking, an appealing mixture of regional French classics and modern innovations that has won it a devoted following in its upper Georgetown neighborhood.

Bistrot Lepic recently turned its former private dining room upstairs into a handsome wine bar, serving a menu of about a dozen small plates called "appeteasers." Sufficient for a light meal or a snack with drinks, this appealing assortment includes an onion tart, roasted peppers stuffed with brandade of salt cod and potatoes, a terrine of foie gras, and veal cheeks in puff pastry. It's also a haven for smokers, who, by reservation, can order from the full downstairs menu.

A recent fall lunch started with appetizers of creamy, mildly spiced rabbit rillettes and a delicious dish of pig's feet, boned and molded into a terrine, then sliced, breaded, and fried. Main courses included veal cheeks cooked to perfection and a quail half-boned and stuffed with foie gras. Anyone with any affection for French food will find it hard to go wrong at Bistrot Lepic.