No. 26: 2 Amys
At 6 o’clock, families queue out the door of this black-and-white-tile Cleveland Park mainstay. And why not? At few places in the area can you eat so well with toddlers in tow.
Chef/owner Peter Pastan, who also owns Obelisk in Dupont Circle, is not content with having the crispest, thinnest, most sparsely topped Neapolitan wood-oven pizza around. (The simple, sublime Margherita is the standard-bearer.) He continually ups the culinary ante with well-sourced salumeri plates, which might include such delectables as lomo (cured pork loin) and piacentinu ennesse, a saffron-scented Sicilian sheep’s-milk cheese, along with engaging bar snacks and tidbits picked up on his travels through Italy. They bolster an already-winning lineup of little plates: oven-roasted olives, escarole slicked with anchovy dressing, delicate, crunchy potato-and-prosciutto croquettes, smoky grilled sardines. You could feast on these dishes alone with perhaps a fabulous crusty panino for good measure.
The small wine list is also inviting, with not-often-seen regional picks from Puglia and Sardinia. Most offerings are available by the glass, quarter liter, or bottle and, in keeping with the generous spirit of this Cleveland Park eatery, are under $30.