100 Best Restaurants 2011: Kinkead’s

Only the top 40 restaurants were ranked in 2011's Best Restaurants list.

The downstairs bar at Bob Kinkead’s Foggy Bottom seafood place is a rollicking spot for a quick bite to the tune of a jazz pianist and the chatter of a genial bartender. Upstairs, the mood is more serious, better suited to a business dinner or quiet night out. Anywhere you sit, the menu pays homage to Kinkead’s New England roots, with the city’s best fried Ipswich clams and a reliable clam chowder; the lobster roll, however, is usually stuffed with too-salty, minced meat.

Beyond that, Kinkead lets loose. You could go from a delicately chopped tuna tartare over sushi rice to pepita-crusted salmon to a bowl of mussels in a bouillabaisse broth with aïoli-slathered toasts. Pastas, such as pumpkin ravioli with brown butter—even a lobster-based riff on carbonara in which spaghetti squash stands in for noodles—tend to be very heavy.

Also good: Roasted-pear salad with Gorgonzola and endive; crabcakes with corn relish; West Coast oysters from the raw bar; cod topped with crab imperial; trio of lemon desserts with pudding cake, chiboust, and lemon meringue tart.

Open Monday through Friday for lunch and dinner, Saturday and Sunday for dinner. Very expensive.

>> See all of 2011's Best Restaurants

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Ann Limpert
Executive Food Editor/Critic

Ann Limpert joined Washingtonian in late 2003. She was previously an editorial assistant at Entertainment Weekly and a cook in New York restaurant kitchens, and she is a graduate of the Institute of Culinary Education. She lives in Logan Circle.