100 Best Restaurants 2012: Brasserie Beck

From soulful bistros to high-gloss steakhouses, there's lots of good eating in DC, Maryland, and Virginia


Robert Wiedmaier’s Belgian brasserie and beer hall is a multipurpose space–great for blowing off steam with coworkers, downing platters of oysters and pints of beer (the menu is as thick as the best wine lists), enjoying a hearty meal or a leisurely weekend brunch.

Servers cross the dining room with the hurried purpose of commuters at rush hour while diners gamely attack gargantuan plates of food. Belgian cuisine is more robust than French and more blue-collar: It emphasizes the slow braise over the composed plate, fortifies its sauces with beer as often as with wine, and turns up its ruddy nose at seasonality.

What to get: Steak tartare; either of the raw-bar towers with lobster, oysters, shrimp, mussels, and clams; mussels steamed in white wine and garlic or drenched in veal Bolognese; duck cassoulet with white-bean ragoût; lamb pappardelle; pear tarte Tatin.

Open Monday through Friday for lunch and dinner, Saturday and Sunday for brunch and dinner. Moderate.

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 Petworth.