100 Best Restaurants 2012: The Majestic

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


This eclectic American cafe, part of Cathal Armstrong’s growing empire, features the same farm-to-table dedication as its higher-end sibling, Restaurant Eve, along with cocktails from Eve barmaster Todd Thrasher. But chef Shannon Overmiller’s bold takes on upscale American comfort food are unique. She keeps watch over the kitchen in a red chef’s coat and kerchief, adding an air of fun to the tasteful Deco dining room before the big plates of food hit the table. Kid-friendly crayons and coloring paper, a Johnny Cash-infused soundtrack, and an apple-pie soda that would make Willy Wonka jealous further lighten the mood. On weekends, patrons reserve helpings of Nana’s Sunday Dinner, family-style feasts with platters that might hold roast beef or fried chicken.

What to get: Fried green tomatoes on a seasoned potato cake; crabcake; chicken-liver mousse with plum jam; duck confit with white beans and kale; roast chicken with root vegetables; meatloaf with mashed potatoes; creamy lima beans; coconut cake; Key-lime pie.

Open Monday through Saturday for lunch and dinner, Sunday 1 to 9 for either the regular dinner menu or a family-style dinner. Expensive.

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.