100 Very Best Restaurants 2013: Central Michel Richard


The terrific desserts at Central Michel Richard harken back to kiddie favorites such as banana splits and Kit-Kat bars.

It’s easy to take this six-year-old bistro for granted—to lose sight of its exuberance and steady excellence as new restaurants explode on the scene. And then you pop a perfect cheese puff into your mouth or
lap up the magnificent banana split like a giddy five-year-old and you remember why you fell in love with it in the first place.

The kitchen may not be as exacting as it once was, but it nearly always manages to make its marriage of the American diner and the rustic French bistro feel natural and unaffected.

Don’t miss: “Faux gras” terrine and country pâté; bacon-and-onion tart; deviled eggs with boquerones; lobster bisque; cavatappi Bolognese; fried chicken; 48-hour braised short ribs; chocolate mousse; napoleon.

Open: Monday through Friday for lunch and dinner, Saturday for dinner. Expensive.

100 Very Best Restaurants 2013

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.