100 Very Best Restaurants 2013: Marcel’s


Prosciutto wrapped monk fish stuffed with truffles, white bean puree, and chive beurre blanc. Photograph by Scott Suchman

About Marcel's


Belgian, French

Robert Wiedmaier’s dark-lit Foggy Bottom restaurant—the
fanciest in his collection of Belgian-inspired eateries—is notorious for
above-and-beyond service (there’s a complimentary car service to and from
the Kennedy Center), but throwback formalities are a sideshow that
shouldn’t distract from the main event: the creations that emerge from the
semi-open kitchen. From deeply layered vegetable soups such as asparagus
or wild mushroom to an alluring gâteau of chocolate and passionfruit, the
well-paced dishes are exquisitely delicious—so much so that while they can
all be ordered à la carte, we encourage you to go all out on a tasting
menu of four to seven courses.

The helpful staffers are refreshingly frank—ask them to point
you to the night’s best (and worst) dishes. Don’t miss:
Pan-seared diver scallops with butternut-squash hash and crispy shiitakes;
prosciutto-wrapped monkfish stuffed with truffles, white-bean purée, and
chive beurre blanc; chestnut-and-duck-confit tortellini with English peas
and tarragon jus; bison strip loin with roasted Brussels sprouts,
cauliflower purée, and Cabernet/foie-gras sauce; chocolate-coconut
crumble; coconut-rum anglaise.

Open: Daily for dinner.
Very 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.