Fiola Mare Is the Best Restaurant in Washington

Our 100 Very Best Restaurants issue hits newsstands today.

What’s the #1 restaurant in Washington? According to our 2016 100 Very Best Restaurants list, it’s Fiola Mare, Fabio and Maria Trabocchi’s luxurious seafood palace on the Georgetown Waterfront.

The full list—which is ranked from 1 to 100 and includes reviews, our favorite dish of the year, and more—is on newsstands now. You can sign up for a digital subscription here.

In the meantime, here’s the top 20:
1. Fiola Mare, the extravagant Georgetown seafood restaurant.
2. Komi, Johnny Monis and Anne Marler’s Mediterranean-accented tasting-menu destination in Dupont Circle (and last year’s number-one restaurant).
3. Little Serow, Monis and Marler’s Northern/Northeastern Thai dining room.
4. Convivial, Cedric Maupillier’s French-American newcomer in Shaw.
5. Rasika and Rasika West End, the modern Indian dining rooms in Penn Quarter and the West End.
6. Plume, the opulent creative American dining room (with purse stools!) in downtown DC’s Jefferson Hotel.
7. Bad Saint, the tiny Filipino hotspot in Columbia Heights.
8. The Inn at Little Washington, the baroque Rappahannock County destination.
9. Casa Luca, Fabio and Maria Trabocchi’s trattoria in downtown DC.
10. Izakaya Seki, Cizuka and Hiroshi Seki’s spare Japanese place off U Street.
11.The Source, Wolfgang Puck’s recently renovated pan-Asian satellite in Penn Quarter.
12. Masseria, the tasting-menu-only Italian restaurant near Union Market.
13. Garrison, Robert Weland’s farm-to-table newcomer on Barracks Row.
14. Vin 909 Winecafe, the homey small plates and pizza place in Annapolis.
15. Proof, the eclectic wine bar in Penn Quarter.
16. Maketto, the Cambodian/Taiwanese restaurant, coffee bar, and shop on H Street, Northeast.
17. Blue Duck Tavern, the classic American dining room in the Park Hyatt Hotel.
18. Bistro Bis, Jeffrey Buben’s old-school French bastion near the Capitol
19. Central Michel Richard, the playful French/American brasserie in Penn Quarter
20. Marcel’s, Robert Wiedmaier’s quietly formal French restaurant in Foggy Bottom

There are plenty of changes on this year’s list, including 31 newcomers. Among them are the French-American Convivial (#4), Filipino Bad Saint (#7), and creative American Clarity (#29). There are some notable departures, too, including Corduroy, Cava Mezze, Ris, and DGS Delicatessen.

And there are some shake-ups. Three restaurants that landed in last year’s top ten didn’t crack that tier in 2016. Minibar moved from #2 in last year’s ranking to #22 in this year’s (“Many dishes in the lineup these days are more about brow-raising wizardry than deliciousness.”). Rose’s Luxury fell from #3 to #21 (“A once-airtight menu of knockout dishes now yields the occasional dud.”). And the Red Hen dropped from the #7 slot to #39 (“Inconsistencies have cropped up of late.”).

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.

Food Editor

Anna Spiegel covers the dining and drinking scene in her native DC. Prior to joining Washingtonian in 2010, she attended the French Culinary Institute and Columbia University’s MFA program in New York, and held various cooking and writing positions in NYC and in St. John, US Virgin Islands.