Time was, big chunks of protein were an emblem of upscale cuisine. These days, though, famous chefs are moving away from meat and toward vegetables: Witness the popularity of José Andrés’s Beefsteak (named for the tomato). Now Todd and Ellen Gray are getting into the act at their 17-year-old restaurant—roughly half the dinner menu is now vegan. And it works, most of the time. Even carnivores should explore the creative “plant-based selections” —we loved crispy sherry-glazed cauliflower with roasted spaghetti squash and a wild-mushroom pot au feu. Then again, soy-based chestnut velouté doesn’t have the same ethereal quality sans cream, and other options beckon from the menu’s omnivorous side, such as perfectly seared scallops or pappardelle in a lustrous Bolognese. Thankfully, all dishes can be ordered in half or full portions, inviting diners to dabble where they please.
Don’t miss: Truffled risotto fritters; Roman-style artichokes; bacon-wrapped venison; truffled macaroni and cheese; ganache tart.
See what other restaurants made our 100 Very Best Restaurants list. This article appears in our February 2016 issue of Washingtonian.