100 Very Best Restaurants: #34 – Central Michel Richard

A Central classic—steak au poivre and crispy frites. Photo by Scott Suchman.

The late Michel Richard lives on at this French-American bistro where diners revel in his famed dishes—think “faux gras” (made with chicken instead of goose liver) and sous-vide fried chicken. Richard protégé turned restaurant partner David Deshaies and chef Tony Roussel keep these plates on point while injecting new energy with creations such as lentil “coco” curry heaped with fried tofu or a bright salad of avocado and radicchio with blue-cheese shavings. End with a Richard-stamped sweet, whether a crispy-crunchy chocolate bar or lemon “eggceptional.” Expensive.
Also great: Gougères;bacon-onion tart; fish croquettes; duck-leg confit with chestnut “risotto”; lamb-shank pastilla; short ribs bourguignon.

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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 Logan Circle.

Anna Spiegel
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.

Jessica Sidman
Food Editor

Jessica Sidman covers the people and trends behind D.C.’s food and drink scene. Before joining Washingtonian in July 2016, she was Food Editor and Young & Hungry columnist at Washington City Paper. She is a Colorado native and University of Pennsylvania grad.