100 Very Best Restaurants: #62 – Compass Rose


Photograph by Scott Suchman

About Compass Rose


1346 T St NW
Washington, DC 20009

“Global small plates” tends to be code for lack of direction in a kitchen. That’s not the case at Compass Rose, where owner Rose Previte’s travels shape a menu that pays respects to Lebanon, Peru, and beyond without feeling like another fusion cliché. The rowhouse dining room adds a cozy dinner-party vibe. Get a taste of Jamaica with spicy lamb curry, then sample Denmark with a steelhead-trout smorrebrod that puts avocado toast to shame. The place also deserves credit for introducing Washington to khachapuri, a cheesy, buttery flatbread from the country of Georgia that’s become the restaurant’s most famous dish. Moderate.
Also great: Grilled duck hearts; tuna poke; sambal udang; Korean short ribs; fried cauliflower; panna cotta.

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.

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.