Food

Memorial Day Restaurant and Bar Specials to Get You in the Summer Mood

Barbecue, picnic boxes, crabs, and more for pickup and delivery.

Photograph by Scott Suchman

The unofficial start of summer is upon us, even if Memorial Day Weekend activities look a little different this year. Good news: you can still flip burgers—or chef-marinated meats—and crack crabs to kick off the season thanks to these delivery and takeout specials from restaurants and bars. Don’t forget to throw in a few frozen drinks to-go for a true summer spread.

Grill Kits

Bresca is offering grill kits to go. Photo by Rey Lopez.
Bresca is offering grill kits to go. Photo by Rey Lopez.

All you need is some charcoal (or a high-powered oven) to complete these ready-cook feasts.

Albi
1346 4th St., SE
Fire up the grill for a Mediterranean feast from chef Michael Rafidi with a variety of kebabs (marinated lamb, chicken, mushroom, etc.) and prepared dishes like tomato fattoush salad and labne soft serve ($50 per person). Throw in a rack of pomegranate ribs for an additional $38 as well as refreshing drinks like sumac lemonade. Details: Pick up only from Friday May 22 to Sunday May 24.

Bresca
1906 14th St., NW
Ryan Ratino’s modernist restaurant is offering a cheffed up $150 barbecue kit (feed two to four) for the summer holiday. There may be hot dogs and burgers but this isn’t your run-of-the-mill cookout: the dogs are homemade, the burgers Waygu, and there’s a decadent short rib to boot (plus the option to tack on lobster for $36). Details: Pick up only on Sunday May 24. Must order by Friday May 22.

Centrolina
974 Palmer Aly., NW
The Italian restaurant’s $200 grilling kit (serves two to four) is stocked with buns, toppings, and sides to go with pork and fennel sausages, salmon skewers, and dry-aged beef patties. Chill out with stracciatella gelato as well the included bottle of rosé, and a six pack of Port City beer. Details: Delivery and pick up from Friday May 22 to Sunday May 24. Must order by Saturday May 23.

Le Diplomate 
1601 14th St., NW 
You can make the French bistro’s all-American double patty at home with a $90 Burger Americain box, special sauce included. The kit includes instructions and ingredients for building the cheeseburger as well as dilly potato salad. Details: Delivery and pick up.

Neighborhood Provisions
Butcher and charcuterie pro Nate Anda is curating a carnivorous selection for the Neighborhood Restaurant Group’s  online platform. The lineup includes anything from sausage to decadent tomahwak steaks plus essentials like charcoal, BBQ rub, and challah buns and a $64 grill pack with all the burger fixings. Details: Delivery only.

Crab Feasts

chesapeake bay crab houses Photograph by Jay Fleming.
Get crackin’ with Chesapeake crabs. Photograph by Jay Fleming.

American Ice Company
817 V St., NW 
If your summer memories are tinged with Old Bay order a dozen steamed Chesapeake Bay blue crabs delivered from the Shaw bar (starting at $80). Wash down sides like potato salad and cornbread with cold beer, canned cocktails, or pickle back shots. Details: Delivery and pickup. Must order by Thursday for weekend delivery.

Jimmy Cantler’s Riverside Inn
458 Forest Beach Rd., Annapolis
Annapolis’ iconic crab mainstay is now “Cantler’s Curbside,” offering freshly-caught crabs by the dozen ranging from large ($75) to supers ($115). Channel Memorial Day by the Bay with boozy crushes to go with your crab-cracking seafood feast. Details: Pick up only.

Shilling Canning Company
360 Water St., SE
The mid-Atlantic restaurant is serving a Memorial Day menu for $65 per person featuring half a dozen steamed blue crabs. The Chesapeake catches are paired with summery sides like coleslaw and hushpuppies with a fruit crisp for dessert. Details: Pick up only. Must order by Friday, May 22.

Quarterdeck 
1200 Fort Myer Dr., Arlington
The Arlington fixture is a seafood haven with blue crabs by the half and full dozen, peel and eat shrimp, and fried oysters. Grab steamed crabs or go with crab cake sandwiches and crab rolls. Details: Pick up only.

Barbecue Boxes

Pork ribs at Oklahoma Joe's. Photograph by Scott Suchman.
Photograph by Scott Suchman

BBQ Bus 
2800 10th St. NE; 5830 Georgia Ave., NW
The food truck turned brick-and-mortar is firing up the smokers for your backyard barbecue. The smoked-meat menu can serve two ($65), four ($125), or ($125) with collard greens, mac and cheese, and canned cocktails. The special is also available from Board Room in Dupont Circle. Details: Delivery and pick up.

Big Bear Cafe
1700 1st St., NW 
Swing by the Bloomingdale cafe for a New Mexican-style cookout for $45 that serves two to three. Stuff flour tortillas with chili-rubbed brisket and ranchero sauce paired with summer salads. Details: Pick up only on Sunday May 24.

The Dabney 
122 Blagden Aly., NW
Looking for a cheffy barbecue menu? Jeremiah Langhorne’s three-course Memorial Day menu ($55 per person) kicks off with pimento cheese and buttermilk biscuits followed by plates like barbecue chicken and watermelon and feta salad. Celebrate the season’s offerings with a berry cobbler at the end of the meal. Details: Delivery and pickup on Sunday May 23.

Hank’s Oyster Bar
1624 Q St., NW 
The oyster house is offering two Memorial Day specials at the newly reopened Dupont Circle location. Options include BBQ spare ribs and corn on the cob ($119) or crab cakes and short ribs ($149) with wine, beer, and cocktails available for pick up. Details: Delivery and pickup only from Thursday May 21 to Sunday May 24. Must order 24 hours in advance.

Sloppy Mama’s 
5731 Lee Hwy., Arlington
Head to Arlington for delicious wood-smoked brisket and pulled pork platters with pickles and white bread. The ‘cue spot is also putting together a burger kit for four if you’re looking to grill out. Details: Delivery and pick up.

Picnic Baskets

Convivial
801 O St., NW 
Pull out a blanket for Cedric Maupillier‘s Parisian picnic of leek quiche, ratatouille, rich chocolate mousse, and more for $45 (serves two). Add-on options include bottles of bubbly and rosé. Details: Delivery and pickup.

Equinox
818 Connecticut Ave., NW 
Todd Gray’s seasonal kitchen is serving a three-course spread for a plant-based picnic ($40 per person). Choose from seasonal treats like rhubarb pies, sweet corn salad, and teriyaki salmon with crunchy homemade barbecue chips. Details: Delivery and pick up from Saturday May 21 to Monday May 23.

Mintwood Place
1813 Columbia Rd., NW
The French-American bistro is packing their $95 picnic basket with treats like salmon rilletes, roasted chicken salad, creamy French cheeses, and charcuterie like wild boar salami and prosciutto. Details: Pick up only on Saturday March 23 and Sunday March 24.

Xiquet
2404 Wisconsin Ave., NW
Glover Park’s wood-fired Spanish spot is offering two picnic baskets filled with Valencian provisions and a bottle of wine. The first option features jamon iberico and mussels ($146) and the second boasts chorizo and manchego-stuffed olives ($80). Details: Delivery and pickup.

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Daniella Byck

Daniella joined Washingtonian in August 2018. She is a University of Wisconsin-Madison grad and lives in Logan Circle.