The New York Times Dropped a Perfectly Acceptable Restaurant Guide to DC

It doesn't even mention lobbyists.

Photograph from Oyster Oyster by Rey Lopez.

There was a time in the not-so-distant past when New York Times coverage of DC’s restaurant scene would almost certainly result in outrage that consumed social media chatter for days on end. Perhaps you still remember the great sandwich debacle of 2013, when a review of Mark Leibovich’s This Town described “the utter inability of a metropolitan area of 6.9 million people to produce a single decent slice of pizza or a passable submarine sandwich with oil and not mayonnaise.” (Yes, we are still bitter about that one.) Or maybe you recall how the Times “discovered” that DC had neighborhood restaurants. Or maybe you’ve just been beat down over the years by one too many clichés about “steak-loving senators” dining “blocks from the White House.” 

But this week, the Times dropped its list of the “25 Best Restaurants in Washington, D.C. right now,” and I am here to inform you that it is totally fine. Pretty good even?

The list—with five bylines—includes 16 restaurants on Washingtonian‘s own 100 Very Best Restaurants list, plus two on our new Hot List featuring restaurants we’re loving right now. The Times includes some widely acclaimed spots, like two-Michelin-starred Pineapple & Pearls and recent James Beard winner Oyster Oyster. But we appreciate that they’ve also got some casual insider hits that visitors don’t always try but locals love—like Kuya Ja’s Lechon Belly for Filipino in Rockville and Baan Siam for Thai in Mount Vernon Triangle. Best of all, the list doesn’t mention lobbyists and steakhouses once.

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.