100 Very Best Restaurants 2013: 1789

The dining room at 1789, which serves a classic Thanksgiving menu. Photograph by Chris Campbell.

The Clyde’s Restaurant Group has a well-articulated aesthetic: antique prints, wood-paneled walls, cozy nooks. Nowhere does that charm so readily as at this Georgetown restaurant. A sense of tradition runs through the dining rooms, each lined with drawings that depict gentlemen cavorting in pantaloons or frisking on horseback.

Chef Anthony Lombardo’s menu includes a few nods to modern tastes—“humanely farmed” meats, a salad of figs and trendy burrata cheese. But it mostly recalls an era when a bordelaise-soaked hunk of beef was the main event and appetizers weren’t routinely shared. While most people go to 1789 for formal dining, its tucked-away bar is great for a solo meal. Don’t miss: Mushroom crepes with butternut-squash velouté; scallops with parsnip purée and oxtail ragu; strip steak; rockfish with lobster farro; tagliatelle with crab fritters; petit gâteau of milk-chocolate cream; ice creams and sorbets.

Open: Daily for dinner. Very expensive.

100 Very Best Restaurants 2013

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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.