100 Very Best Restaurants 2014: Komi

No. 3 on this year's list
Photograph by Scott Suchman.
Photograph by Scott Suchman.

Some say this is the restaurant that taught Washingtonians to appreciate goat—the pièce de résistance toward which the long journey of a tasting menu here moves. We say this is the restaurant that has taught Washingtonians that a meal is a chance to stash the phone and slow down. A night at this rowhouse is a leisurely affair, moving from a series of small plates that consumes a good hour and all but encourages conversation. Those two- and three-biters can edge into the overly cerebral, and lately some feel like unfinished drafts, but at their best—such as a mascarpone-stuffed date—they’re brilliant distillations of the entire meal: playful, intense, ingenious.

That roasted goat is still the lusty anchor of the final, hands-on course (you fold hunks of meat, crisp skin, and tzatziki into pancake-thick pita), but it’s been joined by other possibilities, including a marvelous veal chop with za’atar-dusted artichokes. House-made lollipops, a parting gift, are as good a reminder as any to step off the grid and savor a sweet pleasure. Open: Tuesday through Saturday for dinner. Don’t miss: Recent standouts on the set 12-course menu have included a selection of crudo; lamb ravioli with almonds; and foie gras torchon.

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