The arrival, last year, of chef Brian Wilson was not heralded in the food world. Wilson wasn’t a celebrity, and Montmartre—a dependably good pit stop in Capitol Hill’s Eastern Market neighborhood for French comfort food—has never been a destination. But Wilson has proven to be a smart hire, nudging the bistro into relevance with a more seasonal approach and a light, expressive hand at the stove. If you missed his dish of prawns in a pistou with white beans and tomatoes, you missed one of the great dishes of the summer. Diners have always descended on this low-lit space to ease into a meal without gimmicks, and Wilson’s renditions of bistro classics such as duck confit and scallops and cream are as on-message as a consultant-coached politico. Desserts remain much as they were in French restaurants a generation ago—not a bad thing, especially when it’s a sumptuous île flottante, a fluffy meringue ringed by a silken moat of custard.
Open: Tuesday through Friday for lunch and dinner, Saturday and Sunday for brunch and dinner.
Don’t Miss: Duck-confit salad; croque madame; hanger steak; mixed-berry tart.