100 Very Best Restaurants 2014: Ris

Spicy fried shrimp are served atop Napa slaw with yuzu sauce at Ris. Photograph by Andrew Propp.

Some chefs are more concerned with satisfying their own egos than diners’ palates. (How many times have you found yourself craving mushroom “soil”?) Ris Lacoste—a veteran of 1789 and the late Kinkead’s, is at the other end of the spectrum—specializing in feel-good dishes that are by turns homey and polished. Much of the menu at this glassy West End dining room has stayed the same over the years, which is fine by us, especially when you’re talking about the terrific cheeseburger or the mahogany-brothed onion soup. But we’ve been taken by a few newer dishes, too, notably an arrangement of sweet, chorizo-crusted scallops and a plate of pepita-coated salmon (an homage to mentor Bob Kinkead) with cilantro, sour cream, and shrimp. On Sunday, the place serves one of the best brunches in town, with lemon-basil mimosas and huevos rancheros.

Open: Monday through Friday for lunch and dinner, Saturday for dinner, Sunday for brunch and dinner.

Don’t Miss: Mussels with chorizo; Caesar salad; scallop “margarita”; tempura shrimp with Sriracha; braised lamb with chickpeas and yogurt; portobello Reuben; butterscotch pudding.

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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.

Anna Spiegel
Food Editor

Anna Spiegel covers the dining and drinking scene in her native DC. Prior to joining Washingtonian in 2010, she attended the French Culinary Institute and Columbia University’s MFA program in New York, and held various cooking and writing positions in NYC and in St. John, US Virgin Islands.