100 Very Best Restaurants 2015: No. 13 Casa Luca

Casa Luca’s bone-in strip loin for two. Photograph by Scott Suchman.

The most casual operation in chef Fabio Trabocchi’s portfolio, this orange-toned trattoria exudes a masterly assurance. The staff is crisp and knowledgeable, the soundtrack old-school and adult, the mood soothing and sophisticated. And the cooking? Think of it as Trabocchi at his most crowd-pleasing and approachable.

Rusticated fine dining is all the rage right now, but rarely has it felt so thought-through or tasted so delicious. From the opening nibbles to the pastas (go for ravioli stuffed with greens and ricotta and treated to a sauce of butter, toasted almonds, and nepitella, a wild mint) to the exquisite desserts, there’s no weak link on the menu. And you can relax and let the meal unspool with choreographed seamlessness.

Don’t miss:

  • Grilled flatbread with ’nduja (spreadable sausage)
  • Tortellini in broth
  • Bucatini with prawns
  • Branzino with roasted tomatoes
  • Fusilli cacio e pepe
  • Lamb shoulder with gremolata
  • Zuppa Inglese (an Italian trifle)
  • Quince crostada
  • Cookie plate

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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.