100 Very Best Restaurants 2015: No. 99 BlackSalt

BlackSalt. Photograph by Chris Campbell.

Things don’t change much at this narrow seafood dining room in the leafy Palisades—and that’s just fine with its many regulars, who have been ordering the same bouillabaisse and bacon-studded clam chowder for years.

Appetizers remain the strongest parts of a meal, and grazing tends to be a better strategy than a traditional three courses. Tartares—whether bigeye tuna or smooth Skuna Bay salmon—are accessorized with just enough sweet ponzu sauce. And plump sardines arrive with a welcome whiff of smoke from the wood grill.

Up front, there’s a gold-standard fish counter that offers mostly wild catches plus top-notch peel-and-eat shrimp and crabcakes to take home.

Don’t miss:

  • Fried Ipswich clams with curry aïoli
  • Butterfish with mango gastrique
  • Butterscotch pot de crème

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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.