clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

The Early Word on DBGB Kitchen + Bar

What diners are saying so far about Daniel Boulud's long-awaited D.C. restaurant.

If you buy something from an Eater link, Vox Media may earn a commission. See our ethics policy.

DBGB Kitchen + Bar
DBGB Kitchen + Bar
R. Lopez

It's been about three weeks since renowned chef Daniel Boulud's DBGB Kitchen + Bar opened to great fanfare at CityCenterDC. And now that the celeb chef hype has died down a bit, how are D.C. diners reacting to DBGB's menu of French classics, house made sausages, raw oysters and crab-topped burgers? Here's what the first bloggers, Yelpers and others are saying about DBGB Kitchen + Bar:

Must Get The Baked Alaska: Tom Sietsema appreciates Daniel Boulud's effort in the early weeks of the restaurant. "No out-of-town chef in recent memory has tried as hard as Daniel Boulud to win over Washington," he writes in The Washington Post. Sietsema counts two "showstoppers" already at DBGB: "One is savory. Caper-showered sauteed fluke circled with a garland of crumbled cauliflower, dandelion tendrils and grape slivers is an elegant tribute to the Chesapeake. Wisely, [executive chef Ed] Scarpone, a six-year veteran of the Boulud empire, serves the local fish on the bone and with its skin. The other arresting performance is sweet. Baked Alaska with a core of raspberry sorbet is ignited at the table with Chartreuse — and a blow torch." [WaPo]

Don’t Skip The Coq Au Vin: Todd Kliman tweets, "My early word on the new DBGB from chef Daniel Boulud: coq au (my god!) vin. #dcrestaurants" [Twitter]

More Coq Au Vin Raves: User jumbo shrimp also posts on Don Rockwell that the coq au vin is a winner, saying, "The kitchen is sending out very good food. I had the Sweet & Sour Eggplant, which was nuanced and balanced. Our party shared a sausage duo: Boudin Basque & Tunisienne. My coq au vin was textbook and absolutely delicious. I finished with the fig tart, which was mostly fruit and not very sweet--nicely restrained. All of the service staff that we interacted with were friendly and had the right attitude (i.e. solving problems instead of pawning them off)." [DR]

The Burger Comparison: Going Out Gurus ordered the Menage a Trois three-burger platter and did a taste test. The Frenchie was deemed the winner — "Our tasters felt this burger, $19 on its own, offered the richest, most complex flavors — apropos for a place as upscale-casual ad DBGB." How did the SpongeBob-inspired The Crabbie burger fare? "Our panel of tasters found the sweetness of the crab overpowered the burger, but it's quite the thing to behold, even at $22." [GoG]

The Forgotten DC Outpost: A PoPville commenter says, "I’ve been to a number of Daniel Boulud’s restaurants in New York (including the original DBGB) and our visit for dinner last night was equally disappointing. Food was okay, I guess but definitely not worth the the hype. Really felt like it was a DC outpost that no one really cared about."

Another Not As Good As New York Comparison: The restaurant is currently earning 3 stars on Yelp with 15 reviews in. User M.G. writes on Yelp: "The consensus at our table was that the food was pretty good, but certainly none of the wow factor we'd seen at Boloud's New York restaurants. The service was appallingly bad. Chalk it up to early days? Let's hope so." [Yelp]

The Celeb Chef Run-in: Yelper Nicole L. recounted meeting Daniel Boulud in the restaurant after the opening week: "We were surprised to see him he went around the tables to say hello. That was cool. When he made his rounds we managed to catch his attention even though our table was in the middle we didnt know what to expect. We had a candid chat about the embassy life in DC (he was the chef of the French Ambassador to the EU) and Lyon, he jumped and asked if we saw the episode of Anthony Bourdain's show about Lyon. He said it was fun but a lot of work. He was very approachable and normal. We enjoyed chatting with him and hope to check out Daniel in NYC." [Yelp]

The Tears of Joy for Madeleines: Foursquare user Rocio del Mar Perez writes: "The pork confit appetizer is delicious, as is the steak tartare. Coq au vin is a winner, and the madeleines for dessert almost made me cry out of joy. Very good food. The service can improve…" [Yelp]

The Vegetarian-Friendly Review: Yelp reviewer Patrick P. is a big fan, saying, "You should absolutely go here. Don't let the hype get in the way of the food. Go, eat, enjoy. I'll be back!" He writes: "My vegetarian friend went off the menu for dinner, and the chef whipped up a pasta with fresh vegetables that she simply RAVED about, declaring she had never had such a quality pasta dish." [Yelp]

DBGB Kitchen + Bar is located at 931 H Street NW, Washington, DC 20001

Sign up for the newsletter Sign up for the Eater DC newsletter

The freshest news from the local food world