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The Best Meal(s) Local Dining Pros Ate in 2017

Savor every detail

Fried oysters at Himitsu.
Fried oysters with lemon crema and garlic-spinach puree at Himitsu.
Photo by Rey Lopez for Eater DC

As per tradition, Eater asked a group of restaurant critics, journalists, bloggers, and friends of the site to weigh in on the year in food. Here are the most interesting things to pass through their lips.

Nevin Martell, DC Modern Luxury dining editor: “It's a three-way tie between dinners at Himitsu, Inferno [Pizzeria Napoletana], and the chef's table in the kitchen at the Inn at Little Washington. Each was special in its own way and equally deserving of a blue ribbon.”

Laura Hayes, Washington City Paper food editor: “The four-seat counter experience at ChiKo, which amounts to two hours of eating the most finessed Chinese-meets-Korean drunk food of all time.”

Tom Sietsema, Washington Post restaurant critic:”Paella (and more) with my soon-to-be-90 year old mom at Del Mar. ‘Isn’t this fun? I wish your father were here to see all this!’”

Lori Gardner, Been There, Eaten That:Restaurant at Patowmack Farm.”

David Hagedorn, Arlington Magazine/Bethesda Magazine dining columnist: “Ham and truffle croquetas, scallop crudo with truffle slices and uni, crab-stuffed piquillo peppers with sea urchin sauce, Cinco Jotas Iberico ham, patatas bravas, seafood paella, and churros at Del Mar.”

Rina Rapuano, Zagat DC/freelance food writer:Kobo (with Arroz and ChiKo not far behind).”

Don Rockwell, DC Dining: “Omakase at the sushi bar at Sushi Ogawa.”

Jessica Sidman, Washingtonian food editor: “I'm still thinking about a meal I had at Himitsu back in May: beautiful cocktails, the most amazing uni toast, fun crudos, and oh man, that gochujang fried chicken.”

Tim Carman, Washington Post food writer: “The lamb chops at Royal Nepal in Alexandria, Virginia. Served atop a slab of pink Himalayan salt, the chops were melt-in-your-mouth tender, but also charred and spiced in a way that you could wolf down the bones without ever dipping them in the mint chutney. I’d order that dish weekly, if I could.”

Stefanie Gans, Northern Virginia Magazine restaurant critic and dining editor: “There’s something so charming and unpretentious and magical at Nasime in Old Town Alexandria.”

The Restaurant at Patowmack Farm

42461 Lovettsville Road, , VA 20180 (540) 822-9017 Visit Website


828 Upshur St NW, Washington, D.C. 20011 (202) 288-6864 Visit Website

The Inn at Little Washington

309 Middle Street, , VA 22747 (540) 675-3800 Visit Website


5455 Wisconsin Ave, Chevy Chase, MD 20815 (301) 961-1644 Visit Website


423 8th Street Southeast, , DC 20003 (202) 558-9934 Visit Website

Inferno Pizzeria Napoletana

12207 Darnestown Road, , MD 20878 (301) 963-0115 Visit Website


901 Massachusetts Ave. NW, Washington, D.C. 20001 (202) 869-3300 Visit Website

Del Mar

791 Wharf Street Southwest, , DC 20024 (202) 588-7272 Visit Website