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A whole grille dfish with three dipping sauces, herb garnishes and vermicelli noodles on an intricate blue plate
Whole fish from Laos in Town
R. Lopez/Eater DC

Where to Eat and Drink Around Union Station

The best dining options for those on the go

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Whole fish from Laos in Town
| R. Lopez/Eater DC

Union Station isn’t exactly the bustling center of activity that it typically is, now that the COVID-19 crisis has put such a damper on travel. But there are still people who have to patronize Amtrak for work and family reasons, and the neighborhood that houses the iconic train station hums on, especially given its proximity to the Capitol. Temporary closures within the station itself means dining options there are more limited than usual. This map primarily highlights options outside the building, from Lao appetizers to Irish pub fare, and even that landscape is looking a little different these days (with such institutions as Charlie Palmer and Art & Soul temporarily closed).

A number of D.C. area restaurants have resumed dine-in service. However, this should not be taken as endorsement for dining in, as there are still safety concerns. The Washington Post is tracking coronavirus cases and deaths in D.C., Maryland, and Virginia. More information can be found at coronavirus.dc.gov. Studies indicate that there is a lower exposure risk when outdoors, but the level of risk involved with patio dining is contingent on restaurants following strict social distancing and other safety guidelines.

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Note: Restaurants on this map are listed geographically.
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Red Bear Brewing Co

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As one of the newer breweries in town, Red Bear stands out with a punchy draft list that includes fast favorites such as Skookum, a hoppy, Pacific Northwest-style red ale, and a chocolate peanut butter milk stout. Bar fare includes beer-infused cheeseburgers, beer-battered cheese curds, and Sichuan beef noodle soup. The taproom takes reservations for inside seating and two levels of patio tables. Place to-go and delivery orders here. — Gabe Hiatt

Laos in Town

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This exciting new option for Lao food serves dishes like an extra spicy, crispy rice salad, herbal sausage, fried quail, and whole fish with a variety of dipping sauces. It has indoor and outdoor dining (reservations here), and takeout is available through the restaurants’ website. — Missy Frederick

A tray of sausage fanned out with dipping sauce in the middle and peanuts on the side, served on a red and white plate with chopsticks and Thai iced tea.
Herbal pork sausage from Laos in Town
R. Lopez/Eater DC

This charming neighborhood Indian restaurant has a cute patio with a separate bar slinging drinks to go with trays of biryani and butter chicken. Customers can find an extensive number of specials and vegetarian options on the chalkboard inside. It’s open for indoor and outdoor dining. Customers can place pickup orders through their website or delivery through Caviar. — M.F.

Indigo owners Nidhi Tandon, center, and Dinesh Tandon, right, at their NoMa restaurant.
Indigo owners Nidhi Tandon, center, and Dinesh Tandon, right, at their NoMa restaurant.
Matt McClain/The Washington Post via Getty Images

Le Grenier

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This French restaurant has been serving brasserie classics to the Atlas Distrct since 2012. It’s open for dine-in, takeout and delivery through UberEats. — M.F.

Two profiteroles stuffed with cream, dripping with chocolate, and garnished with whipped cream and mint.
Profiteroles from Le Grenier
Le Grenier [official site]

Ethiopic Restaurant

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Ethiopic is one of D.C.’s most consistent (and stylish) destinations for Ethiopian fare, including kitfo, tibs, and hearty vegetarian platters. Limited outdoor seating is available. Get takeout and delivery through the restaurant’s website. — M.F.

Cubed awaze beef tibs from Ethiopic
Cubed awaze beef tibs from Ethiopic
Dixie D. Vereen/For The Washington Post via Getty Images

Cafe Fili

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Owner Ziad Maalouf brought this Middle Eastern cafe to D.C. from Baltimore. Zippy dishes full of lemon and sumac include fattoush salad and Israeli couscous grain bowls full of chopped salad, hummus, and falafel or shawarma. For a heartier meal, go with panini filled with Moroccan chicken or short rib and Swiss, then throw in an order of za’atar and black pepper fries. There’s patio seating, or customers can place takeout and delivery orders here. — G.H.

Union Station Food Court and Vendors

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The basement food court in the station itself has an ever-changing roster of vendors, and several restaurant groups have standalone options within the station as well. Right now, though, several of the more popular destinations (such as Shake Shack) are closed due to the pandemic. Some of the open options currently include Crepe Lena (crepes), Chipotle, and Potbelly.

An exterior shot of Union Station
Union Station
Caroline Brehman/CQ-Roll Call, Inc via Getty Images

Ebenezers Coffeehouse

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This community church-run corner coffeehouse deals in fair trade coffee, assorted teas (hot and iced), and ready-made snack foods like baked goods and sandwiches. Delivery and pickup available via Postmates. —T.P.

The Dubliner

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One of D.C.'s most famous and longstanding Irish bars, the Dubliner is the dean of the city’s pub scene. Even Barack Obama has stopped by on Saint Patrick's Day. The restaurant is open for both indoor and outdoor dining. —M.F.

The wooden bar with dozens of bottles lined up in front of it at The Dubliner
The Dubliner
R. Lopez/Eater DC

Bistro Bis

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Veteran D.C. restaurateur Jeff Buben's longstanding French restaurant — a favorite of local lobbyists and politicos alike — is just steps from Union Station. Open for indoor and outdoor dining; takeout and delivery info here. —T.P.

Buffalo & Bergen - Capitol HIll

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This Union Market favorite for bagels, matzo ball soup, knishes, and killer cocktails now has a Capitol Hill location. Owner and longtime D.C. mixologist Gina Chersevani offers takeout and patio seating only during the pandemic.

A bagel topped with lox, cream cheese, capers, bagels, and more
Buffalo Bergen’s bagel
Buffalo & Bergen [Photo: Facebook]

Nostra Cucina

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This no-frills Italian-American restaurant is ideal for travelers on a budget. The majority of a menu is under $20, including classic chicken Parmesan subs, veal piccata, and all the expected red sauce dishes with homemade spaghetti or fettuccine. Call in for pickups or delivery. — G.H.

The Monocle

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An institution on Capitol Hill, The Monocle specializes in traditional American dishes such as entree salads, jumbo lump crab cakes, and assorted steaks, ribs, and chops. It is also a great place to people-watch — workers pop by regularly when Congress is in session — while grabbing a drink. The restaurant just reopened in September for dine-in and takeout. — T.P.

A steak garnished with parsley with mashed potatoes in the background The Monocle [official site]

Bistro Cacao

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People who have time for a leisurely meal should venture over to this French favorite for happy hour or moules frites. Order takeout or delivery through Toast. — T.P.

Cafe Berlin

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Traditional German cuisine is rare around town, and this neighborhood favorite is one of the better options. The restaurant is offering carryout with limited dine-in options outdoors and indoors. — M.F.

The Alibi

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This laid-back British American pub tucked in an alley is a popular spot to throw back beers while brushing shoulders with under-the-radar politicos. Dine-in and carryout/delivery available. — T.P.

Plenty of imported beers await at Alibi
The bar at Alibi.
The Alibi/official photo

Red Bear Brewing Co

As one of the newer breweries in town, Red Bear stands out with a punchy draft list that includes fast favorites such as Skookum, a hoppy, Pacific Northwest-style red ale, and a chocolate peanut butter milk stout. Bar fare includes beer-infused cheeseburgers, beer-battered cheese curds, and Sichuan beef noodle soup. The taproom takes reservations for inside seating and two levels of patio tables. Place to-go and delivery orders here. — Gabe Hiatt

Laos in Town

A tray of sausage fanned out with dipping sauce in the middle and peanuts on the side, served on a red and white plate with chopsticks and Thai iced tea.
Herbal pork sausage from Laos in Town
R. Lopez/Eater DC

This exciting new option for Lao food serves dishes like an extra spicy, crispy rice salad, herbal sausage, fried quail, and whole fish with a variety of dipping sauces. It has indoor and outdoor dining (reservations here), and takeout is available through the restaurants’ website. — Missy Frederick

A tray of sausage fanned out with dipping sauce in the middle and peanuts on the side, served on a red and white plate with chopsticks and Thai iced tea.
Herbal pork sausage from Laos in Town
R. Lopez/Eater DC

Indigo

Indigo owners Nidhi Tandon, center, and Dinesh Tandon, right, at their NoMa restaurant.
Indigo owners Nidhi Tandon, center, and Dinesh Tandon, right, at their NoMa restaurant.
Matt McClain/The Washington Post via Getty Images

This charming neighborhood Indian restaurant has a cute patio with a separate bar slinging drinks to go with trays of biryani and butter chicken. Customers can find an extensive number of specials and vegetarian options on the chalkboard inside. It’s open for indoor and outdoor dining. Customers can place pickup orders through their website or delivery through Caviar. — M.F.

Indigo owners Nidhi Tandon, center, and Dinesh Tandon, right, at their NoMa restaurant.
Indigo owners Nidhi Tandon, center, and Dinesh Tandon, right, at their NoMa restaurant.
Matt McClain/The Washington Post via Getty Images

Le Grenier

Two profiteroles stuffed with cream, dripping with chocolate, and garnished with whipped cream and mint.
Profiteroles from Le Grenier
Le Grenier [official site]

This French restaurant has been serving brasserie classics to the Atlas Distrct since 2012. It’s open for dine-in, takeout and delivery through UberEats. — M.F.

Two profiteroles stuffed with cream, dripping with chocolate, and garnished with whipped cream and mint.
Profiteroles from Le Grenier
Le Grenier [official site]

Ethiopic Restaurant

Cubed awaze beef tibs from Ethiopic
Cubed awaze beef tibs from Ethiopic
Dixie D. Vereen/For The Washington Post via Getty Images

Ethiopic is one of D.C.’s most consistent (and stylish) destinations for Ethiopian fare, including kitfo, tibs, and hearty vegetarian platters. Limited outdoor seating is available. Get takeout and delivery through the restaurant’s website. — M.F.

Cubed awaze beef tibs from Ethiopic
Cubed awaze beef tibs from Ethiopic
Dixie D. Vereen/For The Washington Post via Getty Images

Cafe Fili

Owner Ziad Maalouf brought this Middle Eastern cafe to D.C. from Baltimore. Zippy dishes full of lemon and sumac include fattoush salad and Israeli couscous grain bowls full of chopped salad, hummus, and falafel or shawarma. For a heartier meal, go with panini filled with Moroccan chicken or short rib and Swiss, then throw in an order of za’atar and black pepper fries. There’s patio seating, or customers can place takeout and delivery orders here. — G.H.

Union Station Food Court and Vendors

An exterior shot of Union Station
Union Station
Caroline Brehman/CQ-Roll Call, Inc via Getty Images

The basement food court in the station itself has an ever-changing roster of vendors, and several restaurant groups have standalone options within the station as well. Right now, though, several of the more popular destinations (such as Shake Shack) are closed due to the pandemic. Some of the open options currently include Crepe Lena (crepes), Chipotle, and Potbelly.

An exterior shot of Union Station
Union Station
Caroline Brehman/CQ-Roll Call, Inc via Getty Images

Ebenezers Coffeehouse

This community church-run corner coffeehouse deals in fair trade coffee, assorted teas (hot and iced), and ready-made snack foods like baked goods and sandwiches. Delivery and pickup available via Postmates. —T.P.

The Dubliner

The wooden bar with dozens of bottles lined up in front of it at The Dubliner
The Dubliner
R. Lopez/Eater DC

One of D.C.'s most famous and longstanding Irish bars, the Dubliner is the dean of the city’s pub scene. Even Barack Obama has stopped by on Saint Patrick's Day. The restaurant is open for both indoor and outdoor dining. —M.F.

The wooden bar with dozens of bottles lined up in front of it at The Dubliner
The Dubliner
R. Lopez/Eater DC

Bistro Bis

Veteran D.C. restaurateur Jeff Buben's longstanding French restaurant — a favorite of local lobbyists and politicos alike — is just steps from Union Station. Open for indoor and outdoor dining; takeout and delivery info here. —T.P.

Buffalo & Bergen - Capitol HIll

A bagel topped with lox, cream cheese, capers, bagels, and more
Buffalo Bergen’s bagel
Buffalo & Bergen [Photo: Facebook]

This Union Market favorite for bagels, matzo ball soup, knishes, and killer cocktails now has a Capitol Hill location. Owner and longtime D.C. mixologist Gina Chersevani offers takeout and patio seating only during the pandemic.

A bagel topped with lox, cream cheese, capers, bagels, and more
Buffalo Bergen’s bagel
Buffalo & Bergen [Photo: Facebook]

Nostra Cucina

This no-frills Italian-American restaurant is ideal for travelers on a budget. The majority of a menu is under $20, including classic chicken Parmesan subs, veal piccata, and all the expected red sauce dishes with homemade spaghetti or fettuccine. Call in for pickups or delivery. — G.H.

The Monocle

A steak garnished with parsley with mashed potatoes in the background The Monocle [official site]

An institution on Capitol Hill, The Monocle specializes in traditional American dishes such as entree salads, jumbo lump crab cakes, and assorted steaks, ribs, and chops. It is also a great place to people-watch — workers pop by regularly when Congress is in session — while grabbing a drink. The restaurant just reopened in September for dine-in and takeout. — T.P.

A steak garnished with parsley with mashed potatoes in the background The Monocle [official site]

Bistro Cacao

People who have time for a leisurely meal should venture over to this French favorite for happy hour or moules frites. Order takeout or delivery through Toast. — T.P.

Cafe Berlin

Traditional German cuisine is rare around town, and this neighborhood favorite is one of the better options. The restaurant is offering carryout with limited dine-in options outdoors and indoors. — M.F.

Related Maps

The Alibi

Plenty of imported beers await at Alibi
The bar at Alibi.
The Alibi/official photo

This laid-back British American pub tucked in an alley is a popular spot to throw back beers while brushing shoulders with under-the-radar politicos. Dine-in and carryout/delivery available. — T.P.

Plenty of imported beers await at Alibi
The bar at Alibi.
The Alibi/official photo

Related Maps