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Schnitzel sandwich at Duke's Grocery.
Schnitzel sandwich at Duke's Grocery.
Laura Hayes

Where to Find Simple and Satisfying Schnitzel Around Town

Start with a fried cutlet, and go from there

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Schnitzel sandwich at Duke's Grocery.
| Laura Hayes

Most cultures have a glorious take on breaded and fried meat. For Germans and Austrians, it's schnitzel. The basic recipe calls for a cutlet of veal, pork or chicken to be pounded thin, breaded, and then fried. Traditional accompaniments include roasted potatoes or spaetzle — €”soft egg noodles with a name that's equally fun to say.

Within the world of schnitzel, there are age-old variations. Wiener schnitzel, for example, is the national dish of Austria and calls for veal, while jägerschnitzel features a pork or veal cutlet glistening in a rich, creamy mushroom sauce. The latter translates to "hunter's cutlet" (and involves no bad decision shots at the bar).

Trying schnitzel is easy to do in D.C. A few restaurants serve it in sandwich form; others offer it at brunch; and one beer hall even fries up a vegetarian version. Here are 15 places to indulge in one of Bavaria's greatest pleasures.

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Note: Restaurants on this map are listed geographically.

1. Ambar Balkan Cuisine

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523 8th St SE
Washington, D.C. 20003
(202) 813-3039
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Schnitzel at a Balkan restaurant? Restaurateur Ivan Iricanin says Austria borders Serbia and schnitzel has been wildly popular there for decades. He adds that many cultures and empires have left their mark on Balkan food. Ambar serves Vienna schnitzel, which calls for crispy veal, topped with creamy tartar sauce.
Official

2. Biergarten Haus

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1355 H St NE
Washington, D.C. 20002
(202) 388-4053
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Vegetarians can get in on schnitzel at Biergarten Haus. In addition to veal, pork and chicken schnitzel, the Atlas District beer garden serves eggplant schnitzel with lemon caper sauce, achieving a similar flavor profile and all the naughtiness of something breaded and fried. Each schnitzel order comes with a side such as red cabbage, potato pancakes or hand-cut fries.

3. Bistro Bohem

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600 Florida Ave NW
Washington, D.C. 20001
(202) 506-0019
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Neighborhood spot Bistro Bohem says auf wiedersehen to the traditional club sandwich at lunch by subbing in pork schnitzel for deli meat. Come dinner, diners can try pork or chicken schnitzel served with a squeeze of lemon, plus mashed potatoes or fries. It gets better. Bistro Bohem’s brunch schnitzel marries breaded and fried meat with maple syrup.
Official

4. Brasserie Beck

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1101 K St NW
Washington, D.C. 20005
(202) 408-1717
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Schnitzel fans should target Thursdays at Brasserie Beck because that’s when Wiener Schnitzel Holstein is the plat du jour. The Belgian restaurant uses Randall Lineback veal from Virginia for the schnitzel and then tops it according to an age-old recipe that calls for an egg, plus anchovies, capers and a side of spaetzle.
Official

5. Cafe Berlin

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322 Massachusetts Ave NE
Washington, D.C. 20002
(202) 543-7656
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The Hill’s Café Berlin has a tri-fecta of schnitzels: huhnerschnitzel starring chicken breast; jagerschnitzel with pork loin; and wiener schnitzel with veal. The chicken and pork iterations come with gravy and spaetzle, while the veal is served as is tradition with potatoes and roasted vegetables. During lunch, there’s a schnitzel sandwich, and brunch boasts a take on schnitzel a la Holstein with a fried egg.

6. Cafe Mozart

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1331 H St NW
Washington, D.C. 20005
(202) 347-5732
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It would take a whole Bundesliga soccer team to finish all of Café Motzart’s schnitzel offerings in one sitting. Their dedicated schnitzel menu is ten lines deep, and includes the option to build-your-own by selecting your choice of meat and sauce. Popular picks include pork jägerschnitzel with tomato, mushroom, onion and red wine sauce or veal rahm schnitzel with champignon cream sauce.

7. Dacha Beer Garden

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1600 7th St NW
Washington, D.C. 20001
(202) 524-8790
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Schnitzel and suds in a beer garden setting feels like Bavaria right here in D.C. Dacha serves their chicken schnitzel in sandwich form with dill-mustard aioli, purple kraut and Havarti cheese on an olive oil bun.
Official

8. DGS Delicatessen

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1317 Connecticut Ave NW
Washington, D.C. 20036
(202) 293-4400
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DGS Co-owner Nick Wiseman says schnitzel belongs in his new school Jewish deli because of its Eastern European roots. They use chicken thigh meat that’s been brined for eight hours, which they crust in rye bread crumbs for a twist. Currently, the schnitzel comes topped with arugula, pickled ramps, radish and lemon dressing.

9. Duke's Grocery

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1513 17th St NW
Washington, D.C. 20036
(202) 733-5623
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Chill East London eatery, Duke’s Grocery, serves their schnitzel on a bun. The mouth-stretching sandwich dubbed Munchener brötchen practically mandates leftovers with a stack containing Swiss Emmental cheese, spicy sauerkraut, pickles, mustard and bacon on top of double slabs of juicy chicken schnitzel.
Laura Hayes

10. Kafè Leopold

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3315 M St NW
Washington, D.C. 20007
(202) 965-6005
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An afternoon at Leopold’s Kafe feels like an express trip to Europe with its secluded patio setting on Cady’s Alley and blue beer umbrellas even before the veal schnitzel arrives. They serve it alongside arugula, potato salad and a choice of mustard or sweet and tangy lingonberries.

11. Lyon Hall

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3100 Washington Blvd
Arlington, VA 22201
(703) 741-7636
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Planning to tackle Lyon Hall’s pork schnitzel? Come hungry. Piled high, it comes with the best of spring: asparagus, morel mushrooms, herb spaetzle, marinated cucumbers and whole grain mustard butter.

12. Old Europe

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2434 Wisconsin Ave NW
Washington, D.C. 20007
(202) 333-7600
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Trust the recipe at Old Europe. They’ve been slinging schnitzel since the doors opened in 1948. While there are several varieties to choose from including wiener schnitzel and jägerschnitzel, the “Schnitzel Old Europe” is a best bet because it’s an original Lichtenstein family recipe.

13. The Airedale

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3605 14th St NW
Washington, D.C. 20010
The Airedale channels a European pub feel with its crush on Premiere League soccer and hearty food including pan-fried pork schnitzel with spring greens and a creamy mushroom sauce.

14. The Riggsby

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1731 New Hampshire Ave NW
Washington, D.C. 20009
(202) 787-1500
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The schnitzel at The Riggsby is currently served "a la lyonnaise," topped with such ingredients as a fried egg.

15. Wagshal's

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4855 Massachusetts Ave NW
Washington, D.C. 20016
(202) 363-5698
Visit Website
This deli, which expanded into a full service restaurant at its original location last November, serves a pork schnitzel dinner entree with lemon caper butter sauce and a side of spaghetti with Parmesan cheese.
Official

1. Ambar Balkan Cuisine

523 8th St SE, Washington, D.C. 20003
Official
Schnitzel at a Balkan restaurant? Restaurateur Ivan Iricanin says Austria borders Serbia and schnitzel has been wildly popular there for decades. He adds that many cultures and empires have left their mark on Balkan food. Ambar serves Vienna schnitzel, which calls for crispy veal, topped with creamy tartar sauce.
523 8th St SE
Washington, D.C. 20003

2. Biergarten Haus

1355 H St NE, Washington, D.C. 20002
Vegetarians can get in on schnitzel at Biergarten Haus. In addition to veal, pork and chicken schnitzel, the Atlas District beer garden serves eggplant schnitzel with lemon caper sauce, achieving a similar flavor profile and all the naughtiness of something breaded and fried. Each schnitzel order comes with a side such as red cabbage, potato pancakes or hand-cut fries.
1355 H St NE
Washington, D.C. 20002

3. Bistro Bohem

600 Florida Ave NW, Washington, D.C. 20001
Official
Neighborhood spot Bistro Bohem says auf wiedersehen to the traditional club sandwich at lunch by subbing in pork schnitzel for deli meat. Come dinner, diners can try pork or chicken schnitzel served with a squeeze of lemon, plus mashed potatoes or fries. It gets better. Bistro Bohem’s brunch schnitzel marries breaded and fried meat with maple syrup.
600 Florida Ave NW
Washington, D.C. 20001

4. Brasserie Beck

1101 K St NW, Washington, D.C. 20005
Official
Schnitzel fans should target Thursdays at Brasserie Beck because that’s when Wiener Schnitzel Holstein is the plat du jour. The Belgian restaurant uses Randall Lineback veal from Virginia for the schnitzel and then tops it according to an age-old recipe that calls for an egg, plus anchovies, capers and a side of spaetzle.
1101 K St NW
Washington, D.C. 20005

5. Cafe Berlin

322 Massachusetts Ave NE, Washington, D.C. 20002
The Hill’s Café Berlin has a tri-fecta of schnitzels: huhnerschnitzel starring chicken breast; jagerschnitzel with pork loin; and wiener schnitzel with veal. The chicken and pork iterations come with gravy and spaetzle, while the veal is served as is tradition with potatoes and roasted vegetables. During lunch, there’s a schnitzel sandwich, and brunch boasts a take on schnitzel a la Holstein with a fried egg.
322 Massachusetts Ave NE
Washington, D.C. 20002

6. Cafe Mozart

1331 H St NW, Washington, D.C. 20005
It would take a whole Bundesliga soccer team to finish all of Café Motzart’s schnitzel offerings in one sitting. Their dedicated schnitzel menu is ten lines deep, and includes the option to build-your-own by selecting your choice of meat and sauce. Popular picks include pork jägerschnitzel with tomato, mushroom, onion and red wine sauce or veal rahm schnitzel with champignon cream sauce.
1331 H St NW
Washington, D.C. 20005

7. Dacha Beer Garden

1600 7th St NW, Washington, D.C. 20001
Official
Schnitzel and suds in a beer garden setting feels like Bavaria right here in D.C. Dacha serves their chicken schnitzel in sandwich form with dill-mustard aioli, purple kraut and Havarti cheese on an olive oil bun.
1600 7th St NW
Washington, D.C. 20001

8. DGS Delicatessen

1317 Connecticut Ave NW, Washington, D.C. 20036
DGS Co-owner Nick Wiseman says schnitzel belongs in his new school Jewish deli because of its Eastern European roots. They use chicken thigh meat that’s been brined for eight hours, which they crust in rye bread crumbs for a twist. Currently, the schnitzel comes topped with arugula, pickled ramps, radish and lemon dressing.
1317 Connecticut Ave NW
Washington, D.C. 20036

9. Duke's Grocery

1513 17th St NW, Washington, D.C. 20036
Laura Hayes
Chill East London eatery, Duke’s Grocery, serves their schnitzel on a bun. The mouth-stretching sandwich dubbed Munchener brötchen practically mandates leftovers with a stack containing Swiss Emmental cheese, spicy sauerkraut, pickles, mustard and bacon on top of double slabs of juicy chicken schnitzel.
1513 17th St NW
Washington, D.C. 20036

10. Kafè Leopold

3315 M St NW, Washington, D.C. 20007
An afternoon at Leopold’s Kafe feels like an express trip to Europe with its secluded patio setting on Cady’s Alley and blue beer umbrellas even before the veal schnitzel arrives. They serve it alongside arugula, potato salad and a choice of mustard or sweet and tangy lingonberries.
3315 M St NW
Washington, D.C. 20007

11. Lyon Hall

3100 Washington Blvd, Arlington, VA 22201
Planning to tackle Lyon Hall’s pork schnitzel? Come hungry. Piled high, it comes with the best of spring: asparagus, morel mushrooms, herb spaetzle, marinated cucumbers and whole grain mustard butter.
3100 Washington Blvd
Arlington, VA 22201

12. Old Europe

2434 Wisconsin Ave NW, Washington, D.C. 20007
Trust the recipe at Old Europe. They’ve been slinging schnitzel since the doors opened in 1948. While there are several varieties to choose from including wiener schnitzel and jägerschnitzel, the “Schnitzel Old Europe” is a best bet because it’s an original Lichtenstein family recipe.
2434 Wisconsin Ave NW
Washington, D.C. 20007

13. The Airedale

3605 14th St NW, Washington, D.C. 20010
The Airedale channels a European pub feel with its crush on Premiere League soccer and hearty food including pan-fried pork schnitzel with spring greens and a creamy mushroom sauce.
3605 14th St NW
Washington, D.C. 20010

14. The Riggsby

1731 New Hampshire Ave NW, Washington, D.C. 20009
The schnitzel at The Riggsby is currently served "a la lyonnaise," topped with such ingredients as a fried egg.
1731 New Hampshire Ave NW
Washington, D.C. 20009

15. Wagshal's

4855 Massachusetts Ave NW, Washington, D.C. 20016
Official
This deli, which expanded into a full service restaurant at its original location last November, serves a pork schnitzel dinner entree with lemon caper butter sauce and a side of spaghetti with Parmesan cheese.
4855 Massachusetts Ave NW
Washington, D.C. 20016

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