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Bindaas's crab dish
A crab dish from Bindaas
Rey Lopez/Eater D.C.

Where to Eat and Drink in Cleveland Park

Everything from pizza by the slice to Indian street food.

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A crab dish from Bindaas
| Rey Lopez/Eater D.C.

Cleveland Park has endured plenty of turnover.

When this map was first created in 2017, the neighborhood was having trouble keeping its hospitality scene intact. Critically acclaimed Ripple and longstanding Nam-Viet had recently closed. Well-known Italian restaurant Dino shuttered and was replaced by a 7-Eleven. Critical darling Palena had already left the scene in 2014.

Despite the changes and some lingering vacancies, this old neighborhood’s Connecticut Avenue corridor hosts some bright newcomers — including sibling restaurants for Israeli and Indian street food — and standbys including two of the most trusted delis in the city.

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Note: Restaurants on this map are listed geographically.

1. Siam House

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3520 Connecticut Ave NW
Washington, DC 20008
(202) 363-7802
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People do not come to Siam House for the décor or the view of the Exxon station across the street. They come for the flavorful menu of Thai standbys and specials, from kaprow to clay pot shrimp. Be prepared for Thai-level spiciness. The chef does not edit the heat down for American palates unless asked.

Siam House [official]

2. Dolan Uyghur Restaurant

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3518 Connecticut Ave NW
Washington, D.C.
(202) 686-3941

Dolan specializes in Uyghur cuisine, food from Northwestern China that incorporates a range of Middle Eastern influences. Find dishes ranging from kebabs to stir-fries to goshnan, a Uyghur-style pizza. Dolan’s menu reflects the diversity of this Central Asian community’s role as culinary melting pot.

3. Indique

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3512-14 Connecticut Ave NW
Washington, D.C.
(202) 244-6600
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Indique offers a traditional Indian menu with features from the coastal Kerala region in the south. With a menu that includes a mix of street snacks, classic curries, tandoor specials, and a variety of vegetarian dishes, this standby works as a casual date night spot (grab a table on the second floor terrace) or a post-work pop-in. Don’t miss the Kerala fish curry.

4. Medium Rare (Multiple locations)

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3500 Connecticut Ave NW
Washington, D.C.
(202) 237-1432
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What Medium Rare lacks in menu size, it makes up for in popularity among college group diners, date night couples, and families alike. The local chain has a single prix fixe option priced at $22.95: pain de campagne bread, culotte steak, fries, and a salad. There’s a selection of desserts available for $9.

5. St. Arnold's Mussel Bar (Multiple locations)

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3435 Connecticut Ave NW, Ste B
Washington, D.C.
(202) 621-6719
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Moules frites are the most popular dish at St. Arnold’s, but there are plenty of other Belgian classics on the menu as well. That includes hearty stews like waterzooi (chicken in a creamy sauce), and beer-infused beef carbonade. St. Arnold’s features 20 mussel dishes, each served up in steaming cast-iron pots, plus a selection of 60 Belgian beers. Happy hour features $11 mussel pots and other drink and food specials.

6. Trattoria al Volo

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3417 Connecticut Ave NW
Washington, DC 20008
(202) 686-1233
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The Italian duo behind the quickly-expanding Al Volo collection of restaurants oversees a casual menu of house-made pastas — most of which hover around $20 — and more. The restaurant also has a stand-alone counter for buying fresh pasta, and offers frequent cooking classes.

Al Volo Cleveland Park Lisa K. Ruland/For Eater D.C.

7. Firehook Bakery & Coffeehouse (Multiple locations)

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3411 Connecticut Ave NW
Washington, DC 20008
(202) 362-2253
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Come for coffee and a cookie the size of a human head. Stay to enjoy it in the quiet, semi-secret backyard, where stroller moms, laptoppers, retirees, and other locals know to go for a quiet moment under the grapevine-shaded tables and nooks.

Lisa K. Ruland/For Eater D.C.

8. Fat Pete's Barbecue (Multiple locations)

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3407 Connecticut Ave NW
Washington, D.C.
(202) 362-7777
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The Cleveland Park location of Fat Pete’s was the first for this burgeoning local chain. The restaurant has something for everyone. Pork ribs, pulled chicken, brisket burnt ends, and even tofu go with a large selection of house sauces that represent major barbecue regions including Texas and the Carolinas.

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Honey-glazed barbecue spareribs

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9. Byblos Deli

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3414 Connecticut Ave NW
Washington, D.C.
(202) 364-6549
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Byblos is one of the few local spots to get a quick bite to eat in the neighborhood. Find all the typical Greek deli items like gyros, shawarma, souvlaki, spanakopita, and falafel. Then dig in under the large, covered front patio.

10. Spices

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3333 Connecticut Ave NW
Washington, D.C.
(202) 686-3833
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Spices does a big take-out and delivery business for people living along Connecticut Avenue. Its pan-Asian menu boasts a wide variety, offering up Malaysian food, sushi, and Korean fried chicken. Be sure to check out the curry laksa and mee goreng (stir-fried egg noodles).

11. Coppi's Organic Restaurant

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3321 Connecticut Ave NW
Washington, D.C.
(202) 966-0770
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In 2014, after 20 years on U Street, Coppi’s Organic relocated to Cleveland Park and quickly became a local institution. The Northern Italian restaurant offers pizzas and meats roasted in its wood-burning oven along with seasonal and classics like pappardelle bolognese and mushroom risotto. There’s also an interesting mix of organic and biodynamic wines from around the world.

12. Nanny O'Brien's Irish Pub

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3319 Connecticut Ave NW
Washington, D.C.
(202) 686-9189
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Nanny O’Brien’s is one of the closest things to a genuine dive bar in the D.C. area. While it may look like a place where Guinness is the only beer on tap, it has a rotating menu of drafts and specialty brews in cans. Don’t sleep on the wings, which come in a variety of styles (nuclear, D.C. with mumbo sauce) and frequently appear on local “best of” lists.

13. Vace Italian Delicatessen

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3315 Connecticut Ave NW
Washington, D.C.
(202) 369-1999
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Vace has served as Northwest D.C.’s go-to Italian store since the 1970s. This neighborhood deli sells imported cheese and semi-obscure DeCecco pasta shapes (racchette, anyone?). But Vace is best known for is its pizza, a favorite among locals and those grabbing a quick slice before seeing a movie at the historic Uptown theater across the street. Try the plain-looking onion pizza — a sleeper hit.

14. Sababa

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3311 Connecticut Ave NW
Washington, DC 20008
(202) 244-6750
Visit Website

Prolific D.C. restaurateur Ashok Bajaj opened this casual, modern Israeli restaurant in March 2018 to strong reviews, and its popularity continues apace with next-door sibling spot Bindaas. Sababa features seasonal salatim, extensive small plates, and large plates like kibbeh pie and vegetable bastilla. Stand-out small plates include roasted halloumi cheese and kushari, and Egyptian-style blend of chickpeas, reice, lentils, pasta, fried onions, and tomato sauce.

15. Bindaas (Multiple locations)

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3309 Connecticut Ave NW
Washington, D.C.
(202) 244-6550
Visit Website

Bajaj’s Indian restaurant in Cleveland Park, which has sprouted a second location in Foggy Bottom, focuses on street food. The menu doesn’t feature curries, at least not in the traditional sense. Instead, find chicken tikka in a kathi roll, or crab in a creamy coconut sauce and idiyappam (rice noodles). The popular rooftop is one of the best in the area. Make sure to reserve in advance in nice weather.

Bindaas's crab dish
A crab dish from Bindaas
R. Lopez

1. Siam House

3520 Connecticut Ave NW, Washington, DC 20008
Siam House [official]

People do not come to Siam House for the décor or the view of the Exxon station across the street. They come for the flavorful menu of Thai standbys and specials, from kaprow to clay pot shrimp. Be prepared for Thai-level spiciness. The chef does not edit the heat down for American palates unless asked.

3520 Connecticut Ave NW
Washington, DC 20008

2. Dolan Uyghur Restaurant

3518 Connecticut Ave NW, Washington, D.C.

Dolan specializes in Uyghur cuisine, food from Northwestern China that incorporates a range of Middle Eastern influences. Find dishes ranging from kebabs to stir-fries to goshnan, a Uyghur-style pizza. Dolan’s menu reflects the diversity of this Central Asian community’s role as culinary melting pot.

3518 Connecticut Ave NW
Washington, D.C.

3. Indique

3512-14 Connecticut Ave NW, Washington, D.C.

Indique offers a traditional Indian menu with features from the coastal Kerala region in the south. With a menu that includes a mix of street snacks, classic curries, tandoor specials, and a variety of vegetarian dishes, this standby works as a casual date night spot (grab a table on the second floor terrace) or a post-work pop-in. Don’t miss the Kerala fish curry.

3512-14 Connecticut Ave NW
Washington, D.C.

4. Medium Rare (Multiple locations)

3500 Connecticut Ave NW, Washington, D.C.

What Medium Rare lacks in menu size, it makes up for in popularity among college group diners, date night couples, and families alike. The local chain has a single prix fixe option priced at $22.95: pain de campagne bread, culotte steak, fries, and a salad. There’s a selection of desserts available for $9.

3500 Connecticut Ave NW
Washington, D.C.

5. St. Arnold's Mussel Bar (Multiple locations)

3435 Connecticut Ave NW, Ste B, Washington, D.C.

Moules frites are the most popular dish at St. Arnold’s, but there are plenty of other Belgian classics on the menu as well. That includes hearty stews like waterzooi (chicken in a creamy sauce), and beer-infused beef carbonade. St. Arnold’s features 20 mussel dishes, each served up in steaming cast-iron pots, plus a selection of 60 Belgian beers. Happy hour features $11 mussel pots and other drink and food specials.

3435 Connecticut Ave NW, Ste B
Washington, D.C.

6. Trattoria al Volo

3417 Connecticut Ave NW, Washington, DC 20008
Al Volo Cleveland Park Lisa K. Ruland/For Eater D.C.

The Italian duo behind the quickly-expanding Al Volo collection of restaurants oversees a casual menu of house-made pastas — most of which hover around $20 — and more. The restaurant also has a stand-alone counter for buying fresh pasta, and offers frequent cooking classes.

3417 Connecticut Ave NW
Washington, DC 20008

7. Firehook Bakery & Coffeehouse (Multiple locations)

3411 Connecticut Ave NW, Washington, DC 20008
Lisa K. Ruland/For Eater D.C.

Come for coffee and a cookie the size of a human head. Stay to enjoy it in the quiet, semi-secret backyard, where stroller moms, laptoppers, retirees, and other locals know to go for a quiet moment under the grapevine-shaded tables and nooks.

3411 Connecticut Ave NW
Washington, DC 20008

8. Fat Pete's Barbecue (Multiple locations)

3407 Connecticut Ave NW, Washington, D.C.

The Cleveland Park location of Fat Pete’s was the first for this burgeoning local chain. The restaurant has something for everyone. Pork ribs, pulled chicken, brisket burnt ends, and even tofu go with a large selection of house sauces that represent major barbecue regions including Texas and the Carolinas.

3407 Connecticut Ave NW
Washington, D.C.

9. Byblos Deli

3414 Connecticut Ave NW, Washington, D.C.

Byblos is one of the few local spots to get a quick bite to eat in the neighborhood. Find all the typical Greek deli items like gyros, shawarma, souvlaki, spanakopita, and falafel. Then dig in under the large, covered front patio.

3414 Connecticut Ave NW
Washington, D.C.

10. Spices

3333 Connecticut Ave NW, Washington, D.C.

Spices does a big take-out and delivery business for people living along Connecticut Avenue. Its pan-Asian menu boasts a wide variety, offering up Malaysian food, sushi, and Korean fried chicken. Be sure to check out the curry laksa and mee goreng (stir-fried egg noodles).

3333 Connecticut Ave NW
Washington, D.C.

11. Coppi's Organic Restaurant

3321 Connecticut Ave NW, Washington, D.C.

In 2014, after 20 years on U Street, Coppi’s Organic relocated to Cleveland Park and quickly became a local institution. The Northern Italian restaurant offers pizzas and meats roasted in its wood-burning oven along with seasonal and classics like pappardelle bolognese and mushroom risotto. There’s also an interesting mix of organic and biodynamic wines from around the world.

3321 Connecticut Ave NW
Washington, D.C.

12. Nanny O'Brien's Irish Pub

3319 Connecticut Ave NW, Washington, D.C.

Nanny O’Brien’s is one of the closest things to a genuine dive bar in the D.C. area. While it may look like a place where Guinness is the only beer on tap, it has a rotating menu of drafts and specialty brews in cans. Don’t sleep on the wings, which come in a variety of styles (nuclear, D.C. with mumbo sauce) and frequently appear on local “best of” lists.

3319 Connecticut Ave NW
Washington, D.C.

13. Vace Italian Delicatessen

3315 Connecticut Ave NW, Washington, D.C.

Vace has served as Northwest D.C.’s go-to Italian store since the 1970s. This neighborhood deli sells imported cheese and semi-obscure DeCecco pasta shapes (racchette, anyone?). But Vace is best known for is its pizza, a favorite among locals and those grabbing a quick slice before seeing a movie at the historic Uptown theater across the street. Try the plain-looking onion pizza — a sleeper hit.

3315 Connecticut Ave NW
Washington, D.C.

14. Sababa

3311 Connecticut Ave NW, Washington, DC 20008

Prolific D.C. restaurateur Ashok Bajaj opened this casual, modern Israeli restaurant in March 2018 to strong reviews, and its popularity continues apace with next-door sibling spot Bindaas. Sababa features seasonal salatim, extensive small plates, and large plates like kibbeh pie and vegetable bastilla. Stand-out small plates include roasted halloumi cheese and kushari, and Egyptian-style blend of chickpeas, reice, lentils, pasta, fried onions, and tomato sauce.

3311 Connecticut Ave NW
Washington, DC 20008

15. Bindaas (Multiple locations)

3309 Connecticut Ave NW, Washington, D.C.
Bindaas's crab dish
A crab dish from Bindaas
R. Lopez

Bajaj’s Indian restaurant in Cleveland Park, which has sprouted a second location in Foggy Bottom, focuses on street food. The menu doesn’t feature curries, at least not in the traditional sense. Instead, find chicken tikka in a kathi roll, or crab in a creamy coconut sauce and idiyappam (rice noodles). The popular rooftop is one of the best in the area. Make sure to reserve in advance in nice weather.

3309 Connecticut Ave NW
Washington, D.C.

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