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The 38 Essential Washington Restaurants, July 2012

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It's time to update the Eater 38, your answer and ours to any question that begins, “Can you recommend a restaurant?” This highly elite group covers the entire city, spans myriad cuisines, and collectively satisfies all of your restaurant needs, save for those occasions when you absolutely must spend half a paycheck. Every couple of months, we'll be adding pertinent restaurants that were omitted, have newly become eligible (restaurants must be open at least six months), or have stepped up their game.

This time around, the 38 bids farewell to EatBar, Ethiopic and Et Voila not because they're not great, but to show a little love for a few other neighborhood staples: Vidalia, Bistrot Du Coin and Lyon Hall. All of these changes are reflected in totally random order here.

And, just in case, rather than a stage-4 meltdown over our having excluded your favorite restaurant from the list, wouldn't it be more productive to just nominate it for inclusion?

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Note: Restaurants on this map are listed geographically.

1. Palena

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3529 Connecticut Ave NW
Washington, DC 20008

2. Estadio

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1520 14th St NW
Washington, DC 20005

3. Rasika

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633 D St NW
Washington, DC 20004

4. Birch & Barley

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1337 14th St NW
Washington, DC 20005

5. Kushi Izakaya & Sushi

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465 K St NW
Washington, DC 20001

6. Toki Underground

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1234 H St NE
Washington, DC 20002

7. Ray's The Steaks

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2300 Wilson Blvd
Arlington, VA 22201

8. Proof

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775 G St NW
Washington, DC 20001

9. Pearl Dive Oyster Palace

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1612 14th St NW
Washington, DC 20009

10. Hill Country

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410 7th St NW
Washington, DC 20004

11. Ben's Chili Bowl

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1213 U St NW
Washington, DC 20009

12. The Majestic

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911 King St
Alexandria, VA 22314

13. Hank's Oyster Bar

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1624 Q St NW
Washington, DC 20009

14. Room 11

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3234 11th St NW
Washington, DC 20010

15. Cashion's Eat Place

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1819 Columbia Rd NW
Washington, DC 20009

16. Bibiana

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1100 New York Ave NW
Washington, DC 20005

17. Vermilion

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1120 King St
Alexandria, VA 22314

18. Brasserie Beck

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1101 K St NW
Washington, DC 20005

19. 2Amys

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3715 Macomb St NW
Washington, DC 20016

20. Hotel Tabard Inn

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1739 N St NW
Washington, DC 20036

21. Zaytinya

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701 9th St NW
Washington, DC 20001

22. Dukem

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1114 U St NW
Washington, DC 20009

23. Vidalia

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1990 M St NW
Washington, DC 20036

24. Graffiato

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707 6th St NW
Washington, DC 20001

25. Fiola

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601 Pennsylvania Ave NW
Washington, DC 20004

26. Montmartre

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327 7th St SE
Washington, DC 20003

27. Equinox Restaurant

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818 Connecticut Ave NW
Washington, DC 20006

28. Central Michel Richard

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1001 Pennsylvania Ave NW
Washington, DC 20004

29. The Source

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575 Pennsylvania Ave NW
Washington, DC 20004

30. Cava Mezze

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9713 Traville Gateway Dr
Rockville, MD 20850

31. Bistrot Du Coin

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1738 Connecticut Ave NW
Washington, DC 20009

32. Pho 75

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1721 Wilson Blvd
Arlington, VA 22209
703-525-7355

33. Sushiko

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2309 Wisconsin Ave NW
Washington, DC 20007

34. Ripple

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3417 Connecticut Ave NW
Washington, DC 20008

35. District Commons

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2200 Pennsylvania Ave NW
Washington, DC 20037

36. Lyon Hall Restaurant

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3100 Washington Blvd
Arlington, VA 22201

37. Newton's Table

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4917 Elm St
Bethesda, MD 20814

38. BlackSalt

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4883 MacArthur Blvd NW
Washington, DC 20007

1. Palena

3529 Connecticut Ave NW, Washington, DC 20008
3529 Connecticut Ave NW
Washington, DC 20008

2. Estadio

1520 14th St NW, Washington, DC 20005
1520 14th St NW
Washington, DC 20005

3. Rasika

633 D St NW, Washington, DC 20004
633 D St NW
Washington, DC 20004

4. Birch & Barley

1337 14th St NW, Washington, DC 20005
1337 14th St NW
Washington, DC 20005

5. Kushi Izakaya & Sushi

465 K St NW, Washington, DC 20001
465 K St NW
Washington, DC 20001

6. Toki Underground

1234 H St NE, Washington, DC 20002
1234 H St NE
Washington, DC 20002

7. Ray's The Steaks

2300 Wilson Blvd, Arlington, VA 22201
2300 Wilson Blvd
Arlington, VA 22201

8. Proof

775 G St NW, Washington, DC 20001
775 G St NW
Washington, DC 20001

9. Pearl Dive Oyster Palace

1612 14th St NW, Washington, DC 20009
1612 14th St NW
Washington, DC 20009

10. Hill Country

410 7th St NW, Washington, DC 20004
410 7th St NW
Washington, DC 20004

11. Ben's Chili Bowl

1213 U St NW, Washington, DC 20009