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The 38 Essential Washington Restaurants, October 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 Zaytinya, Sushiko, Montmartre and Tabard Inn not because they're not great, but simply because time moves on. And with chef Tony Chittum's impending move, it's time to remove Vermilion for now. So that's the bad news. The good news is that Pizzeria Paradiso, Blue Duck Tavern and Fishnet make their debuts on the list, while the post-renovation judgement period has ended for Jaleo and Bar Pilar. Meanwhile, we've swapped out Cava Rockville for Cava Capitol Hill. 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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Estadio

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Birch & Barley

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Kushi Izakaya & Sushi

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Toki Underground

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Ray's The Steaks

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Pearl Dive Oyster Palace

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Hill Country

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Ben's Chili Bowl

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The Majestic

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Hank's Oyster Bar

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Room 11

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Cashion's Eat Place

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Bibiana

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Brasserie Beck

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Vidalia

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Graffiato

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Equinox

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Central Michel Richard

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The Source

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Cava Mezze Restaurant

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Bistrot Du Coin

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Pho 75

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District Commons

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Lyon Hall

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Newton's Table

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BlackSalt

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Bar Pilar

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Pizzeria Paradiso

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Blue Duck Tavern

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Fishnet

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