Congratulations to these new Bib Gourmands joining the Washington, DC MICHELIN Guide this year! Here are the four new additions to the Guide. This is a preview of the full 2022 MICHELIN Guide Washington DC. Tune in next week for the full list of Washington, DC's new Bib Gourmands, new MICHELIN-Starred restaurants, and updated lists of all MICHELIN Guide restaurants in DC.
Daru (H Street Corridor)Cuisine: Contemporary
Rasika vets Dante Datta and Chef Suresh Sundas are behind much-anticipated Indian operation. The corner space, flaunting a windowed façade and white-ringed Sanskrit logo, is an instant attention grabber. Weather permitting, a large sidewalk increases the dining capacity. Inside, at the bar-counter set abuzz with vibrant tunes, the kitchen team takes classic Indian cuisine in a novel direction. Is that blue cheese on your tandoor-grilled chicken kebabs? Yes indeed. Matched with sour cherry reduction and cashews, it's as enticing a preparation as the boldly spiced minced bison momos. Nariyal lamb shank is rich and robust with saffron, chili, and coconut. Sop up the heady sauce with light basmati rice and call it a night.
Dauphine's (Downtown)Cuisine: Creole
The old adage "Never judge a book by its cover" couldn't be more apt for this operation, which seems a most unlikely candidate for "serious food." It's vast and spread over three levels, but when you're seated in that perfect nook full of pretty people and tantalizing cocktails you'll start to get the drift.
There is no denying Chef Kristen Essig's immense skill, as she prepares a delicious tapestry of New Orleans dishes—with zero fuss and maximum flavor. Make a hearty start with fresh-baked bread and cultured Poirier’s cane butter. Then dive into a platter of silky oysters Dauphine, tailed by blackened soft-shell crab with creamed Prairie Ronde rice. Carry on carb loading at dessert with dark chocolate crémeux and vanilla rice pudding—you won't be sorry.
Honeymoon Chicken (Petworth)Cuisine: American
Chef Rob Sonderman of Federalist Pig has expanded to chicken—well, an updated version of fried chicken to be precise. This Petworth perch resembles a modern diner with old-school vibes. Yellow-upholstered booths in alcoves are a haven of privacy, while the ubiquitous counter is best for solo guests. The menu, not unlike the concept, is focused. Guests can build their own bucket (or combo) and sandwich, which can be made with waffles. Starters like hot honey cauliflower; and sides like buttermilk smashed potatoes hit all the right spots. Spicy seasoning is an option for those who dare, but rolls—finished with honey butter and Maldon sea salt—are a must. Then comes the "fancy fried chicken," which is brined for 24 hours and fried to crisp perfection.
Menya Hosaki (Petworth)Cuisine: Japanese
Once a pop-up and now a full-fledged brick and mortar establishment, this young'un is making waves in the city’s ramen scene. The kitchen runs the length of this sleek, narrow space in Petworth; and the young chefs running it move about with the deftness of a team many years older. They are as focused as the menu, which is all ramen except for the karaage served with yuzu mayo. Carefully composed bowls feature thin, chewy, house-made noodles accompanied by delicate broths with nuance and depth. The signature bowl is a smoky, triple-threat combination of tonkotsu, chicken chintan, and dashi. The soy-sauce-based truffle shoyu, which also features meaty cuts of pork belly, spinach and bamboo shoots, warrants slurping. Vegan ramen is also available.
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Hero image: Menya Hosaki. Photo by Anne Kim