The MICHELIN Guide Washington DC has added four One MICHELIN Star restaurants to the district’s constellation of Stars. Altogether, 24 restaurants made the list.
“The MICHELIN Guide inspectors found that Washington’s culinary scene has risen to the challenges of the past year,” said Gwendal Poullennec, international director of the MICHELIN Guides. “The chefs and restaurant teams in the district continue to show off their meticulous creativity. We are pleased to celebrate four new One MICHELIN Star restaurants and offer continued praise to the returning Starred restaurants in the city.”
Here are the new One MICHELIN Star restaurants, with inspector notes from each (inspector comments in full on the MICHELIN Guide website and mobile app):
Albi (Middle Eastern cuisine)
Located in the pulsating Navy Yard, this dining room is hip and lively. Arranged around a roaring hearth, the space features an inviting bar at one end and chef’s counter at the other. À la carte is the way to go, but guests may just do better with the hyper-seasonal prix-fixe. Regardless, Chef/owner Michael Rafidi’s dishes are full of surprises as he weaves in the flavors of the eastern Mediterranean with myriad local ingredients.
Imperfecto: The Chef’s Table (Latin American cuisine)
Boasting all the buzz of a hornet’s nest, this soaring box of glass and marble virtually reaches for the sky. Inside, it’s decked out with brass accents, terra-cotta and a tight counter positioned directly under Chef Enrique Limardo’s perch. Here, he prepares an elaborate tasting, which is a far cry from the main, more casual menu; it's a celebration of Latin flavors, ace ingredients and exacting technique. Meals, served by the chef himself, take on an intimate if long form.
Oyster Oyster (Vegetarian cuisine)
It is highly rare for a tasting menu to leave one feeling, well, energized, but so goes the imaginative cooking at this vegetable-focused gem. Who knew that turnip juice makes for good bread or that oysters can turn into a creamy and yet entirely creamless sauce? Chef Rob Rubba did, and his creations are delicious insights into what is possible with vegetables.
Reverie (Contemporary cuisine)
Tucked off a quiet Georgetown alley, it almost feels like this secret gem is perfectly content with not being found. Accoutred with smooth wood and clean lines, this unusual delight flaunts a contemporary Nordic vibe; enveloped by melodic tunes, the dining room is attended to by a disarmingly warm staff. Nab a seat at the counter to witness Chef Johnny Spero’s artistry. His cooking skews Mid-Atlantic, with a laser-focus on seasonality and inspired flavors.
The MICHELIN Guide inspectors added four restaurants to the Bib Gourmand list, which recognizes eateries for great food at a great value: Daru, Dauphine’s, Honeymoon Chicken and Menya Hosaki.
In addition to the highly anticipated Bib Gourmand and Star awards, the Guide announced two special awards. Sommelier of the Year, presented by Wine Access, was awarded to Nicole Ramée, Alisa Watts and the team at Xiquet. The Exceptional Cocktails Award was awarded to Will Patton and the teams at Bresca and Jônt.
The MICHELIN Guide Star Revelation event is presented with the support of Capital One.
The 2022 Washington restaurant selection will join the MICHELIN Guide selection of hotels, which features the most unique and exciting places to stay in Washington and around the world. Visit the MICHELIN Guide website, or download the free app for iOS and Android, to book unforgettable hotels and make restaurant reservations through partners OpenTable, Resy and SevenRooms.