Since moving into the White House, the Obamas have done an impressive job of dining out at some of the finest restaurants in Washington, D.C. Almost every month, POTUS and FLOTUS are spotted supping somewhere, doing their part to boost the capitol’s booming dining scene. From Bourbon Steak and Oyamel to Blue Duck Tavern and BLT Steak, they’ve eaten everywhere. Well, almost everywhere. With their 23rd wedding anniversary coming up on Saturday, October 3, we thought we would suggest six First Couple-worthy D.C. restaurants where the Obamas should celebrate their anniversary.
The Restaurant at Patowmack Farm, Lovettsville, Virginia
Nestled in the verdant hills overlooking the sinuous Potomac River, this backcountry gem is worth the hour-long drive from D.C. The RAMMY Award-winning restaurant is inside a restyled greenhouse at the heart of a 40-acre property featuring a working farm and plenty of woodlands. Chef Tarver King roams the region foraging exotic elements, such as wild mushrooms, pawpaw fruit, and dandelion greens, which are all incorporated into his forward-thinking New American cuisine. Diners choose from one of three tasting menus – Raised, Grown, and Found – each of which is guaranteed to delight and amaze with its unexpected flavors and Instagram-worthy presentations. Given the Obamas’ well-documented love of steak, we suggest they opt for the Raised option, which often features locally sourced beef.
The Riggsby, Washington, D.C.
Chef Michael Schlow has already wowed D.C. diners with the Latin-loving Tico on 14th Street. Now he’s doing it again at this charming throwback located inside the Carlyle Hotel in Dupont Circle. The menu focuses on continental classics with chef-y accents. We recommend the First Couple start off with jalapeno-boosted tater tots and housemade potato chips with cut-above green onion dip. For a main, the Obamas may want to keep it simple and order the roasted chicken with broccoli rabe, roasted potatoes, and mustard (pictured). Or they can step it up on a notch with the béarnaise-shrouded, barrel-cut NY strip filet accompanied by a passel of fries. For a lighter option, the striped bass on a bed of corn, bacon, and pickled onions is the way to go. No matter what, they should definitely save room for a giant wedge of chocolate cake.
The Partisan, Washington, D.C.
If POTUS and FLOTUS are in the mood for meat – and don’t mind the inevitable jokes the press will make if they eat at a restaurant called the Partisan – this Penn Quarter standout is where they should go. Co-chefs Ed Witt and Nate Anda oversee a masterfully inventive menu that takes a tip-to-tail approach and leaves no cut untouched. The celebrating couple should begin with charcuterie, making sure not to miss the pickled half smoke, pastrami terrine, or curried pork pâté. The beef tartare with fried egg yolk, marrow crostini, and grated horseradish (pictured) also offers meaty satisfaction. The bo ssam-style slow-cooked pork shoulder would be an epic entrée. The pair would surely have leftovers to take home, but the tender roast would make a memorable sandwich the next day as a tasty reminder of their date night.
Osteria Morini, Washington, D.C.
In our book, carb-loading is the perfect way to celebrate a lifelong commitment. Plus, it reminds us of that sweet spaghetti-slurping scene from Lady and the Tramp that makes us tear up every time we watch it. We know we’re saps, but we can’t help ourselves! Anyway, Barack and Michelle would undoubtedly enjoy digging into executive chef Matt Adler’s flawlessly executed pastas at this waterfront eatery in the Yards. Top of the list are the sunny ravioli pocketed with truffled ricotta glistening with brown butter sauce and pappardelle dressed up with lamb-neck sughetto. When agnolotti make an appearance (pictured), they, too, are not to be missed. Further carb-loading can be easily accomplished by sampling a sweet selection from executive pastry chef Alex Levin. Peanut butter and chocolate budino, riso (rice pudding) enlivened with vanilla bean and plums, and the Italian-inflected lemon meringue tart are all worthy closers.