Restaurant Week Restaurants Announced
Today, Destination D.C. and the Restaurant Association Metropolitan Washington announced the list of restaurants participating in this summer's Restaurant Week (Aug. 11-17). You can find the full list of restaurants here.Tables fill up fast for the twice-yearly promotion, so if you want to get in on the deal, make your reservations soon and be sure to mention Restaurant Week when reserving a table.
This year, the dinner price jumps to $35.08, a $5 increase over previous years (lunch is priced at $20.08, in line with past Restaurant Weeks). Fair enough -- we're all sympathetic to the rising costs of gas and groceries and since restaurants are also feeling the pinch, it makes sense for them to adjust prices accordingly.
For my money, though, even at the $30 price, Restaurant Week has never seemed to be that great a deal. If you order a glass of wine -- and who wouldn't want to at such fancy establishments? -- dinner for two usually ends up in the $80 to $90 range, not including tip. But at places like Tabaq Bistro, Les Halles and Zaytinya-- all on the Restaurant Week list -- I've been able to score great meals for two under $110. Okay, maybe I've split dessert or an appetizer with my dining partner to shave off a few dollars, but for me, that experience beats Restaurant Week by a long shot. I find that these restaurants are worth the extra $10 to $20 per person to enjoy a place on my own time and being able to take advantage of the establishment's full menu and best service. The Tabard Inn is often thought of as one of the most romantic places in town, but it will probably never feel that way to me. I was hustled in and out so quickly a few Restaurant Weeks ago, that I never really felt the desire to go back.
I think the best use of the promotion is to try some of the city's more expensive places -- like, say, The Prime Rib -- or some place that you'd never seek out on your own. Right after I graduated college, the Hill's swanky Bistro Bis wasn't exactly on my must-try list. But I had such a delicious lunch there during Restaurant Week a few years ago that it encouraged me to go back for dinner.
What do you think of the promotion? How do you make Restaurant Week worth your dining dollars? Love it or hate it, let us know in the comments below.
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