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Posted at 9:00 AM ET, 12/16/2008

The Christmas Eve Table

By Julia Beizer

Traditionalists looking to dine out for Christmas Eve dinner have much to be excited about this year. Restaurants across the region are offering typical holiday fare like beef tenderloin, duck and goose. But there's more to these meals than just red meat. In the Christmas Eve dinner round-up below, we've also listed a Peruvian holiday meal, an Asian-influenced menu and a couple of restaurants celebrating the season with fish dishes.

Christmas Eve dinners are the focus of this post, but you'll find a few Christmas day meals sprinkled in.

Bourbon Steak opens officially in the District's Four Seasons on Friday, Dec. 19, but Michael Mina's local team is prepared to jump into action with a holiday feast on Christmas Eve and Christmas day. From 5:30 to 10 p.m. each day, sample entrees like Maine lobster or holiday goose. Dishes on the a la carte menu range from $14 to $65. (Full menu)

Speaking of celebrity chefs with outposts in Washington hotels, Eric Ripert's Westend Bistro is offering a four-course $95 feast from 5:30 to 10 p.m. on Christmas Eve.

Cozy and traditional are the adjectives that come to mind when looking over the Christmas Eve menu at Loudoun County's Magnolia's at the Mill. It begins with apps like cornmeal-crusted oysters and Caesar salad and transitions into main courses like chicken cordon bleu, hickory grilled filet mignon and slow-roasted pork loin. The entree prices range between $37 and $45 and that fee includes an appetizer and a dessert. Dinner is served between 4 and 8:30 p.m. (Full menu)

In August 2007, Tom Sietsema called Las Canteras "a bright spot in Adams Morgan." From Dec. 19 to 24, you can order off the restaurant's usual menu or try a three- or four-course menu featuring Peruvian holiday specialties. Highlights include an appetizer called Camarones in a Wrap (shrimp in a pastry shell with avocado salsa) and an entree of sea bass with a maple-flavored sauce made from the Peruvian lucuma fruit. The three-course menu is $30 ($40 with wine pairings); the four-course, $45 ($65 with wine pairings).

Add a French accent to your holiday festivities at Glover Park's Bistro Lepic. The restaurant's special menu includes a cheese course, dessert course, appetizers like lobster bisque with Maryland crab and entrees like veal chop with baby artichokes and a black-olive sauce. The cost is $47.50 per person and dinner will be held 5:30 to 10 p.m. (Full menu, click on the Holiday Specials tab)

French fare is also on the menu at Old Town's Le Gaulois Cafe. Entree prices on the a la carte menu max out at $30; shellfish bouillabaise, duck and lamb cassoulet and beef tenderloin are highlights. Dinner is served from 5 to 10 p.m. on Christmas Eve. (Full menu -- PDF)

Muscovy duck, seared rockfish and beef tenderloin are on the menu for the Morrison Clark Inn's four-course feast. The meal is $65 per person ($25 for kids under 12) and will be available from 6 to 9 p.m. on Christmas Eve and 11:30 a.m. to 7 p.m. on Christmas day. (Full menu, PDF)

Restaurants at the Alexandria Kimpton hotels join in the holiday spirit. Old Town's Jackson 20 offers a three-course menu on Christmas Eve that's heavy on fish: choose calamari salad or fish stew, roasted salmon or seared rockfish. The menu is $55 per person. The Grille at Morrison House offers another fish-laden menu with the Feast of Seven Fishes, a twist on the traditional Italian feast. The meal is $90, but there is an a la carte menu available as well. The restaurant will also offer a Christmas brunch from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. the next day. (Full menus)

Oceanaire Seafood Room also celebrates the Feast of he Seven Fishes with a four-course menu incorporating seven seafood dishes. The cost is $55 per person and the restaurant is open from 11:30 a.m. until 8 p.m. on Christmas Eve.

Tuna tartare, fois gras, butter poached lobster and two cuts of veal grace the decadent $95 four-course menu at 2941. It will be offered from 4 until 9 p.m. (Full menu)

The Source's $90 menu, available from 5:30 to 10 p.m., includes holiday dishes with an Asian flair: a Peking-style holiday duck, ginger-glazed sweet potatoes and spicy lo mein noodles.

BLT Steak offers its regular meat-friendly menu on Christmas Eve until 9:30 p.m. Seasonal desserts and drinks like semifreddo with gingersnaps and butterscotch sauce are available.

On Christmas day, Fyve offers three ways to celebrate the holiday: a brunch buffet from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. ($90, children $40), a four-course dinner menu ($95, $40 children) and a takeout feast of turkey or prime rib (order by Dec. 22).

-- Julia

By Julia Beizer  | December 16, 2008; 9:00 AM ET
Categories:  Restaurants  
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