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A huge part of life’s journey is celebrating the big moments - from graduations to anniversaries to promotions. The key to a great celebration? Awesome #EEEEEATS, and the perfect restaurant for whatever life event you’re celebrating. We’re no strangers to that quest for quality - this website was started to help people find the ideal restaurant for their particular occasion.
That's why we teamed up with American Express on this Guide To The Best Restaurants for Celebrations In DC. We picked places we think are especially perfect for all those important celebrations in life that you want to do just right (and the good places aren’t just in Dupont or Georgetown). Another way to do those times right? By using the Premier Rewards Gold Card from American Express – it’s the card to use if you eat out anywhere near as much as we do. Follow this list, use that card and you’ll be golden.
Here’s to your celebration, and look out for our upcoming Celebrations Guides for our other cities.
Intimate, dimly-lit, BYOB, and a tasting menu. Don’t overthink this. Book a spot here for some excellent Thai food in a space that was seemingly made for the occasion. What occasion do you ask? Looooooove. And pumpkin curry. Love and pumpkin curry.
You've been with your significant other for a while, and you're out to celebrate your relationship. But you've moved past the point in your relationship where you’re nervous on every date, internally screaming, “OH MY GOD I HOPE THEY DIDN’T NOTICE MY SOCKS AREN’T FRESHLY IRONED.” Throw it back to those exciting dating days at the sexy Estadio in a space that feels like a secret, Spanish spy’s wine cellar. Split some tapas and sample some of their excellent wines while remaining confident in your undergarments’ ironing status.
Promotions come with more money, money that you aren’t quite used to having yet. Don’t let it burn a hole in your pocket. Go out and spend it on an excellent, classic French meal at Le Diplomate. And tell the somm that you’ll be ordering the second least expensive bottle of wine this time. You earned it.
You just got promoted, and that calls for getting more than a few drinks with a few friends. Pepita’s drink list is longer than its food menu, which is perfect for this celebration. Go the traditional route with the drinks, or get inventive with it. Either way, you can’t go wrong, and make sure to order some of the Mexican bar food to soak some of that booze up.
You don’t graduate every day. You know what else you don’t do often? Eat some good, fancy- Indian food. Use this as an excuse to do so. And if Aunt Lisa doesn’t approve because she can’t pronounce anything on the menu? Oh, I’m sorry, did she graduate today? DIDN’T THINK SO.
Ok, throw Aunt Lisa a bone with this one. Convivial has plenty of room to fit your extended family, and the menu of modern French food should satisfy everyone’s hang-ups.
What’s a better choice for a birthday celebration than the perfect neighborhood restaurant with excellent food and drinks? Everyone in the crew will be happy with this choice, and if they aren’t? Well, it’s your birthday which gives you the legal right to force your friends to go anywhere you want. Don’t look that up. We took a law class in college once. Trust us, it’s in there.
Birthdays mean fun and Oyamel is one of the most fun spots in town. Gather your group and keep ordering those salt-air margaritas. Plus, they have tacos. Eat a taco for each year. On second thought, if you want to make it to your next birthday, maybe don’t.
Meeting the parents
Oh boy. Talk about high-stakes. Don’t leave anything to chance. You need the food, service, and drinks (especially the drinks) to be dependable. The Riggsby knows this, and the classic vibes of the dining room and the food will be sure to keep everyone in a good mood and far from disaster…until someone starts talking about kids.
Parents are in from out of town? Have they been reading years-old newspaper clippings about how U St is incredibly unsafe? Skip the argument and explanation that the only dangerous thing that happens on U St these days is getting ripped off by a $15 drink that you’re pretty sure had well liquor in it. Take them to Proof, right off the Gallery Place Metro stop for a dependable cut of meat and a solid wine list, all in a neighborhood that they deem “respectable.”
Booze and meat. Two things that most bachelor parties have in large quantities. Check the first two off at Ray’s for some great steaks and wine, all at a pretty reasonable cost, considering you’re getting one of the better steaks in the city. You can use all that saved money on whatever else you get up to that night.
The dining room here is dark, the tables are tucked away and hidden from view, making it the perfect place for plotting out the rest of the night. Which, come to think of it, will probably involve another type of establishment with those same characteristics. Oh yeah, and The Partisan has a ton of meat and drinks (an extensive cocktail and beer list) to kick off the night.
There’s probably no cooler, better looking part of town than Blagden Alley right now, making The Dabney a great spot to start off the night. There will be no shortage of fantastic Instagramable opportunities here for those friends of yours that are constantly on the hunt for the perfect shot. Oh wait, that’s all of your friends?
Cocktails that come in pitchers are set in a cool, fun space. Yep, that’ll do for the place to start the bachelorette party. And it’s right on 14th St, convenient for all your post-dinner bar hopping plans.
Going Away Dinner
You’re moving, and you’re gathering the whole gang for one more dinner. You’ll need lots of space, and it’s going to have to be fun. You know what has lots of space and is fun. Ping-pong. Which Comet Ping-Pong has. Who would’ve thought that? Put your name in, grab some beers, and play some games while you wait and put off those tearful goodbyes. Yes, it’s far and not metro accessible, but Metro sucks anyways and hey, you’re moving. Feel free to guilt-trip your friends into doing whatever you want. If not now, when?
You’re leaving town, so you should go somewhere that you can’t get anywhere else. We can just about guarantee there isn’t a super-cool cafe/clothing store/excellent Cambodian and Taiwanese restaurant where you’re moving. Go here while you still can. You’ll miss it when you’re gone.
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