When considering what to eat during a Capital One Arena event, take Andre 3000s advice: “Don’t do it. Reconsider. Read some literature on the subject.” The food flat-out sucks. Whether you’re looking to lay down a liquid base layer to prepare yourself for an inevitable Wizards disappointment or grab a decent meal before a concert, consider this the literature Three Stacks was talking about.
Noted DC sports fan Jose Andres once offered to cook personally for Paul Pierce if he stayed with the Wizards. If The Truth took him up on the offer, it’d be damn convenient for him. Along with Oyamel and Zaytinya (listed below), these are some of the best restaurants in the city and are just a couple blocks away from the arena. Think ahead and get reservations to play it safe. Hit this one for spanish tapas. How you’re dressed will play a role in which of these three you end up at. Dress level: Tasteful team apparel.
The Mexican option. Get some tacos and salt air margaritas on the table. Dress level: Jersey. (Unless it’s a Wizards tank. No one wants to see that armpit hair, dude).
Mediterranean small plates in a space that is truly stunning, although not something you may associate with pre-game food. Ignore those instincts because the food here is great and is a block and a half from the arena. Dress level: Straight from work in the monkey suit.
Matchbox Vintage Pizza Bistro
Head here if you’re looking for classic stadium food, but upscale. Think pizza and sliders.
Hill Country Barbecue Market
Decent, Texas-style BBQ with a good drink list to go along with the meat.
Our favorite fast-casual option if you’re pressed for time.
Cuba Libre Restaurant & Rum Bar
Upscale Cuban food. And by that we mean the classics (ropa vieja, cubanos, etc), but more expensive. Not the best value on this list, but it will get the job done.
Capital One Arena
Fine, fine the ice cream is good here because ice cream is never bad. But seriously, don’t bother with anything else.