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Bad Saint

PHOTOS: Chris Prosser

Sometimes I like to think I'm pretty cool. We all do. That's what drives us as humans to spend money on things like sneakers. So we can feel cool. And unique. And individual. Just like everyone else with the exact same pair of Nikes.

But every once in a while, something that is truly unique and individual and cool rolls around, and makes you realize how "same" most of your life really is. Bad Saint is one of those things.

This twenty seat Filipino restaurant in Columbia Heights is home to the most unique and memorable dining experiences we've had in DC - or anywhere for that matter. And every time we walk in, we realize how not cool we are. The restaurant has the look and feel of something that was conceptualized by a person or people with a clear vision and a sense of aesthetic - the kind of person that always looks good in hats.

That's not to say that Bad Saint is "too cool." The staff are very nice - especially considering the fact that they have to turn people away on most nights. It's also a place where you're just as likely to see a guy with his two young kids having dinner as you are some kid that spent two hours waiting in line for the latest pair of Yeezys to drop.

However, you and that kid will have one thing in common if you plan to eat at Bad Saint - you'll both be doing some waiting to get what you want. Much like a few of the other well known restaurants in this town, lines form outside of Bad Saint around 4:30pm on most days, and the entire night's worth of seatings can go quickly. Is that annoying? Yes. But it's also democratic. At least you know if you put in the time, you're probably going to get what you want.

Once inside, we're confident that you'll find what we have in each and every one of our Bad Saint visits - incredible, inventive food and drinks that incorporate delicious FIlipino flavors.

It'll blow your mind. And maybe make you feel a little bit cooler.

Food Rundown

Ensaladang Palapa

An amazing, light salad of shredded coconut, purple cabbage, and bird's eye chiles. A must order, and the proper way to start a meal at Bad Saint.

Chris Prosser
Kinilaw Na Hipon

A ceviche of tiger shrimp, passion fruit, and cucumber. Absolutely incredible. Please eat this.


A planet-sized nest of sweet potato fries and whatever shellfish type thing happens to be fresh and in season. Pictured, it's a ball of fries and soft shell crab. On your visit, there may be something like shrimp in there. Either way, pull it apart with your fingers, dunk in the vinegary sauce, and good luck getting it out of your dreams for the foreseeable future.

Chris Prosser
Kanding Marano

An incredibly tasty, incredibly meaty dish consisting of goat with lemongrass and peppers. Don't eat goat that often? Don't matter. If this is on the menu at Bad Saint while you're there, you want it.

Chris Prosser
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