photo credit: Jai Williams

Florida Avenue Grill image

Florida Avenue Grill


ShawColumbia Heights

$$$$Perfect For:BreakfastClassic EstablishmentWalk-Ins
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Sometimes restaurants are time capsules that embody a city’s culture and legacy. Florida Avenue Grill is a DC institution that has served residents since 1944, and is also the city’s oldest Black-owned restaurant. It’s an old-school diner, so think tattered vinyl booths and bar seats that have withstood the test of time, with customers that range from longtime regulars to the occasional tourist. The restaurant itself is only open Friday through Sunday from 9-2pm, so time is of the essence here. (Which sucks, because you’ll find yourself craving cajun fried catfish on a Tuesday night knowing d*mn well you’ll have to go somewhere else, but nothing will hit the spot in the same way.)

The recipes here have been perfected over the last 70 years and include dishes like BBQ pork spare ribs, chitterlings, and salmon cakes. For breakfast, their world-famous hot cakes, served with butter, cinnamon, and powdered sugar, is the stuff of dreams. It's light and fluffy, buttery and sweet. Things take time here and the service can be slow, but like the saying goes, good things come to those who wait.

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