Old Ebbitt Grill

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675 15th Street Northwest, Washington, DC, USA

Old Ebbitt Grill Washington Reviews

marksreynolds marksrey…
55 reviews
Historic Bar/Restaurant near The White House Jun 17, 2012
I've heard about this place, even walked by a few times since I work about a block away, but this was the first time eating here.

Harriet (Africancrab) and her family are in Washington DC for a while and we arranged to meet up for dinner. They had been touring the city all day, so it was late in the day before we decided Lena and I would come to DC to meet up with them. I chose this place because the decor inside looked very nice, and the menu had a nice verity, all which looked very good. I first called the restaurant to make a reservation, but being late in the afternoon on a Saturday, they didn't have a reservation open for the six of us until 10:30pm. But I was told we could walk in and put our name on the list, but there might be a bit of a wait. That was fine with me; gives us time to have a drink and chat over an appetizer.

Harriet and her family arrived first, so they put their name on the list and received one of those pager things that buzzes and blinks when they call your name. They were told it might be about an hour and twenty minutes, so Mark, Harriet's husband called me letting us know about the wait time. As Lena and I were still on the Metro, which runs slow during the weekends because that's when they work on the tracks, I told Mark that was fine since we were still about an half hour away, and to get themselves some drinks and we would be there soon. It's a beautiful evening in Washington DC, on a Saturday, with a lot of tourist, so any place worth going to will have a long wait, so no sense in going somewhere else.

When Lena and I arrived, we ordered drinks and we all ordered appetizers from one of the three bars here. The servers name was Chris, and he was very nice, professional but friendly as if he knew you! Our appetizers came out very fast, and the Colombian Empanadas with chicken, potatoes and scallions served with chimichurri and aji were very good!! Mark ordered Fried Calamari which looked very good too, but you'll have to read Harriet's review on that.

Time went by as we chatted having a great time, but it had been over an hour now, so Mark went up to check on our table. When he returned, he told us that they had tried to page us, but it seems our pager was broken, so we now have a new one and they will get us in as soon as they have a table big enough for the six of us. A bit disappointing, but things happen and they are doing their best to seat us. The placed is packed, with barely any standing room, so we all stayed in the back near the bar where we had been sitting. Now that I think about it, guess we could have just ordered from the bar and sat there...oh well :) A few minutes later I went up front to see how much longer, and was told they were getting ready to clear a table and it would be about 2 more minutes, so I went back and gathered everyone up and we waited up front next to the hostess podium. About five minutes later we were seated, but it was at a booth which was better for four people, or five if one sat on the end, than the five of us and the baby, but we managed. The very nice waitress arrived soon after, and after hearing our story of the long wait, she apologized and first offered to buy us appetizers. But since we already had that while waiting, she offered to buy a round of drinks, and then dessert at the end of our meal...well that's what we all heard anyway. We placed our dinner order, drinks arrived soon after, then way quicker than I thought possible, our food arrived!! Well they are definitely trying to make up for our long wait!

The food was excellent, and our waitress was very friendly and doing her best to make things right!! I had the Cannelloni di Casa: house made pasta stuffed with spinach, mortadella ham and three cheeses baked in a cream sauce. And Lena had the Senator: smoked turkey and ham on toasted potato bread with roasted red peppers, arugula and herbed Boursin cheese...it was all very tasty!!

It was getting late, so we were ready to call it a night, Harriet and Marks little baby was tired and not happy, so we asked if we could take our dessert (on the house) to go. There was a bit of confusion that we were told dessert was on them, and they wanted us to eat it there, but they made it right and we all got dessert to go...free!

For a first time visit, it wasn't the best experience, but they did good getting us in and making things right. The food and all the employees were great, so I'll definitely go back and give them another try!
Front as seen from the street.
The girls
Harriet, mark and kids with Lena
3 / 3 TravBuddies found this review helpful/trustworthy
sylviandavid says:
Congratulations on being featured.... great review... very deserving!
Posted on: Jun 23, 2012
jamartin39 says:
Congrats on the feature
Posted on: Jun 23, 2012
jennjeff1 says:
This is one of our favorite places to go in the District! Love the history there too....

Congrats on the featured review Ambassador Mark!
Posted on: Jun 23, 2012
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Africancrab Africanc…
773 reviews
Two Hours Waiting for food, and finally . . . Jun 16, 2012
This was the first time in the history of my travels, that I had to wait for more than an hour for food. You are probably wondering why I waited right? Well if you read Mark Reynolds review, you will learn that, we were waiting for them, and then our seats got given to another group because our buzzer was broken.

That aside, it is a nice restaurant with personality and ambiance. I hate to write a bad review about a place based on wait time. Once the wait was over though, we got a wonderfully pleasant waitress. She did everything possible to bring our food on time, take care of us personally and even offered us free drinks and free desert to compensate for the bad experience we had, had up until she began service.

What I found rather disturbing was that when she told her manager about our situation, he asked her if she had offered us food on the house?? well she said no. Our seats were uncomfortable, they put 6 plates on a table that was meant to seat only 4. My husband of course was going over the roof. I have never seen him have such a public display of displeasure, especially in front of people he was meeting for the first time. I guess we could say he was incredibly displeased.

All said and done, the food was delectable, and the to-go New York style Cheese Cake desert was outstanding.
Mark's plate
My Plate
My daughter's plate
1 / 1 TravBuddies found this review helpful/trustworthy
Africancrab says:
Andy, yes I understand, but the nobles used butler and maids, not waiters and waitresses. The term waiter and waitress became popular with early settlers in colonies that eventually became part of the Union.
Posted on: Jun 21, 2012
Andy99 says:
Saturday evening is the busiest time for any restaurant in the Washington, DC, metro area, even in the outer suburbs. Wait time at any area restaurant will be close to an hour unless you have made a reservation well in advance or use the call-ahead service if restaurant offers it. Best to plan to arrive before 6:00 p.m. on a Saturday evening.

Sorry, but where did you find that derivation of "waiter"/"waitress"? To wait upon a person, that is to serve them, is an old usage, i.e. Lady-in-Waiting to the Queen. (Such persons were and are nobles themselves.) The OED has waiter in the modern tavern/restaurant sense going back in to the 17th century in England.
Posted on: Jun 21, 2012
westwind57 says:
Really... I didn't know that. Had no idea. Actually I mentioned this because it was not the waiters and waitresses but you guys in this restaurant who had to wait... ;)
Posted on: Jun 19, 2012
jamesdean252 jamesdea…
68 reviews
Hot Steak Salad Mar 03, 2011
I walked by this place a few times during the day and kind of thought it was a toy store. They have these huge nutcrackers standing out side at the main entrance. I asked a local security guard on where a great place to eat at and that’s where he told me to go. So I figured I would give it a try, it was only a couple blocks up the road. When I got there the place was packed with about an hour wait for a table. I walked around looking for a spot at the bar but it was about 3 deep, so I decided I would give it a try another night. It doesn’t help when you are looking for a place to eat on a Saturday night. The next night I went back and found a spot at the bar, it wasn’t as packed but still had a crowd for a Sunday evening. The service was great and the salad I had was amazing. After eating there I found out that The Old Ebbitt Grill is one of the oldest most historic saloonsthat was founded in 1856.

The hot steak salad consists of romaine lettuce, roasted winter vegetables, herbed feta cheese, Washington apple slices, pecans and balsamic vinaigrette.

I would recommence this place to anyone that is traveling to DC.
Old Ebbitt Grill
Andy99 Andy99
579 reviews
History at the Old Ebbitt Grill Aug 25, 2009
The Old Ebbitt Grill, founded in 1856, is one of Washington, DC's, oldest continuosly operated restaurants. It reached its present location, across from the Tresaury Department and up the street from the White House, in 1983.

The Old Ebbitt Grill serves a variety of meat, seafood, and pasta dishes made from fresh ingredients. Crab cakes and oysters are noted specialities. Everything is nicely prepared and you are certain to find a dish that will become a favorite! Susan and I most recently visited for our anniversary and we both selected the crab cake dinner (two generous crab cakes), accompanied by vegetables and oven roasted potatoes. I added a glass of the recommended Chardonnay and we enjoyed an appetizer of Calamari.

Washington vistors will also want to go to Old Ebbitt Grill for the ambiance. The elegant wooden and mirrored decor evokes old Washington and the restaurant is lit by real gaslights! Displays of vintage steins, menus, and memorabilia remind of the Presidents and personages who have dined at Old Ebbitt Grill.

Old Ebitt Grill is convenient to the National Theatre and Warner Theatre for dinner before a show.
Old Ebbitt Grill
cheramity cheramity
5 reviews
Delicious Ebbitt Yumminess Aug 23, 2008
Mouth watering, huge variety, impecable staff, fancy or casual. It went beyond our expectations. :) We started out with a delicious spinich dip appetizer. We both got mojitos (*best I've ever had*). I had the seafood jambalaya and my boyfriend had the crabcakes. We switched half-way through our meals and were equally satisfied with everything. We also split a decadent butterscotch blondie. We still talk about that meal to this day!

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Old Ebbitt Grill Map
3 reviews
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photo by: b93sp