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Taco-bout Tasty Tacos in Washington DC

For a long time, Washington DC didn't have much going on when it came to its food scene. The New York Times even called it 'a culinary backwater’ in 1981. But international immigrants and young professionals brought with them an economic boom. By the 1990s, DC experienced a culinary revolution. From Adam's Morgan to Georgetown. today DC boasts everything from American contemporary kitchens and wine bars to international cuisine and Michelin star establishments. When in the mood for Mexican, DC has taco trucks and authentic eateries all across town. But where do the most seasoned diners go for the best tacos in DC? Welcome to the Tastemaker 20. We’ve gathered data from OpenTable’s most veteran foodies to discover which restaurants drive the most buzz. Book a table for a taco night in DC you won't soon forget!

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The OpenTable Team
15 Restaurants
Updated 27 January 2020
Restaurants:Commissary DC, Tabard Inn, Gerrard Street Kitchen
Price Range:$$ - $$$
Cuisines:American, Contemporary American, Global, International
Neighborhoods:Logan Circle, Dupont Circle
A photo of Commissary DC restaurant

Commissary DC

$$$$
American
Logan Circle
4.5
1797 reviews
Anyone who enjoys all-day breakfast has likely heard of Commissary DC, but their offering of the best tacos in DC is equally as likely to attract new patrons. Their fish tacos feature peach Pico and purple cabbage, but there are also grilled burgers, baked mac & cheese, filet medallions and thin crust pizza for those with different cravings. There’s an eclectic array of décor – ranging from nautical to international – but it’s the everyday Happy Hour, extensive alcohol selection, delicious smoothies and casual ambiance that will grab most people’s attention.

At the moment, there's no online availability within 2.5 hours of your request. Do you have another time in mind?


Takeout available
View Takeout Menu
A photo of Tabard Inn restaurant

Tabard Inn

$$$$
Contemporary American
Dupont Circle
4.6
2880 reviews
Fireplace-lit lounges, Victorian dining rooms, town home settings and an ivy-covered patio provide an opportunity for distinct dining experiences at Tabard Inn Restaurant. Considering the name that the hotel has built for itself since 1975, these high-end settings aren’t surprising. Gorgeous paintings, intricate sculptures and antique décor round out the atmosphere. Their offering of the best tacos in DC features fried shrimp, sriracha aioli and apple-pear relish. During subsequent visits, patrons should try the black bean burger, mushroom risotto and wild boar pappardelle.

At the moment, there's no online availability within 2.5 hours of your request. Do you have another time in mind?

A photo of Gerrard Street Kitchen restaurant

Gerrard Street Kitchen

$$$$
Global, International
Dupont Circle
4.3
124 reviews
Located inside The Darcy and offering an interactive and shareable dining experience, Gerrard Street Kitchen is truly something special. A few of the dishes are actually completed tableside, and guests have options from India, the United Kingdom, Morocco, Japan and more. Gorgeous chandeliers, hardwood flooring and the impressive artworks create a vibe that's quintessentially early 1900s London. Their Paratha tacos feature braised marinated beef short rib, and their made with Indian flatbread. Even guests who don’t think these are the best tacos in DC will love their originality.

At the moment, there's no online availability within 2.5 hours of your request. Do you have another time in mind?


Experiences available
View Experiences
A photo of Toro Toro restaurant

Toro Toro

$$$$
Latin American
Downtown
3.5
1328 reviews
All-you-can-eat brunch, bottomless cocktails and the unlimited tapas experience could stand on their own in attracting guests to Toro Toro. Insanely enough, this isn’t where the greatness ends. They also offer a Pan Latin twist on contemporary tapas, and there are a variety of Central and South American flavors to choose from. Their flour tortillas loaded with tempura fish constitute some of the best tacos in DC, and they're enjoyed surrounded by one of the most unique dining areas in the city. Neon lights, livestock skulls along the walls, cow-hide bar seating and a visually exhilarating bar are just a few of the perks.

At the moment, there's no online availability within 2.5 hours of your request. Do you have another time in mind?

A photo of Avenue Café & Lounge - Holiday Inn Central restaurant

Avenue Café & Lounge - Holiday Inn Central

$$$$
American
Logan Circle
3.8
84 reviews
Located at the Central Holiday Inn and near Scott Circle, Avenue Cafe & Lounge provides a great dining experience within minutes of the most popular attractions in the nation's capital. Guests will find a combination of Southern, Creole, Italian and classic American flavors to choose from. Fortunately, this includes some of the best tacos in DC – equipped with grilled fish, shredded cabbage and fresh Pico de Gallo. The natural lighting, black-and-white photography and simple décor create a relaxing environment where the focus is more on cuisine than over-the-top interior design.

At the moment, there's no online availability within 2.5 hours of your request. Do you have another time in mind?

A photo of Joe's Seafood, Prime Steak & Stone Crab - Washington DC restaurant

Joe's Seafood, Prime Steak & Stone Crab - Washington DC

$$$$
Seafood
Downtown
4.8
8218 reviews
With a name like Joe's Seafood, Prime Steak & Stone Crab, it seems pretty obvious what the eatery would offer. Fortunately, this includes grilled mahi tacos with avocado, tomatillo salsa and jicama slaw. In addition to this and the restaurant's namesakes, guests can enjoy a wide variety of chicken, salads, sandwiches and soups. Just as exciting as the menu, though, is the fine dining atmosphere. Luxury chandeliers, fine linen tablecloths, an array of professional photography and gorgeous marble columns create a high-end environment to enjoy a meal.

At the moment, there's no online availability within 2.5 hours of your request. Do you have another time in mind?

A photo of Barcode restaurant

Barcode

$$$$
American
Downtown
3.8
867 reviews
The contemporary atmosphere at Barcode comes complete with entryway turntables, lounge seating, brushed steel surfaces, LED lighting and dark-wood paneling. There are also a multitude of televisions for patrons whose attention can’t be maintained by hip décor. Guests can choose from a variety of pizzas, seafood offerings, shared plates and steak tacos. Toss in the beer pong, drink specials, music and hookah on Tuesday’s Barcode & Chill night, and this is the perfect place to enjoy some of the best tacos in DC.

At the moment, there's no online availability within 2.5 hours of your request. Do you have another time in mind?

A photo of Morton's The Steakhouse - Downtown DC restaurant

Morton's The Steakhouse - Downtown DC

$$$$
Steakhouse
Downtown
4.5
1949 reviews
For those seeking a local DC experience, Morton's The Steakhouse probably isn’t the place to be. This brand prides itself on being America’s premier steakhouse group, but with some of the best tacos in DC, Morton’s certainly shouldn’t be missed. Both the short rib steak and tuna tacos are worth drooling over, but popular offerings like crab cakes, pork sliders, crispy chicken BLT and prime ribeye should also be experienced. The exquisite lighting, luxury seating, beautiful exterior views and variety of artwork create a true American steakhouse experience.

At the moment, there's no online availability within 2.5 hours of your request. Do you have another time in mind?

A photo of BLT Steak DC restaurant

BLT Steak DC

$$$$
Steak
Downtown
4.7
3728 reviews
If someone can't decide between visiting an American steakhouse or a French bistro, BLT Steak DC is the place to be. The soft lighting, candlelit tables, expansive wall of wine and collection of foliage bring together the best of both worlds. The menu, however, has more of a Modern American appeal. There are a variety of raw bar selections, and guests also enjoy NY strips, Wagyu ribeye, seafood platters and a soft pretzel board. Their avocado tacos are a unique and distinct take on the best tacos in DC, but they’re certainly worth a try during Happy Hour.

At the moment, there's no online availability within 2.5 hours of your request. Do you have another time in mind?

A photo of Capitol City Brewing Company - Downtown restaurant

Capitol City Brewing Company - Downtown

$$$$
American
Downtown
4.0
648 reviews
There were no brew pubs in America's capitol since Prohibition, but Capitol City Brewing changed this in 1992. This is a great Downtown location to enjoy a large selection of hand-crafted beer, and it also doesn't hurt that they offer some of the best tacos in DC. Guests can get fish tacos either fried or grilled, and if they’re craving something different, there are delicious offerings like flat iron steak, jambalaya, black bean burgers and porter bratwurst. The intricate overhead lighting, neon-lit columns, old-school art and vast collection of televisions creates a fun environment inside a DC classic.

At the moment, there's no online availability within 2.5 hours of your request. Do you have another time in mind?

A photo of Pearl Dive Oyster Palace restaurant

Pearl Dive Oyster Palace

$$$$
Seafood
Logan Circle
4.8
1178 reviews
Anyone with a hankering for seafood would be remiss to not visit Pearl Dive Oyster Palace. They bring in oysters from locales around the world, and they also feature unique offerings like seafood gumbo, crawfish fritters, barbecue shrimp and crawfish etouffee. Their love of the sea also finds its way to the best tacos in DC – thanks to the delicious seared Arctic char tacos. Both communal and booth seating are available, and guests can admire the imaginative chain sculpture, disco area, black-and-white film showcase and exquisite statues come together for an experience like no other.

At the moment, there's no online availability within 2.5 hours of your request. Do you have another time in mind?

A photo of MXDC restaurant

MXDC

$$$$
Mexican
Downtown
4.6
2010 reviews
For classic Mexican cuisine with a bit of contemporary flair, MXDC Cocina Mexicana is the place to be. It's only one block away from the White House, and those visiting with family and friends will love the family-style dishes. Anyone riding solo or in small groups will also have a variety of options, and these include quesadillas, enchiladas, ceviche and many other south-of-the-border classics. Of course, this includes some of the best tacos in DC – with at least nine varieties. The eatery bucks the traditional Latin décor and created more of a contemporary lodge-like space.

At the moment, there's no online availability within 2.5 hours of your request. Do you have another time in mind?


Takeout available
View Takeout Menu
A photo of Proper 21 restaurant

Proper 21

$$$$
Contemporary American
Downtown
4.2
640 reviews
The various types of foliage, chic artwork, live music and contemporary flamboyance inside of Proper 21 resemble a New York City establishment. As it turns out, that’s because The Big Apple is where the concept was born. This eatery offers a variety of contemporary American dishes, and this means everything from chicken wings and meatball eggrolls to Mom's Meatloaf and ginger salmon. Those who think they have had the best tacos in DC might change their mind after trying Proper 21’s charred veggie variety, but even if they don’t, the discounted tacos on Margarita Monday are worth the trip.

At the moment, there's no online availability within 2.5 hours of your request. Do you have another time in mind?

A photo of City Tap House - Penn Quarter restaurant

City Tap House - Penn Quarter

$$$$
American
Downtown
4.2
1076 reviews
Lovers of microbrews can be found at City Tap House on any given night. They have over 40 draughts in addition to a bottle collection any bar would envy. In addition to their local, national and international brew offerings, they also serve up some of the best tacos in DC. Their Korean short rib variety must be experienced to be believed, and true fans will always show up Monday for Taco Night. The roped chandeliers, exposed ductwork, distressed wood and touches of iron create a rugged appearance for those weary from the road.

At the moment, there's no online availability within 2.5 hours of your request. Do you have another time in mind?

A photo of The Hamilton restaurant

The Hamilton

$$$$
American
Downtown
4.5
10067 reviews
Those who want more of an experience than a dinner cannot miss the opportunity to visit The Hamilton. Their cuisine includes charcuterie, sushi and a variety of both regional and seasonal American fare. This obviously includes grilled fish tacos, but guests also sing praises for the shrimp & grits, falafel, Atlantic salmon and BBQ brisket burger. Whether guests get the best tacos in DC or one of the other delectable offerings, though, they’ll always enjoy the live music and entertainment. The elegant chandeliers, modern art pieces and vintage style may be impressive, but it rarely detracts from what’s happening on stage.

At the moment, there's no online availability within 2.5 hours of your request. Do you have another time in mind?

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