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Kaliwa, Washington, DC

Kaliwa

3.6
3.6
244 reviews
$30 and under
Asian
Award-Winning, Michelin Bib Gourmand 2022 Recepient! Created by Celebrated Chef and Resterantuer Cathal Armstrong, Kaliwa presents upscale, South East Asian fare accompanied by vibrant cocktails in classy, waterfront digs. Enjoy interpretations of Thai, Filipino and Korean dishes under a sky of eclectic chandeliers, or dine Al Fresca on the patio overlooking the bustling waterfront.

Make a booking

2 people

19:00


Booked 36 times today

Dining areas

Additional information

  • Dining style

    Casual Dining

  • Cuisines

    Asian, Korean, Thai

  • Hours of Operation

    Mon–Thu 11:30 am–10:00 pm Fri–Sun 11:30 am–11:00 pm

  • Phone number

    (202) 516-4739

  • Payment Options

    AMEX, Discover, MasterCard, Visa

  • Dress Code

    Casual Dress

  • Executive Chef

    Cathal Armstrong

What 244 people are saying

Overall ratings and reviews

Reviews can only be made by diners who have eaten at this restaurant

3.6
3.6 based on recent ratings
  • 3.8Food
  • 3.3Service
  • 3.9Ambience
  • 3.3Value

NoiseModerate

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  1. KT

    KarenT

    Washington DC

    1 review

    vip
    1.0

    1 review

    Dined 2 days ago

    overall1food2service1ambience1
    2nd time at this restaurant with a larger party because we were in the area and the other restaurant we wanted to go to was full. Decided that it's been a few years since I was last here and thought maybe to give it another try. They were listed Michelin star in 2021 and 2022.... But it was very disappointing again. Different issues this time - food, service, and cleanliness. I'll talk about service and cleanliness to start: 1) they tried to squeeze 5 people into a tiny table for 4 next to a walkway (other roomier places were available throughout my time at the restaurant). 2) the bathrooms were not cleaned 3) the velvet seating and seat padding for individual chairs were all stained 4) hot was was lukewarm. Now about the food: the pork belly started out ok but could but taste the banana ketchup (reason why I ordered it). The pad Thai was underwhelming - worst than what I would've gotten somewhere else in northern Virginia... not a Michelin restaurant. The sisig fried rice and kalbi short rib were good. the best dishes of the night... but also kinda mediocre at a Michelin restaurant. The half chicken in lemongrass was dry and tasteless. The baby back ribs was super saucy and salty! Overall, wouldn't come back another time after 2 out of 2 bad experiences..
  2. t

    tapaseater

    New England

    34 reviews

    vip
    3.0

    34 reviews

    Dined 2 days ago

    overall3food4service1ambience1
    Food is great but service is absolutely atrocious. If you can tolerate the bad service (no service, get your own everything, your server ignoring you, random people dropping food at your table and not serving what you asked for) and the fact that they automatically charge you 20% for gratuity (apparently you don’t have a choice!) then the food is worth it. If good or even mediocre service is a requirement, then Kaliwa is a must skip.
  3. H

    Holly

    1 review

    5.0

    1 review

    Dined on 19 November 2022

    overall5food5service5ambience4
    Enjoyable! Food was great, service excellent. Very loud... nothing to dampen the sound.
  4. RM

    RobertM

    1 review

    2.0

    1 review

    Dined on 18 November 2022

    overall2food2service1ambience2
    The food was average. The service was poor. Well-intentioned but inexperienced and poorly trained staff struggled with basics. ie, failing to clear used dishes and cutlery between courses and delivering entrees one-at-a-time over several minutes.
  5. RT

    RonT

    Naples

    11 reviews

    vip
    2.0

    11 reviews

    Dined on 18 November 2022

    overall2food1service4ambience2
    Seated elbow to elbow with other diners despite ample space elsewhere. Tuna sashimi totally unremarkable presentation served on avocado mash and rice. Pad Thai just OK. Mango salad had barely in total one tiny piece of mango. Rest was greens. Pineapple crème caramel a feeble effort at the crème and caramel was barely hardened. An extremely dry and inedible cashew butter cream dessert was doused with graham cracker crumbs. All in all, except for the good service, a bad dining experience. Will not be back.
  6. C

    Colin

    Washington DC

    1 review

    3.0

    1 review

    Dined on 16 November 2022

    overall3food2service3ambience4
    The chicken was dried out and the rest of the food was overpriced and mediocre.
  7. JO

    JOHNK

    Chicago

    2 reviews

    1.0

    2 reviews

    Dined on 14 November 2022

    overall1food1service2ambience2
    Lumpia filling was sour, informed waitress, did nothing. Kaliwa burger ordered medium, was cooked well done and was dry. Pad Thai with shrimp, here again over cooked the shrimp. We had better shrimp and burger (Loco Moco) at a Hawaiian place in Alexandria for half the money and free parking.
  8. CH

    ClydeHillBen

    Seattle

    58 reviews

    vip
    4.0

    58 reviews

    Dined on 12 November 2022

    overall4food5service5ambience3
    Too LOUD. Turn off the music, let people talk. Otherwise, great food, surprisingly quick service for such a large space. There were 6 of us, we enjoyed a nice Pinot noir and Bordeaux blend from California, and a wide range of dishes. Pork Belly was really good, several great salads.
  9. OT

    OpenTable Diner

    Seattle

    1 review

    vip
    3.0

    1 review

    Dined on 12 November 2022

    overall3food4service4ambience3
    It was ok but I have had better.
  10. HG

    HazelG

    1 review

    5.0

    1 review

    Dined on 12 November 2022

    overall5food4service5ambience4
    We celebrated my niece's 20th birthday at Kaliwa. We enjoyed the unique foods, the friendly and knowledgeable staff and the ambience. We ranged in age from 56 to 13 and we all enjoyed the experience and will definitely go again.
  11. G

    Gallegoscot

    Washington DC

    8 reviews

    5.0

    8 reviews

    Dined on 11 November 2022

    overall5food5service5ambience5
    Food and drink’s excellent. Service attentive and friendly.
  12. OT

    OpenTable Diner

    New York Area

    1 review

    5.0

    1 review

    Dined on 6 November 2022

    overall5food5service5ambience5
    This place is amazing. The best Asian food you can get in the USA. I brought people to eat here who usually only eat American food and they enjoyed the it!
  13. EC

    ElinorC

    1 review

    5.0

    1 review

    Dined on 6 November 2022

    overall5food5service5ambience5
    We came to try the Filipino food menu and ended up ordering other menu as well. The food were all superb, no doubt! It is The Wharf in DC so I should not be surprised at the pricing. We did however paid for close to what we would have paid on dinner for lunch. Great service, great food, great experience overall.
  14. OT

    OpenTable Diner

    Baltimore

    2 reviews

    2.0

    2 reviews

    Dined on 6 November 2022

    overall2food2service1ambience5
    We were super excited to try this place due to the looks/ambiance. But that was about the only thing going for it. I never write reviews but the service was terrible. We waited an hour just to get waters after asking 4 times and we ended up flagging someone else down to do it. Our waiter kept passing our table and blatantly ignoring us when we would try and flag him down to order our food. We were there for SO LONG without literally anything and then when the food finally did arrive, it wasn't great and both of us got the wrong order but didn't say anything bc we didn't know how long it would take to redo. Maybe it was just a bad night, but def won't be coming back.
  15. b

    bfa1121

    Washington DC

    8 reviews

    vip
    2.0

    8 reviews

    Dined on 5 November 2022

    overall2food2service2ambience4
    Extremely slow service. Food was mediocre at best. View and ambiance were amazing and made up for the food. The curries were not balanced- just a bowl of soupy peppercorns. The coconut curry was bland but somehow spicy at the same time. Just unappetizing all around.
  16. MO

    MarieO

    Washington DC

    6 reviews

    vip
    5.0

    6 reviews

    Dined on 5 November 2022

    overall5food5service2ambience5
    The food was so good we had lunch and picked up dinner the same day! But the service was terrible! The reason is they only had two servers responsible for the entire terrace on a 76 degree day. They took their orders, made their own bar drinks and were bussing their own tables too. They did the best they could but a manager should have assisted them. Later that day we returned to place our takeout order so we skipped the line and went straight to the bar, as many restaurants do takeout orders at the bar. On our way to the bar we were met with a rude manager who stopped us and asked us to get back in line. We told him we wanted to only place a takeout order. He responded with "tell me what you to order" as if he wanted us to "prove" we wanted takeout. We gave him our order, then he called a server over to take our order again. I understand it was busy but they should come up with a better process for takeout.
  17. DB

    DB123

    Washington DC

    5 reviews

    vip
    5.0

    5 reviews

    Dined on 4 November 2022

    overall5food5service4ambience5
    Excellent food, lovely outdoor seating area.
  18. LR

    LindseyR

    New York Area

    1 review

    3.0

    1 review

    Dined on 2 November 2022

    overall3food4service1ambience3
    The food was amazing. The service was some of the worst I’ve experienced in DC (saying a lot). The price point for the level of service and presentation was too high. Even in DC.
  19. OT

    OpenTable Diner

    1 review

    4.0

    1 review

    Dined on 1 November 2022

    overall4food4service2ambience5
    The outdoor patio was wonderful, as were the drinks and food. The service was a little sporadic and we had to ask for the happy hour menu when we were there for an early happy hour. Those were the only two negatives. Go and enjoy!!
  20. M

    Marcel

    Maastricht

    1 review

    2.0

    1 review

    Dined on 29 October 2022

    overall2food1service4ambience4
    Food was not good! The rice was overcooked and poor vegetables! It wasn’t tasty at all! This is not a bib gourmand worthy place!
  21. A

    Anna

    1 review

    3.0

    1 review

    Dined on 29 October 2022

    overall3food3service3ambience4
    Surprised that this place has a bib gourmand. Food was just ok, but outrageously overpriced for what we received. Would have expected the food quality and taste to set the price around 15 dollars but my entree was 27! For a vegan dish! Beautiful interior space and good drinks. The desserts were delicious. Don't necessarily go for the food, but the drinks and desserts are a must.
  22. AD

    AmyD

    Washington DC

    8 reviews

    4.0

    8 reviews

    Dined on 28 October 2022

    overall4food2service3ambience4
    I love the look of the restaurant. The food was just okay. Our dishes needed more seasoning.
  23. MJ

    MJP42

    Washington DC

    6 reviews

    vip
    2.0

    6 reviews

    Dined on 28 October 2022

    overall2food3service3ambience2
    From walking in, to ordering, to eating to paying the check, to walking out…no one seemed to own the place or care about how you were doing. Way too robotic and cold. Sorry.
  24. WK

    WillK

    Pittsburgh

    1 review

    1.0

    1 review

    Dined on 27 October 2022

    overall1food4service1ambience1
    Our server brought us one water and one drink. Didn’t refill or check on us for 35 mins. The food staff were fast and efficient but the waitress was the worst. It was also evident other tables had issues with service as well. Their dissatisfaction was easily heard though the noise of the restaurant. Spent 2 hours, ordered two appetizers and two entrees for $140 and got served one drink for my wife’s birthday. Thanks but no thanks.
  25. OT

    OpenTable Diner

    Washington DC

    1 review

    vip
    3.0

    1 review

    Dined on 25 October 2022

    overall3food3service5ambience5
    Food just not great
  26. OT

    OpenTable Diner

    1 review

    2.0

    1 review

    Dined on 23 October 2022

    overall2food4service1ambience5
    Honestly I keep giving this place a chance bc their red curry is so good but last night they were out of it, which I understand happens. Every time I go it’s something, but usually sirrI always order the Pinot noir from Oregon but this time I could tell the wine was not the same as usual but I drank it. Our server was sweet but didn’t even knowledge how long our food took (almost 45 mins for my friends dish and about 5 mins later my food came …) and only came back to check on us once. He said their was a party upstairs but if the kitchen cannot keep up with it then put the restaurant on a hold or communicate with the tables. If I come back I’ll probably just come for the curry. It was just embarrassing bc I brought a friend from out of town.
  27. OT

    OpenTable Diner

    Washington DC

    1 review

    vip
    1.0

    1 review

    Dined on 22 October 2022

    overall1food1service1ambience3
    Our food did not arrive until two hours later
  28. G

    George

    1 review

    2.0

    1 review

    Dined on 22 October 2022

    overall2food2service2ambience3
    I ordered a frozen drink and was brought a drink with ice cubes, but the waiter insisted it was a "frozen" drink. The appetizer came after the entrees and only after we inquired about it. I expected stellar tasting food, but it lacked flavor. We were really disappointed. The atmosphere is nice though.
  29. k

    kristinm

    New York Area

    4 reviews

    vip
    5.0

    4 reviews

    Dined on 22 October 2022

    overall5food5service5ambience5
    Fabulous dinner and we loved our server! Thank you for the champagne to celebrate our engagement this week!
  30. r

    rachaelk

    Baltimore

    5 reviews

    vip
    5.0

    5 reviews

    Dined on 22 October 2022

    overall5food3service3ambience3
    We are out of towners, this was our 2nd time here and we were really looking forward to it. After our first visit in 2019, I raved about this place! Unfortunately, our return was a major letdown. We had a “bar” booking which sounded like a fun experience, but we were facing the disorganized & dirty service bar area. The place was a mess. The menu seems the have become a bit more pedestrian and the food overall was just ok. I am sympathetic to post COVID challenges for restaurants, and don’t want to be judgmental, but the experience was a disappointment.
  31. OT

    OpenTable Diner

    New York Area

    5 reviews

    vip
    4.0

    5 reviews

    Dined on 22 October 2022

    overall4food4service4ambience5
    My son and his group of almost 20 other teenagers were treated with respect. Not all restaurants are so fond of serving teenagers. This mom appreciates their kindness. My son said the food was good too.
  32. OT

    OpenTable Diner

    New York Area

    2 reviews

    5.0

    2 reviews

    Dined on 22 October 2022

    overall5food5service5ambience5
    It was great. Our server (i forgot his name) was really good at giving recommendations of food and guiding us through the menu
  33. OT

    OpenTable Diner

    1 review

    5.0

    1 review

    Dined on 21 October 2022

    overall5food5service5ambience5
    The food was delicious and the service was great. I will definitely come back!
  34. c

    cchull1

    Washington DC

    15 reviews

    5.0

    15 reviews

    Dined on 21 October 2022

    overall5food5service5ambience4
    We shared a tasty chicken satay appetizer. I had the pork hash fried rice (fabulous!) and my friend had panang curry with pork belly (which he loved). I can hardly wait to go back and try more things!
  35. L

    Linny

    New York Area

    4 reviews

    5.0

    4 reviews

    Dined on 19 October 2022

    overall5food5service5ambience5
    Wonderful ambiance, service and food excellent! i've been twice in recent past and both time all dishes excellent. Highly recommend the whole fish - sublime!
  36. D

    Diana

    Seattle

    15 reviews

    vip
    2.0

    15 reviews

    Dined on 18 October 2022

    overall2food3service1ambience4
    We were really excited to try Kaliwa. Unfortunately, it wasn't a great experience. We ordered drinks and an appetizer to start. After the drinks came, we put in our food order. They note on the menu that sharing family style is encouraged, so we asked how big the entrees were and if they were good for sharing, especially the blue crab curry. We also asked it rice came with any of the dishes or if we should order a side. He said yes that's the curry was good for sharing and that rice came with everything. Within 5 mins, we received the curry. Just the curry. No rice, and not even the appetizer that we first ordered with drinks. The curry was a small bowl. Not sure why he thought 4 adults were going to share a small bowl or curry, which was more like the consistency of soup. There was a good amount of crab. I was trying to get someone's attention to ask for another order because it was too small to share for the group. Also asked for a serving spoon so we could actually share it. He came back with a serving spoon that was larger than the bowl! Our other food started to come out, and we needed another spoon, had ordered another beer, and still didn't have our appetizer, even after all the main dishes were out. Flavor was alright. We had the kimchi fried rice, adobo ribs, pad Thai, crab curry, and lumpiang. I had to glad someone down again to ask about the appetizer that never came, and the beer. I also noticed that employees would group together and just be chatting, while I had to wave my hands around to get someone's attention several times. By the end, we finally got the appetizer, I had to go up and find someone at the bar (who happened to be our server) to order another drink and let him know the beer still never came. We couldn't even flag someone to pay our tab. I had to go find the hostess, and even let the hostess know that there were some problems, but I was trying to be nice and not say anything, and just wanted our check.
  37. IS

    InSightPubAffairsDanaT

    Washington DC

    10 reviews

    5.0

    10 reviews

    Dined on 17 October 2022

    overall5food5service5ambience5
    Server was amazing!
  38. NR

    NinoR

    Washington DC

    3 reviews

    4.0

    3 reviews

    Dined on 16 October 2022

    overall4food4service5ambience4
    Food was delicious, servings were small though and not for sharing (as indicated in menu)
  39. MZ

    MaryZ

    Chicago

    1 review

    1.0

    1 review

    Dined on 15 October 2022

    overall1food1service1ambience3
    No service, food not good,
  40. OT

    OpenTable Diner

    Baltimore

    1 review

    3.0

    1 review

    Dined on 15 October 2022

    overall3food3service2ambience3
    Tried to walk in and was told “we are not accepting walk ins until 8pm.” Okay, fine I get it, it’s Friday and most restaurants at the wharf are slammed. I pull out my phone to look at other options nearby, but then I see an available reservation at Kaliwa available immediately. I make the reservation, go back to the same hostess less than a minute after being denied and tell her I have a reservation - we was seated immediately. This makes absolutely no sense…do you not want my business??? Also, our waiter reeked of weed.

Safety precautions

  • Cleaning & sanitising

    • Surfaces sanitised between seatings
    • Digital, disposable or sanitised menu provided
    • Common areas deep-cleaned daily
    • Sanitiser or wipes provided for customers
  • Physical distancing

    • Distancing maintained in common areas
  • Screening

    • Sick staff prohibited in the workplace

FAQs

Kaliwa offers takeout which you can order by calling the restaurant at (202) 516-4739.

Kaliwa is rated 3.6 stars by 244 OpenTable diners.

Yes, you can generally book this restaurant by choosing the date, time and party size on OpenTable.

Make a booking

2 people

19:00


Booked 36 times today
Google Map for Kaliwa

751 Wharf St SW, Washington, DC 20024-3433

Dining areas

Additional information

  • Area

    Southwest Waterfront

  • Hours of Operation

    Mon–Thu 11:30 am–10:00 pm Fri–Sun 11:30 am–11:00 pm

  • Cuisines

    Asian, Korean, Thai

  • Dining style

    Casual Dining

  • Dress Code

    Casual Dress

  • Parking Details

    Street Parking

  • Payment Options

    AMEX, Discover, MasterCard, Visa

  • Executive Chef

    Cathal Armstrong

  • Additional

    Gluten-free Options, Vegan

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