Overview: Every day, food critic Tom Sietsema is asked what his favorite restaurant in Washington is. Not surprisingly, he can't settle on just one.
Tom's Top 40

2012 Fall Dining Guide

I can't tell you how many times I've been asked: "So, what's your favorite restaurant?" There's no one-size-fits all restaurant for me. I'm a fan of dozens of dining rooms. The process of winnowing more than 100 potential loves down to a highly personal Top 40 takes months. The next time someone asks me, I'll point him in one of 40 directions.

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4 stars
CityZen SW Washington (DC) American $$$$
Inn at Little Washington Virginia (VA) American $$$$
Komi Dupont Circle (DC) Greek $$$$
Rasika Penn Quarter Penn Quarter (DC) Indian $$$
3½ stars
Little Serow Dupont Circle (DC) Thai $$$$
3 stars
Blue Duck Tavern Foggy Bottom (DC) American $$$
Bombay Club Downtown (DC) Indian $$
Bourbon Steak Georgetown (DC) American, Steakhouse $$$$
Cashion's Eat Place Adams Morgan (DC) American $$$
Central Michel Richard Downtown (DC) French $$$
Fiola Downtown (DC) Italian $$$$
Jaleo Chinatown (DC) Spanish $$
Mintwood Place Adams Morgan (DC) Nouveau American $$$
Obelisk Dupont Circle (DC) Italian $$$$
Rasika West End Foggy Bottom (DC) Indian $$$
Rogue 24 NW Washington (DC) Nouveau American $$$$
The Source Chinatown (DC) Asian $$$
Vidalia Dupont Circle (DC) Southern/Soul $$$$
Woodberry Kitchen Baltimore (MD) American $$$
Zaytinya Chinatown (DC) Mediterranean $$
2½ stars
Et Voila! Palisades (DC) Belgian, French $$
Ethiopic NE Washington (DC) Ethiopian $$
Izakaya Seki U Street/Cardozo (DC) Japanese $
Mio Downtown (DC) Latin American $$$
Oval Room Downtown (DC) American $$$
Toki Underground NE Washington (DC) Asian $
Vermilion Old Town Alexandria (VA) American, Nouveau American $$$
2 stars
A&J Restaurant Rockville (MD) Chinese $
C.F. Folks Dupont Circle (DC) American $
Chez Billy NW Washington (DC) French $$
Elephant Jumps Falls Church (VA) Thai $
Family Meal Frederick County (MD) American $$
Gamasot Franconia/Springfield (VA) Korean $
L'Auberge Chez Francois Fairfax County (VA) French $$$$
La Limena Rockville (MD) Latin American $$
LacoMelza Ethio Cafe Silver Spring (MD) Ethiopian $
Liberty Tavern Clarendon (VA) American $$
Red Truck Bakery and Market Fauquier County (VA) Bakery $
1 star
Tabard Inn Dupont Circle (DC) American $$$
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