While Georgetown’s campus is stocked full of new and exciting dining options, after a few weeks, you will inevitably tire of the same-old coffee from the Corp and limp pizza from Leo’s. Sooner or later, you’ll venture off-campus in search of different food options to treat yourself after a long week of class or to break the bubble during finals week. Follow this guide for all of the best dining options beyond the front gates, from the quick meal just a few blocks away to fancy sit-down options for when your parents come to visit.
Quick Meals in Georgetown
If you’re in a rush or just craving a quick bite, Wisemiller’s Grocery & Deli (1236 36th St. NW) — better known as Wisey’s — is for you. Classic sandwiches and Georgetown standards include the Chicken Madness — with grilled chicken, peppers and provolone cheese folded into a sub — and the Hot Chick — which includes chopped chicken tenders, cheese and spicy mayo. Be sure to check out the Oreo cookies if you still have room for dessert. Its healthier counterpart on Wisconsin, called DC Wisey’s (1440 Wisconsin Ave. NW), serves mouth-watering paninis and wraps as well as a wide range of vegetarian options and a full smoothie menu.
Just 10 minutes from campus, Grace Street offers plenty of on-the-go meals including farm-to-table vegetarian taco joint Chaia (3207 Grace St. NW), acai and smoothie stop South Block Juice Co., artisanal coffee shop Grace Street Coffee Roasters and locally sourced and globally inspired sandwich company SUNdeVICH (3210 Grace St. NW).
Wingo’s near O Street and Wisconsin Avenue serves wings available with 20 different sauces at varying spice levels. Chili dogs and cheese fries are also great choices. Spice up your mid-week lunch with half-priced wings on Wednesdays.
Fuel up without breaking the bank at Falafel, Inc. (1210 Potomac St. NW), a new addition to the Georgetown dining scene. Offering falafel sandwiches for just $3 each, this is likely the cheapest quality meal in the Georgetown neighborhood. The company was founded as an entrepreneurial venture to help the refugee crisis in the Middle East, and as part of its mission, it donates a day’s worth of food to a refugee for every $10 of profit.
Kung Fu Tea (1529 Wisconsin Ave. NW) is the hottest new spot for bubble tea in the Georgetown neighborhood, as the New York-based company expands across the District and nation. With a variety of milk- or fruit-based teas to choose from, regulars will never tire of the menu and its endless options to mix up or personalize your drink with varying sugar levels, toppings and tapioca bubbles.
While the M Street Sweetgreen (3333 M St. NW) is undergoing renovations, the Georgetown alumni-founded company is making much bigger plans for another Georgetown location, partnering with FreshFarm Markets to open a new storefront on Grace Street this August. Georgetown Sweetgreen and Farm Stand (1044 Wisconsin Ave. NW) will be its biggest location in D.C., doubling as a salad shop and weekly farm stand as a nod to its longstanding partnership with local farmers and the importance of the Georgetown location to its founders.
Classic Georgetown Destinations
If you want to spend an afternoon hanging out with friends, Booeymonger (3265 Prospect St. NW) — or Booey’s for short — is a convenient spot. With beer pitchers at just around $6 during happy hour, Booey’s is a great place to relax for cheap. The breakfast sandwich — Chicken Little — is a filling option with bacon, egg and cheese on your choice of a bagel.
Without a doubt, The Tombs (1226 36th St. NW) is deeply ingrained in any student’s Georgetown experience. An underground joint with all your classic pub food dishes, this is the place to go for your 21st birthday, and thereby is the first place all Georgetown students have their first official drink. A popular option is the chicken parmesan, which is only served on Wednesdays. Pro tip: It’s always referred to as “Tombs” and never “The Tombs.”
Mai Thai (3251 Prospect St. NW), a Thai and Asian fusion joint, is a great restaurant to grab dinner with friends. Portions are so large that you’ll have enough to take home for lunch the next day. The basil fried rice is flavorful and spicy, and don’t forget to stop by for happy hour for $4 sushi rolls and $15 cocktail pitchers.
If you trek down toward the waterfront, il Canale (1065 31st St. NW) is a classic Italian restaurant with delicious pizzas. One of the best pizzas is the diavola: margherita pizza with spicy salami. It’s also a popular date spot for those of you looking for your Hoya romances.
Curry & Pie (1204 34th St. NW), a flavorful, inventive combination of Indian and Italian cuisine, offers traditional Indian dishes in one of two ways: on a pizza or in a dish. Stop by for a classic Chicken Tikka Masala on a doughy pie or for a taste of their delicious samosas.
When your parents are in town and want to spoil you to a non-Leo’s meal or during the end of exam week, there are plenty of restaurants in town at which you can treat yourself. Rasika (633 D St. NW), an Indian restaurant with two locations in D.C., has great dishes for sharing. Try the palak chaat appetizer, which is composed of perfectly crispy spinach and a yogurt dressing.
Blue Duck Tavern (1201 24th St. NW), a few blocks from M Street downtown, is a family-style restaurant with phenomenal flavor pairings that often change seasonally. The squid ink cavatelli and the wild king salmon are delicious dishes, and its weekend brunches are also a popular choice.
For a nice restaurant closer to campus, Das Ethiopian Cuisine (1202 28th St. NW) serves shared plates of various vegetables and meats with injera – a type of rolled spongey bread. Its short ribs — grilled, savory and sauteed with onions — are a hearty choice.
The most famous brunch in Georgetown is at Farmers, Fishers, Bakers (3000 K St. NW) down by the waterfront. The all-you-can-eat weekend and holiday brunches are relatively pricey, but they’re worth it on a special occasion. The crab dip and honey fried chicken are to die for, and other breakfast specials such as bruleed grapefruit and egg scrambles are worth a taste as well.
For crepes and French food, Café Bonaparte (1522 Wisconsin Ave. NW) is a quaint spot. Be aware the restaurant does not take reservations and the line can get long during brunch, but it is always worth the wait.
The Sovereign (1206 Wisconsin Ave. NW), tucked into an alley at the crossroads of M Street and Wisconsin Avenue, is a Belgian bar and bistro that also boasts a mouth-watering weekend brunch menu. Featuring a full spread of exquisite waffles, fifth-generation-farmed Dutch mussels and flambe, The Sovereign is a great spot to splurge on a classy mid-day meal just a few minutes from campus.
Making a Day of It
For those looking to get out and about, try heading over to Eastern Market (225 7th St. SE) to survey the vendors’ stalls and grab some fresh fruit and vegetables. After a morning of shopping, the best place to grab a bite is at Market Lunch (225 7th St. SE), a small vendor inside the market’s building. Its weekend shrimp and grits are popular, as are its blueberry buckwheat pancakes.
If you get peckish while checking out D.C.’s Chinatown, you can grab a bowl of spicy miso ramen from Daikaya (705 6th St. NW) — a perfect meal just before a movie at the nearby theater or a basketball game at the Verizon Center.
For a lazy but productive Sunday afternoon, stop by A Baked Joint (440 K St. NW) near the Georgetown University Law Center in Mount Vernon for a cup of coffee and its open-faced smoked salmon sandwich. The fried capers on top give a pleasingly salty bite. For dessert, grab a slice of cake or a chocolate chip cookie. The open and inviting atmosphere also makes it the perfect place to read a book, do homework or study for an exam.
Coffee and Sweets
For a cup of coffee, stop by Baked & Wired (1052 Thomas Jefferson St. NW), where you can also grab a monstrous cupcake, biscotti or my personal favorite, a Lemon Crunch Square. The Georgetown Cupcake versus Baked & Wired debate is an ongoing and contentious one, but you should go see for yourself. Don’t leave without a bag of the house-made Hippie Crack granola, perfect for breakfast or a quick snack.
Dog Tag Bakery (3206 Grace St NW) is the ideal bakery to satisfy all your bread, dessert and pastry needs. The bakery supports veterans and their families by providing a job and a Georgetown education, all while serving the perfect snickerdoodle. During finals season, Dog Tag is a good place to look for a peaceful off-campus study spot.
To satisfy your sweet tooth and get off campus, stop by Thomas Sweet (3214 P St. NW) on Wisconsin Avenue for house-made ice cream with tons of flavors, toppings and cones to choose from. Also, be sure to try out Dolcezza (1560 Wisconsin Ave. NW), a locally sourced and produced gelato company that also serves top-notch coffee. Ask for the affogato for a shot of espresso to blanket your scoop.
Insomnia Cookies (3204 O St. NW) is opening a new storefront on O Street this fall. The cookie shop is famous for its customizable cookie sandwiches and delivery until 3 a.m., and it is sure to become a late-night staple for students on the weekends after a night out or as a treat while studying into the night.