Open only since 2017, the Washington DC Wharf has become the most popular destination in the city this summer. This development, which is set to expand in 2021, is a community beloved by visitors and locals alike. Perched along the Wharf’s one-mile-long boardwalk, nearly every restaurant features views of the Washington Channel.
With a variety of price points, you can have a luxurious dinner that will transport you to another part of the globe, like Spanish seafood at Del Mar, the Asian-fusion powerhouse Kaliwa, and the Afro-Caribbean fare at Kith and Kin (which I describe below). You can absorb the festive waterfront vibe at Tiki-TNT across from the Maine Avenue Fish Market. If you want sophisticated Mexican, try Mi Vida; for Irish pub fare, there’s Kirwan’s on the Wharf. Popular with local celebrities, check out the Italian restaurant, bar and market, Officina.
Nicole Sunderland DC Social Media Expert and @EatLiveTravelDrink @NickiEatstheGlobe says her favorite area of Washington, D.C. right now is the DC Wharf. “The Waterfront boasts incredible dining options from Michelin Star Chef Nick Stefanelli – opening his second restaurant, Officina; the incredible desserts at Milk Bar by Christina Tossi; and Whiskey Charlie offers delicious bar bites and drinks with the best sunset views in the city.”
The Wharf’s rooftop cocktail bars are drawing big crowds thanks to killer views and original craft cocktails. You’ll find Whiskey Charlie caters to a youthful bunch, while 12 Stories serves the Intercontinental Hotel’s sophisticated clientele, though all are welcome.
In an area that is all about water, you can choose seafood sourced right at the historic Maine Avenue Fish Market (which first opened in 1805) from southern-influenced Hank’s Oyster Bar and Rappahannock Oyster Bar, the latter also sources bivalves from their farm in the Tidewater of Virginia. For something quick and inexpensive, pick from Shake Shack, Toastique and Falafel. Finish up with a terrific treat from Dolcezza Gelato or cook some marshmallows at the S’mores Food Truck.
Kith and Kin is a sensation and perfect for the adventurous foodie
The Executive Chef and Memorist Kwame Onwauchi blended his heritage—Nigerian, Jamaican, Creole—to create a medley of unforgettable dishes. Winner of a James Beard award and a Michelin Star, Kith and Kin actually serves as the Intercontinental Washington DC – The Wharf’s hotel restaurant.
Onwauchi calls his cooking “comfort soul food,” and his dishes are elevated to unusual heights, thanks to the chef’s mastery of spices, sauces and inspired ingredients.
Onwauchi deconstructs Caribbean traditions like Jerk Chicken, Goat-Roti with Dal Puri, Curried Goat and Jollof Rice. Sample Nigerian delicacies like Egusi Monkfish accompanied by Fufu and toasted melon seeds. The whole fried snapper will thrill and amaze adventurous eaters—the head on, the tangy, crunchy skin is a revelation. Veggie lovers, don’t miss the Brussels or Mushroom Forest with charred eggplant dip. Dining at Kith and Kin also provides a front row seat to the action on the DC Wharf Boardwalk.
801 Wharf Street. SW; 202-878-8566; kithandkin.com Southwest Waterfront Metro Station
When you’re looking for a memorable night out in Washington DC, check out the DC Wharf.