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“The ingredients for a great meal were there ...” 3 of 5 stars
Review of CityZen - CLOSED

CityZen
Mandarin Oriental Hotel, 1330 Maryland Avenue, SW, Washington DC, DC 20024
(202) 787 6148
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Menu
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Price range: $50 - $50
Cuisines: Contemporary
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Good for: Romance, Special occasions, Entertaining clients
Dining options: Dinner, Reservations, Late Night
Dining style: Fine Dining
Cross street: 12th Street, SW
Transit: Smithsonian Metro (Orange and Blue Line) L'Enfant Plaza Metro (Yellow and Green Line)
Washington DC, District of Columbia
Top Contributor
233 reviews 233 reviews
133 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 57 cities Reviews in 57 cities
142 helpful votes 142 helpful votes
“The ingredients for a great meal were there ...”
3 of 5 stars Reviewed April 11, 2013

CitiZen tries hard. Our group of four had the tasting menu with wine pairings. The food was overall excellent and full of a tasteful mix of flavors ... but far too heavy on proteins with very little greens. The lobster was tough though. The wine pairings were a very interesting and a good match for the food flavors ... but consisted of unknown inexpensive wines. Our waitress gave us very attentive, friendly and efficient service ... but each of our six courses was delivered by kitchen staff who muttered quickly what was on the platter in a totally impersonal and memory-recital manner. Noone offered me a second cup of coffee, which I wanted, at the end. Given the $555 bill for each couple, I had expected a more flawless evening, a better choice of foods and better wines. It did not help that, despite my request and their assurances, noone had called for our car from the valet service, located a few feet away from the restaurant exit, when we left.

Visited April 2013
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174 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
    110
    35
    16
    7
    6
Rating summary
    Food
    Service
    Value
    Atmosphere
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Sao Paulo, SP
Top Contributor
98 reviews 98 reviews
50 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 20 cities Reviews in 20 cities
38 helpful votes 38 helpful votes
“Great food with expected service”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed April 7, 2013

The food is great, I had the prix-fixe dinner and enjoyed it a lot. The young chef behind the kitchen is very skilled and a rising star.
Sadly, service was a bit cold and indifferent, a rarity for any Mandarin Oriental rest that I've visited.

Visited March 2013
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Bethesda, MD
Senior Contributor
30 reviews 30 reviews
16 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 22 cities Reviews in 22 cities
35 helpful votes 35 helpful votes
“Good, not transcendent”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed April 7, 2013 via mobile

Perhaps our high expectations were bound to go unmet, but the hype surrounding this place was enormous.

It's 90$ for a four course meal, 120$ for the chef's tasting menu-- without beverages. We did the four course, mostly because the tasting menu didn't tempt us.

The mushroom soup was tasty, but nothing really new flavor-wise. Like some of our other dishes, it suffered from a little too much salt. The beet salad was ho-hum. Again, nothing new.

The fish course gave us grilled octopus, which was a bit too chewy, but saved by a surprisingly delicate, if a tad too salty, parsley risotto. The sea trout was ok, similar to, but not as delicious as well cooked salmon might have been.

Our meat course of shortribs was the standout dish of the evening. Flavorful and perfectly moist, it was the one memorable food note of the night. (That and the elderflower gelee bonbon served with dessert.)

Our chocolate desserts were tasty but not as wow as others we've had-- hats off to Michel Richard at Central for that.

With only a few bottles on the exhaustive wine list priced below 50$, we stuck to wines by the glass.

We live in the DC area, and have had more exciting and truly memorable meals at Fiola and the newly opened, and more moderately priced, Range. With high expectations, we found CityZen to be merely good, not justifying the hype or the expense.

  • Visited April 2013
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 4 of 5 stars Food
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Chapel Hill, North Carolina
Top Contributor
52 reviews 52 reviews
28 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 20 cities Reviews in 20 cities
21 helpful votes 21 helpful votes
“WOW”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 1, 2013

Fabulous dinner. Great menu, perfect preparations, great service, lovely atmosphere. Best dinner in DC. Pricey, but well worth it.

Visited March 2013
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Washington DC, District of Columbia
Senior Reviewer
10 reviews 10 reviews
3 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 8 cities Reviews in 8 cities
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
“The food is so amazing, this place is more of a culinary experience than a restaurant”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 25, 2013

We went here for our wedding anniversary and the staff was amazingly nice. The food was also amazing. I have never tasted anything like anything I the food I had there. The blends of seasonings were out of this world and everything was perfectly prepared. The atmosphere inside the restaurant was also very nice. The only complaint I have is that it's too expensive to do more often. The food, however, is well worth the price.

  • Visited December 2012
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 5 of 5 stars Food
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