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“Not enough superlatives to describe” 5 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: Romantic, Special occasions, Entertaining clients
Dining options: Dinner, Late Night, Reservations
Dining style: Fine Dining
Cross street: 12th Street, SW
Transit: Smithsonian Metro (Orange and Blue Line) L'Enfant Plaza Metro (Yellow and Green Line)
Albuquerque, New Mexico
Contributor
13 reviews 13 reviews
3 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 11 cities Reviews in 11 cities
6 helpful votes 6 helpful votes
“Not enough superlatives to describe”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 15, 2013

Each bite of every dish was an explosion of favors that blended perfectly. The atmosphere was refined contemporary and utterly enjoyable. Service was beyond reproach. The wait staff was attentive but not suffocating, extremely knowledgable and perfectly delightful. Clearly, resources have been expended in ensuring the staff is top notch and it has paid off. As others have noted, the restaurant is not inexpensive but, unlike some high end restaurants, including a well-known DC legend we ate at the previous night, we did not leave thinking "ho, hum, ok, good food but nothing we haven't had before". Instead, CityZen was a wonderful experience. Go, be thrilled again by food?

  • Visited August 2013
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 5 of 5 stars Food
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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
Rockville, Maryland, United States
Contributor
14 reviews 14 reviews
12 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 5 cities Reviews in 5 cities
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
“A Sunday experience to remember”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 9, 2013 via mobile

I was immediately tempted with an apitizer that was remenicent in culinary consumption just as a sensuous Sunday morning breakfast in bed. (Not the kind you eat if your following me.) It was rich and creamy and tangy that made my mouth water and my mind ease into blissful appeasement. This tempting and delightful starter bite was not even a part of the 3 course menu but same as the pleasant surprise of Sunday morning liasonfare.

The first course was a salty and perfectly balance duck ravioli coupled with pickled baby snap beans that took me back to my childhood in rural Nebraska. I only imagine this course as the late morning or early afternoon sweaty romp after he mowed the lawn and because you were about to launder the sheets. Thus far satisfaction has had me twice.

The main course was a well proportion of seared sushi grade tuna that flaked apart on the cooked portion and smoothly sliced through with a fork on the raw portion. It was accompanied with charred romain and veggies in a cream sauce and a wonderfully salty and tangy olive paste that transformed the taste of the meat with just a dash. In the spirit of the Sunday trist the main course is most identified to the late afternoon when he has finiahed his chores, showered, beer in hand and watching the game and she is trying to gain his attention for a mid-afternoon rendezvous on the kitchen counter but will probably have to compromise with the sofa. It can only be coincidence that Sade's "Smooth Operator" was the backdrop fanning my inspiration.

Before I could embark on the journey that the desert was sure to take me on, I indulged in a robust expresso to recharge my appetite. Then the most decadent desert was presented in front of me...it was the long awaited evening attire which could only be likened to french lingerie with garter straps and stiletto heels. This seductive plate teased my every senses. The brownie exploded my mouth at first first bite. The texture was like milk chocolate fudge with a crispy bottom and rich chocolate balls and edible gold flakes balancing the richness with a matelic whip that made me submit, succumb to my exstacy of flavor and texture. The only thing I can imagine after this complete meal is deep sound sleep and fancifilled dreams.

  • Visited August 2013
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 5 of 5 stars Food
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Virginia
Reviewer
5 reviews 5 reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
“Hidden DC Gem”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 13, 2013

There are many great places to eat in DC, but I found that CityZen has the best service, ambiance, quality, and food for the price in this high-priced city. Every dish that I had was carefully prepared and executed flawlessly. Also, great selection of wines by the glass. Treat yourself to a wonderful dinner at CityZen.

Visited July 2013
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Senior Contributor
37 reviews 37 reviews
26 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 14 cities Reviews in 14 cities
11 helpful votes 11 helpful votes
“WOW, what an experience!!”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 18, 2013

We celebrated my sister-in-laws birthday at the CityZen, and it was quite an experience! The service was second to none, and if you have an adventurous palate, you are in for a treat! I loved the cheese course, as all of the origins of the cheeses were explained to us. My lemon dessert was just ok, but I was so full by the time that course arrived, I didn't really need dessert anyway! What a dinner!!

  • Visited June 2013
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 4 of 5 stars Food
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Washington DC, District of Columbia
Top Contributor
54 reviews 54 reviews
16 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 36 cities Reviews in 36 cities
60 helpful votes 60 helpful votes
“Solidly One of DC's Finest”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 2, 2013 via mobile

We recently made our first ever visit to CityZen this for our anniversary. They have a great reputation and our dinner confirmed most of the excellent reviews. The menu has both a Chef's tasting menu and a sort of "choose your own adventure" multicourse dinner. I think this is a great technique for a restaurant that caters almost exclusively for special occasions.
I loved my Peking Duck confit. My saddle of lamb was also delicious. Dessert was special and we were sent home with a delicious coffee cake.

Though the service was friendly and solid. They did have some rough spots. Again I stress that the team was very good, but considering they aspire to provide a Michelin Star level of service, this was just a bit off the mark. Our head waiter was knowledgable and provided excellent details about each dish as it arrived and fun context for the wine parings. We were seated with a whole row of couples celebrating their anniversaries and we enjoyed chatting with them along the banquette.

A word about the decor: I have to confess that I was a little disappointed, It seemed a bit too much California casual for my taste and the table-scape seemed plain. It felt not at all Asian or even connected to the Mandrin ethos. The bar nearby seemed convivial but small. (Only 8 total seats.) Odd for a hotel restaurant. It's a bit tired.

In summary, CityZen is a destination restaurant that lives up to the hype for its creative kitchen and excellent ingredients. Some other small things don't mar the experience, but also don't quite hold up to the very best international standards to which they aspire.

  • Visited May 2013
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
    • 5 of 5 stars Food
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