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Travelers' Choice2023
RATINGS
Food
Service
Value
Atmosphere

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CUISINES
American
Meals
Lunch, Dinner, Late Night
FEATURES
Gift Cards Available, Takeout, Seating, Wheelchair Accessible, Accepts Credit Cards
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Reviews (2,172)
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LanguageEnglish
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Traveler rating
813
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314
116
74
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All reviews chili dog chili cheese fries turkey burger half smoke u street an institution metro stop worth the wait milkshakes virginia neighborhood joint
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Reviewed 4 weeks ago via mobile

Ben's Chili Bowl is iconic and a must stop when visiting DC! The half smokes with Chili are delicious! Mrs. Ali is a real gem too! ❤️ We loved our visit to Ben's Chili Bowl!

Date of visit: April 2024
Helpful?1  
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
Reviewed April 7, 2024 via mobile

The most popular , delicious , historical hot dogs ever. My wife and I went there for lunch. I chose half smoked chili which is the most famous one.it was delicious. The price is reasonable. The most attractive part was the atmosphere. Virginia ( Ben...& Virginia founders from1950) Was there we took photos. Lots of photos on the wall. It is a must see in dc. Highly recommended.More

Date of visit: March 2024
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Reviewed March 9, 2024 via mobile

The Original Chili Half Smoke in a truly American ambiance: hot dog with sausage, chili con carne, onions and mustard … visited by many presidents all around the world 🤫

Date of visit: March 2024
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Reviewed February 12, 2024 via mobile

I was in the area and decided to try and get a seat. Not easy. I got lucky and was able to be seated. I had the chili dog and fries. Oftentimes the hype is way greater than the product but not here. I loved...the dog and the chili that had a little kick to it. And the owner herself waited on me and was so nice.More

Date of visit: February 2024
Helpful?1  
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
Reviewed February 8, 2024

Ben's is just about the best known eatery in Washington, DC. There are now other Ben's outlets (there is even one in Reagan National Airport) but this one is the original. The house specialty is the Half Smoke Chili Dog but you can get plenty...of other food as well. Right near the Metro Green Line U Street stop.More

Date of visit: February 2024
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Reviewed December 30, 2023 via mobile

It’s been years since we last visited this iconic place. First opened in 1958, it has been a staple since then. We ordered two large bowls of the con carne chili. Same surprise and oh so delicious. The only problem is parking nearby.

Date of visit: December 2023
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Reviewed December 26, 2023

Got 2 half smokes with one turkey and the other beef chili, a side of turkey chili cheese fries and a sweet tea to round out the meal. A bit salty for my taste but the (very) sweet tea balanced it out.

Date of visit: December 2023
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Reviewed December 18, 2023 via mobile

This place is on every list if you’re traveling to Washington, and it is worth it. Order the 1/2 smoke all the way and you’ll experience a culinary masterpiece.

Date of visit: November 2023
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Reviewed December 3, 2023 via mobile

Other reviews mention the nice atmosphere- my idea of a nice atmosphere does not include music blaring with multiple expletives. I’m shocked this flies for a restaurant with such a “legacy of love”.

Date of visit: December 2023
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Reviewed November 5, 2023 via mobile

Great Chilli Bowl, dropping in here on a rainy evening. Loved it. Great servers and atmosphere. Tasty food. What's not to like.

Date of visit: October 2023
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Reviewed November 5, 2023

I was jaunting down U Street Washington, DC went I noticed the full wall marque for Ben's Chili Bowl, you'd have to be blind not to notice. I was hungry so I ventured in and was warned to try the original chili, half smoked...........a grilled...hot dog served in a steamed bun with mustard, onions and spicy chili sauce. I was brought up on Michigan Red Hots .....but this chili concoction was awesome. I bought 2 more to take back to my hotel to warm up in the micro later...this is chili fit for the President.More

Date of visit: September 2023
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Reviewed October 31, 2023

Mid asf, nice burger, but it messed with my stomach and I didn’t like that. The pink lemonade was gas tho I can’t even lie.

Date of visit: October 2023
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Reviewed October 20, 2023

Went to the U Street restaurant and had a Half Smoke with the works. Excellent food and a great atmosphere. And, we even got to speak to Virginia. We’ll worth a visit!

Date of visit: October 2023
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Reviewed October 7, 2023

Ben's Chili Bowl has never been more popular. On a Saturday afternoon at 2 o'clock, the line was practically out the door. Considering all this, the quality remains sterling and the service is reasonably quick. I'm happy to report that this iconic chili spot is...absolutely worthy of all its acclaim. I ordered the chili con carne, which was unapologetically spicy--a bold and rich flavor made a trifle more mild with shredded cheddar and a dollop of sour creme. Diced onions further added to the punch of heat. I adore the sweet tea here. It's the best I've had anywhere. This sugary treat made perfect relief for my chili's spice. The onion rings at Ben's are crispy and light. The atmosphere is celebratory and casual, with classic hits blaring over a jukebox. In a constantly changing city, this diner has lasted so long for a reason. I'm confident it will continue to serve happy customers like myself for decades to come.More

Date of visit: October 2023
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Reviewed September 19, 2023

Great food and always friendly staff. Everyone treats you like family. It is a must every time I go to DC.

Date of visit: September 2023
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Questions & Answers
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12razirivi
December 31, 2020|
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Response from L4775EOsueh | Reviewed this property |
Not that I know of
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P6952LOjoeyc
January 28, 2020|
AnswerShow all 2 answers
Response from WizardofAz60 | Reviewed this property |
Yes there are beans in the chili.
1
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Alecia W
August 27, 2018|
AnswerShow all 7 answers
Response from Betty P | Reviewed this property |
Looks like you already have an answer but the half smokes with chili is the main reason to go. The best ever! There is a Bens 2 right next door that serves really great margaritas but you miss the atmosphere of the original... More
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BEN'S CHILI BOWL, Washington DC - 1213 U St NW - Menu, Prices & Restaurant Reviews - Order Online Food Delivery - Tripadvisor

Frequently Asked Questions about Ben's Chili Bowl

Yes, Ben's Chili Bowl offers takeout services.

Ben's Chili Bowl is rated accordingly in the following categories by Tripadvisor travelers:
  • Food: 4
  • Service: 4
  • Value: 4
  • Atmosphere: 4