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“Quiet, good food, poor service”
Review of The Oval Room

The Oval Room
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Ranked #231 of 3,368 Restaurants in Washington DC
Certificate of Excellence
Cuisines: American
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Restaurant details
Good for: Special occasions, Local cuisine, Business meetings, Romantic
Dining options: Lunch, Dinner, Reservations
Dining style: Casual Elegant
Neighborhood: Dupont Circle
Cross street: H & I
Transit: Faragut West (Orange and Blue Lines); Faragut North (Red Line)
Description: The Oval Room, an elegant & sophisticated restaurant, near Farragut Square across from the White House, which accounts for its popularity among politicians, journalists, lobbyists, lawyers, & former Presidents. The setting is contemporary & chic. It offers private dining. Its seasonal contemporary American cuisine has charmed critics & connoisseurs alike. USA Today said The Oval Room's flower-bedecked patio is one of the best outdoor dining experiences in the United States.
Reviewed September 23, 2012

I agree with David E entirely. I also had the Halibut: a different taste in each mouthful. The truffle pasta appetizer was alright, but I expected more richness to complement the truffle. The chocolate dessert was also wonderful.
I went with 3 other women who were not on expense accounts, so they only ordered a main course. The waiter was clearly disappointed by this and provided only very minimal attention and service. I asked for a wine recommendation from a female staff and received an excellent choice with a smile.
I would go back here for a special meal, but be prepared to spend $$$ in order to receive the service a place like this should offer every diner.

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1  Thank ProfandPres
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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173 - 177 of 276 reviews

Reviewed September 17, 2012

My wife and I had dinner tonight at the Oval Room. As others have mentioned, it is an upscale place so prices for entres were above average. We both had salads - my wife's beet salad was great with interesting flavors of passion fruit, ice wine and horseradish mixed in with the beets. I had a plain lettuce salad with balsamic dressing and goat cheese - pretty mundane. Our main courses were the halibut - perfectly cooked with a nice sauce and rock bass - also perfectly cooked but too salty for my taste (the waiter had told me it wasn't salty but it was). Desert was an unusual combination of sorbet, fresh blackberries, panna cotta and ice cream - very good but rather small portions of each.

Overall this is a good restaurant for those on an expense account that want a quiet place for conversation. I thought the portion sizes for the price were small, especially the vegetables which seem to be an after-thought or just an accent for the chef. I much preferred Georgia Browns, also in the same neighborhood, which features southern soul food in a more comfortable atmosphere - with far more generous portions and less expensive.

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1  Thank David E
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed September 13, 2012

Ate here on my last evening in DC. Found this place using the Tripadvisor DC app. Sat outside as it was a warm evening. This is an upmarket restaurant, so fairly pricey, although still good value by UK standards. I had the three course pre-theatre menu (Ordered on the dot of 6.30pm - after that time it's not available) and the food was superb. Crab spring roll for starters, very tender sliced beef for the main, and delicious cherry pie and ice cream for dessert, all for $35. I agree with previous reviewers that the portions are not particularly large, but I left feeling full, so no complaints!

1  Thank 292Peter
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed September 4, 2012

This is a beautiful dining room with low noise levels so this adds to the delightful meal experience. The sauces accompanying each course were out of this world. The emphasis on fresh local ingredients brings each course to life. There was four of us and all meals and courses were outstanding. The service was very good.

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1  Thank FuzzyBeaver
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 28, 2012

The hype about this restaurant is strong, but my expereince was that is was better than okay, but not as original as I thought it would be. It is expensive-figure $70 per person if you have some wine. The food was tasty, well-presented and portioned so that you won't overeat. I just expected more. The butternut sqush soup that I had was very good, but the tenderloin was just enderloin. Perhaps I expected too much.Worth a one-time visit.

Oh - I got really dressed up and felt a bit overdressed, so if you go, dress nicely but not in envening wear.

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1  Thank Manon M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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