Since 1955, Michelin has been highlighting restaurants that offer “exceptionally good food at moderate prices”. Today, though, they refer to this distinction as the Bib Gourmand. The name, it turns out, may sound elegant, but it is actually quite adorable. Bib is short for Bibendum which is the name of one of the world’s oldest trademarks – we know him as the Michelin Man. Gourmand, by definition, is a person who enjoys eating and often eats too much. So, while you’re grinning thinking about the Michelin Man enjoying good food at a reasonable price, you may want to plan a visit to Washington, D.C. to enjoy their 2018 Bib Gourmand restaurants – we’ve highlighted those which are new to the list this year.
Twenty-Two Make the List
For 2018, Michelin awarded 22 restaurants in Washington, D.C. the Bib Gourmand – up three from the prior year. This is impressive out of a field of 102 restaurants and 440 hotels and inns that the committee reviewed. Clearly, there are a number of quality restaurants in the city, including 14 earning a Michelin Star, three of which earned two stars.
The Full Bib Gourmand List
Most of the restaurants earning the Bib Gourmand for 2018 are returning favorites, however, there are three (as indicated) that are new. We’ve profiled those which are new to the list below.
- Bad Saint
- China Chilcano
- Doi Moi
- Hazel (new)
- Ivy City Smokehouse (new)
- Ottoman Taverna
- Pearl Dive Oyster Palace
- The Red Hen
- Sfoglina (new)
- Thip Khao
The Washington Post’s Tom Sietsema describes Hazel as ““Sophisticated but not stuffy, Hazel feels like the right restaurant at the right time”. With its comfortable, casual yet modern atmosphere, Hazel’s Executive Chef Robert Rubba notes that “each and every aspect of our dining experience is a personal and thoughtful reflection. Our menu is a collection of distinctive and satisfying medium size plates featuring global influences – each has a story and is meant to be shared.”
Ivy City Smokehouse
Situated in the heart of a cool newish neighborhood that became a popular destination in 2015, Ivy City Smokehouse took the name of the neighborhood and established itself as an anchor. Whether you visit for the market, the tavern, the music, or the smokehouse, you’ll find that they’ve remained true to the area.
Historically, Ivy City was a center of food craftsmanship and social gathering in Washington, DC. 150 years or so ago, county fairs and racetracks drew the movers and shakers of the city. Ivy City SmokeHouse is committed to revitalizing the spirit of this part of the city.
Sfoglina is steeped in Italian tradition as they describe themselves, “Sfoglina is a Fabio Trabocchi Restaurant, named for the female artisans and Italian cultural icons that carry on the tradition of rolling sheets of pasta by hand with a rolling pin, a technique passed through the generations.” Under the direction of Chef Fabio Trabocci, Maria Font Trabocchi, and Executive Chef Michael Fusano, Sfoglina and their fresh pasta and creative Italian dishes will reinvigorate your love of the carb.
As Washington, D.C. becomes more of a food haven leading us all to flock to the city, where will you begin on the Bib Gourmand list? Should you decide to take your dining experience further, you’ll want to visit these Michelin Star Restaurants in Washington, D.C.