Nestled in charming Bloomingdale, the rustic Red Hen is a golden egg of D.C.’s dining scene. Chef/owner Michael Friedman (also of All Purpose Pizza) has created an inviting home for culinary pleasures like the cool taste of soft, bulbous burrata and classics like an elevated rigatoni pasta with fennel sausage ragu. Inspired by Italian and Jewish traditions, the vibe is familial, and thoughtful attention is paid to each dish, drink, and decor detail. The best seats are at the bar next to the open kitchen, where you can watch the grilling, flipping, frying, chopping, baking, and plating. Don’t leave without dessert—the maple custard with a caramelized hazelnut crumble will transport you.
“It’s one of D.C.’s hippest spots right now. Look for rustic, comforting dishes; the wood-grilled chicken is spot-on. Don’t miss the funky orange wines the bar serves by the glass, either.” —Local food blogger Zach Patton of The Bitten Word on his essential eats in the District. This appeared in the March/April 2015 issue.