Food & Drink

How to Eat Your Way Through 20 Countries Without Leaving DC

Eat around the world without leaving town.

DC may be the epicenter of US history with monuments, museums, and other historical sites. But off the beaten path of the National Mall is a hotbed for international cuisine. The nation's capital is known for Ethiopian spots, so much so that they’ve become a tourist destination themselves, and Salvadorian food is part of the lifeblood in the international food scene. While some of the bigger names and smaller, more authentic spots are closed during the coronavirus shutdown, there’s still a chance to sample tastes from around the world at these 20 global restaurants in DC. 

Afghan: Bistro Aracosia

Palisades
Bistro Aracosia is a true Arghan chophouse with spicy kabobs and aromatic stews front and center on the menu. Now that the restaurant offers takeout, you can get a three-course family meal made for sharing or purchase pre-marinated meat like beef and lamb to take home and prepare yourself.
How to order: Order pickup or delivery within one mile by calling 202.363.0400

Balkan: Ambar

Clarendon
Run by Serbian natives with two DC locations and another in Belgrade, Ambar offers authentic Balkan food in the District. The Capitol Hill location is closed for renovations, but those in Clarendon can order the feast for two which includes a main course, pita bread, cornbread, house-made pickles, one spread, and three other sides (not to mention, Balkan-style tres leches for dessert) all for just $35.99.
How to order: Order takeout online

Dominican: Los Hermanos

Columbia Heights
Los Hermanos is a favorite of DC locals and one of the most-loved caterers in Major League Baseball. Now that the homey restaurant has closed its dining room, the family-run spot is offering favorites like sancocho, mofongo, and make-your-own platters of protein, rice, and a side to take home.
How to order: Order pickup or delivery on Grubhub

Ethiopian: Ethiopic

H Street Corridor
While the Ethiopian food DC is known for isn’t quite the same when you’re not in the restaurant pulling injera apart side-by-side, you can still have the cuisine at home. Ethiopic is offering dishes a la carte or you can opt for one of the restaurant’s samplers which include about five dishes atop enough spongy injera bread to share.
How to order: Order pickup or delivery online

Filipino: Purple Patch

Mount Pleasant
The menu at Purple Patch is made up of recipes that chef and owner Patrice Cleary’s mother developed while growing up in the Philippines. But alongside traditional fare like the thin rice noodle dish pancit bihon on the restaurant’s new takeout menu, there is some cuisine from other nations represented, too.
How to order: Order pickup or delivery online

French: Le Diplomate

Logan Circle
You can finally get a reservation at Le Diplomate. Well, maybe. The staple French restaurant is now offering takeout so steak frites, trout amandine, and the restaurant’s famous burger (flags and all) can be yours to take home. Pickup will be available from 1-8pm Tuesday through Sunday, but call early. This is one of the hardest spots to get a reservation in DC, after all.
How to order: Call 202.332.3333 for takeout or order takeout/delivery on Caviar or Doordash

Indian: Indigo

NoMa
Owners of Indigo are proud to have created “1,000 square feet of India in Washington, DC” and you can help them expand that slice by bringing expertly crafted Indian food to your own home. The Indigo has become known for its roti wrap, dubbed an indiroll, which is available for takeout alongside daily specials and platters with a main dish, rice, and side of chickpeas.
How to order: Order pickup or delivery online

Japanese: Daikaya

Penn Quarter
You can go many different directions with sushi varieties and other Japanese fare, but let’s be real: You need a comforting bowl of ramen right now. Daikaya’s popular ramen with shoyu, spicy miso, and other broths and Japanese noodles are now available in a deconstructed form so you can take it home and easily reassemble.
How to order: Order pickup online or delivery on Uber Eats

Korean: Anju

Dupont Circle
This contemporary Korean spot won DC over when it opened last year, and it’s now offering takeout so you can take refined classics like bibimbap and mandu for dinner with some panchan, or little side dishes, for eating alongside your main event.
How to order: Order pickup and delivery 24 hours in advance online

Lebanese: Me Jana

Clarendon
Named after a folk song that is meant to welcome friends, Me Jana is all about dine-in service hospitality. But the Lebanese restaurant is hoping to bring family and friends together (while staying apart) through its takeout menu of labneh, falafel, shawarma, and so much more.
How to order: Order pickup or delivery on Postmates, Caviar, Uber Eats, Grubhub, or Doordash

Mexican: Taqueria Habanero

Petworth
A husband and wife duo from Puebla, Mexico are bringing the flavors of their home to the table at a restaurant they call 99% Mexican. The new takeout menu is studded with handmade tortillas fashioned into tacos, quesadillas, and tortas, plus the taqueria offers heartier dishes like chicken molé and carne asada.
How to order: Order pickup by calling 202.722.7700

Nordic: Mikko

Dupont Circle
The Finnish chef behind Mikko is offering ready-to-eat meals like salmon potato casserole and lamb stew that you can eat right away or freeze to stock up. When you go to pick up your order, you can also get staple groceries like flour, pasta, beans, and rice from the restaurant.
How to order: Order takeout or delivery on Uber Eats, Caviar, or Grubhub

Peruvian: El Chalan

Downtown
El Chalan is said to be the oldest Peruvian restaurant in the District, so when you’re hankering for lomo saltado, there’s only one place to go. The well-known sauteed beef dish is on the menu alongside other classic dishes like causa and ceviche, but you’ll have to make your own pisco sours at home.
How to order: Order pickup by calling 202.293.2765 or order delivery on Postmates

Salvadoran: El Tamarindo

Adams Morgan
Pupusas are the ideal delivery food. They travel well and the warm, flavorful dish is an instant comfort (which we all could use right now). So stock up on pupusas with curtido and salsa at El Tamarindo, DC’s longest standing Mexican and Salvadoran restaurant.
How to order: Order takeout or delivery on Postmates, Grubhub, and Uber Eats

Swiss: Stable

H Street Corridor
The cozy alpine restaurant known for cheese on cheese on cheese is allowing you to have that experience at home. All the way down to the fondue pot. The restaurant’s takeout menu includes fondue and raclette, and you can even borrow the equipment used to serve it in house. If you don’t want to put down the $75 deposit, an array of fresh baked breads and pretzels are available alongside rotating dinner and brunch specials.
How to order: Order pickup or delivery online

Taiwanese: Maketto

H Street Corridor
Erik Bruner-Yang may be busy feeding the community through his Power of 10 initiative, but the second restaurant he opened in DC is putting out a take on Cambodian and Tawianese food. Menu favorites like the Cambodian noodle salad and bao varieties are available, and the restaurant has been running a pastry “bake sale” on Saturdays where you can order treats over the phone and pick them up at the restaurant.
How to order: Order pickup or delivery on Caviar

Thai: Little Serow

Dupont Circle
This cavernous dining room never took reservations, so lines ran out the door for a chance to try James Beard Award-winning chef Johnny Monis’ take on Northern Thai food. But now, you can get a taste of Little Serow packaged up to take home. The fixed, family-style menu has been thrown to the wayside in favor of dishes like lanna-style chicken laap and tom kha offered a la carte. Plus, the beer and wine menu is currently 40% off.
How to order: Order pickup online

Trinidadian: Cane

H Street Corridor
African, Indian, Spanish, French, and East Asian food and culture come together in Trinidad and Tobago, and these cuisines have been on full display at Cane since it opened last year. With its new takeout menu, you can get doubles, a Caribbean street food staple that consists of fried bread topped with cumin-spiced chickpeas, or parathan tiffin boxes filled with Indian bread and an assortment or curries and chutneys ready to be dipped and spread.
How to order: Order pickup or delivery on Caviar

Uyghur: Dolan Uyghur

Cleveland Park
This cuisine is hard to come by -- likely because the majority-Muslim Turkic group from northwest China are one of the smallest immigrant communities in America -- so don’t miss a chance to try something that is probably very new to you. The style of food blends flavors from many Asian countries, so expect bold spices, hand-pulled noodles, kebabs, and more.
How to order: Order pickup or delivery on Uber Eats

Vietnamese: Bún DC

Park View
Bún DC is fueled by a family drawing on memories of cooking and growing up in Southern Vietnam. The uninitiated may not have tried bún bò huế xả, a lemongrass vermicelli beef noodle soup, but the dish makes the perfect comfort meal, as does the restaurant’s steaming hot bowls of pho. The restaurant’s well-known sister spot, Pho Viet, is also open for takeout.
How to order: Call 202.412.6113 for takeout

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Liz Provencher is an editorial assistant and former DC dweller. Talk to her at lprovencher@thrillist.com, follow her on Twitter, or see what she eats on Instagram.