I’m not going to harp on the reasons why you need this guide. I’m sure there is a good explanation why you’re not traversing the icy tundra to make your way home this year. Whether your reasons are political, financial, or something else entirely, it doesn’t matter. You don’t have to go home to enjoy a quality Christmas meal. Wander into one of these lovely D.C. restaurants and surround yourself in good cheer. Plus, when you’re done, you can just catch an Uber home. No cleaning up required.
Christmas Eve @ Bastille
Best If: You can’t afford to fly to France for the holidays but you did get $100 from your grandparents.
Bastille’s four course prix fixe menu is sure to transport you to Paris even if only for a few hours. Choose from foie gras, riesling poached Maine lobster, and chocolate soufflé, but no matter what you pick, I’m sure you’re going to have a good time.
Christmas Eve @ Bernaise
Best If: You want some Food Network quality goodness but there’s no way in hell you’re getting a reservation at The Shaw Bijou anytime soon.
For a relatively cheap $35 per person, you could be spending Christmas Eve surrounded by prime rib and pumpkin profiteroles instead of lame relatives and burnt ham. Spring for the $15 wine pairings. Jesus would approve.
Christmas Day Buffet @ BLT Prime
Best If: You want to wrap up 2016 by eating the most insane sounding buffet of the year / hang out in the hotel our new president built.
Buffets are usually terrible, but this one includes heritage pork, champagne poached shrimp, southern fried Hudson Valley cornish hens, and so much more.
Christmas Eve Blackboard Menu @ BLT Steak
Price: $$ – $$$
Best If: You’re bougie enough t0 want truffles with every dish.
From 5 p.m. to 9:30 p.m. swing by BLT Steak to fill yourself with mushroom risotto, dry aged ribeye, and pecan pie. White truffles can be added to any and all entrees for $24. Truffles are great so we recommend you go for it. If you can’t be decadent this time of the year then when can you?
Christmas Eve @ Casa Luca
Best If: You want to eat like the goddamn President.
We’re huge fans of Casa Luca here at BYT, but more importantly, so are the Obamas. Their $90 Christmas Eve menu includes four courses. Choose from Wagyu Bresola, pappardelle, Hudson Valley duck breast, and a killer looking dessert menu. A wine pairing will cost you an extra $55, or you can down some $15 cocktails. Either way, it’s going be delicious.
Festive Christmas Eve Celebration @ DBGB
Price: $$ – $$$
Best If: You prefer a la carte options and also you’re hopping to score with someone who lives in City Center.
If you don’t like following rules, DBGB is throwing an a la carte Christmas celebration that might be exactly what you’re looking for. No need to settle on choosing an appetizer from a list of sad options you wouldn’t feed to your worst enemy, just grab a burger, order an Aviation and kick back.
Christmas Eve / First Night of Hanukkah @ Lincoln
Best if: You grew up in a multi-faith family and want all the things.
Lincoln is offering both a Hanukkah and a Christmas Eve menu on December 24th. While you technically can’t mix and match, I feel like this is the time of year no one will blink an eye if you go with a date / friend / enemy and share. It is the season of giving after all.
Christmas Eve @ McClellan’s Retreat
Best if: You want to get drunk and watch A Christmas Story but you don’t want to invite people over to your house.
McClellan’s Retreat has a variety of Christmas themed cocktails for you to drink and they’ll be screening A Christmas Story on a loop all night long.
Feast of Seven Fishes @ Osteria Morini
Best If: You love seafood more than life itself.
This four course menu is packed to the brim with seafood, so if you’ve been dreaming of squid ink pasta, swordfish, and crab, your decision has already been made.
Christmas Eve Happy Hour @ The Riggsby
Best If: You’re idea of a great meal is drinking good cocktails and then stumbling home to order Domino’s
If you’re looking for a more low key way to celebrate Christmas, then look no further. The Riggsby is offering all night happy hour to anyone who shows in up in an ugly Christmas sweater, and they’ll also have their special aged eggnog and mulled wine available. Pop by for a couple drinks, and then make your way home to order carryout and watch Netflix. You’re living the dream.
Christmas Eve & Christmas Day @ Rosa Mexicano
Best If: You eat guacamole for every meal and feel strongly that Christmas is no exception.
For $49 you could be spending Christmas Eve / Day eating your weight in Mexican food. Rosa Mexicano’s dinner begins with a dose of Guacamole en Molcajete, is followed by a healthy dose of flautas, and then you can choose from any of their special holiday entrees (which include things like chicharrón-crusted white fish and skewered and grilled filet mignon). There’s also a special spicy / pomegranate cocktail available, which honest to god sounds pretty damn good.
Falafel Frenzy @ 18th Street Lounge
Price: $ – $$
Best If: You have singular tastes and you want to rectify for all the garbage things you did in the year of our Satan 2016.
The Jewish Federation of Greater Washington and 18th Street Lounge are teaming up to raise money for charity. Get your $30 tickets in advance (or $40 if you purchase at the door) and enjoy a ton of falafel, drink specials, and a DJ. Plus no matter how many drunken mistakes you make on that dance floor, you’ll still be able to feel good about yourself the next morning.