Best Bistro

Montsouris
2002 P St NW, Washington, DC 20036, (202) 833-4180

Chef Stephane Lezla co-owns two of the best bistros in D.C., but I’ve always been fond of the one he squeezed into the old Johnny’s Half Shell space on P Street NW, near Dupont Circle. Its vibe is more relaxed than its self-consciously chic sibling, Montmartre on Capitol Hill; Montsouris doesn’t try to score easy style points with French poster art or umbrella-shaded patio tables for the see-and-be-seen crowd. Its charms are all on the plate, particularly when that plate is brimming with beef. It could be the hanger steak, charred, cut perfectly against the grain, and fanned on the plate, or an entrecôte béarnaise, a generous slab of rib-eye that delivers a wallop of beef and butter flavor. Or it could even be the poached and roasted beef bone marrow, which when slathered on grilled rustic bread, becomes the best slathered toast you’ll ever eat.

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