Judging Restaurants – Bistro Italiano


Bistro Italiano is located at 320 D Street, NE not too far from Union Station. I love stumbling upon these tiny spots. Some folks from Yelp say the pizza is pretty good. Any fans out there? Besides the pizza how are the other options?

21 Comment

  • Bistro Italiano is probably one of my favorite spots on capital hill. I’ve always had good food there. I think they mostly do a busy lunch business.

  • This place rocks. A true neighborhood Italian joint.

  • Agreed with the two posters above. It’s tiny inside and almost always packed for dinner (not sure about lunch). Nothing fancy or gourmet about it, but good Italian comfort food in a neighborhood place. I love it!

  • Just throwing in my agreement with everyone else – this is a really good place. In fact, my wife and I went on one of our first dates here. The pizza is delicious, and all the other dishes I’ve had there have been solid, good Italian fare.

  • I hate to bring more crowds to this place because it means less room for me…but more business for them, which they deserve a zillion times over.

    I think it’s the best pizza I’ve ever had. And my friends and family think the veggie lasagna and manicotti are the best of those they’ve ever had. And it’s dirt cheap relative to other DC restaurants.

  • Some of the best delivery pizza in D.C., definitely the best delivery pizza on the Hill (tho sadly not open Sundays and Mondays). Dirt-cheap entrees that are actually edible. What’s not to like?

  • hidden (maybe not anymore!) gem. love the atmosphere and the food. its heavy stuff, but full of flavor.

    a little tip — if you are there and are going to the bathroom, take a whif of the kitchen as you walk by. what a smell!

  • Since Restaurant AV folded, I’ve been looking for a good, cheap white pizza. Bistro Italiano’s comes very close to approximating the original. One of the better cheap Italian American red check tablecloth joints in DC.

  • thanks for the tip – however now i’m guessing it will be jam packed with PoP readers.

  • I enjoy this little place, but other comments make me think it’s incredible, and it’s not. It’s simple, usually terrible service, sometimes dirty silverware and glasses, you will be in your neighbors’ conversations and the cheap food is better than the higher-priced items. It’s an unpolished stone, but an enjoyable one.

  • Was a favorite lunch spot for me when I worked at the Postal Museum by Union Station. Haven’t been since moving jobs but now I have a real craving…perhaps dinner tonight?

  • I really love this place. It does get REALLY loud with the nice tile floor and tile ceiling, but the pastas are good, I especially like the basics, the spaghetti with meatballs and the calimari pasta with the fra diavolo sauce. My girlfriend has gotton some of the cream sauce pastas and pronouced them good also. The wine is pretty reasonably priced for both both bottles and by the glass. Not a huge selection, but its drinkable stuff.

  • Decent, cheap Italian food completely free of pretension, which is a rarity on the Hill. But those claiming it’s the best pizza/spaghetti/anything they’ve had need to get out more.

  • This place is kind of terrible–on the other hand, it’s authentically terrible, like many mediocre Italian restaurants in Rome!

  • This place is great. When I lived on the Hill I would go at least once a month. Consistent, good service, great, authentic food…. and all without a pretentious atmosphere. What more could you ask for?

  • We always order our delivery pizza from here and the pizza is really good. Unfortunately all the other Hill delivery pizza places are terrible. As much as I want to support Citipizza, ugh.

  • Mappo, if you actually read the comments instead of merely being a crank, no one actually said it’s the best Italian food they’ve ever had. It is what it is: cheap, decent, honestly made Italian food. No one’s claiming it’s Tosca, nor does the restaurant aspire to be.

  • I used to live a few blocks from here and ate at the restaurant quite a few times. The pizza and other items are fine and comparatively cheap, but it’s definitely not worth a special trip. It was better a few years ago; one of the last times I was there, they were unloading boxes of frozen food (chicken piccata and the like), so I’m not sure how much of the cooking they actually do on site.

  • What makes this place amazing is its complete lack of pretension. When so many restaurants in DC strive for a ‘scene’ of sorts, this place exists and thrives on solid food, cozy space, and cheap prices. My girlfriend used to live a couple of blocks away and this was always a go-to place. Great neighborhood spot.

  • We always order our delivery pizza from here and the pizza is really good.

    As far as I know, they don’t deliver–they only take pick-up orders.

  • Ok. I’m not sure that this place is as cheap for dinner as people have written. Even so, I really love this place for its neighborhood feel. It’s not pretentious. There’s people dressed nicely and other in jeans. There’s folks waiting for take out and it’s got cute decor. It’s a nice place to take your parents or out of town friends and it doesn’t demand formality.

    Things I like about it:
    The food is hot and always tasty. (I have not had the pizza, but now I think I should try it.)
    The wines are always decent and reasonably priced.
    The house wine is often a good Chianti.
    It’s not as crowded as some people have said it is. There have been week nights I’ve gone where it’s half-empty.
    The service is always nice.

    Things I dislike about it:
    It’s very loud inside.
    The service can be extremely slow due to a staffing levels. (One time there was only one server working the whole floor. But that’s never stopped us from coming back.)
    The food can be over-salted. I don’t mind that, but for someone with a heart condition, I would warn them.

Comments are closed.