27 Comment

  • I am hearing that it is going to be re-done and turned into a Sports bar.

  • I tried going there once. I stood there for 2-3 minutes while the hostess ignored me. When I greeted her, she asked what I wanted. I suggested a table. She said no, it’ll be a wait. I asked how long. She didn’t know. It was the most unwelcoming restaurant I had ever gone to. And yes, I was dressed appropriately and have good hygiene. Never bothered to try to go there again.

  • Ugh…not another sports bar. Seems like U Street is turning into Adams-Morgan. I’m still made about Bistro La Bonne becoming Sudhouse.

    • Another sports bar? I don’t know of one (except for Nellie’s but not my scene).

      If you could tell me where, then I’d actually agree with your assessment.

      • Yeah, seriously. And there’s only one sports bar in Adams Morgan that I can think of (Ventnor).

      • Tsar of Truxton

        I agree with you. There used to be Touchdown and Duffy’s (technically an Irish pub but really just a sports bar), but I can’t think of much else. There is Climax, which I think might be a sports bar, but I have never been in there. I think DC as a whole doesn’t have too many sports bars other than near the stadiums.

    • A good sports bar in this area would be a welcome addition.

      • +1 – My friends and I always lament the fact that there is nowhere to watch sports in the 14/U area. Nellies is awesome but gets too crowded!

        • Come on folks, it’s like you are not even trying that hard to find a TV…
          Brixton shows a ton of games (multiple screens)
          El Rey always has games on the TV (usually 2 or 3 games simultaneously)
          DC-9 has whatever the most popular games are on their 2 crappy TVs
          Solly’s has tons of different games on multiple screens
          Vinoteca shows games at the main bar
          That crappy Mexican place at the corner of 13th/U has TVs….
          You can watch sports at Lost Society.
          You people are helpless.

          • Tsar of Truxton

            No one said there are no TVs on U Street. They said there is no sports bar other than Nellies. If you can’t understand the difference between a sports bar and a bar that has a few TVs then I don’t know what to tell you.

          • Bar with TV showing sports =\= sports bar.

          • Agree with anon and Mark- a sports bar has multiple TV’s with sound. If you can’t hear the announcers and the play by play, then it is not a sports bar.

            I will miss Ulah though- their crab cakes benedict was amazing for brunch.

  • I’ve been a couple of times. It’s pleasant enough, but nothing about this restaurant stands out in my mind.

  • Oh no! I’ve always liked their pizzas and sandwiches.

  • Tsar of Truxton

    I always found it to be a decent spot for a cheap(ish) meal. They usually had some good deal on booze. That said, I haven’t been back since I moved away from that area. Not worth the trip with so many other options around.

  • Back in the day — let’s call that the first five years of operation, as it has been open for at least 10 years if not 12-years — it was a great, well-priced go-to place. However, over the last 3-years, the prices have become 14th-Street-like so I bid it adieu a year or two ago.

  • Anonomnom

    I liked this place. Their brunch was a reasonable price, and I could always convince my girls to go there for mimosas while I watched football on the many screens. Was kind of my go-to for a sports brunch… Which is ironic if it is becoming a sports bar.

  • Dang…Ulah Bistro is/was one of my favorites….for what it is/soon to be was… Decent, accessible food. No, the the service wasn’t exactly welcoming…..but I think that may have been largely attributable to the cultural differences represented by the non-native (Eastern European???) staff. They seemed to embrace the European “bistro” standard of ‘what do you want?’….’here’s your food AND (since I presume that you don’t need anything else – and in recognition of the fact that I won’t be returning your table) here’s the check’. Cest la vie. Still, once you ‘got the joke’ you relaxed and had a good time with your dining companion(s). BTW, went to a few hosted, large group events on the second floor….always treated well and had a good time. Ulah Bistro will be missed!

  • Before the 14th Street restaurant scene became uber-popular, Ulah used to draw a decent crowd, at least on weekends. When I dined there a few months ago on a Saturday evening, I was surprised how quiet it was.

  • I’d be sad if I hadn’t just been there a month or so ago and seen how downhill it had gone. A few years back, they routinely offered $40 for $20 groupons, and that made this place an amazing deal. Go with a friend or a date, order a pizza and a pricey entree like the steak frites, and the $20 groupon covered the whole thing – you just left tip, and paid for drinks if you wanted one. The crowd seemed lively but friendly, and the place seemed welcoming, and you could carry on a conversation. I must have bought 20 of those groupons over the years – I picked one up every time it came out, and ate there once every few weeks for over a year.
    Then, I went back the last time. The prices have gone up, the quality of the food (and the service) has gone down, and the environment sucked. They cranked up the volume on the music three different times while we were there till finally we just paid and left and went somewhere else for an after-dinner drink.
    I miss the Ulah that used to be there, but I won’t miss the Ulah that’s there now if it goes.

    • To be fair, groupons are probably part of what killed it. It got to the point where no one was paying full price and the managers would not just ride it out. They kept doing more groupons. You can’t make money when everything is basically half price. When no one will go to your business without a groupon, you have got a big problem.

  • Went to Ulah some time ago and the food was OK. Seating was odd and service was so-so. I’ll say that Ulah has been more decent than some of the immediate neighboring establishments (two of which are now also closed). It’s so noisy there near the Metro exit, and it doesn’t feel particularly safe or welcoming with younger people hanging out in the area these days. Buskers set up their musical equipment on a regular basis now and are very loud. Around the bend on 14th Street, it is equally busy and bustling, but it doesn’t feel as uncomfortable. There are dislikable groups of motorcycle riders also parking on U Street, by 7-Eleven and Ben’s, and they intentionally are revving their engines up to ridiculously loud levels. Its been happening for hours at a time, in the evenings on the weekends, and it’s extremely unpleasant. Who can’t see and hear why this section is failing because it’s being disadvantaged by noise?

  • Very sad. It will likely to become another “concept restaurant”. How about something by Rich Sandoval – how original.
    DC restaurant scene is becoming a little too much of the same thing – Logan Tavern, The Pig, etc….

  • If you live in the area – and have lived in the area for at least the past 6 or 7 years (and not just since the Trader Joes opened) – Ulah has always been a pretty good place to hit up and get drinks and get food. I met a lot of good people there and the staff has always been really great and welcoming. As the neighborhood is now, it doesn’t surprise me if it closes. It tried to remodel a bit but it never really found an identity in the mix of all the new restaurants. I will miss it, but mainly for reasons of nostalgia than because it offers much of anything new and interesting.

  • Confirmed today with one of the managers-it’s been sold. Last day is Tuesday. Boo. They feed us well every week. Staff and the ambience will be greatly missed. Will have to find somewhere else to avoid the hipsters. Ugh. Certainly not going to Lupo Verde.

  • Agree with others. It used to be a great place but has gone downhill in recent years.

  • I went here in 2008 to watch the election results, back then U Street had a handful of bars and each were pretty crowded LOL. After Barack Obama won everyone in Ulah hugged each other, the bartender gave out drinks and crowds rushed into U Street where we danced, cried and screamed and cried again. Such great memories, still have the video documenting it.

    It’s a pity so many places in DC where I had so many wonderful memories are now dead and gone. Oh well.

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