The nation’s capital may very well have one of the best assortments of seafood restaurants along the East Coast. Icons like Occidental Grill & Seafood and Old Ebbitt Grill have been serving the political and social elite for decades. Most great seafood restaurants in D.C. serve sustainably sourced fish and seafood, and no matter how you like your fresh catch, you’ll find something spectacular in Washington, D.C. Certain attractions may be temporarily closed or require advance reservations. Hours/availability may have changed.

1.Fiola Mare

Fiola Mare
© Fiola Mare

Georgetown epicurean restaurant Fiola Mare is one of three Fabio Trabocchi restaurants in Washington, D.C. This impeccably tasteful waterfront seafood restaurant is the place to rub shoulders with Washington’s political and social elite. It’s been featured in national publications like O Magazine, Travel + Leisure, and Hollywood Reporter as well as in countless notable D.C. outlets.

Fiola Mare is committed to sourcing sustainable seafood for its high-end menus. Diners can expect exquisitely prepared dishes like smoked potato gnocchi with fresh Carolina shrimp, whole John Dory fish carved tableside, and Japanese A5 Miyazaki Wagyu beef with winter black truffle jus.

3050 K St NW, Washington, DC 20007, Phone: 202 525 1402

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2.Old Ebbitt Grill

Old Ebbitt Grill
© Old Ebbitt Grill

The Old Ebbitt Grill has a long history in the nation’s capital dating back to 1856, when it was a local favorite for Presidents Cleveland, Harding, Grant, and Theodore Roosevelt. It’s stunning interior features a Beaux-Arts façade, brass and chamfered glass, with mahogany and velvet booths still providing allure to the celebrities, political insiders, theater-goers, and journalists of today.

When you add the close-proximity of museums and the White House to the delights of their upscale menu, you have all the makings of a local hot-spot. Visitors will enjoy dining on extravagant tavern-style American food such as braised short rib pappardelle paired with a glass of wine from their extensive selection.

675 15th Street, NW Washington, DC, Phone: 202-347-4800

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3.Farmers Fishers Bakers

Farmers Fishers Bakers
© Farmers Fishers Bakers

Farmers Fishers Bakers has the unusual distinction of being majority-owned by a national group of family farmers. Their Farmers Market Brunch, an all-you-can-eat buffet featuring everything from warm cinnamon rolls, eggs Benedict, and house-cured ham to sushi, tacos, and honey pot fried chicken, has earned it a spot among America’s 100 best brunches.

The restaurant’s Fishers Tiki bar has landed on numerous “Best of” tiki bar lists in D.C. Signature tiki cocktails include Tiki Enlightenment, Silencio Nights, and 1703 Cocktail. They also have 24 beers on tap and an array of farm-to-still proprietary drinks. First Bake is all about the baked goods served early weekday mornings.

3000 K Street NW, Washington, DC, Phone: 202-298-8783

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4.Seafood restaurants in DC: Luke's Lobster

Seafood restaurants in DC: Luke's Lobster
© Luke's Lobster

Luke’s Lobster has been an East Village standard since 2009, and has racked up print and digital accolades ever since, even winning the Today Show’s “Best Lobster Roll” contest. Founder Luke Holden is building a veritable lobster shack dynasty, and Washington, D.C., is the beneficiary of a Penn Quarter location.

What makes this restaurant unique is their ability to partner with fishermen they know sans middlemen, and therefore trace sustainable catches to their source. Diners at Luke’s can expect top-of-the-line bisques and chowders; their famous lobster, crab, and shrimp rolls; chilled crab claws and lobster tail; and seasonal favorites like lobster grilled cheese and Wild Blue lobster tail salad.

624 E Street NW, Washington, DC, Phone: 202-347-3355

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5.BlackSalt Restaurant

BlackSalt Restaurant
© BlackSalt Restaurant

BlackSalt Restaurant has been making regular appearances on Washington Magazine’s annual “100 Best Restaurants” list since shortly after opening in 2004. Diners can expect the freshest seafood from sustainable sources prepared with an array of global influences, like their Thai or Belgian blue shell mussels. Menu favorites include salmon tartare, butter-poached lobster, assorted caviar, and fried Ipswich clams.

BlackSalt is one of the few restaurants where diners can delight in their favorite dishes and visit the fish market on the way out to take home the ingredients. The best dining advice is always to eat where the locals eat, and in Palisades, it’s BlackSalt.

4883 MacArthur Boulevard, Washington, DC, Phone: 202-342-9101

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6.Fish restaurants near me: Grillfish

Fish restaurants near me: Grillfish
© Grillfish

Grillfish is an Eatwell DC neighborhood restaurant in the West End. Eatwell DC restaurants thrive on sustainably sourced ingredients, including naturally raised produce from their own farm. The casual restaurant serves upscale fish, seafood, pasta, and meat dishes, and offers separate lunch, brunch, dessert, and children’s menus.

For dinner, guests can indulge in delectable entrées like pecan-crusted striped bass; seafood fra diavlo, a seafood pasta dish with spicy marinara; mahi mahi; and NY steak. Weekend brunches feature lobster, caviar, oysters, crab, shrimp, and steak. Their signature three-course brunch selection includes champagne, their original Bloody Mary, or another cocktail.

1200 New Hampshire Ave NW, Washington, DC 20036, Phone: 202-331-7310

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7.Joe's Seafood, Prime Steak and Stone Crab

Joe's Seafood, Prime Steak and Stone Crab
© Joe's Seafood, Prime Steak and Stone Crab

Located up the block from the White House in the nation’s capital, Joe’s Seafood, Prime Steak and Stone Crab restaurant is where Washington’s wheeler-dealers and power brokers make things happen over plates of Gulf stone crab, hand-carved porterhouse steak, and jumbo lobster tail. Diners will enjoy the people-watching almost as much as sharing The Whale – Alaskan king crab, lobster tail, jumbo shrimp cocktail, and shrimp & scallop ceviche – that’s priced per person.

Weekend brunch favorites include Colossal Lump Crab Cake Benedict and strawberry waffles. Daily extended cocktail hours feature oysters on the half shell, wine, tap beer, and signature cocktails at half price. Gluten-free, vegetarian, and kids’ menus are available.

750 15th Street NW, Washington, DC, Phone: 202-489-0140

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8.Occidental Grill & Seafood

Occidental Grill & Seafood
© Occidental Grill & Seafood

Located across the street from the White House, Occidental Grill & Seafood has been serving the famous and the powerful for over 110 years. Patrons over the years are a who’s who of American political and social celebrity, with names like Winston Churchill, Sandra Day O’Connor, Steven Spielberg, and Katie Couric.

This is the place to come for culinary classics like grilled filet mignon with glazed baby carrots and pan-roasted yellowfin tuna with black trumpet mushrooms. The midday menu ranges from an impressive charcuterie platter to a Black Angus burger with smoked bacon on a sweet potato bun. Come for the food; stay to see and be seen.

1475 Pennsylvania Avenue NW, Washington, DC, Phone: 202-783-1475

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9.Seafood Restaurants in DC: Pearl Dive Oyster Palace

Seafood Restaurants in DC: Pearl Dive Oyster Palace
© Pearl Dive Oyster Palace

When diners dive into the eats at Pearl Dive Oyster Palace, they do a double-take to be sure they’re still in Washington, D.C., and not New Orleans. Guests can get grilled bacon-wrapped oysters, wood-grilled oysters with red chili butter, signature Old Black Salt Oysters on the half shell, fried oyster po’ boys, oysters confit, oysters Rockefeller, or almost any other conceivable way there is to serve them.

Besides oysters, menu favorites include Pearl Dive’s gumbos, crawfish étouffée, wood-grilled Gulf redfish, and catfish BLT po’ boy. Guests will absolutely want to save room for one of their extraordinary Southern-inspired desserts.

1612 14th Street NW, Washington, DC, Phone: 202-319-1612

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10.Hot N’ Juicy Crawfish

Hot N’ Juicy Crawfish
© Hot N’ Juicy Crawfish

Regular travelers to Las Vegas, Tim and Laina, found that something was missing among the bright lights and lively streets: a good place to get crawfish. They decided they would be the ones to fill this need, and so Hot N’ Juicy Crawfish was established.

It’s grown into an empire over the years, with more than ten locations, including one in the nations’ capital, for hot n’ spicy enthusiasts everywhere. Owners encourage their patrons to “dine on the kind of crawfish that doesn’t need pretense, special occasions, or utensils” in a casual atmosphere of brick and dark wood with high-definition televisions.

2651 Connecticut Ave, NW Washington, DC, Phone: 202-299-9448

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11.Best seafood in DC: Kellari Taverna

Best seafood in DC: Kellari Taverna
© Kellari Taverna

The Kellari Taverna restaurant in Washington, D.C., showcases its Greek heritage from the spacious dining room with close-set tables to the waters from which they get their seafood. Guests will enjoy dining on white linens in a room decorated with warm colors offering an inviting Grecian fine-dining experience.

The restaurant maintains their authentic heritage by importing their fish, cheese, oil, and balsamic vinegar straight from Greece and the Mediterranean. Guests will enjoy everything from their marinated assorted saganaki to main dishes like their signature Greek barbouni, perfectly complemented by one of their more than 300 Greek and international wines.

1700 K Street N.W, Washington, DC, Phone: 202-535-5274

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12.Seafood restaurants in DC: Hank's Oyster Bar

Seafood restaurants in DC: Hank's Oyster Bar
© Hank's Oyster Bar

Hank’s Oyster Bar is the wildly successful casual restaurant of owner/chef Jamie Leeds. Since opening in 2005, it’s received accolades from the likes of Bon Appetit, The Washington Post, Gourmet, and Southern Living. The award-winning chef describes her menu as urban New England beach food.

Diners come back again and again for popular items like lobster rolls, chowder bowls, crab cakes, and of course, oysters served up in imaginative and delicious ways. Diners will want to try grilled Hog Island-style oysters when they’re on the menu. Oysters are dipped in a lemon-Tabasco garlicky butter sauce, and sprinkled with cheese and breadcrumbs before being broiled to perfection.

1624 Q Street NW, Washington, DC, Phone: 202-462-4265

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13.Pop’s SeaBar

Pop’s SeaBar
© Pop’s SeaBar

Pop’s SeaBar in Washington, D.C., is a self-described “mom & pop boardwalk-inspired” restaurant created by owners John and Justin who were influenced by family shore trips taken with their parents when they were young. This friendly, laidback eatery is meant for visitors who enjoy spending time with family and friends while dining on seriously scrumptious Eastern shore eats, and sipping their signature “Crush” cocktails.

Guests will enjoy flavorful dishes, like the Fried Oyster Sandwich created by Chef John Manolatos, while watching TV and drinking cold brews. For seafood lovers and raw enthusiasts, enjoy an afternoon slurping oysters at their raw bar.

1817 Columbia Road, NW, Washington DC, Phone: 202-534-3933

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17 Best Seafood Restaurants in Washington, DC

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