In a perfect world, getting dressed for dinner would be a relaxing-yet-inspiring occurrence, where you can experiment with new looks and take your time crafting the perfect ensemble for the occasion. But, you're not Lady Mary, and there's usually not much time to dawdle in front of your closet.
That's where we come in, with suggestions for three new, must-visit dining destinations and a perfectly on-point outfit for each one. Whether you're craving tacos, modern pub fare, or a big, juicy steak, there's something here to satisfy your appetite. As for finding more time to walk around in your undies and complain about having nothing to wear? Sorry, can't help you there.
Craving a casual hangout with friends over fish tacos, margs, and other Mexican street-fare dishes? Head to the new U Street hotspot El Rey, a beer-garden-inspired offering from nightlife gurus Eric and Ian Hilton. Keep your look on the low-key side — the space is constructed from shipping containers, after all — with a chic sweatshirt, the perfect pair of boyfriend jeans, and a statement shoe.
El Rey, 919 U Street NW; 202-506-6418.
Clockwise from top left: Mango Sequin Cotton Sweatshirt, $39.99, available at Mango; Paige Jimmy Jimmy Skinny Mid-Rise Boyfriend Jeans, $189, available at Net-A-Porter; Anthropologie Pariente Paisley Scarf, $48, available at Anthropologie; Accessorize Leather Mari Tote Bag, $155, available at Accessorize; Joie Lexington Heels, $325, available at Joie.
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For a special occasion (or just because you're feeling special), head to the newly opened Joe's location near McPherson Square. Treat yourself to the famed stone crab claws, or indulge your Paleo side with a perfectly seared steak — either way, you'll leave feeling fully satisfied. Opt for a modern take on the dress-and-jacket combo by choosing a bold-printed frock and a graphic jacket. The result is maximum impact with minimal effort — who doesn't love that? A sleek bootie and simple earrings finish off the look.
Joe's Seafood, Prime Steak & Stone Crab, 750 15th Street NW; 202-489-0140.
Clockwise from top left: IRO Lizzie Printed Jacket, $598, available at Intermix; Clover Canyon Cuban Step Dress, $366.75, available at Oxygen Boutique; BaubleBar Sundial Spike Studs, $28, available at BaubleBar; Scoop NYC Perfect Pair Solid Tights, $26, available at Scoop; ASOS Leather Quilted Cross Body Bag, $83.34, available at ASOS; Ivanka Trump Anders Bootie, $159.95, available at Nordstrom.
The focus of City Tap House, a new gastropub in Mount Vernon Square, is twofold: craft beer and modern American pub food. To go with your perfect pint, opt for the flatbreads, which got high marks in a slew of early reviews, or the daily supper special, which includes dishes like chicken and waffles, crispy pork shank, and a local, seasonal fish selection. Since classic comfort food calls for an equally classic (and comfortable) ensemble, choose a pair of tailored trousers and layer on a dainty blouse and chic sweater. A punchy suede loafer adds just the right amount of sunny flair.
City Tap House, 801 I Street NW; 202-644-9433.
Clockwise from top left: Dusen Dusen Copper Pleated Pants, $200, available at Bona Drag; Loren Hope Perla Cuff, $188, available at Loren Hope; French Connection Summer Mozart Ribbed Jumper, $78, available at French Connection; Zara Braided Leather Messenger Bag, $129, available at Zara; Topshop Scallop Neck Tank, $32, available at Topshop; Gap Suede Loafers, $59.95, available at Gap.