Answers from Our Experts (2)
Here are our favorite things to order at the Forbes Travel Guide Recommended Willard InterContinental in Washington, D.C.:
1. A mint julep. The Round Robin & Scotch Bar specializes in classic cocktails, but the mint juleps at this historic bar are particularly delicious.
2. French onion soup. At Cafe du Parc, the D.C. hotel's French bistro, try the French onion soup. Chef Antoine Westermann, an alumn of Le Buerehiesel in Strasbourg, France, brings serious street cred to this dish and all the fare on the French bistro’s menu. Westermann favors slow-cooked recipes that mimic “Grandmother’s cooking,” and helps fill the menu with unfussy but delicious offerings, ranging from the famous soup to seasonal favorites like the sous vide-braised pork shank flavored with lemon and fennel.
3. A barrel-aged cocktail. At the Occidental Grill & Seafood, the steak and seafood restaurant adjacent to the Willard, sidle up to the bar and order a barrel-aged cocktail. Like an aged whiskey or rye, these drinks take on the flavors of the barrel they are aged in. On our visit, the offerings included a curiously strong Manhattan made with Maker’s Mark whisky, vermouth, bitters and brandied cherries.
4. The Occidental Grill & Seafood side dishes. Meals are hearty at the Occidental, but the sides are a delicious steal at $9. We loved the sautéed Brussels sprouts with pancetta and lobster mashed potatoes that have more buttery lobster than a Maine lobster roll.
5. Cucumber water. For a lighter drink, have a glass of cucumber-infused water in the relaxation room at the Red Door Spa, which is located on the second floor of the Forbes Travel Guide Recommended hotel. You’ll be led through a sliding glass door to the relaxation room, where you will be seated on plush, square-seated leather chairs to enjoy water infused with cucumber, lime or lemon or tea or coffee from the single-cup Keurig machine.
The five best things to eat and drink at Willard InterContinental are the French onion soup, crab cakes, frites or one of the daily fish specials at Café du Parc. Enjoy a mint julep mixed in the Round Robin Bar for a true Willard experience.