Plume finds inspiration in its surroundings at the stately Jefferson Hotel, specifically the hotel's namesake. In accordance with former President Thomas Jefferson's passion for wine, the restaurant pays homage to the oenophile inclinations of the founding father with a hefty number of wines from the world over, as well as a real-time, online wine list that allows you to plan your evening's imbibing up to the nanosecond of your arrival.

It is possible, however, to be transported back to colonial America with a wine list that also includes rare finds Jefferson might have indulged in himself, including a 1720 Borges Madeira Bual.
Our Inspector's Highlights
• The spendiest option on the menu at Plume is currently a sampling of one of the last bottles of 1720 Madeira in the world. The cost for a 2 oz. pour is – you guessed it- $1,720.

• Waiters dressed in suits and white gloves deliver dishes on silver platters, speak multiple languages and work with diners to accommodate food allergies and other dietary restrictions (if you have either, mention it when making your reservation).

• Your handbag will get better service than most people get at other D.C. restaurants when you dine at Plume. Rather than placing your bag on the floor, the staff will provide a small, plush purse stool — a tiny ottoman that is a throwback to an earlier time.

• If the wine isn't enough to spark romance, the pastry chef's parting gift will: It's a small box of chocolates. After all, dessert is the ultimate aphrodisiac.
Things to Know
•  All meals are multi-course, prix fixe tastings and change seasonally. They start at around $102 for a three-course meal (without wine).

• With only 17 tables you'll need a reservation on most nights, and in many cases you’ll need quite a bit of notice to make one. You can book online on the restaurant’s website or by calling 202-448-3227.

• The Five-Star Washington D.C. restaurant is only open for dinner Tuesday through Saturday from 5:30 until 9 p.m.
The Food
• The highly seasonal prix-fixe menus change regularly, but typically feature local fare.

• Starters might include Virginia quail with Swiss chard or Maryland blue crab risotto.

• Entrees typically feature a nice range of seafood, beef and game. A late summer menu, for example, might offer the classic Dover sole with Amish heirloom tomato, New Frontier bison strip loin with a blueberry barbeque sauce or a West Virginia rack of lamb.  Executive chef Ralf Schelegel’s menu includes the highly recommended King Salmon Yew Wood Bento with Amish Bees Wax and Brown Butter Emulsion. 

• Elegant desserts run the gamut from the fresh and fruity Meyer Lemon Raspberry Sablé, to the rich and indulgent Everything Chocolate and even aromatic Honey Marzipan Croustillant.
The Design
• Like the rest of The Jefferson, Washington, D.C. hotel, the interior design of Plume, its fine dining restaurant, is traditional and historically inspired.

• Bathed in opulent hues of light gray and yellow, the space is covered with wallpaper depicting the estate and landscape at Monticello, Thomas Jefferson's estate in Virginia. The wallpaper was painted especially for the Five-Star restaurant on a single piece of silk, then cut to fit the room at Plume.

• Jeffersonian touches are apparent at each table, such as small silver birds that represent the former president's love of the creatures.

• In the Wine Cellar, a private space that can seat up to 18 guests, you'll get a different view: The walls are lined with many of the cellar's more than 1,300 bottles, reminiscent of the president's passion for viniculture.

• Known as "The Bird's Nest," the restaurant’s most popular semicircular booth is set into the wall in a curtained-off, curved library. The table sits beneath an enormous crystal chandelier that was once at the nearby Willard InterContinental Washington, a favorite hotel of past presidents in the weeks before their inaugurations.
Getting There
1200 16th Street Northwest, Washington, District of Columbia 20036
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