I celebrated my birthday last week , so a good friend of mine took me out to dinner. Mediterranean food has easily become one of my favorite cuisines to eat, so it was easy for me to choose to have dinner at Zaytinya. This was my first time dining at Zaytinya and I was not disappointed. The ambiance directly reflected the cuisine they serve. Zaytinya is a sea of blue and white and it is easy to see that the ambiance is heavily influenced by Greece more so the Santorini area. The ambiance definitely enhanced the dining experience because it made it more believable that you were getting an authentic experience.
They only serve small plates (aka tapas), but I don’t believe that should dissuade anyone from dining there. Each dish is very reasonable priced and in my opinion I think the portion size was good considering that they’re small plates.
Location and Parking: Zaytinya is located at 701 9th St NW, Washington, DC 20001( the Penn Quarter area). It is conveniently located directly across from the Gallery Place/Chinatown Metro stop. I took an uber there, so I am not really sure what street parking is like , but if it is any consolation they do offer valet parking for $12.
We tried a couple of dishes and we liked everything besides the Hunkar Begendi, which I thought was bland. We started out with the Hommus Ma Lahm , which is a hummus and spicy lamb spread. Surprisingly, that was my favorite dish considering that I do not like hummus but the spicy lamb and humus really complimented each other. We also had the Midyes, which are fried mussels with walnut tarator sauce. I’ve never had fried mussels , so that was definitely something different. You’ve never had mussels if you haven’t had fried mussels (yes I became a mussel expert overnight), but seriously if there is one dish you should try it would be the Midyes. The last meat dish we had was the Lamb Baha, which was good but not something I haven’t eaten before. Btw we had all the meat dishes with pita bread that was
No birthday dinner is complete without dessert, so we got the Turkish Delight. The Turkish Delight was the perfect end to a wonderful meal. It was refreshing without being overly sweet and left me wanting more. Obviously, it goes without saying that I highly recommend dining at Zaytinya.
If you would like me to share the restaurants on my list or any upcoming events I’m attending just leave a comment or shoot me an email . Also, let me know if you would like to see a blog post about Voltaggio Brothers Steakhouse at the MGM casino ( I also went there for my birthday).