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Central Michel Richard

  • $$$$$
    RatingAvg. Dinner Entrée
    $$$$$Greater than $25
    $$$$$18.01 - $25
    $$$$12.01 - $18
    $$$7.01 - $12
    $Less than $7
  • American (New), French, Bistro
  • 1001 Pennsylvania Ave NW, Washington DC20004 38.895113 -77.026478
  • (At 10th St NW)
  • click map to interact
  • (202) 626-0015
  • 0

User Ratings (Based on 11 reviews)

Food 3.3 Value 3.0
Service 2.9 Atmosphere 3.5

Other Restaurant Info

(202) 626-0015
Valet Parking Visa, MC, AmEx, Disc
Lunch Mon-Fri: 11:30am-2:30pm Dinner Mon-Thu: 5pm-10:30pm Fri-Sat: 5pm-11pm Brunch Sun: 11am-2:30pm
Lunch, Dinner, Brunch
Prix Fixe, Trendy, Pre/Post Theater, Raw Bar, Online Reservations, Wheelchair Friendly, Accepts Credit Cards, Lunch Special, Take Out, Private Parties

User Reviews

  • Central Michel Richard

    Posted by barek46 on 10/14/2009

    an excellant meal

    I had an excellent meal at central. There were 4 of us and everyone agreed it was an enjoyable experience. The cheese puffs are a great whimsical start. We also had the faux gras and bacon/onion tart, both which were very good. I had the cassoulet and it was tasty and filling. We ended with the banana split which was another fun takeoff on an american classic. All in all a very good meal. The atmosphere was pleasant and we were not rushed.The service was ok but not great. Never asked if we wanted a refill on coffee.

  • Central Michel Richard

    Posted by Martin on 12/09/2008

    High expectations but disappointing

    I really thought this restaurant would be much better. For the prices, I did not expect Citronelle standards (a great restaurant I have been too a few times) but I did expect a higher standard of cooking than we experienced. If there is one generic problem it is that too much of the food we ate was greasy too much fat for our taste. The lardons in the salad swamped everything, and had left grease throughout the salad. The "cassoulet" is an insult to that fine dish from SW France all I could taste was salt and fat, and that was my lasting memory of the whole meal. The service was indifferent at best, with long inexplicable delays and poor descriptions. A struggle to even get water. And a very noisy place, with the atmosphere of a cafeteria. Disappointing.

  • Central Michel Richard

    Posted by Anonymous on 05/24/2008

    Not recommended

    I wanted to try a full meal after only having appetizers and drinks the first time. We arrived 10 minutes early to a 5PM reservation (before a Sunday show @ Warner) and waited outside the door watching people stare at us as they rushed around the restaurant. Finally, they open the door after 5 to tell us the restaurant is closed due to flooding, took our name, and promised we'd hear from them for a gift card. Now, over a month later we've heard nothing for the inconvenience. Not a way to run a restaurant that already has poor food ratings.. I will not be wasting my time again at this place....

  • Central Michel Richard

    Posted by Robyn on 01/19/2008


    First of all, I am a very laid back person that likes good food and I dont usually complain. I took my husband here for his birthday...what a bad wife I am after this unpleasant meal. I made the reservation a month ago and still was given the worst table in the whole restaurant, right next to the door. Everytime the door opened, there was a wind tunnel...and it was freezing! The bread was the best thing there. We tried the cheese puffs and they were tasteless and dry. We asked for some sauce to dip it in and they "didnt have any"! I had the shrimp burger....after all of the hype by the waitress, it was not good....it didnt seem to go together very well, but maybe I am an idiot for ordering a "shrimp burger". My husband ordered the NY strip steak and he could barely eat it. It was this tiny little thing that he could barely chew since it was so tough. It seemed like a very low quality piece of steak. The fries were burnt. We ordered a side of macaroni and cheese for 7 bucks....even Kraft is better...it was a very small portion and very bland. We had the Kit Kat bar for dessert....nothing to write home about. Oh, and they didnt even acknowledge his birthday, after I told them both for the reservation and before we were seated. I guess I owe him a birthday dinner....$100 bucks later! Wow, re reading this, I sound like a very picky, miserable person....I really am not.

  • Central Michel Richard

    Posted by Anonymous on 11/13/2007


    The food was OK but not great. Given the chef's reputation and the buzz around this place, I would have considered returning and trying the place out again. However the service was completely innattenive. There are lots of great restaurants in the area. I doubt that I will return to this one anytime soon.

  • Central Michel Richard

    Posted by Zoey on 08/22/2007

    Try it at least once

    So I can not afford Citronelle and opt to try the infamous Michel Richard's a la carte menu at Central. I heard it is quite busy at dinner so I went for a middle of the week lunch. Nothing better than treating yourself. :) I had heard rave reviews about the lobster burger and in general about Central itself. The best time to go for lunch is 1:30ish...the lunch crowd dies down . The service when you walk in is warm and friendly. Our server was a bit rushed when the restaurant was not all too busy but I made a joke and he lightened up. He was on par soon after. Side note, their linen is nice, people don't understand how nice it is to have decent linen at a restaruant! I ordered the lobster burger and my girlfriend the shrimp burger with a sangria. Lobster burger: Delicious! Loved the creativity. The warm simple bread, the crunch of the potato crips, the warm seasoned tomato slice on the bottom and the lobster that melts in your mouth! The mayo was great as well. The fries coudl be better, less cooked and seasoned with something that stands out since you are paying $29. Shrimp burger: Gives the lobster burger competition. It was amazing looking and tasting. No complaints, worth every penny. Fries could be better. A dish to try!! Sangria: $11 and not worth it. I think I paid that b/c I fell in love w/ my lunch and did not notice. Not worth it. Coming from a bartender, it needs improvement. Tasted too simple, great for people who like light and refreshing...but it tasted too simple, watered down and was missing a good kick. What I would change, but just me...A place as nice as Central....better salt and pepper...you shake them and the grinder spills everywhere! I did not like that. Maybe some salt and pepper, Maldon maybe and some great peppers would be nice. I'd pay the extra. I like the simple not over done atmosphere. It is elegant and does not overpower what you go for, which is the food.

  • Central Michel Richard

    Posted by Richard fan on 07/29/2007

    second visit disappointment

    Our first visit was very satisfying, with attentive yet not hovering service; our meals included a wonderful lobster bisque soup, a so-so onion tart, excellent hangar steak and beef ribs. Our second visit was hugely disappointing, especially so since we had invited friends who enjoy fine interesting dining. We were seated at a table in the back which was located in the middle of the floor- seemed fine at first, as one could see the kitchen. Unfortunately, throughout the evening, wait staff repeatedly bumped our chairs as they rushed to serve other tables, even after I quietly asked one to please be more careful. Advice: ask for a table against the windows. Service was uneven. After declining to order a second bottle of wine after appetizers and while waiting for dinner, the server simply disappeared. When asked to check on our dinners, as the wait was very long, he came back and reported that the reason was because I had ordered a dish that takes a long time to prepare- in other words, our own fault, - except that we gave the order when ordering appetizers nearly an hour before. And the reason he hadn't been back to check on us was "because we did not order another bottle of wine"- will someone please train this young man how to be a gracious waiter? He was eager and enthusiastic at first, but management must train employees how to be nice in circumstances where the customers are getting unhappy. All seafood selections were excellent- from the scallops over pasta to the lobster burger. The rabbit was braised so long it was dry- and the delicate flavor of rabbit overwhelmed by a mustard-dominated sauce. Apple pan dowdy for desert was yummy. So, we may go back, but only for the reliable dishes, and probably not for a while, as its not worth the stress of poor service. We have dined at all of MC's restaurants, starting years ago in Los Angeles, and he's very inventive with food. So don't miss it,.

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