Bethesda Food Guide: 10 Must-Eat Restaurants & Street Food Stalls in Bethesda

April 14, 2018 Jeremy Dunfee

Bethesda is an unincorporated, census-designated place in southern Montgomery County, Maryland, United States, located just northwest of the U.S. capital of Washington, D.C. It takes its name from a local church, the Bethesda Meeting House (1820, rebuilt 1849), which in turn took its name from Jerusalem's Pool of Bethesda. In Aramaic, ܒܝܬ ܚܣܕܐ beth ḥesda means "House of Mercy" and in Hebrew, בית חסד‬ "beit ḥesed" means "House of Kindness". The National Institutes of Health main campus and the Walter Reed National Military Medical Center are in Bethesda, as are a number of corporate and government headquarters.
Things to do in Bethesda

1. Chef Tony's

4926 Saint Elmo Ave, Bethesda, MD 20814-6008 Takeout, Seating, Waitstaff, Parking Available, Street Parking, Television, Wheelchair Accessible, Serves Alcohol, Accepts American Express, Accepts Mastercard, Accepts Visa, Accepts Discover, Reservations, Wine and Beer, Highchairs Available, Full Bar, Accepts Credit Cards Italian, Mediterranean, Seafood, American, Vegetarian Friendly, Gluten Free Options, Vegan Options Lunch, Dinner, Brunch SGD 13 - SGD 39 +1 301-654-3737
Excellent
64%
Good
26%
Satisfactory
6%
Poor
3%
Terrible
1%
Overall Ratings

4.5 based on 384 reviews

Chef Tony's

We are a Chef owned seafood focused restaurant in beautiful downtown Bethesda. We feature a daily changing menu and use as many locally sourced products as we can. We maintain a friendly and comfortable dining space that allows our guests to relax and recharge. We approach our restaurant with an appreciation for simplicity, authenticity and connection to our community. We deliver daily with high quality food, spirits and people. Our menus include fresh seasonal seafood at their core. We deliver food that nurtures, delights and reminds people that life is short and to enjoy a great meal more often. Our restaurant delivers a comfortable upscale environment that promotes conversation and connection

Reviewed By Hugh K - Silver Spring, Maryland

Objectively speaking, there was actually nothing wrong with our meal or our experience at Chef Tony's this evening. All of our food was alright--not terrific or anything special, mind you, just alright. Our meals consisted of a Caesar salad (served warm and grilled, which meant an interesting flavor and a soggy, mushy consistency), cream of crab soup (nice and rich, good crab taste, with too much Old Bay added to it), crab cake entrée (high quality crab meat, LOTS of spice, zero filler, and very little sauce), and stuffed cod entrée (tasty enough but generally unmemorable).

Like the food, service was also alright. Our waiter either had too many tables to attend to or else he was inefficient at doing his job, or both. He barely came by to check on us, but did his job competently enough.

The atmosphere in this restaurant is pretty minimalistic. Like everything else about Chef Tony's, it was simply nothing special. The noise level was surprisingly high for a place that was not crowded despite having very few open tables available. On that topic, by the way, although the restaurant does not require reservations, it is small and, on a weekend night or special occasion evening, they would be STRONGLY recommended.

Would I eat here again? Maybe. For a comparable price and better food, you might want to consider Daily Grill just a few blocks away, or Positano's (one block away) or Uncle Julio's Rio Grande (a few more blocks away than those). Bethesda has lots of good and great restaurants from which to choose. Why people would select Chef Tony's above other places is rather a mystery to me based on our dining experience this evening.

2. Raku-An Asian Dining & Sushi

7240 Woodmont Ave, Bethesda, MD 20814-2951 Takeout, Outdoor Seating, Seating, Waitstaff, Wheelchair Accessible, Serves Alcohol, Full Bar Japanese, Sushi, Asian, Vegetarian Friendly, Vegan Options, Gluten Free Options Lunch, Dinner, Late Night SGD 26 - SGD 52 +1 301-718-8680
Excellent
54%
Good
36%
Satisfactory
7%
Poor
2%
Terrible
1%
Overall Ratings

4.5 based on 283 reviews

Raku-An Asian Dining & Sushi

Reviewed By MLovei - Bethesda, Maryland

Raku used to cater my parties, and they always did a great job. I visited the restaurant for an early dinner now, ordered sushi, and confirmed that they are still great! The service was super friendly and fast, the sushi great, and the price reasonable. The atmosphere in the restaurant is pleasant, despite the bar, the noise level is ok.

3. Woodmont Grill

7715 Woodmont Ave, Bethesda, MD 20814-6003 (Formerly Houston's) Outdoor Seating, Television, Wheelchair Accessible, Takeout, Seating, Waitstaff, Highchairs Available, Serves Alcohol, Full Bar, Accepts American Express, Accepts Mastercard, Accepts Visa, Accepts Credit Cards American, Bar, Vegetarian Friendly, Vegan Options, Gluten Free Options Lunch, Dinner, Brunch, Late Night +1 301-656-9755
Excellent
55%
Good
31%
Satisfactory
9%
Poor
3%
Terrible
2%
Overall Ratings

4.5 based on 541 reviews

Woodmont Grill

Reviewed By Susan G - Baltimore

When looking for a good restaurant to dine with our grandson (a student at University of Maryland), we found the Woodmont Grill. Being long time fans of Houston's, we visited the Woodmont Grill numerous times. Food and service were excellent.

4. Mon Ami Gabi

7239 Woodmont Ave, Bethesda, MD 20814-2959 Reservations, Outdoor Seating, Private Dining, Seating, Waitstaff, Valet Parking, Highchairs Available, Wheelchair Accessible, Serves Alcohol, Full Bar French, Vegetarian Friendly, Vegan Options, Gluten Free Options Lunch, Dinner, Brunch, Late Night SGD 26 - SGD 46 +1 301-654-1234
Excellent
36%
Good
48%
Satisfactory
12%
Poor
3%
Terrible
1%
Overall Ratings

4 based on 807 reviews

Mon Ami Gabi

Reviewed By makai714 - Washington DC, District of Columbia

Found myself at the bar 5 minutes before happy hour ends, with a dinner rez 30 minutes later. Beaujolais villages? Of course. Escargot? Yes! Bread? Why not.

Having just passed a pizza joint celebrating cauliflower pizza crust, it was a welcome if surprisingly generous gesture to receive a warm mini baguette to absorb the gorgeous garlic parsley butter sauce. Vive la France.

Everything after that at dinner was also lovely, for a fond farewell to friends departing DC. Thanks James for keeping such a good eye on our table. If we could get the potatos and the mussel broth homedelivered with those fresh baked baguettes? Heaven!

5. Gringos & Mariachis

4928 Cordell Ave, Bethesda, MD 20814-2510 Takeout, Seating, Waitstaff, Television, Wheelchair Accessible, Serves Alcohol, Full Bar Mexican, Southwestern, Latin, Vegetarian Friendly, Vegan Options, Gluten Free Options Lunch, Dinner +1 240-800-4266
Excellent
49%
Good
40%
Satisfactory
11%
Poor
0%
Terrible
0%
Overall Ratings

4.5 based on 96 reviews

Gringos & Mariachis

Reviewed By Travelingbear1000 - Oakland, California

This is a tasty restaurant and was especially fun on Halloween as the wait staff was dressed up and left candy on all tables. The carne asada was quite tasty too. Jalapeño maragarita was great too.

6. Guapo's

8130 Wisconsin Ave, Bethesda, MD 20814-3640 Takeout, Reservations, Seating, Waitstaff, Television, Wheelchair Accessible, Serves Alcohol, Full Bar Mexican, Southwestern, Vegetarian Friendly, Gluten Free Options Lunch, Dinner, Late Night +1 301-656-0888
Excellent
36%
Good
44%
Satisfactory
15%
Poor
4%
Terrible
1%
Overall Ratings

4 based on 214 reviews

Guapo's

Reviewed By Peggy S

You almost would not stop in when walking by, but we read it was good on TripAdvisor. The place has Mexican ambiance and is nice inside. We eat a lot of Tex-Mex in Texas and Florida Mexican food. This place has really good food and very generous portions. My sangria was really home-made and not from a wine bottle. I would go there anytime I wanted Mexican food and look forward to going back. I use an electric scooter for mobility and they accommodated me easily.

7. Jaleo

7271 Woodmont Ave, Bethesda, MD 20814-2959 Reservations, Outdoor Seating, Seating, Waitstaff, Wheelchair Accessible, Serves Alcohol, Full Bar Latin, Mediterranean, Spanish, Vegetarian Friendly, Vegan Options, Gluten Free Options Lunch, Dinner, Brunch, Late Night SGD 39 - SGD 39 +1 301-913-0003
Excellent
40%
Good
36%
Satisfactory
14%
Poor
6%
Terrible
4%
Overall Ratings

4 based on 565 reviews

Jaleo

Reviewed By winindc - Mid-atlantic

We went for lunch during Restaurant Week, and would return. Reading some reviews, it seems people were disappointed with a lack of flavor; we found the flavors to be mostly that of the ingredients not of sauces: Espinacas a la catalana (spinach, apples, raisins and pine nuts) was just that. The cauliflower with dates was similar--no other sauce, just good ingredients. That being said, my favorite dish was the bean salad (Empedrat de mongete) that had a vinaigrette. The chicken croquetas were very good, with an unexpected mousse-like filling. The beet gazpacho was nice, as well. We wouldn’t get the bacon wrapped dates or patatas bravas again when there are so many other items to try. The only disappointment was the pork with blue cheese—it was tasted like goat cheese (which was not listed in the description)—not a flavor we enjoy. The meal ended on a high note—flan—which seemed decadently rich, accompanied by 3 rosettes of whipped lemon-scented cream.

8. Olazzo

7921 Norfolk Ave, Bethesda, MD 20814-2501 Takeout, Seating, Waitstaff, Television, Wheelchair Accessible, Serves Alcohol, Full Bar, Reservations, Outdoor Seating Italian, Vegetarian Friendly, Gluten Free Options Dinner, Lunch, Late Night SGD 26 +1 301-654-9496
Excellent
46%
Good
36%
Satisfactory
13%
Poor
4%
Terrible
1%
Overall Ratings

4 based on 200 reviews

Olazzo

Reviewed By Mungospike - Washington DC, District of Columbia

Eight of us ate at Olazzo's last night and we each thought the food and service was outstanding. We had three different appetizers, seven different entrees (including one that was gluten-free), and one incredible dessert (brownie with gelato). Everything was scrumptious. The place is small, yet we didn't feel crowded, and the ambiance was just right.
The wait staff is attentive and well trained. Our waiter, Ian, was exceptional.
If I were you, I'd stop reading these reviews and get on over to Olazzo!

9. Le Vieux Logis

7925 Old Georgetown Rd, Bethesda, MD 20814-2424 Seating, Waitstaff, Parking Available, Valet Parking, Wheelchair Accessible, Serves Alcohol, Full Bar, Accepts American Express, Accepts Mastercard, Accepts Visa, Free Wifi, Accepts Discover, Reservations, Street Parking, Takeout, Highchairs Available, Accepts Credit Cards French, Gluten Free Options Lunch, Dinner SGD 33 - SGD 92 +1 301-652-6816
Excellent
60%
Good
24%
Satisfactory
11%
Poor
4%
Terrible
1%
Overall Ratings

4.5 based on 181 reviews

Le Vieux Logis

Welcome to Le Vieux Logis A long time Bethesda favorite, Le Vieux Logis offers a newly inspired French menu and wine list, perfect for intimate dinners, cozy nights out and quiet conversation with friends and colleagues. The kitchen showcases flavorful French recipes that change slightly with the season and the availability of locally sourced ingredients. Authentically French, the restaurant has the feel of a bistro with a French country flavor.

Reviewed By 448SusieQ - Bethesda, Maryland

The menu of the Vieux Logis is a traditional French menu. The staff is friendly, attentive, and welcoming. The restaurant has its own parking lot which, in Bethesda, is amazing and very useful. However, the food is disappointing and mediocre. And, the prices are high. The kitchen cannot be using fresh ingredients or creating soups and sauces from scratch. We were quite disappointed. We have traveled and enjoyed French restaurants in the U.S. and Europe and this French restaurant is not up to par, even though other TripAdvisor reviews had led us to believe otherwise,

10. Pizzeria Da Marco

8008 Woodmont Ave, Bethesda, MD 20814-3027 Takeout, Reservations, Outdoor Seating, Seating, Waitstaff, Television, Highchairs Available, Serves Alcohol, Full Bar, Wheelchair Accessible Italian, Pizza, Vegetarian Friendly Lunch, Dinner +1 301-654-6083
Excellent
43%
Good
40%
Satisfactory
12%
Poor
4%
Terrible
1%
Overall Ratings

4 based on 122 reviews

Pizzeria Da Marco

Reviewed By FarmerRK - Moraga, California

If you want a place to eat and talk; you will find on a Friday night that talking will be hard. There were 5 adults and 2 children in our party. We tried the following starters: Eggplant Parmigiana (very tasty); Calamari with spinach (more like a soup and I did not see any spinach); Orange salad (arugula with slices of oranges--nice and fresh but needed more salt and spices); Burrata Salad (very good). The pizzas are thin crusted and about 12" in diameter. We tried Solo Carne, Margherita Classic, Marco, Primavera, Mushroom--it was nice to have an assortment of flavors. All in all we had a good time; the restaurant was very crowded. Make reservations if you can.

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