minibar by José Andrés

Row 1

855 E St NW (9th & E Streets NW)
Washington, DC 20004
(202) 393-0812
Molecular Gastronomy
$ $ $ $
Tue–Sat: 6:00 PM–8:00 PM

They really have tried to make it easier on everyone, but getting into minibar, where protean chef José Andrés channels Spanish avant-garde cuisine, is still difficult. The restaurant now accepts reservations on a seasonal basis (in three-month periods), with each season opening one month in advance. But you still need to send them an email a couple of months ahead of time and keep your fingers crossed. When you do get what is still essentially the reservation of a lifetime (let’s be honest here), you’ll perch at one of two counters that overlook the kitchen, which The Washington Post critic Tom Sietsema called "suggestive of an operating theater when you factor in the chefs in their whites, bending over dishes manipulated by tweezers, tongs, liquid nitrogen and cloches galore." Expect a "molecular gastronomy" experience executed by executive sous-chef Johnny Spero and filled with culinary hat tricks — think edible rubber duckies, popcorn that smokes in your mouth, and a churro made with veal tendon. Even with a price tag of $250 for 25 to 30 (mini) courses, it's a steal of a deal. The imaginative cuisine displayed at minibar scored chef José Andrés a 2011 James Beard Outstanding Chef Award. In 2013, Andrés opened the adjoining barmini, his “culinary cocktail lab,” where more than 100 adventuresome cocktail creations adorn the menu. According to Sietsema, it is “home to some of the most fascinating liquids this city has ever sipped.”

— Arthur Bovino, 101 Best Restaurants, April 1, 2015

Foursquare Tips

  • Kevin Sbraga loves this place! -Kevin Sbraga, Top Chef
  • The Obamas celebrated Valentine's Day 2013 at Jose Andres' Penn Quarter restaurant, which left Washington Post restaurant critic Tom Sietsema unimpressed in December 2012.
  • When was the last time you picked up a mezcal-spiked cocktail and ate it like a snowball? Jos Andrss 27-course menu kicks off with just that and follows up with other mind-bending surprises.
  • With only six bar seats available for dining, this restaurant within arestaurant is arguably the country's toughest reservation to score.
  • Call at 10am exactly 1 month ahead for a reservation.
  • The restaurant address is incorrect. It is on The corner of E Street NW and 9th St. And, Daniel the maitre d is great! ;)
  • Obama's favorite chef, Jose Andres, feeds the plebes at his Penn Quarter restaurant. Since it takes ages to get a reservation, we hope you booked yours last year.
  • Reservations are hard to come by at this six-customer, two-chef restaurant. Call exactly at 10am (not 10:05) one month ahead for a reservation.
  • Bill Addison was "hooked by a dish called 'Ibrico tendon,' where noodles fashioned from Ibrico ham consomm and Japanse kuzu root mimicked the translucent chewiness of beef ligament."
  • Unpredictable hours...
  • If youre looking for something more daring than Jos Andrss tapas restaurant Jaleo, head to nearby Minibar, where one-bite molecular concoctions take center stage.
  • A must do everyones bucket list if you are a foodie! Also , for a corkage fee you can bring wine. The culinary staff are talented, creative and entertaining. I cannot begin to discribe the menu but t
  • Try the Philly Cheese Steak
  • Try the Boneless Chicken Wing
  • The whole menu is stunning-it is a true experience
  • Get the drink pairings. It's practically a steal. Also, the razor clam and the beans were two of the best things I have ever put in my face.
  • Very comfortable & friendly spot
  • Everything.
  • Check out Minibar as seen on Best Thing I Ever Ate
  • Holy mother of everything. This meal was fantastic and completely worth it.