Mexican Small Plates

  • 82
  • 2015 Best Mexican

This popular Penn Quarter eatery from celebrity chef José Andrés serves up Mexican small plates, ceviches and tacos in an upscale, festive setting.

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What the Food Critics are Saying

“… the Penn Quarter retreat is one of multiple small-plates restaurants from the globe-trotting José Andrés and a rare source of memorable Mexican cooking in Washington. Sliced chayote strewn with crumbled white cheese and crushed peanuts gets a brilliant charge from its hibiscus dressing. Raw striped bass with citrus and jicama in a marinade of pineapple juice and habanero makes you glad to have dipped into ceviche. And I almost squeal when I take a bite of the taco filled with soft baby pig, crisp pork rinds and green tomatillo sauce. (Fried grasshopper tacos, on the other hand, are proof that if you fry something in enough garlic, it’s going to be at least decent.) Hominy and shredded pork in a brick-red broth is a strapping good time that becomes a major party with the addition of lime, radishes and cabbage. Proceed with abandon.” – Washington Post

“From the urbane taco to creative antojitos (street food) and ceviches, Oyamel is a fiesta of flavours and happy (crowd) sounds. Try the melted Chihuahua cheese flambéed with tequila and served with fresh hand-made tortillas. There is also a 30-page drink menu with choice cocktail, tequila and wine selections.” — theculturetrip.com


  • Two and a half stars from the Washington Post, 2014
  • Wine Spectator's Award of Excellence, 2014-2015
  • Washington Post Top Restaurants - 2014
  • Best Tacos/Margaritas in DC – Zagat
  • Top 10 Power Dining Spots in DC – Food Network
  • Zagat rating of 25 out of 30


Bright colors and faux butterflies – painted and hanging – pay tribute to Oyamel’s namesake (the Oaxaca forest fir trees that protect monarch butterflies in the winter). Whimsical and vibrant, the design, along with the din of the lively crowds, creates an atmosphere of fiesta – and the perfect complement to the food and drink.


  • Michelin Bib Gourmand 2016

401 7th Street Northwest
Washington, DC 20004

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  • Price Range: $$
    Atmosphere: Eclectic, Lively, Modern
  • Dress Code: Casual
    Good For: Hot Spot, Late Night, Meet For A Drink
  • Noise Level: Loud
  • Wine Spirits: Full Bar
    Phone: (202) 628-1005
  • Private Dining Room: Yes