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Review of Graffiato

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Ranked #191 of 3,215 Restaurants in Washington DC
Certificate of Excellence
Cuisines: Italian, Pizza
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Good for: Special Occasion Dining, Bar Scene
Dining options: Dinner, After-hours, Lunch, Full Bar, Reservations, Seating, Serves Alcohol, Waitstaff, Wheelchair Accessible
Neighbourhood: Downtown / Chinatown
Austin, Texas, United States
Level Contributor
7 reviews
5 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
Reviewed 20 March 2012

I've visited many restaurants that I found from looking on tripadvisor and have not been very pleased with the results, this however was a GREAT surprise. Top Chef alumni Mike Isabella has done a wonderful job with this one. I know this doesn't sound good, but you must have the Brussels Sprouts. I had to keep my husband from eating all of them and he hates Brussels Sprouts!

  • Visited March 2012
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
1 Thank Carol P
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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515 reviews from our community

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Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Japanese first
  • Portuguese first
  • Spanish first
  • Swedish first
  • Any
English first
Washington DC
Level Contributor
59 reviews
37 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 18 helpful votes
“A hit from a Top Chef alum”
Reviewed 18 March 2012

Everyone raves about the Pepperoni Sauce, but the Brussels Sprouts make this place a must-visit. Delicious food, but note that they serve smaller portions. We could all use a little smaller servings if the food is this good. ;-)

Visited January 2012
Thank Richard Z
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Troutman, North Carolina
Level Contributor
71 reviews
47 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 78 helpful votes
“Two word--Pepperoni Sauce”
Reviewed 5 March 2012

My man and I dined at Graffiato for a belated Valentine's Day dinner. What an excellent choice! We arrived shortly after 5 so the place was not very crowded. We sat at the bar in front of the kitchen, which made for an exciting night. It was a lot of fun to watch the chefs and cooks do their thing and interact with them. Chef Mike Isabella sat two chairs down from us and was conducting a little business. We also got to talk with Marjorie, the head chef. She was fantastic and a lot of fun to talk to. Brad waited on us and truly made it a great experience. We started out with the Flatbread and Pepperoni Sauce. Yes, it's true. The Pepperoni Sauce is to die for! If for nothing else, visit Graffiato for this delectable appetizer. Our second course was a selection of 5 cheeses. True-it's probably a little odd to order the cheese tray at such a great small plate restaurant but we are cheese fanatics. All cheeses were excellent. After that we had Lobster Risotto. That was fantastic too. Lastly, we decided to order another round of the Pepperoni Sauce and Flatbread. (We just couldn't help ourselves!!) Portion sizes were good for two people. I'd like to go there with a few more people and try the Chef's Tasting Menu. True-it is a little pricey but you're getting great quality food. Besides, it's DC and you're dining at a Top Chef's restaurant. We're looking forward to returning to Graffiato!

  • Visited March 2012
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Thank MJGso
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
New York City, New York
Level Contributor
138 reviews
76 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 93 helpful votes
“Every bite was delicious!”
Reviewed 5 March 2012

We went to Graffiato on the strength of Mike Isabella's cooking performance on "Top Chef" and did not come away disappointed. The menu was interesting with a lot of tempting choices. The "special" pepperoni sauce was out of this world -- I want to know how he does it! The server was kind enough to give me the recipe (they have it printed up because it is so popular) but I gotta say, I could not replicate the delicious-ness of that sauce. And the flatbread it went on was superb. A friendly staff with a bustling atmosphere, and spectacular dessert (zeppole that melted in my mouth!) -- be prepared for a very good time!

  • Visited February 2012
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Thank TravelFan15
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Washington, D.C.
Level Contributor
278 reviews
182 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 111 helpful votes
“Second time excellent; had to order the brussell sprouts!”
Reviewed 3 March 2012

we went back to Graffiato for a second visit, having had a pretty good dinner there within a couple of months after they opened. See my previous review for a few issues i cited.

This time, we had an excellent experience. maybe the opening pains are gone, maybe because we sat downstairs close to the kitchen and bar (as opposed to the 2nd floor), maybe because we started a tad earlier? not sure, but Graffiato has matured into an even better dining experience.

after arriving at 5:30, the restaurant and bar area quickly became packed and was bustling. we had excellent service all evening. we enjoyed a Prosecco on tap (had to) and the marinated olives and flatbread with pepperoni sauce (daily special) first. my daughter loved the marinated olives more than i did. i just didn't get much distinctive flavors of chili, citrus and herbs this time compared with my first visit, but they were good, not great. the delicate flatbread wedges cut arrived in a cone holder like a belgian french fire holder, with the pepperoni sauce on the side for dipping or spreading on the bread. that sauce would be good on anything.

we had the Classic pizza with prosciutto and mozarella added and it was delicious. great to get it right out of the wood stove and eat it right away, which added to a more delicious experience than last visit when our 2nd floor location and decision to eat it last may have resulted in a sub-par eating experience.

the Crispy brussell sprouts were even more amazing than the first time. the sprout leaves somehow get flaked away and fried crispy into a fried but delicate flavor with the pancetta, maple and egg.

we had a second order of crisp brussel spouts. had to.

the tortellini with butternut squash, goat and walnut were delicate and delicious. for desert, we loved sharing the dense chocolate taste with olive oil, pine nuts, sea salt gelato. rich, and with the sweet and salty taste combination, it's excellent. but make sure you eat your bites with a bit of chocolate tarte TOGETHER with the sea salt gelato; and the warm walnut cake with some kind of gelato - strawberry? very nice, the little walnut cakes were appropriately crispy on the outside and soft in the inside.

loved. will go back soon

  • Visited March 2012
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Thank walton56
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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