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Johnny's Half Shell Restaurant Review - Washington DC

About.com Rating 4 Star Rating


The Bottom Line

Johnny's Half Shell offers fresh seafood in a nice setting at reasonable prices. The restaurant is conveniently located near the U.S. Capitol and Union Station in the heart of Washington DC.


  • Award winning chef
  • Interesting menu featuring contemporary seafood dishes
  • Reasonable prices
  • Large outdoor patio
  • Garage and street (metered parking available)


  • On weekends, open for Saturday dinner only. Closed for lunch on Saturday and all day on Sunday.
  • Expensive cocktails


  • Address: 400 North Capitol Street, NW Washington, DC 20001
  • Phone: (202) 737-0400
  • Hours: Mon and Fri 11:30am-10pm, Tues-Thurs-7am-10pm, Sat 5-10pm, Closed Sundays
  • Prices: Breakfast: $7.75-$12.50, Lunch: $8.25-$32.50, Dinner: $18.25 to $32.50, Pre-Theater: Prix fixe, three-course menu $35.
  • Metro: 3 Blocks from Union Station
  • Valet Parking: Available after 5pm.
  • Music: Live jazz plays every Saturday from 6-10pm.

Guide Review - Johnny's Half Shell Restaurant Review - Washington DC

Johnny's Half Shell features contemporary American cuisine with a focus on fresh sustainable seafood sourced from the Chesapeake Bay, Gulf Coast and Mid-Atlantic regions. Notable dishes include New Orleans File Gumbo; Shrimp or Oyster Po’boys; Maryland Crab Cakes; Barbequed Shrimp with Asiago cheese grits; Fried Oysters with pickled vegetables; Chicken in Creole Etouffeé sauce served with green onions and Basmati rice, or Catch of the Day. I especially enjoyed the Gumbo as an appetizer. It had plenty of was a bit spicy but seasoned just right. For the main course, I had the Sauteed Sea Scallops with roasted beets, ginger and onion crisps, bacon and rice wine vinaigrette. They were very tasty as well.

Johnny’s Half Shell can accommodate up to 315. An outdoor patio is also available during the spring and summer months (weather permitting) which can accommodate 200 guests for a reception or 95 for a seated dinner. On the patio, guests will find a new 14-foot-long copper bar draped by 25-foot midnight blue velvet curtains, as well as a stone fire pit and new patio furnishings. The space is surrounded by 8-foot long planters that are filled with perennials and other seasonal annuals.

As is common in the industry, the writer was provided with a complimentary meal for the purpose of the review. While it has not influenced this review, About.com believes in full disclosure of all potential conflicts of interest. For more information, see our ethics policy. All prices and offering mentioned herein are subject to change without notice.

Reviewed August 2012 - Prices are subject to change

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