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Oyamel Restaurant Review

About.com Rating 4 Star Rating
User Rating 2.5 Star Rating (2 Reviews)


Oyamel Restaurant Review

Oyamel means Butterfly in Spanish

The Bottom Line

Oyamel is a fine Mexican restaurant located in the Penn Quarter neighborhood of Washington, DC. The food is creatively prepared and is a welcome departure from typical Mexican chain restaurant fare.


  • Innovative Mexican cuisine by an internationally renowned chef
  • Great location in the heart of Penn Quarter
  • Modern decor and nice atmosphere
  • Extensive a la carte menu with reasonable prices


  • Located in a busy area where parking is limited


  • Address: 401 7th St. NW Washington, DC 20004
  • Phone: (202) 628-1005
  • Hours: Sun-Mon 11:30 am-10 pm; Tues-Thurs 11:30 am-11:30 pm; Fri-Sat 11:30 am-12 pm; Bar open until 1 am
  • Prices: antojitos $4.75-8.50, tacos $5-8
  • Reservations: Reservations are available for lunch and limited for dinner
  • Closest Metro: Gallery Place/Chinatown or Archives/Navy Memorial
  • Valet Parking: $11 beginning at 5 pm

Guide Review - Oyamel Restaurant Review

In January 2007, Oyamel relocated from Arlington, Virginia to the busy Penn Quarter neighborhood of downtown Washington, DC. The restaurant offers a truly unique dining experience with innovative Mexican cuisine that reflects the current urban fare of Mexico City. Signature Dishes include: house-made tacos, (including some unique offerings such as farm-raised sautéed grasshopper, beef tongue, and baby pig) stuffed quail with rose petal sauce, and chile en nogada, traditional Mexican Poblano pepper stuffed with picadillo and covered in fresh walnut sauce and fresh pomegranate, a tableside creation of guacamole and Caesar salad, plus an array of fresh ceviche choices. The dishes are served a la carte and are artistically presented. Signature drinks include the Oyamel margarita with salt air, licuados (juices prepared to order) and traditional Mexican aguas frescas.

The new Oyamel features modern decor with large inviting windows and a mural of photos showcasing scenes of everyday life in Mexico. The cozy restaurant seats 125 people in the main dining room; 50 seated in a private dining room; and six at the Ceviche Bar.

Reviewed March 2007 - Prices are subject to change

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.
User Reviews

Reviews for this section have been closed.

 4 out of 5
Dining and Delight, Member MadameDolce

The experience at Oyamel was simply delightful because the service was great, atmosphere was cozy and food was delicious. Highly recommended items include the Guacamole which is perfectly blended with subtle flavors that pop when combined with the lightly seasoned tortilla chips; Gaspacho estilo Morelia which is an interesting medley of cucumber, jicama root, orange, mango, jalapeno and cheese; the pollo a la parrilla con aguacate and the pescado Mexicano tacos are bursting with flavor-don't underestimate the power of these tapas temptations!

2 out of 4 people found this helpful.

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