The Top Restaurant is Marcel’s in Foggy Bottom, Washington DC

Posted by Lise | Filed under: Buyers

The top restaurant in the DC area, according to the most recent Open Table voter poll, is Marcel’s in Foggy Bottom.  If you love Marcel’s as much as I do, perhaps  you would like some information about the history of Marcel’s, the neighborhood of Foggy Bottom and the homes there.

Acclaimed Chef Robert Wiedmaier opened Marcel’s in 1999 to rave reviews of his French cuisine with a Flemish flair, derived from his Belgian heritage. Signature dishes that have Washingtonians and critics talking are his seared foie gras, crispy skate wing and light as air Boudin Blanc complemented by his outstanding wine list. Marcel’s offers a daily changing three-course Pre-Theater dinner with complimentary executive car service to and from the nearby Kennedy Center.

Once DC’s industrial center, Foggy Bottom is named for the fog that used to rise up from the Potomac.

Foggy Bottom was once a community of Irish, German, and Black laborers employed at the nearby breweries, glass plants, and city gas works. These industrial facilities are also cited as a possible reason for the neighborhood’s name, the “fog” being the smoke given off by the industries. The historic neighborhood is preserved and listed on the National Register of Historic Places.

The Foggy Bottom area was the site of one of the earliest settlements in what is now the District of Columbia, when German settler Jacob Funck subdivided 130 acres (0.53 km2) near the meeting place of the Potomac River and Rock Creek in 1763. The settlement officially was named Hamburgh, but colloquially was called Funkstown, and attracted few settlers until the 1850s, when more industrial enterprises came into the area. Funck also set aside land in Hamburgh for a German-speaking congregation in 1768. Concordia German Evangelical Church, located at 1920 G Street NW was finally founded in 1833. Today the congregation is The United Church, and is the oldest religious community remaining in Foggy Bottom.

Foggy Bottom was also the name of a line of beer by the Olde Heurich Brewing Company, which was foundednear Dupont Circle in 1873 by German immigrant Christian Heurich. In addition to its main brand, Heurich, Olde Heurich’s most successful products bore such local names as Senate and Old Georgetown. During the 1950s, Heurich Brewing also sponsored the city’s professional baseball team, the Washington Senators. Industry consolidation led the brewery to cease operations in 1956. In 1961–1962, the brewery buildings were razed to make way for the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts. Heurich, Jr., and his two sisters donated a portion of the brewery land to the Kennedy Center in memory of their parents, and established the Christian Heurich Family as one of the Founders of the national cultural center. Although the firm was founded in the Foggy Bottom neighborhood, the modern beer was brewed in UticaNew York.

There are lots of fine hotels and restaurants in this corner of the city, which plays host to diplomats, dignitaries and celebrities who visit neighborhood landmarks such as the IMF, the World Bank, the Kennedy Center and the Department of State. Foggy Bottom stretches down to the Potomac shoreline, welcoming runners, bikers and water sports enthusiasts to the southernmost point of Rock Creek Park.

Early residences were individually constructed flat-fronted, narrow brick row houses some of which were built by well-known architects such as A. H. Beers and Norman Grimm. The area is listed on the National Register of Historic Places. Today,  it is filled with condos and apartments, popular with nearby George Washington University students,  and a few areas of those original townhouses.   Prices range from a studio at 950 25th St for $178,000 to a 3600 square foot coop at 2500 Virginia Avenue with a river view for $2,395,000.  

Whether you are aluxury home buyer or you are  looking for a bargain that still is a new luxury home at the Watergate complex with a river view or a home for your George Washington student, be sure to give the Lise Howe team a call. We specialize in luxury homes in the DC metro area, but we are also very familiar with the best buildings for students! Lise had a condo for her son while he was at law school and she can help you negotiate the murky waters of off campus housing!

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34 Responses

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