Napoleon Bistro and Lounge in Adams Morgan has been gaining in popularity over the past year and now seems to have fully arrived. We are frequent visitors and it used to be more hit or miss but now, especially on weekends, there is almost always a good crowd in the lounge with a number of people dancing to a good mix of music. The restaurant on the other hand has received mixed reviews but I get the sense that over the past few months things have been getting better – especially for brunch.
Cost – $$
Service – B
I have heard some complain about the service but my experiences have all been pretty positive. The wait staff continues to be friendly and the food and drinks usually come out in a reasonable amount of time. The bartenders in the lounge do a great job and probably deserve an A-. Even on overly crowded nights, they seem to do their best to keep wait times to a minimum.
Food – C+
The food isn’t as good as many of the other French restaurants around town in the same price range but it is still a little better than decent. I have ordered the same entree on different visits and have it be very good one time and okay another. As I alluded to earlier, the food seems to be getting more consistent.
Decor – B
Napoleon falls a little short of French chic but it’s a good attempt. I like the idea of red walls, black leather booths and the coat of arms behind the upstairs bar. The lounge area is kind of cool too with the brick mixed with regal looking wallpaper but it is sometimes too crowded and dimly lit to see much of anything except the bar.
Feel – B+
Napoleon has been a go to spot over the past few months and it has consistently been a good way to end nights out in Adams Morgan. The crowd used to be more hip but now that it has more of a following, there is a lot more variety in the clientele which isn’t necessarily a bad thing. The lounge tends to be on the small side so it can be crowded but not obnoxiously so. It also helps that the DJs are always good and keep the atmosphere energetic, fun and friendly.
Napoleon is located at 1847 Columbia Rd. NW. They can be reached at (202) 299-9630.
What’s the Buzz:
April 13, 2007 – Napoleon (Washington Post) – Whether your taste and budget call for a glass of sparkling Australian wine or an expensive vintage from a legendary French producer, champagne bars draw the hip and well-heeled from New York to Paris and beyond. Full article…
February 20, 2007 – Napoleon (DC Dining) – Café Bonaparte in Georgetown has opened a sibling restaurant, Napoleon, in the old Mantis space at the corner of Columbia Road and Mintwood Place in Adams Morgan. The interior, garish that it may be, is much more comfortable. Full article…