DC’s Best Grilled Cheese
This is a city of monuments, for sure - both to history and to restaurants.
There are the stone-faced tributes to Lincoln and King, as well as the Washington establishments that are shrines to culinary ego and ingenuity alike. But to appreciate this capital city and its true character, get away from both categories and venture to the quickly developing stretch around the 14th Street corridor.
There, discover the best tribute to the ultimate American comfort food: Stoney’s grilled cheeses.
Yes, grilled cheeses.
While other restaurants in Washington deservedly earn high praise from foodies for their longevity, tradition and innovation, the low-key vibe of Stoney’s is the embodiment of what folks who call Washington home know better. The wood-floored, high-ceiling neighborhood bar captures the flavor that suburban chain restaurants try to replicate in mall parking lots, without the kitsch or glaring fluorescent lights. No high-energy script, just vintage-style, low-intensity bulbs.
Stoney’s menu is genuinely casual and its signature grilled cheese menu doesn’t carry a celebrity chef’s endorsement increasingly common in Washington and its environs in Maryland and Virginia. It’s a city where tourists often wait hours to sample plates prepared by bold-faced kitchen whizzes such as Jose Andres or Michel Richard and reality show veterans such as Mike Isabella and Spike Mendelsohn. And weekend lines at Georgetown’s feuding cupcake stores often stretch around blocks.
At Stoney’s, it’s seat yourself, no host or hostess. Menus are already on the tables. Water and soda glasses are plastic. Draft beer trumps craft cocktails.
There are multiple varieties of grilled cheese, all delicious. There is the classic, with melted American between two thick slices of buttery Texas toast, crispy on the outside but chewy in the middle. The "super" variety adds juicy tomato, break-your-tooth-crunchy bacon and plenty of onions. Another option includes thick and salty slices of ham to the mix.