Welcome to the vibrant culinary scene of Bethesda, Maryland!
As someone who has lived here for years, I can confidently say that this charming town is a haven for foodies.
From casual spots to fine dining establishments, there's a little something here for all tastes and budgets.
I'm excited to share with you my personal favorites, the places I can't help but return to time and time again.
So, get ready to discover the best restaurants in Bethesda, Maryland, that make the town a must-visit destination for anyone looking to satisfy their taste buds.
One of my favorite places to grab a bite in town has to be Peter's Carryout.
This pint-sized, family-run joint has been my go-to spot for years and never disappoints.
They offer a variety of burgers, sandwiches, and other tasty eats.
The freshness of their ingredients and the generous portions always leave me satisfied.
Hinata Sushi Carry Out
Let me tell you about my favorite sushi spot in Bethesda – Hinata Sushi Carry Out.
This colorful little gem with outdoor tables offers the best sushi and Japanese groceries around.
No gimmicky rolls here, just good old authentic Japanese cuisine, freshly made to order.
Whenever I visit, I can't resist ordering the sashimi deluxe, and I always add extra scallops and other fish.
I highly recommend the scallop sashimi – it's so creamy and delicious! Trust me when I say you'll want to come back for more.
What's even better is that they have a small grocery section where I can pick up some amazing Japanese snacks and other hard-to-find items that aren't available at Hmart.
Although the selection is smaller compared to other stores like Maruichi, the quality of their products is unbeatable.
Virraaj Indian Cuisine
I've been a resident of this town for a while now, and I must say, my experience at Virraaj Indian Cuisine was nothing short of amazing.
From the moment I walked in, I was greeted with warm smiles and a cozy atmosphere that immediately made me feel at home.
The soft Bollywood music playing in the background only added to the charm.
I couldn't resist the vegetarian butter chicken, and it turned out to be bright, flavorful, and unlike anything, I've ever tasted before.
As for the drinks, the cocktails were perfectly balanced and beautifully presented.
But what really stood out to me was the attention to detail in both the food and the decor.
The presentation of the dishes was unique and eye-catching, and I could tell that everything from the spices to the names of the dishes had been carefully thought out.
It's no wonder Virraaj Indian Cuisine has such rave reviews!
Lilit Cafe has quickly become one of my go-to places whenever I crave something delicious and satisfying.
The cafe's intimate atmosphere is perfect for catching up with friends or enjoying a quiet meal by myself.
What I really appreciate is their extensive gluten-free menu, making it convenient for my friends with dietary restrictions.
I often find myself ordering their steak and cheese wrap paired with a refreshing Stella to cap off a long day.
On occasion, I indulge in their crab cake entree and Margherita pizza, both gluten-free and absolutely scrumptious.
To satisfy my sweet tooth, I never miss out on their delightful cheesecake and gelato.
As a bonus, Lilit Cafe also has a selection of wines and a dedicated gluten-free section that offers cookies, bread, and other treats.
Let me tell you, I've been going to Cheesy Pizzi for quite some time now, and their food never disappoints. Whenever I crave pizza, sandwiches, or a quick Italian fix, this is my go-to spot.
The fig prosciutto goat cheese pizza is a must-try – the combination of flavors and the perfect crust is just chef's kiss.
I often find myself enjoying any leftovers as a midnight snack, and it's always just as delicious! My partner is a big fan of their chicken panini.
We've also tried their pride, and it was a delightful addition to our meal.
Their chicken wings are another highlight for me, with a variety of unique and tasty sauces to choose from.
I appreciate that the food is always served fresh, hot, and in generous portions.
You can taste the quality of the ingredients they use, even in their salads, which come with a delicious raspberry sauce.
I'm also happy to report that the restaurant is always clean and well-maintained.
Maya Cuisine Restaurant & Bar
I recently had the pleasure of dining at Maya Cuisine Restaurant & Bar.
I must admit the experience exceeded my expectations.
The quality of the food was outstanding, and the prices were more than reasonable.
During my visit, I decided to try their Thali.
It's a complete meal that includes various curries, papad, and even dessert.
The portion sizes were more than generous, and it was truly a satisfying meal. As a local, I really appreciate the convenience of the restaurant's location, right beside the Bethesda metro station.
The service at Maya Cuisine was also exceptional.
I was thrilled to see they were able to accommodate my dietary needs, and their noodles are to die for!
The establishment was spotless, and the food was simply delicious.
Hawkers Asian Street Food
I recently decided to try out Hawkers Asian Street Food with some friends, and let me tell you, the vibe of this place is so fun!
I absolutely loved the decor, and the seating was comfortable.
One thing that stood out was how they bring out the food as it is ready, so everything doesn't come out all at once.
This ended up as a nice stream of food, and we didn't have to wait much at all.
We went during happy hour and got such a great deal!
A few half-priced Bao buns and smaller bites for just $5.
The Korean fried chicken was delicious!
We ordered a lot of dishes so we could try them all, and everything was incredibly tasty.
We were initially seated outside, but when it started pouring rain, they let us move inside.
The indoor space was just as great as the outside, with plenty of space and a fantastic ambiance.
One of the best restaurant experiences I've had in a long time. Every order was delicious - endless appetizers, scrumptious pad Thai, summer rolls... all excellent.
The atmosphere was really fun and relaxing.
The service was outstanding - they even moved all of us, including my dog, away from the rain when it started pouring.
The Big Greek Cafe
I've been a frequent visitor to The Big Greek Cafe ever since they opened their Bethesda location.
The food has always been delicious, and I simply cannot resist their hearty stuffed pitas and souvlaki platters.
My personal favorite is their chicken pita.
I also enjoyed their mouth-watering Greek fare and their smooth and tasty hummus.
Persimmon has become one of my go-to restaurants for a delightful evening out.
The interior is adorable, with a cozy and comfortable ambiance that never fails to make me feel at home.
And the food? Absolutely divine!
Every dish is made with the freshest ingredients and utmost love.
I particularly enjoy their crab cake, which boasts a generous amount of chunky crab instead of the usual patties.
The menu is creative, offering a variety of flavors that are well-executed and perfectly portioned.
I'm consistently impressed by both the food and service whenever I visit Persimmon.
I've been looking for a spot to grab healthy and delicious meals in Bethesda, and I'm so glad I stumbled upon Flower Child in Wildwood Shopping Center.
The bright colors and cheerful atmosphere instantly put me in a good mood, and the menu offers a wide variety of options that cater to different dietary preferences.
One of my recent favorites is their avocado toast on seed bread, and I was surprised by the burst of flavor from their cauliflower risotto with lemon zest.
I also appreciate that they have local beers on tap, providing a nice way to unwind after a long day.
I remember the first time I visited Flower Child with my partner.
I ordered a wrap, and they decided on a bowl with added salmon.
I couldn't help but feel a little envious of their meal, as it looked and tasted amazing!
In the future, I'll definitely be trying out more of their protein bowls.
I must mention that parking has never been an issue for me at Flower Child in Wildwood Shopping Center, which is an added bonus.
Pizzeria Da Marco
Nothing beats a night out at Pizzeria Da Marco. This spacious brick-walled eatery with a terrace has become my go-to spot for traditional Neapolitan pizzas, salads, and antipasti.
Over the years, I've had the pleasure of trying a variety of mouthwatering dishes.
The Americana pizza has always been a favorite of mine with its great sauce and delightful texture of dough that's soft yet has a slight chewiness to it.
Another dish that blew me away was the panzerotti – a mini calzone deep-fried to perfection, almost like a wonton.
The internal cheese and prosciutto filling combined with the tangy yet sweet marinara sauce served on the side is simply to die for.
I just wish they would sell that sauce by the bottle!
Pizzeria Da Marco also offers refreshing drinks like See Emily Run, which can be a bit heavy on the lemon but is perfect for a hot summer day.
&pizza - Bethesda
As a pizza lover, I often search for new pizza places around town.
One day, I stumbled upon &pizza - Bethesda, a modern pizzeria chain serving gourmet pies with diverse sauces, dessert pizzas, and house sodas.
I had heard about it but never got the chance to visit.
So, I decided to give it a try.
When I first entered the store, I was greeted by their friendly associates, who took my order quickly and efficiently.
I had the chance to build my own pizza and experiment with different toppings and sauces.
Now, I often visit &pizza with my family, and my son, who just turned 15, has become a big fan.
He even requested that we celebrate his birthday there. We ordered pizzas to go and enjoyed them at Bethesda Row, just a few blocks away.
Oishii Ramen Cafe
I recently visited Oishii Ramen Cafe, and I must say, it has quickly become one of my favorite Japanese ramen spots in the DMV area!
Their menu is incredibly creative and offers a variety of delicious dishes.
You can check it out for yourself on their website.
One of my absolute favorites was the Tarantula Ramen.
I was a bit skeptical at first with its combination of soft-shell crab tempura, shrimp, and squid, but it all came together beautifully in the end.
The lobster broth provided a smooth, subtly spicy base, and the addition of fresh mushroom chunks was a perfect complement.
However, not everything I tried was a hit. The Volcano Ramen, for example, was a big miss for me.
The pork bulgogi didn't pair well with the broth or noodles, and the overall taste was not pleasant.
On the other hand, their Tidal Special Drink was one of the best boba drinks I have ever had.
If you're a fan of ube, fresh mango, and pudding, this drink is a must-try. It may seem a bit pricey at $8.99, but trust me, you get your money's worth.
I also tried the Tsunami Special Drink, which was another hit.
I recently had the pleasure of dining at Tikka Masala, a vibrant Indian restaurant in Bethesda.
The moment I stepped inside, I was impressed by the clean and spacious interiors.
As a lover of Indian cuisine, I decided to try their all-you-can-eat lunch buffet for only $20.
The buffet offered a fantastic variety of regional Indian dishes, along with rice, sauces, and sweets.
What really stood out for me was the freshness and deliciousness of the food.
The warm, soft naan was brought directly to my table, and it tasted heavenly.
The curries were prepared perfectly, and they even accommodated my request for extra spicy lamb Rogan Josh.
House of MILAE
I've dined at House of MILAE in Bethesda a couple of times now, and I must say it's a hidden gem in the area.
What I appreciate the most about this place is the authentic Korean cuisine they serve, especially the bibimbop, spicy squid, and dumpling soup.
During my most recent visit, I ordered the seafood pancake, beef bibimbop, and the beef soft tofu stew.
The beef bibimbop was indeed delicious and came with a generous portion of beef.
The beef soft tofu stew was perfectly seasoned, and the dish had just the right amount of spiciness and tofu.
One of my favorite things about dining at House of MILAE is the small plate of side dishes that come with the meal.
CherCher Ethiopian Cuisine
Last weekend, I decided to check out CherCher Ethiopian Cuisine (chercherrestaurant.com) with a couple of friends.
As a huge fan of Ethiopian food, I was excited to try the authentic experience they promised.
We started with the Lentil Sambosa, which I found a little underwhelming, but my friends seemed to enjoy it.
I usually go for the vegetable platter, but this time, I was craving some meat.
We decided to try the veggie & meat sampler for $60.
It was enough food for all three of us, and we got to enjoy a variety of vegetable dishes as well as lamb, chicken, and beef dishes.
They also have a vegetarian option, which is always a great option for my friends.
One of my friends mentioned that they visited CherCher Ethiopian Cuisine before and had great food and service.
Chef Tony's Fresh Seafood Restaurant
Chef Tony's Fresh Seafood Restaurant has become one of my favorite go-to spots for a delicious seafood meal.
The first time I dined there, I was blown away by the amazing salad and perfectly cooked calamari.
The fish dishes, like trout and salmon, are always seared and seasoned just right.
The shrimp and crab dishes are also absolutely luscious.
And you should definitely try their crème brûlée with fresh strawberry slices and vanilla beans - simply exquisite!
The restaurant offers a farm-to-table Mediterranean-influenced fare, including seafood, served in a simple, yellow-walled dining room.
I've visited the place multiple times and always found the food to be consistently delicious.
The brussels sprouts starter is a must-try, and you should also give their Little Italy cocktail a shot.
The service is generally good, and you'll be greeted and seated promptly.
La Panetteria Restaurant
I've always been curious about La Panetteria Restaurant.
Finally, last week, I decided to give it a try and see if it lives up to its online reputation.
You can find more information about this restaurant on their website.
When I entered the trattoria, I immediately noticed the charming ambiance created by the stucco walls, framed art, and an atrium.
I ordered the branzino, lasagna, and meatballs, hoping for some hearty and delicious Italian classics.
When it comes to parking, I was lucky enough to find a spot right outside the restaurant, but it is a busy area, so you might want to consider using a nearby garage.
As a Bethesda resident, I've had the pleasure of dining at Cubano's Bethesda on several occasions.
The restaurant offers a nice Cuban-style ambiance.
Although the menu options may be a bit limited, the food served is quite tasty and definitely worth trying if you're looking for a new cuisine experience.
One thing to keep in mind is that the prices might be on the higher side, with many entrées costing $30 and up, as well as cocktails being around $15 apiece.
However, I believe the quality of the food and service makes the price worth it for a special occasion or when you're in the mood for some fine dining.
The Cuban sandwich is another popular dish that many of my friends enjoy.
In my experience, the restaurant has a nice atmosphere for a relaxing evening out, and the bathrooms are always clean and well-maintained.
I recently visited Guardado's Restaurant for the second time, and I must say, it's one of my favorite spots for a delightful evening.
The homey, sun-colored ambiance makes it perfect for enjoying Spanish-Latin dishes with friends and family.
The paella, in particular, is a must-try!
The fresh seafood and well-seasoned rice make every bite a memorable one.
We also ordered an appetizer of squid, and the zesty lemon juice added a pleasant tanginess that left me wanting more.
Besides the amazing food, I must also mention the friendly and attentive service we received.
One of the highlights of Guardado's is their tapas menu, which offers a variety of mouth-watering options.
During my visit, we tried the Gambas Al Ajio, grilled salmon, Tilapia in a demi red wine butter sauce, papas fritas, and the special of the day - mushrooms stuffed with shrimp.
Each dish was carefully prepared with fresh produce and offered terrific value for money.
True Food Kitchen Bethesda
I recently dined at True Food Kitchen in Bethesda, and I must say, it was a truly delightful experience.
From the moment I walked in, I was impressed by the trendy and relaxing atmosphere, making it an ideal spot for any occasion.
What sets this restaurant apart is its wellness-oriented approach, offering a diverse menu filled with vegan, vegetarian, and health-conscious dishes inspired by global cuisine.
I was amazed by the variety of options to choose from, catering to all dietary preferences.
The salads at True Food Kitchen are particularly noteworthy, with several creative and unique combinations.
During my visit, I ordered one of their seasonal salads, and it was absolutely delicious – fresh, flavorful, and made with high-quality ingredients.
And, of course, I couldn't resist trying one of their fun and tasty drink options, which added to the overall enjoyment of my meal.
I absolutely love going to Planta for dinner, it's one of my favorite vegan restaurants in the area.
Their dishes are always delicious, and I highly recommend the Bang Bang Broccoli and the Vegan Cheesecake.
The drinks are reasonably priced, although the food can be a bit on the pricier side.
The atmosphere at Planta is always lively and fun.
They also offer outdoor seating, which is great during the warmer months.
Parking is never a problem at Planta, as there are nearby parking garages and street parking available at reasonable prices.
One of my favorite weekend morning routines is to hop on my bike and ride for about 20 minutes to Bethesda Bagels.
It's a counter-serve space with hand-rolled bagels, spreads, and smoked fish. They only offer takeout, but they have a great outdoor sitting area.
Weekend mornings can get really busy at Bethesda Bagels, but trust me, it's worth waiting in line.
The variety of bagels and sandwich options is impressive.
My personal favorite is the jalapeño cheddar bagel.
And if you're lucky enough to catch their rainbow bagel, you must give it a try – I think it's their signature item!
Another thing I love about Bethesda Bagels is their selection of spreads and cheeses.
Be sure to check them out before you leave. I can highly recommend the Steak n Cheese, but the Everything Bagel seems to be the most popular among customers (I'll definitely try it next time around).
Tatte Bakery & Cafe
One of my favorite spots to grab breakfast or lunch in the neighborhood is Tatte Bakery & Cafe. This chic cafe has a wonderful ambiance, and I appreciate the variety of dishes they offer.
Their all-day breakfast menu is a major plus, especially on those lazy weekend mornings.
I'm a big fan of their smoked salmon avocado egg sandwich.
The salmon has just the right amount of flavor without being too salty, and the brioche bread is lightly toasted to perfection.
I also highly recommend their pistachio croissant and dark chocolate mousse—both are simply divine.
And, of course, you can't go wrong with their cappuccinos!
In conclusion, Bethesda has some truly diverse and exceptional dining options.
From mouth-watering sushi at Hinata Sushi Carry Out to the vibrant flavors at Virraaj Indian Cuisine and the rich traditional meals at Cubano’s Bethesda, there's something for everyone in this charming town.
As someone who calls Bethesda home, I can assure you that these culinary gems are not to be missed.