This one is so simple it is stupid, yet you hardly ever hear it. If anything it is mocked, but I will go on record:
Eat at 5 p.m. or 5:30.
The quality of the food coming out of the kitchen will be higher. Only the very top restaurants (and even then not always) can maintain the same quality at say 8 p.m. on a Saturday night. It is also the easiest time for getting a reservation.
The best time to eat at @ElephantJumps is 4:20 p.m. They’re all just sitting around, waiting to cook for you.
Oyamel is a good example of a D.C. restaurant which can be quite iffy, but is tasty and consistent first thing in the evening.
There is a beauty to having a restaurant all to yourself. And if you don’t like the timing, have no more than an apple for lunch.
This is also a better system for getting work done, if the nature of your workplace allows it. Few people who do the 7:30 dinner work through to 11 p.m. If you have dinner 5-6:30, you are ideally suited to get back into the saddle by 7:15.
But please, I hope not too many of you follow this advice. The funny thing is, you won’t. You will leave the low-hanging fruit behind, you strange creatures you.