If you don’t want to cook or host a Seder this Passover, you have plenty of great options, thanks to a bounty of top restaurants in the DC area that are offering Passover-friendly fare in myriad cuisines from Mexican and Italian to pizza (yes, pizza!) and deli between March 25- April 1.
For those who don’t want to do a Seder at home, several restaurants are cooking traditional Passover dinners for both Seder nights. Equinox, Dino, Mon Ami Gabi, DGS Delicatessen and Rosa Mexicano are pulling out some of the old standbys—often with new modern twists—such as gefilte fish, chopped liver, beef brisket or lamb and potato pancakes along with more exotic options.
Throughout the holiday, you can sip a kosher sangria haroset with a Manischewitz reduction and eat a matzah ball flavored with chipotle marrow and brisket wrapped in a banana leaf at Rosa Mexicano…enjoy locally-raised lamb along with potato and mushroom kugel and matzah farfel at Dino…or savor a flourless chocolate cupcake at Sprinkles.
Equinox in downtown DC offers a unique pairing of boutique Israeli wines with its Passover menu, which features a salad with heirloom beets, capers and pistachios; brisket; quinoa salad with figs and mint; wilted spinach with sesame seeds and flourless chocolate cake.
Taking a cue from the traditional Seder plate, DGS in Dupont Circle serves a matzah ball soup made with bone marrow, ginger, scallion and mustard oil and halibut crusted with bitter herbs and braised lamb. Apple and rhubarb crumble completes the dinner.
“This holiday is such a clear reference point for Jewish food,” said DGS owner Nick Wiseman. “We do a Jewish take on food that people remember, like the Seder plate, and re-imagine it into meal with a more modern approach.”
Passover at Dino in Cleveland Park consists of five courses, flights of four glasses of wine, three unique harosets, two desserts and one more reason not to cook. Owner and Chef Dean Gold has been cooking Passover-style dinners for customers the last eight years. They remind him of when he was young helping his mother grind fish and roll matzah balls in her kitchen.
“Those are great memories,” he said.
In a unique take on tradition, Rosa Mexicano in Chevy Chase has a Seder dinner that includes a tropical haroset blending dates, coconut, tangerine, pomegranate, almonds, cinnamon and rose apples. It serves Higado Picado, or chopped liver, with tempura scallions, salsa verde and matzah. Its Jalisco-style Pozole soup comes with chipotle-marrow matzah balls and crispy chicken crackling arrives with mustard salsa verde.
Soupergirl in Takoma Park, DC, will deliver or serve several vegan, Passover-style offerings from its menu including matzah ball soup without rice, triple ginger butternut squash soup and quinoa salad.
Georgetown Cupcake offers a macaroon drizzled with dulce de leche or chocolate ganache. Sprinkles sells a flourless chocolate cupcake made with vanilla bean glaze adorned with a blue Star of David and uses Star of David stickers to seal its boxes for Passover gifts.
“It’s very popular and in demand with the Jewish community,” said Terra Marsden, Sprinkles general manager in Georgetown.
With such great food available for Passover without spending time in the kitchen, it’s easy to move beyond matzah sandwiches at work and even enjoy a night out during the holiday!