Blast through battalions of crepes or invade the sparkling champagnes of diverse regions of France with today's Groupon: $10 for $25 worth of food and drink at Napoleon Bistro & Lounge. Napoleon Bistro is renowned for its fresh and flavorful brunches and sparkling champagnes served in a sultry downstairs lounge.
Just because Napoleon was a fictional legend, like Robin Hood or Mrs. Doubtfire, that doesn't mean he's not worth celebrating. Napoleon Bistro's menu has classic bistro fare coupled with homemade desserts, gourmet coffees, and dynamic seasoned cocktails. Savor sweet crepes (Nutella, banana, gelato, whipped cream, powdered sugar, and more) or savor savory crepes, including the maison blanche (made from black forest ham, asparagus, red onions, ricotta, and Parmesan cheese) and the Montmartre (with wild mushrooms, scallions, and herbed goat and Gruyere cheese). Try a chèvre salad with grapes and hazelnuts, or a Van Gogh omelet with tomatoes, onions, peppers, mushrooms, and no severed ear slices. Napoleon Bistro has gourmet European and international coffees and teas to match the globetrotting tastes on its menu.
Service is friendly and attentive, with very few invasions of Portugal, and there's outdoor seating. The opulent décor of Napoleon Bistro & Lounge makes the interior seem "like the set of a French film", according to the Washingtonian. The regal dining room has crystal chandeliers, red walls, mirrors, and gold accents. The downstairs lounge, called Metropolitain, evokes the Parisian underground with bare brick, ornamental flourishes, black leather booths, and green lighting. The lounge has DJs spinning global grooves on the weekends and a stellar selection of champagne cocktails. A Washington Post reviewer recommends L'Amour ("a bold mix of Courvoisier cognac and bitters"), the Femme Fatale ("in which bitter Campari adds body to the otherwise pleasant Mimosa mix of champagne and a splash of orange juice"), or A Good Night Kiss ("which gets its more robust flavor by ditching the orange juice in favor of bitters").
Napoleon Bistro is a Washington Post Editors' Pick:
- The basement lounge, called Metropolitain, mixes a younger, urban vibe with a menu of bubbly-based cocktails, champagnes and sparkling wines by the glass and a short list of appetizers... Sometimes the simplest drinks are the most pleasant: La Tropicale adds a delicate sparkling wine over mango nectar. Fans of classic cocktails can order the French 75, an herbal blend of Bombay Sapphire gin and a twist of lemon, topped with champagne. Even better is that none of the cocktails tops $12, and most are $9 or $10. – Fritz Hahn, Washington Post
Washington City Paper gave Napoleon Bistro a perfect five-spork rating. More than 60 Yelpers give it an average of 3.5 stars (opinions wildly differed depending on if people dined, danced, or munched brunch):
- From savory crepes to a simple baked chicken with local vegetables, Napoleon satisfies...I've become obsessed with the mushrooms and egg served in a crispy crepe cup. It's the most fluffy and flavorful egg I've ever had. – Mallory T., Yelp
- What makes me prefer Napoleon...is the glorious champagne room in the basement. What decadence, gold painted walls and an elegant bar that just begs you to order a kir royale for yourself and one for each of your friends. – Erin W., Yelp
- Weee. I love this place. – Snicky D., Yelp
Mi Casa, Your Funeral
The earliest Parisian bistros evolved out of room-and-board scenarios, where homeowners opened their kitchens to the public to make additional income. While the bistro was an enormous success, many modern home businesses fail. Here are the most recent failed attempts:
- Grandma Clementine’s Bed and Breakfast and Lecture About What You’re Doing With Your Life (New Haven, Connecticut)
- Rich Payfort’s Trunk Full’a Pogs (Michigan City, Indiana)
- Castle Franken-murder’s Video Game Trade & Save (Romania)
- “Doctor” Pigskin’s Emergency and Rec Room (St. Paul, Minnesota)
- Escaped Uncle Darryl’s “Your-Face-Literally-On-a-T-Shirt” (mobile kiosk, check local listings)
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