Best New Late-Night Restaurant

El Camino
108 Rhode Island Ave. NW, (202) 847-0419
East Los Angeles-inspired El Camino sets a standard for post-10 p.m. D.C. dining beyond fast-casual restaurants like Amsterdam Falafelshop and Dangerously Delicious Pies. Its kitchen cranks out tasty beef tongue tacos and generous portions of guacamole past midnight on weekends. Free from the hordes of munchie-stricken bargoers that clog U Street NW and Adams Morgan, the restaurant manages to maintain its composure with quiet corners and large booths where parties can conduct themselves without disturbing their neighbors. If the schadenfreude of eating tacos while watching people shiver outside at adjacent Showtime Lounge wasn’t enough, El Camino also offers another bonus to late-night diners: Prices for strong margaritas and Tecate tallboys drop during the late-night happy hour, which begins at 11:30 p.m. Monday through Friday.