When it opened down the street from Eastern Market in 2002, Montmartre stood out for being so good and so genuinely French. (Capitol Hill’s restaurant scene wasn’t much to speak of back then). Its wooden tables, yellow-splashed walls, ceiling fans, tiny bar, and sidewalk cafe looked like a little bistro you’d find in Paris. The French owner welcomed you and the chef served up French country specialties of duck confit, country pâté, hangar steak, braised rabbit, crème brulée, gratins of this and that. None of that has changed. Should you pop by without reservations and the place is full, you’ll be directed next door to Seventh Hill, Montmartre’s pizza bistro, which also serves fine salads, sandwiches, and soups.
- Elise Hartman Ford