Citysearch Editorial Review. This Chinatown bistro famous for its crispy-crust, wood-fired pizza and beef sliders started off as an abandoned Chinese grocery. Business partners Drew Kim, Perry Smith and Mark and Ty Neal saw potential in the three-level, 15-foot wide space, which has since expanded into the adjoined building, adding patio seating, too. The space feels vintage and minimalist with exposed brick, wooden floors and simple decor--though look closely at the tables, each of which features an embedded matchbox from one of the owner's own childhood collections. Beyond the pizza, it's also a popular spot for celebratory group outings; house-made liquor infusions and a martini list delineated by "girly" and "manly" cocktails make any meal more fun. After its 2003 debut, it was named "Best New Restaurant" at the restaurant industry award the RAMMYS in 2004.
Yummy Pizza, Yummier Desserts. One of the first things I heard about Matchbox before I ate there was that the pizza was AMAZING. So I went there expecting some life-changing, revelatory pizza and of course I was kind of let down. It's pretty darn good pizza, definitely. But I have a feeling there's probably another spot somewhere in DC where the pizza is even better. I do like their spicy sausage, peppers and onions pizza. And their shrimp and grits is excellent - you don't get many shrimp but it is just an appetizer. I am huge fan of their desserts - they have this cookie sandwich concoction that's just decadent and I loved their doughnuts with espresso-kahlua creme dipping sauce. So if you go to Matchbox, try to save room for dessert.
Upscale Pizza Bistro. For a while matchbox was my go-to restaurant when out of town visitors wanted a quick and affordable bite to eat downtown. You cannot go wrong with ANYTHING on the menu. I am addicted to their sliders and pomegranite martini. Just steps from the Verizon Center and Chinatown metro, Matchbox is the perfect date spot or girls night out restaurant.
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