Big restaurant, good atmosphere. The downtown iteration of the classic U St. landmark bookstore-restaurant-fair trade market-hangout does not have the same community-oriented vibe, bur provides much-appreciated breathing room. Spreading out over a roomy bi-level space and several dining areas, Busboys does a good job of integrating its original character in a different location. The large outdoor patio is a great addition. Busboys always seems to be busy, so there’s often a wait and the staff comes off a bit distant and harried. The atmosphere is laid-back, though it can get loud when crowded. Reasonably priced with mainstream American fare, Busboys is worth a dinner, especially if you can snag a low-slung couch on the patio and people-watch outside munching on a burger in a pita.
A Fun, Vibrant Cafe. Busboys and Poets is always packed, and I pass by this place almost daily. If not for the tasty dishes, go here to just hang out with friends over a drink or some coffee - it's got that great coffeehouse vibe complete with unique artwork and the occasional poetry slam or jazz band playing. This location boasts a nice outdoor seating area, where you can either sit at tables or lounge on patio couches. The food here is pretty solid - they offer mostly American dishes like burgers and sandwiches, and even have some good vegan or vegetarian options. Desserts here are noteworthy as well; try their bread pudding, but not after a big dinner. It's dense, sweet and totally worth it.
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