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I have been searching for a great french onion soup for a long time now, and still have not found it. 

I've had the french onion soup at Bistro Bis a dozen times and always thought it was fantastic.

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I have enjoyed the soupe a l'oignon recently at:

Ray's the Steaks, and
"600" (600 NH Ave., next to Kennedy Center)

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Wow, my name is actually attached to a topic starter, and the subject is French Onion Soup?!?! Gee thanks, Rocks. It reminds me of an old SNL skit with Eddie Murphy when he says to a guy, "you wrote a movie about pimps and there aint no bruthas in it?I don't know whether to thank you or to punch you in your mouth." Now I'm forced to go try the buffet at Good Guys and write a review on that. tongue.gif

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Cafe du Parc has blown me away with their onion soup in the past, prompting me to declare that theirs is as good as any onion soup I ever had. I was there on Sunday, and had it again, and it was very good, but not quite superb. Still very good, though, and it had a beautiful, browned, semi-impenetrable crown of cheese.

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I'm looking for the real thing.  Not some fancy dancy, let me show you how edgy/funky/modern I can be bowl of soup.  I want a crock of something that will take me back to Brasserie Balzar.  Le Diplomat is probably going to be your first suggestion but I'm not in the mood to deal with the crowds and noise.  Bonus point for easy parking.

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I'm looking for the real thing.  Not some fancy dancy, let me show you how edgy/funky/modern I can be bowl of soup.  I want a crock of something that will take me back to Brasserie Balzar.  Le Diplomat is probably going to be your first suggestion but I'm not in the mood to deal with the crowds and noise.  Bonus point for easy parking.

Et Voila's in the Palisades is good.  You didn't specify lunch or dinner but they are open for both I believe.

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Not sure if you're up for crossing the river, but the French Onion Soup at the Brabo Tasting Room is a good version. Parking on that end of King Street is usually pretty open and you might even find a non-metered spot around the corner.  It's probably safe to assume the same/similar preparation can be found at other Wiedmaier spots in DC, too, though parking might be trickier.

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I'm looking for the real thing.  Not some fancy dancy, let me show you how edgy/funky/modern I can be bowl of soup.  I want a crock of something that will take me back to Brasserie Balzar.  Le Diplomat is probably going to be your first suggestion but I'm not in the mood to deal with the crowds and noise.  Bonus point for easy parking.

I think the version at Terasol in Chevy Chase DC might fit the bill in terms of traditionalism, ambiance and parking. Although I have not had it in awhile, Cafe Du Parc made a good french onion soup. Free validated parking couldn't get much easier and the ambiance is typically subdued. But it is a pricey bowl of soup.

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I stand by StephenB's early recommendation of Ray's the Steaks version. Very beefy, rich, dark, and filling. Not classic, but incredible in it's own way.

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On 11/9/2014 at 5:21 PM, drsmoke said:

This week we will feature a "Burnt Ends" French onion soup, yes, it is good!

(The above was quoted from the Winter Soup thread.)

It wasn't with Burnt Ends, but Le Diplomate serves exactly the type of French Onion Soup that people craving comfort food seek: long-cooked onions, reduced to caramelized sweetness, in a perfectly balanced, beefy broth acting as a counterpoint, topped with a baked-brown layer of gooey Gruyères, clinging to the outside of the ramekin, and insulating a slice of Le Diplomate's wonderful bread, soaking in and thickening the broth. It's what you want.

PS - The Baguette Provençale is as bad as any sandwich I've had at any restaurant for a long, long time. It's gloppy, disgusting, and the Camembert was ammoniated. Le Diplomate should be ashamed of itself for serving food as inedible as this. Gotten to go and thrown in the trash.

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1 hour ago, dpamlin said:

Had dinner at the bar at Julii a few weeks ago.  It was . . . fine?  Got French Onion soup, the lamb dish, and a souffle.  The French Onion soup was a bit breadier than I am used to.  Pretty good, but not at the level of Mon Ami Gabi.  The lamb dish was pretty tasty.  The souffle was also good, but seemed to be a bit non-traditional (aren't these things supposed to be "airy").  I think there is potential there, but my meal recently across the street at Nada was better (and a better value).

At the level of Mon Ami Gabi is not really the bar I'm shooting for in my meals.  I'll wait till they work out the kinks.

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58 minutes ago, zgast said:

At the level of Mon Ami Gabi is not really the bar I'm shooting for in my meals.  I'll wait till they work out the kinks.

Mon Ami Gabi's French Onion soup is excellent. 

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22 hours ago, zgast said:

At the level of Mon Ami Gabi is not really the bar I'm shooting for in my meals.  I'll wait till they work out the kinks.

I will echo what was said above--- Mon Ami's French Onion soup is truly excellent, and I've had it at many of the better restaurants in the city. 

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3 hours ago, zgast said:

I've had Mon Ami Gabi's French Onion Soup, FWIW.

Curious: Do you like it? I was thinking it might be a lot like Le Diplomate's (has anyone had both?)

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I went for the first time a couple of weeks ago to Cafe Bonaparte in Georgetown and thought their onion soup was excellent.  I've been disappointed at onion soup at:  Cafe Tatti, Le Chat Noir, Mussel Bar.  The onion soup at La Madeleine was better than those 3 restaurants.

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You can pay $12 for a mediocre bowl at Occidental Grill like I did last night.  But don’t.  I think the Capital Grille on PA Ave does it well and I should have taken the walk.  

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On 12/29/2018 at 5:39 PM, DonRocks said:

Curious: Do you like it? I was thinking it might be a lot like Le Diplomate's (has anyone had both?)

I haven't had it for at least ten years, but the version I had was not deeply caramelized onions and rich broth.  I also recall it had too much bread. Was part of a larger meal that just wasn't very good, so perhaps that's tinged my memories.

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