Enjoy Hyper-Local Cuisine at Nina May

Nina May Restaurant’s co-owner and general manager Danilo Simic. Photo: Alexander Padro, Courtesy Shaw Main Streets.

Fresh locally-sourced meats, fish and vegetables highlight the ever-changing menu at Nina May (1337 11th St NW), an American restaurant in Shaw. Co-owner and Executive Chef Colin McClimans is a native Washingtonian who sources all of the ingredients from local farms within a 150-mile radius of the District. The menu changes, sometimes daily, depending on the availability of ingredients.

Co-owner and General Manager Danilo Simic said that while the restaurant is a popular spot for Shaw locals, it draws customers from Maryland and Virginia, too.

“We just keep doing what we’re best at, and that’s making great food and offering great hospitality,” Simic explained. “We’ve got that neighborhood feel but also, we became a destination restaurant where we get a lot of people coming from Bethesda, Chevy Chase and Arlington to check out the restaurant.”

The restaurant’s name is a combination of McClimans’ and Simic’s daughters’ names.

In addition to a la carte menu options, Nina May features a “Chef’s Choice” menu. This family-style dining experience features six different seasonally inspired dishes to be shared among two or more people.

“Family style is a super, super good way to enjoy the experience because you not only enjoy the food, but you also exchange the energy at the table,” Simic said.

While the fresh, local food is a large part of the Nina May experience, so is their commitment to an unpretentious atmosphere. According to Simic, they have many regulars in the neighborhood, including diners who come in multiple times each week to experience the menu.

“I think people love what we do,” Simic assured. “They love the uniqueness of the concept, and also our design and vibe is very homey and welcoming.”

Simic is also an experienced mixologist who created a unique cocktail program, as well as an extensive wine list, for the restaurant.

Nina May is open for Tuesday through Thursday 5 p.m. to 9:30 p.m., Friday and Saturday 5 p.m. to 10:30 p.m. and Sunday 5 p.m. to 9:30 p.m. for dinner and Saturday and Sunday 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. for brunch. For more information, visit ninamaydc.com.

Sarah Payne is a reporter for Capital Community News. She can be reached at sarahp@hillrag.com.