If you've seen the headlines about Rose's Luxury, chef Aaron Silverman's farmhouse-hip hot spot in Washington, D.C., you might think its defining feature is an epically long line to get in. "The line is crazy," says Silverman, a 2016 Food & Wine Best New Chef. "I got a call from my GM and he was like, 'Cameron Diaz is waiting in line outside!' I think the only people who haven't waited are Michelle and Barack." But you don't have to be the President to get a table at Rose's. Here, Silverman's six tips for snagging a spot.
1. Don't stress. "Relax," Silverman says. "Like, don't freak out. You can get a seat. That's tip #1. Definitely."
2. Go on a weeknight. "The weekend is the weekend," he says. "People are crazy on Saturday and Sunday, and they wait in really long lines. But on weekdays we actually have open seats quite a bit throughout the night, and it's because people are afraid that there's a line and that they can't get in. Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday are usually the best days to come."
3. Get a beer (or an aptly-named cocktail). If you arrive early, why stand in line when you could kick back with a cold beer? "The building past Pineapple and Pearls [Silverman's new spot] is an Irish pub," Silverman says. "You can almost jump from Rose's to there. So especially if it's a nice day we tell people, 'Sit outside and have a beer. Wait until you see people starting to get in line and then you can get in line, but you don't have to be the first person.'" The pub even has the perfect drink for would-be line-waiters: "They named a cocktail for us called Waiting on Rose's," he says.
4. Call for wait times. While Rose's doesn't take reservations over the phone, Silverman welcomes calls. "We answer the phones all day long, so if you call and say, 'What's the wait?' we'll tell you. We've definitely had some crazy stories over the last two and a half years, though. There are definitely some people who feel like they shouldn't wait for things. I won't mention names."
5. Hire a TaskRabbit. If you insist on holding a place on line but don't want to do it yourself, hire someone to sit there for you. "There's typically one or two TaskRabbits every day," Silverman says. "On the weekends, maybe as many as three or four. They get paid to wait in line, so those are usually the first people there. They grab a chair and have a book and play on their iPads, and then when we open up they put down whoever's name. People pay people to be like, 'It's her 30th birthday, we HAVE to do it, we HAVE to have this table for eight people."
6. Use a non-human stand-in. When all else fails, get a human-like substitute to represent you in line, like the skeleton seen waiting in the photo above. Just don't bring it in with you.