Photo of Sopa de Tacos by Rey Lopez
Photo of Sopa de Tacos by Rey Lopez

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Sure you can get a set of three carnitas tacos for $10 at Mi Vida opening at The Wharf tonight at 5 p.m. But Chef Roberto Santibañez knew he couldn’t stop at cantina classics given his nearby competitors Requin, Del Mar, and Kith and Kin in what’s becoming D.C.’s most expensive dining destination. 

The menu includes such resplendent dishes as foie gras churros ($17); potato and corn masa cakes topped with caviar ($19); guacamole with blue cheese, grapes, and smoked almonds ($16); and a seafood plateau overflowing with oysters, crab, shrimp, snapper ceviche, and lobster ($78). See the complete food menu below.

Santibañez is best known for Fonda and La Botaneria in New York City, but previously worked in D.C. at Rosa Mexicana. Mi Vida is in partnership with KNEAD Hospitality + Design, led by co-principals Jason Berry and Michael Reginbogin. This is the same group behind SUCCOTASH in Penn Quarter and National Harbor from Chef Edward Lee.

Fans of agave spirits should pad their stomachs because they have work to do. Mi Vida offers about 40 selections of mezcal ($12-$120) and more than 100 different tequilas ranging from blancos and reposados to anejos ($10-$198). There are also six takes on the margarita and a handful of other cocktails. See the full drink menu here

The best time to visit Mi Vida on a budget is Taco Tuesdays, when from 4-7 p.m. tacos are $3 each and frozen margaritas are $6. 

The 11,000-square-foot restaurant that seats 350 overlooks the Potomac. KNEAD Hospitality + Design outfitted the main dining room with a 19-foot modern take on Mexico’s traditional Árbol de la Vida (tree of life). The clay sculpture is covered with flowers you might find in Oaxaca.

Mi Vida will be open for dinner Mondays through Thursdays from 4 to 11 p.m.; Fridays through Saturdays from 4 p.m. to midnight; and Sundays from 4 to 10 p.m. Later on lunch will be offered weekdays from 11:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. and weekend brunch will be served Saturdays and Sundays from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Weekday happy hour kicks off Feb. 26 (4 to 7 p.m.)

Mexican food is currently on the move in D.C. Catch up here.

Mi Vida, 86 District Square SW; (202) 516-4656;