If you're a college student in the District like I am, odds are you've encountered the problem of finding the perfect restaurant for big group dinners in Washington, DC. It may sound easy at first, but then you have to take a lot into consideration. The restaurant has to be fun, the food has to be good (or at least good enough), and the total bill has to be easy to split and/or relatively cheap.

Since this is a much tougher ordeal than meets-the-eye, to make it easy on ya, here are the best places to go for big group dinners in Washington, DC that meet all of the criteria.

1. Barcelona Wine Bar

Barcelona is the go-to place for a fun night, especially on a warm day with the patio at the 14th St location. Because they serve tapas, it's easy for each person to order as much food as they like. Plus, you can get big pitchers of sangria for the entire group to share. 

2. Tico D.C.

Like Barcelona, Tico is another rare restaurant that's fun and lively and has amazing food. With pitchers of cocktails (like rosé sangria) or even mocktails, and combos of small and large plates (hello, chorizo risotto), you can customize your dinner experience easily.

#SpoonTip: On Tuesdays, all tacos are only $7. You heard me.

3. Farmers Fishers Bakers

This restaurant is perfect for group dinners simply because it serves everything. I'm talking sushi, BBQ, pizza, tacos, jambalayas, burgers, and salads – everyone can find something they like. Although FFB can sway on the pricier side, portions are large so you and your group can be assured that you'll get plenty of bang for your buck.

4. Meiwah

One word: fishbowl. Add in a giant, circular bowl of questionable alcohol with relatively cheap Chinese food, and you've got a fun group dinner set. 

5. Mai Thai

As a Georgetown student, this one is laughable, but hey, Mai Thai's so popular for a reason. The restaurant space is made for big groups, and the fact that you can get any cocktail made into a pitcher attests to that. 

#SpoonTip: Mai Thai is even better during happy hour, where you can get great drink and food deals until 6 pm during the week.

6. Roofer's Union

With live music and drink deals ranging every night, Roofer's Union is definitely a hit spot for lively group dinners. Plus, there's a great rooftop spot for drinks after to get ready for a night out in Adam's Morgan. 

7. El Centro D.F.

Nothing screams a big, fun dinner like chips, guac, and margaritas. El Centro provides just that, Mexican street tacos and all. This restaurant is sure to please any group of friends for big group dinners in Washington, DC. 

7. Dacha Beer Garden

I know what you're thinking—this is a beer garden, how can I have dinner here? But give Dacha's food scene a chance and you won't be disappointed. Grab a burger or some mussels, a boot of beer, and everyone will be happy. 

8. Flavio 

Flavio's space in Georgetown is so big that it can house any group size, and honestly, who wouldn't want to spend a night eating pasta and bruschetta? Bring your group here and then make a joint stop at Baked and Wired afterwards

9. Penn Commons 

Going to Capital One Arena for a game? Stop by Penn Commons before, located right by it in Chinatown, for a delicious American-style big group dinner in Washington, DC. And be sure to try their dips and grilled bread, especially the goat cheese and date one.

#SpoonTip: Penn Commons has great bottomless brunch deals for a group brunch. 

10. Masa 14

Masa is a funky restaurant on 14th St with a Latin American-Asian fusion twist on all of its dishes. All plates are tapas-style, meaning you can get a bunch for the group to share, or pay $45 per person for unlimited tapas for the night.

#SpoonTip: Happy hour is 4-7 pm during the week, but all day on Tuesdays.

11. Maté D.C.

Maté is located by the Georgetown Waterfront, which is a prime location for some group photo-ops after. Its cocktails and sushi are both delicious, plus the restaurant can split checks for hassle-free payment.

12. Bindaas

Rarely do groups go out for Indian food, but Bindaas will change that. From the people behind Rasika, Bindaas is more affordable and focuses on delicious Indian street food. Bring on all the naan

13. Lebanese Taverna

Lebanese Taverna's space on Connecticut Ave really lends for large group dinners, plus the decor is reminiscent of being in the Middle East. Mezze appetizers are perfect for sharing, and the menu is expansive, with Mediterranean and Middle Eastern flavors. Grab yourself some labneh and pita bread, and your group is good to go.

14. Surfside D.C.

Because you order at the counter, grab your food, and sit down, Surfside is definitely one of the friendlier restaurants for groups. Each person can order whatever they want without having to worry about splitting the check and paying for someone else's 8-course meal. Oh, and the food is delicious—huge plus.

15. Unconventional Diner

Just like all diners have a little something for everyone, Unconventional Diner puts interesting twists on some diner classics, like mac and cheese with prosciutto, and chicken parm with a hefty side of spaghetti. Plus, there's a whole section for "shareable" plates, so everyone can have little bites to share.

16. The Smith – Penn Quarter

Disclaimer: The Smith is a tad pricey, but if you're ready to splurge on some fantastic food, then come here with your group. The Smith is one of my favorite restaurants back home in New York, and when they opened up another right here in DC, I squealed. It's just as good as the NYC ones, and it's mac and cheese will blow your mind. 

These are just some great big group dinners in Washington DC. Hopefully this will clear some stuff up next time your group chat wants to go out.