The Washington D.C. Guide
Locals say the vibe in DC, from popularity of neighborhoods to the real estate market, changes depending on the administration. While we can’t tell for sure, we do notice a palpable shift in fashionable areas of town as this term comes to a close. A previously hot Georgetown seems to now have more cupcake shops than restaurants, while an edgier U Street and the urban Chinatown/Penn Quarter area boom. Check out the best of DC’s most happening neighborhoods plus our new and classic favorites from all around the nation’s capital.
The Gibson2009 14th St. NW, Cardozo | 202.232.2156
Behind a nondescript entrance on the 14th Street stretch is the bar that began the mixology craze in DC: The Gibson. Serving expertly-made cocktails in a sexy, low-lit seating-room only, this place is great for a date. Make a reservation to avoid the lines and enjoy one of the many house concoctions in the calming, elegant space. For a rowdier time, the outdoor patio opens in nice weather.
Columbia Room124 Blagden Alley NW, Logan Circle | 202.316.9396
Though à la carte drinking is an option at this reservation-only cocktail den, the meticulously-crafted cocktail tasting menu is the real reason to come. Each party gets their own personal mixologist—they're all extremely knowledgeable and take their craft very seriously (they chop their own ice, for example). Expect to spend two hours in this artful drinking experience, with a small plate in between.
Jack Rose2007 18th St. NW, Adams Morgan | 202.588.7388
Located in nightlife-heavy Adams Morgan, the three-story saloon Jack Rose is usually as stocked as the shelves, which boast over 1,500 bottles, including over 100 rare Kentucky whiskey varieties and some pretty great Scotch (Bruichladdich and Glen Grant). There’s no shortage of well-crafted cocktails, like the eponymous blend of applejack and grenadine, which are best enjoyed on the fantastic and spacious rooftop in warmer months.
Off the Record800 16th St. NW, Downtown | 202.638.6600
Tucked away in the basement of The Hay Adams hotel, this grown-up lounge offers a taste of old Washington. Everything seems like a little secret down here amidst the alcove seating and sinful red velvet hues. We’re sure the staff, who make some pretty killer cocktails, have overheard an important story or two.