Have a weekend in Washington DC? We’ve got you covered with a non-exhaustive list of the best places to get a cocktail and enjoy a night in the nation’s capital according to bartenders.
We caught up with several Chilled 100 members to hear about their favorite places to grab a drink.
1346 Florida Avenue NW, Washington, DC
This Middle Eastern bar and restaurant has won numerous awards and recognition for its world class food and beverage menu. Bartender Jessica Weinstein recommends ordering the Za’atar Martini, made with oregano and sumac oil. “Personally, I love to drink my martini while snacking on my olives, I grew up watching my grandparents drink vodka on the rocks with a side of olives and it definitely stuck. Let’s be real, a drink & snack will always be better than just a drink,” shared Jess.
926 U St NW, Washington, DC
This DC staple features a rotating cocktail menu and no-fuss food options. “This place feels like home and has a lot of good energy and greater staff and owners (all bartenders in their own right),” shared Chilled 100 bartender Rachel Sergi. “I usually get a big ole White Wine Spritzer here. They make it right!” They offer seasonally rotating cocktails, check out their hot cocktails, like the Almond Toddy or head over in summer for their frozen options.
1501 9th Street NW, Washington, DC
Modern ramen and craft cocktails, what more can you ask for? The cocktail menu features a wide range of delights including frozen drinks, seasonal warmers, and a weekend special on Bloody Mary’s. Jess recommends the Frozen Tokyo Tea featuring a mix of Reyka Vodka, Riegers Gin, Bacardi Silver Rum, Lyon Curacao, Clement Coconut, Matcha, Coconut, Cream Soda.
1785 Florida AVE NW, Washington, DC
Since 1982, El Tamarindo has been serving up some of the best Salvadoran and Mexican food and drinks in the DMV area. The drink menu is straightforward – think margaritas and Mexican beer but the quality is high. The Tamarind and Mezcal Margaritas alone are worth the visit.
1301 U ST NW, Washington, DC
Right in the center of DC, Bin 1301 has become a local favorite for fresh, seasonal food and perfectly paired wine and beer. Bartender Dwayne Sawyer recommends their Shinju Whiskey cocktails and the fried salmon bites.
2411 18th Street NW, Washington DC
Modern Tiki meets traditional Filipino food at this bartender launched bar and restaurant. The spirits menu focuses on sugarcane with rum, rhum, ron, and cachaça. Sawyer recommends trying the Quarantine Order, Pagan Idol, William Prestwood Rum made with Blend #16, Lime, Grapefruit, Passion Fruit, Cinnamon, and Angostura Bitters.
1301-A 4th Street NE, Washington, DC
Looking for something with a Dive Bar feel that’s light on the pocket? Last call offers up a no-frills food and beverage menu with plenty of cool factor. Rachel Sergi shares, “I love their drink called “169 Bar”, which is a baller, carbonated Old Fashioned named after a rad dive bar in the LES of Manhattan.”
2226 18th ST NW, Washington, DC
As Sergi says best, “if you have a bad time here, you’re broken.” This unique bar blends modern craft cocktails with the flavors of the middle east. Sergi’s favorite drink on the menu is The Janissary Corps made with Jun Lebanese gin, pistachio syrup, lemon, and spices.
800 16th Street NW, Washington, DC
This old-school hotel bar is a favorite of Washingtonians. It’s known locally as the “best place to be seen and not heard” and visitors can often expect to bump elbows with politicians and local celebrities. Try the Beefeater Gibson of a martini to go with the light fare.
3212 Georgia Ave NW, Washington, DC
With plenty of outside space to enjoy a cheese plate and a bottle of wine or bottled cocktail, this new addition to the DC bar scene is a great stop now that the weather is warming up. Sergi recommends the White Negroni, a flawless, bitter concoction from the mind of Ernest Jay Apaga.