Proof That Iceland's Ring Road Is the World's Most Beautiful Road Trip
More From Cool in the Clutch
1. Mango Tree929 H St NW, Washington
2. Boss Shepherd's1299 Pennsylvania Ave NW, Washington
3. Daikaya705 6th St NW, Washington
4. Denson Liquor Bar600 F St NW, Washington
5. SEI444 7th St NW, Washington
6. Bottom Line1716 I St NW, Washington
7. McCormick & Schmick's901 F St NW, Washington
8. City Tap House901 I St NW, Washington DC
9. Old Ebbitt Grill675 15th St NW, Washington
10. Clyde's of Gallery Place707 7th St NW, Washington
Mango Tree draws inspiration from Thailand's history and tradition to bring patrons an atmosphere and cuisine that'll make them feel like they're in the heart of Bangkok. The Thai titan also opted to keep things simple by pricing everything on their happy hour menu at $6, as if you need more incentive.
Located in Penn Quarter, this new Creative Eats-helmed restaurant offers up farm-to-table Southern-inspired American fare. Come for the food, (Pot Pie Fritters are a must) and stay for the extensive, high-quality drink menu.
Don’t let the wait for this Chinatown ramen shop deter you: it’s more than worth it for the chewy noodles imported from Japan and the chicken, pork, and beef Chintan stock that’s cooked over 16 hours for extra richness. An unsuspecting standout among the Sapporo-style ramen on offer is the vegan version topped with Brussels sprouts, snow peas, carrots, and braised shiitake mushrooms. As if the ramen didn’t already, Daikaya’s wooden accents, dangling lightbulbs, and blue- and yellow-striped walls will have you feeling warm and cozy.
It takes a little effort to find this bar that is seemingly in the basement of FUEL Pizza. But, it’s worth it. Look for a light globe that reads "Denson" and climb down a set of stairs. Your feet slapping the metal will alert the doorman (BALLER!) to swing the door open and welcome you into a sexy, boozy lair. Cocktails like Sazeracs and Negronis are the go-to here (especially during happy hour, when they’re $9 instead of $14). Along with your libations, there are snacks like steak tartare, Greek-inspired lamb meatballs, and even a green curry chicken pot pie.
This sushi spot in Penn Quarter reinvents favorites for one-of-a-kind dishes and sides you'll be too curious about to not try, like wasabi guacamole and the fish n' chips roll. Enough said.
The Bottom Line isn't your typical neighborhood bar. Where else can you find a "beat the clock" happy hour on Fridays? At this Downtown spot, Fridays mean the beer starts dirt-cheap and escalates hourly to... still dirt-cheap.
An established chain since the '70s, McCormick & Schmick's has been dishing seafood goodness for a while. Their happy hour gets a great rep too, with black mussels or Kobe beef-style carpaccio for $4.99.
With 60+ brews available (40 via tap), City Tap House is your destination for craft beer enlightenment. With a sizable menu of bites like brick oven pizza, Craftwiches, and three different kinds of mussels, you can settle in for the long haul and taste a range of brews.
Depending on your tastes, it will either be extremely appealing or off-putting that the Old Ebbitt Grill is the oldest saloon in Washington, once frequented by Presidents Grant, Cleveland, Roosevelt, and McKinley. Just steps away from 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue, Old Ebbitt’s Beaux-Arts façade begs you to enter for a cocktail, while its mahogany and velvet booths and bars set in marble, brass, and beveled glass implore you to stay for a few more as you imagine what kind of political secrets and scandals were shared here. As you’re doing your best Woodward and Bernstein impressions, munch on breakfast, lunch, brunch (if you’re there on a weekend), or dinner. The menus certainly have a Southern slant (chicken and waffles, crab cakes, shrimp and grits), though you can also opt for house-made cannelloni, pappardelle, and ravioli or flash-fried swordfish tacos.