Politely decline your mom’s eggnog and head to these bars instead. From dive bar to decadent hotel lounge, they’ve got your back, even on Christmas Day. Know (with certainty) of others? Spread cheer in the comments.
H Street NE
Tell out-of-towners tagging along not to order a Manhattan, Martini, or a shot you think the bartenders "ought to know."
H Street NE
Looks like she didn’t come home for Christmas. Why is that EAGLES song on repeat!?
H Street NE
Deck the halls with black lights, because everyone looks hot here.
H Street NE
Irish bar-meets Jewish deli-meets Christmas. Sounds like a Seinfeld episode.
Responsible for your new Christmas tradition: beer and burgers.
If you don’t dig Christmas, rejoice knowing it’s St. Patrick’s Day, every day, inside Shenanigans. They’ll be open from noon to 2am serving free ham and turkey dinners.
Give Scott, the owner, a fist bump. He’s takes one for the team and works Christmas every year.
They have live music, even on Christmas. Stop in after 8pm, because Patrick Alban and Noche Latina will be playing.
You get a Stoney’s Super Grilled Cheese whether you’ve been naughty or nice.
Treat yo self.
Dupont’s king of cozy will be open, serving booze and a small but mighty menu.
Of course this no-frills corner bar is rolling out the red carpet for its regulars.
U Street Corridor
This might be the only night of the year 14th St isn’t a crowded theme park, so grab an actual stool and put down some drinks. Visit until midnight, but note the kitchen is closed.
U Street Corridor
Probably your best shot at snagging a Mrs. Claus. At least for the night. Just don’t be a Saint Dick. Same deal as above — open ‘til midnight, but the kitchen’s closed.
U Street Corridor
Reflect over cold beers and see if you can pinpoint the one moment that landed you at a dive bar on Christmas.
New low or new high? New high, definitely new high.
Mike and Ike will likely be wearing Santa hats. So should you. The bar’s open but the kitchen’s closed (except for some small snacks).
Obviously, this is the exact situation an ugly Christmas sweater was made for. Stop in for cheap beer and snacks starting at 4pm.
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1. Little Miss Whiskey's Golden Dollar1104 H St NE, Washington
2. The Star and Shamrock1341 H St NE, Washington
3. The Black Squirrel2427 18th St NW , Washington, DC
4. Madam's Organ2461 18th St NW, Washington
5. Round Robin & Scotch Bar1401 Pennsylvania Ave NW, Washington
6. Off the Record800 16th St NW, Washington
7. Duke's Grocery1513 17th St NW, Washington
8. Lyman's Tavern3720 14th St NW, Washington
9. Meridian Pint3400 11st NW, Washington
10. All Souls Bar725 T St NW, Washington
11. Bar Pilar1833 14th St NW, Washington
12. Cafe Saint-Ex1847 14th Street NW , Washington
13. Showtime113 Rhode Island Ave NW, Washington
14. Beuchert's Saloon623 Pennsylvania Ave SE , Washington, DC
15. BOURBON STEAK DC2800 Pennsylvania Avenue, Washington
Bathed in the violet glow of black lights and serving up an adult slushy called "Awesomeness", Little Miss Whiskey's is a New Orleans-themed haunt with a sticky floor and a good heart. Keep it a little more relaxed downstairs or head up a floor to a DJ-fueled dance party.
Half Irish pub, half Jewish deli, the Rock's anchored by a central, three-sided, pine-topped bar lit by hanging cast-iron lanterns and decked with hand-carved oak reliefs of four-leaf clovers and Stars of David, heart-warmingly coupled with a back-corner,
This massive, Adams Morgan beer hall pours 'em tall, dark, and handsome. Black Squirrel offers a plethora of domestic and imported draft and bottled beers in all ales and stripes. Feeling peckish? The in-house kitchen serves up some seriously insane burgers, and the topping list is just as varied as the beer menu-- goat cheese jalapenos on your bacon burger? Yes please.
This rowdy four-floor D.C. bar maintains the motto, "Where the Beautiful People Go to Get Ugly" -- locals will tell you that the statement holds. Known for the throngs of lively college kids stumbling in and out of its entryways until 3 am, this Adams Morgan spot is a fantastically irreverent crowd favorite. The bar has everything from a year-round roof deck, to live music, trivia, and "Drunkeoke" (it's exactly what you think). Stationed right in the heart of trendy Adams Morgan, Madam's serves a number of sandwiches and bar snacks, along with a full list of soul food entrees -- but it seems that drinking is the preferred means of consumption. The house cocktail menu is impressive, and upon request, the bartenders will top any drink off with a shot of red bull. So, whether searching for soul food and live blues, or 22-year-olds taking tequila shots while belting Christina Aguilera songs, Madam's Organ is certainly the place.
Opened in 1847, Round Robin has been frequented by a number of presidents, as well as Mark Twain & Walt Whitman. Bartender Jim Hewes has also been there for almost 30 years!
If you're across the street from the White House, head to Off the Record. Situated in the Italian Renaissance-style Hay-Adams hotel, this aptly named haunt looks like an over-the-top hideaway of the political elite. Don't be surprised if you noticed Frank Underwood sipping a Sazerac by the bar...
You're in for some monster sandwiches and burgers at this bi-level East London-inspired spot in Dupont. Take the Proper Burger, for example, which is stacked with two griddled patties and topped with a list of flavorful ingredients that includes smoked Gouda, charred red onions, and a Thai sweet chili sauce. Beyond the Proper, their chalkboard menu offers an array of tasty dishes -- from curries to homemade pastas -- that are all made from scratch in their cozy kitchen. The laid-back neighborhood-pub vibe lets you kick back while you sip on a craft brew or cocktail.
Sliders, dogs, and tacos are the main staples at this Columbia Heights dive bar. Here you will find pinball machines, PBR on draught, local beers like DC Brau, National Bohemian, and Atlas Brew Works, and a good number of domestic bottles. If it gives you any idea of what the atmosphere is like, the casual bar features stuffed jackalope heads, cross-stitched signage, and retro decorations. Now with the addition of an outdoor patio space, hot dogs aren't the only dogs welcome at Lyman's ... in other words, bring your pooch.
Columbia Heights' Meridian Pint always has its finger on the pulse of the craft beer scene, offering its customers the latest and best domestic brews in its rustic, Americana dining room -- where you'll find people noshing on bites like nachos, burgers, BBQ pork sandwiches, and wings -- and in its basement that boasts table taps from which you can pour your own beers. If that weren't enough, there's even weekend brunch with breakfast burritos, chicken & waffles, and huevos rancheros.
Across the street from a school, All Souls Bar isn't a mad-house, but rather a low-key, 33-seat retreat offering just three classic cocktails (negroni, Manhattan, and a cava-kissed sidecar), and just a handful of beers and wines. It's not about limitless options, but rather curation. Jukebox tunes float inside, while guests snack on olives, cheeses and nuts. An early closing time, and a table-service-only patio (no standing or smoking) prohibits any shenanigans.
A pioneer of the 14th Street restaurant boom, this comfortable, nautical-themed spot is inspired by Ernest Hemingway’s boat, Pilar, and divided between a downstairs bar that fills up quickly on the weekends, and a low-key restaurant upstairs, where outstanding small plates take center stage (from honey-roasted beet salad to lamb belly bolognese). The 20 or so beers are well-curated but a tad overpriced, so you’re better off opting for a craft cocktail, many of which are mixed with house-made sodas and even include adult slushies, such as the "Violet, You’re Turning Violet," which swirls jalapeño tequila, wild blueberry, pineapple, allspice dram, and ginger into a spicy and sweet concoction.
Named for aviator/ author of The Little Prince Antoine de Saint-Exupery, Cafe Saint-Ex also holds a dual identity. Upstairs is a classy cafe where you can enjoy delicious offerings like Sriracha Chicken Liver Mousse or Slow Roasted Pork Belly, while downstairs a dance party awaits your full-stomached dancing (wait 30 minutes!).
This Bloomingdale spot is one of DC's most beloved dives, thanks to its funk & soul jukebox, weekly live music, and dirt-cheap beer. Painstakingly curated by owner & DJ Paul Vivari, the jukebox contains more than 2,000 tracks of soul, R&B, jazz, and ‘60s pop. As for the booze, the selection isn't quite as extensive: the converted barbershop offers just four draft lines and a compact liquor selection, and fuses them with its $5 shot-and-beer combos, which are ideal if you’re looking to loosen up before getting down to some funk music.
A reborn western saloon with the upscale hipness of Eastern Market, Beuchert’s takes “farm-to-table” fare to the next level. Everything on the market-driven menu is sourced from local coops and farms, resulting in an abundance of fresh flavors. We suggest you sip on a specialty cocktail and order the roasted bone marrow -- a verdant combination of pickled pistachios and mustard seed, served with a parsley salad -- to fit in with the local herd, providing the taxidermy Buffalo (mounted above the cherry wood bar with lifelike expressions) haven’t done so already.
Bourbon Steak, located inside the Four Seasons Hotel, is a chic and modern restaurant brought to you by award winning Chef Michael Mina. It has a classy upscale hotel vibe, offering one of the most extensive selection of steaks, including dry-aged, grass-fed, corn-fed, and Japanese wagyu beef. However, it’s the kind of steakhouse where a trio of steak cuts can cost you up to three figures.