Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Cocktails with a side of crisis

Dawns, even metaphorical ones, have their share of bleak. In the midst of the post-inaugural hangover, winter mix, and lots of work paired with an utter lack of job security, Washingtonians find themselves rather stressed.

Misery loves company, but so does merriment. Take yourself out and invite a friend who'd really appreciate it. If you are watching your money, make it a drink. Churchill, who knew a thing or two about crisis (and fine drinking and dining), said it best: all great things are simple.

These are some of my favorite happy hour places, in no particular order:
1. Ceiba (Metro Center): A cocktail special every day, chatty bartenders, and complimentary appetizers.

2. The Cantina at Darlington House (Dupont Circle): The restaurant upstairs needs work, but the street-level pub is perfect. Wine specials and a $12 sampler of seasonal bar food great for sharing.

3. Piola (Rosslyn): Great pizza, half price beer, and an international chain that you ought to know.

4. Uni, a sushi place (Dupont Circle): $1 Sushi and special prizes for Japanese Beer.

5. Urbana (Dupont Circle): Aperitif Hour, with cocktail and wine specials. Great ambiance, nice wine selection and wonderful service.

6. News Cafe (Georgetown): consistently good and affordable martinis, well-traveled bartenders and overall friendly service.

7. Matchbox (Chinatown): Yes, it will be crowded but yes, you will enjoy it. Affordable martinis, beer specials, and discounted pizza.

8. Utopia (U Street): Plenty to look at, and half price on all cocktails.

9. Union Street Public House (Old Town): They've finally gone smoke free, have a long list of domestic drafts and a consistently good, if not very imaginative, bar menu.

10. Vidalia (Farragut North): Great bar bites and an extensive selection of wines by the half-glass.

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