9 More Election-Themed and Debate-Related Specials Around Washington
Show your support with swing-state cocktails, partisan hot dogs, and patriotic cake pops.
Some of you type-A political types have no doubt conquered our original list of election-themed specials around Washington, so here are nine more to keep you sated through election day. Enjoy.
Through the end of January, try a swing-state cocktail at Art and Soul. Each drink is named for—you guessed it—a swing state, and costs $13. There’s the Colorado Orchid (Cap Rock gin, St. Germain, lime juice, Thai basil, and sparkling wine); the Peanut Butter Buckeye (vodka, peanut butter syrup, and a chocolate powder rim); the Oasis, in honor of Nevada (Vida mezcal, watermelon, lime, simple syrup, and mint); the Cardinal Cooler, for Virginia (gin, White Hall Viognier, simple syrup, soda water, and lemon peel); an homage to Iowa called the Meat and Potato (house-made vodka and candied bacon); the Pennsylvania Avenue (peach-infused vodka, Aperol, simple syrup, lime, and muddled peach); the Cheese Head, for Wisconsin (Death’s Door Gin, lemon juice, simple syrup, a Shiraz floater, and a cheddar cheese cube); and the Patriot, representing New Hampshire (bourbon, pumpkin purée, and house-made lemon-and-lime simple syrup). On election night, head to the Capitol Hill restaurant for a viewing party featuring happy hour all night and drink specials.
If you’re holding election and or/debate parties, you may want to hit up the online bakery Baked by Yael (headquartered in Cleveland Park), which is offering red, white, and blue cake pops through election day in red velvet, birthday cake, and cookies and cream flavors. They’re $2.75 each—spend $39.95 for a 12-pop flag basket or $145 for a 48-pop flag display.
In the week leading up to the election, head to Bayou Bakery for a last chance to sample the hot dog specials it ran during the conventions this year. There’s a Mitt-chigan Dog, featuring “Michigan sauce” (tomato-based chili sauce), chopped white onions, and yellow mustard; or a POTUS Dog, served Windy City style with minced white onions, yellow mustard, dill pickle spears, slices of tomato, pickled sport peppers, sweet relish, and a dash of celery salt.
The Kimpton restaurants are also getting into the civic spirit. Poste is offering three drinks: the Bi-Partisan martini (Plymouth gin, Dolin Blanc vermouth, and orange and lemon bitters); the Tea Partier (Sailor Jerry rum, chamomile-and-citrus tea, lime and lemon juices, agave nectar, and grapefruit bitters); and a Blue State of Mind (Bluecoat gin, St. Germain, and lime juice in an absinthe-rinsed glass with a sprig of rosemary for garnish). They cost between $12 and $14, but on Election Day—when the restaurant is offering all-day happy hour and bar menu service until 1 AM—each drink will run you just $10. If you find yourself in Alexandria on election day, head to Jackson 20 wearing your “I voted” sticker and you can get a three-course, $20 meal featuring favorites from founding father Andrew Jackson, for whom the restaurant is named. That means shrimp escabeche with johnnycake and chow chow, a roasted lamb chop with rosemary and hoppin’ John, and cheese with jam and wafers for dessert.
Thursday, October 11, watch the first vice presidential debate at the Ritz-Carlton’s Lobby Bar. GOP fans can show support with a Grand Old Fashioned: bourbon, muddled strawberries and oranges, Peychaud’s bitters, and club soda. Dems will be ordering up the Blue Bourbon Baracks: bourbon, crystallized ginger, blueberries, Angostura bitters, and ginger ale. Both drinks are $12. Two beer-and-slider snacks pay homage to the hometowns of the dueling veep candidates. Honoring Ryan’s native Wisconsin is a pairing of Leinenkugel “Leinie’s” IPA and bratwurst sliders with caraway sauerkraut, pickled red onion, and whole grain mustard. To support Biden’s home state of Delaware, order rockfish sliders with arugula, picked fennel, and Old Bay remoulade and wash them down with a Dogfish Head Raison D’Etre beer. Each combo costs $12.
Quill at the Jefferson Hotel invites Washingtonians and visitors alike to watch the debates while drinking the Presidential cocktail—with Jefferson bourbon, applejack brandy, lemon juice, Whiskey Barrel bitters, and a dash of cinnamon, garnished with an apple chip.
At 701, tattooed chef Ed Witt is offering a three-course “bipartisan” lunch through Monday, January 21. Available weekdays from 11:30 to 3, the meal costs $25 per person. Start out with a vanilla-vinaigrette-dressed fig and arugula salad with guanciale and goat cheese, soup, or a porcini and red wine risotto. For the main event, choose chestnut and butternut squash ravioli with sage brown butter and ricotta; smoked trout with shaved beets, chicory, and blue cheese fondue; or a five-spice chicken breast with bok choy and mango curry. For dessert, there’s a red velvet cake roulade with candied almonds, or you can choose a selection of seasonal sorbets or flourless chocolate truffle cake with smoked-caramel ice cream—the gluten-free option.
Keep track of Sushi Rock’s election poll on its Facebook page, or head to the Arlington spot for an Obama Aloha Roll ($6), with Spam, pineapple, avocado, and scallion. There’s also a $5 Michelle Obama Skinny Girl margarita. For the right-wingers, there’s the Mitt Romney Color of Money Roll, with avocado, cucumber, asparagus, salmon, and green soy paper ($6). There’s also an Ann Romney Old Fashioned ($5), because Ann Romney is, you know, old-fashioned.
At Topaz in Dupont Circle, there’s a Romney float featuring Old Dominion Root Beer with whipped heavy cream and a “salted lake” caramel drizzle. It’s $5; for $1 more, the bar will add a shot of Root organic liquor. Or you can opt for Obama’s Home Sweet Home—a riff on the District’s official cocktail, the rickey, with Bulleit bourbon, lime juice, club soda, and a little pineapple juice—for $9.