The World Cup is more than just an excuse for beer at breakfast time. It’s the biggest single-sport tournament in the world, with teams from 32 countries (as many as in the 2008 Olympics) and more than a billion people expected to tune in. With the games taking place in South Africa, the time difference isn’t necessarily working in our favor this time (7 AM Buffalo wings, anyone?), but here’s a roundup of bars, pubs and restaurants that are offering World Cup specials this month.
Bar Pilar (1833 14th St., NW; 202-265-1751). We don’t know whether Ernest Hemingway—the author whose boat (named for one of his wives) lends its name to this DC hot spot—was a soccer fan, but rest assured this bar is full of ’em. Swing by for an extensive cocktail list and an ambience that will make you want to stick around, even when your team’s 90 minutes are up.
Biergarten Haus (1355 H St., NE). This brand-new bar is slated to open the day of the opening game. Watch South Africa versus Uruguay or Mexico versus France on its two 100-inch outdoor projection TVs. At one of the three bars, order from a list of more than 30 European beers.
Ceiba (701 14th St., NW; 202-393-3983). Stop by the bar for $5 beer specials. During games, you can also get themed cocktails such as the Tarjeta Roja (Red Card) and the Targeta Amarilla (Yellow Card) for $5.
Fadó Irish Pub (808 Seventh St., NW; 202-789-0066). Although Ireland isn’t among the 32 teams in this year’s World Cup, Fadó will join in the festivities all the same, opening at 7 AM during the World Cup to televise all 64 games. Additional incentives for the soccer-crazed include a fantasy-football competition where players pick teams of “real” footballers and rack up points for how well they do for their respective squads during the tournament. Cash prizes are awarded to top finishers.
Irish Channel (500 H St., NW; 202-216-0046). It might get a little crowded around the seven TVs in this low-key Irish pub, but the specials will make it worth it. For the World Cup, there will be a $20 beer-bucket special—you can choose six bottles of Heineken, Coors Light, or Miller Light, or mix and match. The pub will continue its daily food specials, including wing specials during the weekend. All games will be shown starting at 7 AM.
Jackson 20 (480 King St., Alexandria; 703-842-2790). Executive chef Dennis Marron has created a $20.10 menu that will be available during live games only. The afternoon menu features all-you-can-eat barbecue pork ribs served with apple-cider coleslaw; a J20 burger made with ground chuck and smokehouse bacon, mountaineer cheese, grilled green onions, barbecue aïoli, apple-cider coleslaw, and fries and served with beer and a brownie; and a selection of six canned beers. Earlybirds can have a combination of a Bloody Mary, house-made beignets, and a bacon, egg, lettuce, and fried green tomatoes on toasted brioche bun also for $20.10. You can munch on these in front of the indoor television, which will be showing all matches, or outside on the courtyard where large flat-screen will be available. During halftime, Jackson 20 will feed customers Grand Marnier-dipped orange slices.
La Frontera Cantina (1633 17th St., NW; 202-232-0437). Is Latin-American fútbol more your style? Try La Frontera Cantina for margaritas, sangria, and cerveza and enjoy the World Cup on one of four screens.
Lucky Bar (1221 Connecticut Ave., NW; 202-331-3733). Need some breakfast with that brew? Come to Lucky for the World Cup’s earliest morning games and enjoy breakfast along with $4 Yuengling and Carlsberg, which this pub will serve up during every live match. The kitchen will make special South African treats, such as bobotie, a curry dish with ground lamb and egg. Even more drink and food specials will be posted each day on the Web site. The bar’s 25 TVs will allow for plenty of angles to bask in your team’s exploits on the field.
McFadden’s (2401 Pennsylvania Ave., NW; 202-223-2338). Who knew the same bar that hosts D-Listers like Real World cast members and Heidi Montag was so into the World Cup? The festivities here include opening the bar at 10 AM starting June 11. You’ll get a special brunch menu plus $5 burgers and wing baskets. Drink specials during matches will be $3 Bud Light drafts, $4 Budweisers, $6 Red Bull mimosas, $9 Red Bull Absolut cocktails, and $20 Bud Light Supertubes. Plus, if you show up on Thursday, June 10, for the kickoff tournament, you’ll be able to enjoy the $10 open bar from 8 to 10 PM. You’ll also have a chance to win soccer and World Cup merchandise, and a table/free bar tab for the UK-versus-US watch party Saturday the 12th at 2.
Molly Malone’s (713 Eighth St., SE; 202-547-1222). Head to this Capitol Hill bar during soccer matches for $5 Guinness, Harp lager, and Magners Irish cider. For earlybirds, the bar will be open at 7:30 AM to show the morning games on 12 televisions.
Pour House (319 Pennsylvania Ave., SE; 202-546-1001). This bar is usually the place to go for fans of the US men’s national team. During the World Cup, catch specials including $3 Peronis and $10 Peroni pitchers. Plus, there are more than 25 high-definition TVs where you can cheer (or grimace) over every goal. The bar will be open at 7 AM to show each match.
Urbana Restaurant and Wine Bar (2121 P St., NW; 202-956-6650). For anyone looking to celebrate the World Cup in a classier fashion, the bar will have South African wines in honor of this year’s host country. Starting June 11, try a 2008 Raoul’s Jackals River Chardonnay or a 2005 Blaauwklippen BVS Zinfandel—both will be available for $12 per glass or $40 per bottle. Additionally, the restaurant has temporarily put in a TV so guests can watch matches while sipping. Plus, if the United States, Italy, France, or Spain wins a game, all guests have to say is “World Cup wine special” to get 25 percent off bottles from that country. Reruns will be played during happy hour (5 to 8 daily) and will include $5 small plates of brandade-stuffed piquillo peppers; duck meatballs with Anson Mills polenta; crab beignets with yellow corn, scallions, and rémoulade; falafel with pickled red onions and tahini; and crispy seafood rolls with green-curry aïoli.
Ventnor Sports Cafe (2411 18th St., NW; 202-234-3070). This mega-sports bar plans to switch on its 28 televisions at 7 AM to show every game during the World Cup. Owners have expanded the usual breakfast menu to accommodate the morning crowds and are offering bottomless Bloody Marys and mimosas on Saturdays and Sundays. For those craving a bit of fresh air to go along with their drinks and football, the patio has plenty of screens showing matches all month.
Peacock Cafe (3251 Prospect St., NW; 202-625-2740). The American eatery mixes things up this month with several South African dishes, including beef bobotie, Karoo lamb pie, South African stuffed mushrooms, and vetkoek, a traditional Afrikaner pastry also known as a "fat cake." All World Cup games are shown on the restaurant's two high-definition TVs, and pastries will be offered during the early morning contests.
Ireland’s Four Courts (2051 Wilson Blvd., Arlington; 703-525-3600). All 64 games will be shown live in high definition and surround-sound at this Irish pub. Games will be taped and replayed nightly between 6 and 8 for those who miss the daytime action, and breakfast specials will be offered for dedicated fans who arrive when the bar opens for 7:30 AM contests. During live matches, the bar will serve Peroni for $3.50 in addition to specials and half-price appetizers during the evening replays.
Summers Restaurant (1520 N. Courthouse Rd., Arlington; 703-5
28-8278). This soccer bar is loaded with screens—more than 50—that will be switched on for every game, even the ones that start at 7:30 AM.
Union Jack’s (4915 St. Elmo Ave., Bethesda, 301-652-2561; 671 N. Glebe Rd., Arlington, 703-778-3568; 10400 Little Patuxent Pkwy., Columbia, 410-740-5225). This British pub will be hopping mad with fans clad in Lampard and Rooney jerseys come June 12, when England faces the United States in Britain’s first contest of the World Cup. But don’t let that stop you. This bar’s can’t-miss drink specials will run throughout the month, and each location will televise every game live and give away free team memorabilia during matches. Twenty-five high-definition televisions and a ten-foot high-definition projection screen will ensure that every blade of grass in Royal Bafokeng Stadium shows up in perfect clarity as the United States squares off against its C-group rival.
Flanagan’s Harp & Fiddle (4844 Cordell Ave., Bethesda; 20814). This pub will be showing every kick and every goal on its multitude of screens. Specials will be offered during each of the 64 matches.