Outdoor Drinking Time: Blackwall Hitch Brings Three Riverfront Patios to Alexandria

The nautically-themed bar/restaurant just upped Old Town’s summer sipping game.

Blackwall Hitch brings three outdoor patios--including one directly facing the Potomac--to Old Town, Alexandria. Photography courtesy of Blackwall Hitch.

Alexandria’s outdoor dining and drinking scene just got a big boost with the arrival of Blackwall Hitch on the Old Town waterfront. The nautically-themed restaurant/bar arrives on the scene with three large patios fit for 135 guests overlooking the Potomac River, and plenty of summery fare.

The Crow’s Nest bar provides lounge seating with a view of the water below.

The 315-seat spot is a spinoff of an Annapolis/Eastport original; both are named for the blackwall hitch sailor’s knot, popular with ships traveling between the East Coast and England in the 1800’s. Seafaring themes run throughout. A “crow’s nest” bar on the top floor offers comfy leather sofas and a view of passing boats on the river below, while an oyster counter is the place to belly up for fresh-shucked bivalves and 20 craft brews. The all-day menus follow watery suit, filled with crab cakes and steamed mussels, shrimp-topped flatbreads and fish n’ chips. That’s not to say carnivores are left out. A ribeye tomahawk steak of Flinstones-ian proportion—meant for two—can quell a meat craving.

The menu centers around seafood, with crab cake sandwiches, steamed mussels, and fish tacos.

The biggest draw may be the rear patio directly overlooking the water, outfitted with lounge seating, fire pits, and a bar pouring orange crushes, Moscow mules, sangria, and other warm weather drinks. The view includes National Harbor on the opposite shore; nearby ferries travel regularly to the new development should its giant ferris wheel catch your eye. Still there’s reason to linger at Blackwall, with nightly live music Wednesday through Sunday, and weekend jazz brunch beginning in July.

Blackwall Hitch. 5 Cameron St., Alexandria; 571-982-3577. Open Monday through Wednesday, 11 to midnight; Thursday and Saturday, 11 to 2; Sunday 10 to midnight.

Food Editor

Anna Spiegel covers the dining and drinking scene in her native DC. Prior to joining Washingtonian in 2010, she attended the French Culinary Institute and Columbia University’s MFA program in New York, and held various cooking and writing positions in NYC and in St. John, US Virgin Islands.