Food

Your Eating, Drinking, and Partying Guide to Halloween Around DC

Your Eating, Drinking, and Partying Guide to Halloween Around DC
Astro Doughnuts with Halloween sprinkles, marshmallows, and candy corn. Photo courtesy of Rachel Lyn Photography.

Just because you’re too old to go trick-or-treating doesn’t mean you can’t join in on the Halloween fun. The holiday lands on Monday, October 31, so restaurants and bars are celebrating over the coming days (and weeks). Check back for more events.

MONDAY, OCTOBER 24

Day of the Dead at Oyamel Cocina Mexicana

401 7th St., NW

The modern Mexican restaurant by chef José Andrés hosts an annual festival to celebrate Dia de los Muertos, the Mexican holiday honoring the dead and their spiritual journey. The festival kicks off with an opening party featuring small bites, creative cocktails, live music, and face painting. The fun continues with a series of “tequila and mezcal experience dinners.” Tickets to the opening party are $49; tickets to the dinners are $100.

When: Monday, October 24 through Wednesday, November 2

THURSDAY, OCTOBER 27

Nightmare on the Waterfront at Orange Anchor

3050 K St., NW

Take in Potomac views while taking $3 orange Jell-O shots. You can feel good knowing that 10% of bar proceeds go to the charity Dreams For Kids DC. The best costume of the night wins a $50 Orange Anchor gift card (and eternal bragging rights).

When: 6 pm to 10 pm

FRIDAY, OCTOBER 28

Halloween bash at Port City Brewing Company

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3950 Wheeler Ave., Alexandria

Kick off Halloweekend the adult way: with beer instead of candy, and plenty of games for your inner child. Attendees can win prizes by finding hidden spider rings, or dressing up in the best beer-themed costume.

When: 3 pm to 10 pm

Halloween mini boxes at Astro Doughnuts & Fried Chicken

1308 G St., NW and 7511 Leesburg Pike, Falls Church

The popular purveyor of crispy chicken-doughnut sandwiches will offer mini boxes of donuts decorated with Halloween sprinkles, candy corn, and marshmallow pumpkins. Flavors include crème brûlée, chocolate glazed, and pumpkin glazed. Boxes are $22.

When: Friday through Monday (but only pre-orders are accepted on Sunday)

Nightmare on 18th Street at the Black Squirrel

2427 18th St., NW

All three floors of the sprawling beer hall will be open to revelers. Make sure you check out each floor for craft beer and Halloween candy pairings, pumpkin beer, and pumpkin-flavored food.

When: Friday through Sunday

SATURDAY, OCTOBER 29

Nightmare on M Street Bar Crawl

Various locations

If you have the stamina, spend seven hours hopping between Dupont bars like the Gryphon and James Hoban’s. All participating bars are offering cover-free admission, costume contests, and drink specials. Tickets are $15 to 20.

When: Noon to 7:30 pm

Halloween Costume Tap Takeover at Blackwall Hitch

5 Cameron St., Alexandria

This nautically-themed bar and restaurant on the Alexandria waterfront comes alive with Halloween festivities. Head to the back patio for a costume contest and craft beers from South Street Brewery, including Twisted Gourd Chocolate Chai Pumpkin Ale and Satans Pony Amber Ale. Beers are $7 per draft.

When: 9 am to 2 am

Halloween bash at Black Jack and Tilt Side Bar

1612 14th St.

Black Jack is throwing a rager with drink specials, a photo booth, and costumed bartenders. Tilt Side Bar, a separate back room bar that occupies Black Jack’s former bocce courts, is hosting a superhero-themed costume party. Guests wearing costumes get a free drink ticket that can be redeemed at either bar. Look out for the $8 pumpkin spice slushy, which is made with Bailey’s pumpkin spice liqueur.

When: 5 pm to 10 pm

Halloween bash at Churchkey

1337 14th St., NW

Bring your best costume game, since winners of the costume contest will receive gift cards for drinks or dinner Churchkey, Birch & Barley, or Bluejacket Brewery.

When: 9 pm to 2 am

90’s Zombie Prom at Republic

6939 Laurel Ave., Takoma Park

Put on some 90’s clothes and gory makeup before heading to this hopping Takoma Park restaurant. Show off your best zombie dance moves while enjoying drink specials under deliberately cheesy lighting. The best “his and hers” costume wins a $150 Black Restaurant Group gift card.

When: Starting at 10 pm

Second annual Halloween bash at Bluejacket Brewery

300 Tingey St., SE

Just like last year, expect a costume contest, haunted brewery tours, and tunes spun by Bluejacket’s own “DJBJ” Brian Jones.

When: Starting at 10 pm

Rose’s House Party at Compass Rose

1346 T St., NW

Owner Rose Previte transforms her cozy joint into a hopping party spot for Halloween. The party is hosted by the spirit of Frida Kahlo, and a DJ plays old-school hip-hop all night long.

When: Starting at 11 pm

SUNDAY, OCTOBER 30

Brunch of the Living Dead at Compass Rose

1346 T St., NW

The festivities continue the next day with a brunch hosted by DJ Harry Hotter and DJ Smudge, who only play music by dead musicians.

When: Starting at 11 am

Spooky tea parties at the Ritz-Carlton, Tysons Corner

1700 Tysons Blvd., McLean

Tea takes a turn for the supernatural at Entyse Wine Bar & Lounge in the Ritz-Carlton. Come dressed in your favorite costume and enjoy a magic show, a haunted house, and a Halloween movie. Tea is $68 per person; reservations are required.

When: 10 am or 1 pm

Horror show at the Howard Theatre

620 T St., NW

Head to this historic theater to hear spine-tingling stories about ghosts, devils, and other creatures. Food and specialty cocktails are available from the theater’s kitchen and bar. Advance tickets are $20.

When: Doors open at 5:30 pm for a 7 pm show

BOO-zy Brunch at Orange Anchor

3050 K St., NW

Enjoy bottomless Mimosas, Bloody Marys, and orange Crushes with the purchase of any brunch entrée. Orange Jell-O shots and festive cocktails are available all day, and the best costume wins a $100 gift card to Orange Anchor.

When: 10 am to 5 pm

Halloween dinner at the Oceanaire

The seafood restaurant is introducing a special Halloween dinner menu for two. You and a friend or significant other can feast on appetizers like buttermilk fried calamari and grilled oysters Rockefeller, entrées like stuffed fish Florentine and jumbo shrimp scampi, and desserts (if you have room!) like pumpkin-ginger crème brûlée.

When: During dinner service on Sunday and Monday

Pumpkin painting at Brookland’s Finest Bar & Kitchen

Bring your kids of all ages to the restaurant’s patio, where they can decorate pumpkins to their heart’s content. The restaurant is holding a contest split into three age groups, and the winner in each bracket wins a prize like a coloring book, a t-shirt, or a free meal and dessert. Happy hour-priced drinks will be provided for the parents and adults.

When: 3:30 pm to 5:30 pm

Halloween bash at Archipelago

1201 U St., NW

The tiki bar is throwing a party that mixes elements of Halloween and Hawaii. Come dressed in your finest or worst Hawaiian gear, and carve some pineapples instead of pumpkins.

When: 7 pm to 1 am

“Hilloween” pumpkin brunch at Garrison

524 8th St., SE

Every year, chef Rob Weland and his staff at the Capitol Hill restaurant celebrate “Hilloween” with a pumpkin carving contest and brunch specials made with the “pumpkin guts.” Satisfy your sweet tooth with pumpkin pancakes served with caramelized apples, house-made ricotta, and chestnut honey or a pumpkin sundae drizzled with warm spiced caramel sauce.

When: 11 am to 3 pm

MONDAY, OCTOBER 31

Mo Monday Halloween party at Compass Rose

1346 T St., NW

The three-day festivities at Compass Rose conclude with a party on the actual night of Halloween. Dance the night away to beats by DJ Richard Mixin of Boston.

When: Starting at 5 pm

Day of the Dead celebration at Service Bar DC

928 U St., NW

Service Bar DC, a newcomer to the U Street scene, is teaming up with Mezcal El Silencio for a full week of festivities. Stop by each night for a different mezcal cocktail, such as the “Wrascaly Rabbit,” which contains Mezcal El Silencio, Amaro Nonino, canela-smoked maple syrup, and bitters. The seventh and final cocktail is a surprise.

When: Monday, October 31 through Monday, November 7

Halloween party at Estadio

1520 14th St., NW

Tickets cost $31 and include some tasty tapas and desserts. If you’re looking to get your drink on, stop by the cash bar for festive drinks like the pumpkin slushito, Zombie slushito, and vampire’s blood sangria. The first-place, second-place, and third-place winners of the costume contest will receive $200, $100, and $50 Estadio gift cards, respectively.

When: 7 pm to 11 pm

TUESDAY, NOVEMBER 1

Day of the Dead festival at Espita Mezcaleria

1250 9th St., NW,

Shaw’s Oaxacan restaurant is offering mezcal tasting, face-painting, special cocktails, and several signature dishes for their Day of the Dead celebration. Drink liquid courage in the form of mezcal flights, and try adventurous dishes like house-made Morcilla blood sausage.

When: During regular dinner service


Editorial Fellow

Maxine is an editorial fellow passionate about covering food, news, and politics. Her work has also been published in Forbes, Marie Claire, and Inside Higher Ed. She recently graduated from Brown University with honors in nonfiction writing.