City Tap House plans to breathe new life into the “cursed” restaurant space at 1250 Connecticut Avenue, Northwest. The 9,300 square-foot building on a prominent Dupont Circle corner has changed hands fairly frequently in the past few years, occupied by the “female-friendly” STK steakhouse, Casa Nonna from the BLT group, and the California Pizza Kitchen chain.
Brand director Andy Farrell knows the space’s reputation, but says the Philadelphia-based beer joint’s “neighborhood pub vibe…speaks to what the people here [in Dupont] need and want” (i.e. a ton of beer, crowd-pleasing food, and extensive happy hour deals). He says he’s particularly excited about this location because the Dupont area has a “residential cache” lacking in Penn Quarter, where the chain made its DC debut in 2013.
The Dupont location opens Monday, October 9th with 40 draft lines. Just like at Penn Quarter, the beer menu stars DC-area breweries like DC Brau alongside regional producers such as Victory Brewing Company and Allagash.
Besides beer, drinkers can pick from a list of mostly-American wines and cocktails. Look for fun seasonal drinks, like a vanilla-pumpkin cocktail for fall, and a cranberry Tom Collins around Thanksgiving. Also available: a 50-deep list of bourbons and whiskeys. During happy hour, which runs weekdays from 4 to 7 PM, canned beers will be available for $4, draft beers go for $5, and house wines and well cocktails are $6. In keeping with the extensive drinks menu, the space is centered around a huge island bar.
Much of the food carries over from the Penn Quarter menu, including bar snacks like Korean short rib tacos and corn-and-crab hushpuppies, as well as large, beer-friendly plates (i.e. maple-brined pork chops). New additions for fall include baked cambozola cheese, pumpkin-and-burrata bruschetta, apple-gouda salad, and a must for DC: crab cakes.
Once the beer spot is up and running, they’ll start weekend brunch on October 14th with a build-your-own bloody Mary bar ($18), and hearty dishes like chicken and waffles. Beginning the week after, weekday lunch will begin. The pub will also kick off regular events like a fall “pumpkin smash,” featuring several pumpkin beers, and a “Friends-giving” dinner in November.
City Tap House Dupont. 1250 Connecticut Ave., NW; 202-878-8235. Open Sundays through Wednesdays 5 PM to midnight (kitchen open until 10 PM); Thursdays 5 PM to 1:30 AM (kitchen open until 11 PM); and Fridays and Saturdays 5 PM to 2:30 AM (kitchen open until 11 PM). Brunch (beginning Oct. 14) available Saturdays and Sundays starting at 11 AM. (Weekday lunch hours TBD)