Food

Where to Celebrate Mardi Gras and Fat Tuesday Around DC

Get ready for king cake, po' boys, hurricanes, and all the gumbo you can eat.

A boozy Mardi Gras donut at Astro Beer Hall. Photo courtesy of Jen Chase.

Where can you celebrate Mardi Gras and New Orleans culture in DC? Most of the festivities center around Fat Tuesday, February 25, but like in the Big Easy, bars and restaurants are celebrating all weekend long.

Black Jack
1612 14th St., NW
Black Jack’s annual Mardi Gras Fest kicks off Friday night with an opening ceremony and themed cocktail menu. The party continues until Tuesday. Highlights through the weekend include a masquerade ball on Saturday, drag burlesque brunch on Sunday, and family meal on Monday.

Mardi Gras Extravaganza
1309 5th St., NE
The annual Mardi Gras party at Union Market’s Dock 5 kicks off on Tuesday at 6 PM. In addition to unlimited New Orleans-style eats and drinks, the extravaganza includes a costume contest, hurricane cocktail competition, jazz funk brass banks, and Louisiana celebrity chef David Guas with a slew of friends. Tickets are $50. Proceeds go to DC Central Kitchen

Bayou Bakery
1515 N Courthouse Rd., Arlington
While the Arlington cafe dishes up the flavors of New Orleans everyday, they’re going all out on
Fat Tuesday with live music, flowing Abita beers, and lots of good eats from chef/owner David Guas. Guests can indulge in $2 king cake slices and $5 cocktails and beignets. 

America Eats Tavern is cooking up shrimp jambalaya. Photo courtesy of America Eats Tavern.

Brookland’s Finest
3126 12th St., NE
The neighborhood spot is offering a prix-fixe dinner on
Tuesday. Three courses highlight Southern flavors and ingredients such as gumbo and pecan-roasted Gulf fish. There’re also specialty cocktails from Whiskey Wright distillery named after African American trailblazers. The price is $35. 

Due South
301 Water St., SE
The Southern comfort Navy Yard restaurant will have all-you-can-eat jambalaya, king cake, and fried green tomatoes. The fun starts at 4 PM on
Tuesday. Tickets are $30. 

Maydan
1346 Florida Ave., NW
The fiery eatery is celebrating Mardi Gras with a
Carnival Around The World on Tuesday. Some of DC’s most prominent chefs from acclaimed restaurants like Anju and Kith/Kin will team up to create a prix-fixe, family-style meal. Tickets start at $350 and raise funds for Anacostia Connected. Reserve here

Local bars and restaurants celebrate Mardi Gras, including a multi-day celebration at Black Jack (pictured). Photograph by Daniel Swartz

Republic Cantina
43 N St., NW
In addition to the iconic
King Cake Kolache, this Tex-Mex spot has cooked up some savory specials including a fried gator po’ boy and crawfish taquito. For dessert, try the chicory cafe au lait with sopapillas.

The Salt Line
79 Potomac Ave., SE
The Salt Line will offer a sneak preview of its upcoming downtown DC sister restaurant, Dauphine’s. While the New Orleans-inspired spot isn’t opening until the spring, get a preview of dishes like seafood gumbo. The Mardi Gras menu will be offered exclusively at the Salt Line on
Tuesday

America Eats Tavern
3139 M St., NW
In addition to dirty rice and hurricanes, head chef  Claudio Foschi will fry up pączki, a traditional Polish jam-filled doughnut, on
Tuesday.

Astro Beer Hall
1306 G St., NW
Hurricane doughnuts? Yes please! Stop by the Penn Quarter eatery and beer spot on Tuesday and grab one for $5.25 (note: it’s boozy so the treat is 21+).

Capitol Cider House
3930 Georgia Ave., NW
Looking to take in the festivities with little ones? The Petworth brewery is hosting its annual Family Gras on
Sunday, which means face painting, balloon animals, and libations for the adults. Tickets are $10.

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Emma Francois is an editorial fellow at Washingtonian covering everything from food to fashion. She graduated from Georgetown University and has previously worked for USA Today, the Georgetown Voice, and the Chautauquan Daily.

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