Takoda Restaurant & Beer Garden has been a busy Shaw hangout since it opened five years ago. Now, Better Hospitality Group (BHG) founder Ryan Seelbach is ready to expand, and is planning a sibling location in Navy Yard across from Nationals Park’s main entrance. The two-story setup is nearly identical to the original—with a second-story tavern and roomy rooftop bar—but it will be much bigger (7,000 square-feet) to accommodate ballpark crowds. It’s slated to debut in April 2022, just in time for Nats opening day.
Seelbach says his team snagged one of the few commercial rooftop spaces—which, he says, is the largest—available in Navy Yard, where the majority of sky-high venues are located atop upscale condo buildings. Design team //3877 (the studio that’s also behind the splashy look of the Wharf’s Mi Vida, Penn Quarter’s Cranes, and more) plans to build out the outdoor space with a beer-garden feel—think lush greenery and indoor/outdoor structures that can accommodate drinkers year-round. As with the Shaw location, the bar will pour a hearty selection of American beers—both crafty and not—plus whiskeys and frozen and draft cocktails.
BHG executive chef Julio Estrada will oversee a crowd-pleasing tavern menu of burgers, tater tots, chicken wings, and sliders. Weekends will bring bottomless brunch. It will woo party crowds with spaces that can be reserved for private events and large groups—with no minimums or rental fees—just like in Shaw.
BHG, which also operates rooftop Mexican spot Cortez, is in expansion mode. They’re building out a huge beach-themed venue, Boardwalk Bar & Arcade, which will open at the Wharf by the end of the year (a smaller Penn Quarter sibling reopened in May after a long pandemic closure*). Seelbach says opening his own Navy Yard venue “feels like a homecoming”—he started his DC hospitality career slinging drinks at the Bullpen (then the Fairgrounds) a decade ago.
Takoda Navy Yard. 1299 First St., SE.
*Correction: Boardwalk reopened in May. This article has been updated.