Food

10 New Summer Happy Hours to Try Around DC

Food and drink deals for long days and longer nights.

Beach-style eats and drinks at Hello Betty in North Bethesda are available for happy hour. Photograph by Scott Suchman

For day drinking (and snacking): The Majestic
911 King St., Alexandria
If you’re looking to imbibe early, this all-day happy hour in Old Town starts at 11:30 AM. The Majestic’s generous new specials menu includes $7 cocktails, $6 wines, $4 spirits, and $7 burger sliders and other food options—all available in the dining room, bar, and  outdoor patio (times vary). When: Monday through Friday, 11:30 AM to 5 PM (dining room and patio); 11:30 AM to 7 PM at the bar.

For early drinks downtown: Unconventional Diner
1207 Ninth St., NW
Drink deals (available at the bar) start weekdays at 3:30 PM at the modern Shaw diner. Beers and wines go for $6, highballs are $8, and you can hop on the Dirty Shirley cocktail trend for $10. Hungry? Try discounted snacks like $7 cornbread muffins with habanero butter, $10 crab fritters, or the famous chicken pot pie poppers ($7). When: Monday through Friday, 3:30 to 6:30 PM.

For weekend drinks downtown: Michele’s
1201 K St., NW

Chef Matt Baker’s French-American brasserie in the Eaton Hotel makes for a nice work happy hour or weekend date spot—and with $10 wines and cocktails most days, you can do both. Try a mezcal-ginger spritz or fruity Flower Power with local limoncello and rhubarb vermouth. Look for food specials, too, like a fried chicken sandwich. When: Wednesday through Friday, 4 to 6:30 PM, Saturday and Sunday, 3 to 6:30 PM.

For fine-wine drinkers: Queen’s English
3410 11th St., NW
If your vibe is more orange wine than orange crushes, Natty Wine Hour at this modern Hong Kong restaurant in Columbia Heights is a must. Guests can explore bottles of natural wine and cider for $45—white, red, rose, bubbles, and yes, orange. And while it’s not a happy hour, per se, dine-in customers get a free pour on Wednesdays from whatever special bottle sommelier/co-owner Sarah Thompson has uncorked. When: Daily, 5 to 7 PM.

Aperitivo hour bites and sips. Photograph courtesy of the Red Hen.

For fast foodies: the Red Hen
1822 First St., NW
Chef Mike Friedman’s Bloomingdale restaurant now offers Italian aperitivo hour—though you’ll have to get there quick, because it’s literally one hour. The payoff: $8 spritzes, $7 Italian wines, and snacks like marinated Castelvetrano olives & salami ($5) or whipped-salt-cod crostini with espelette honey ($8). When: Monday through Thursday, 5:30 to 6:30 PM.

For pizza lovers: Caruso’s Grocery
914 14th St., SE
Chef Matt Adler is playing with pizza at his Capitol Hill red sauce joint, offering garlic bread pizzas at the bar. The throwback, French bread-inspired pies come with toppings like pepperoni, homemade marinara, mozzarella, and parmesan ($10). Wash them down with discount rose sangria with strawberry and basil. When: Daily, 5 to 6:30 at the bar.

For Coke lovers: Compliments Only
2029 P St., NW
The brand new Dupont Circle sub shop is offering a sweet deal: $1 Coke or Diet Coke happy hour from 2 to 3 PM daily. We recommend matching it with an Italian meatball-vodka sauce sub for an extra kick.

For boat lovers: Hello Betty
940 Rose Ave., North Bethesda
This California transplant’s new outdoor “boat bar”—it’s actually a revamped vessel—is the place to channel beach vibes at Pike & Rose. Come for half-off specialty cocktails, beer, and wine, and then linger over discount eats like $8 cheeseburgers and grilled oysters or $7 fish tacos.

Hello Betty’s boat bar. Photograph by Hip Hop Photo.

For dog lovers: Bark Social
935 Prose St., North Bethesda
Happy hour is for the dogs—and humans—at this Pike & Rose social club. The latter can enjoy 50 percent off cocktails from 8 PM to close, while pups can run free in the monitored and gated park, then cool off with a pupsicle.

For vacation vibes: Hook Hall Safari
3400 Georgia Ave., NW
The indoor/outdoor Park View venue has taken on a safari theme for summer, complete with tents, greenery, and faux wildlife. Party animals can grab cheap drinks during happy hour, including $5 wines and mixed drinks, $4 house beer, and $20 “mystery buckets.” A pop-up Federalist Pig barbecue stand provides sustenance. When: Wednesday through Friday, 3 to 6 PM.

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.

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