Food

Aslin Beer Garden and Coffee Shop Is the New Place to Be on 14th Street

Find 24 draft beers, food truck fare, and early morning pour-overs.

Aslin Filling Station opens on 14th Street. Photograph by Zachary Warmbrodt.

A dog-friendly beer garden and early-morning coffee spot is the buzzy new place to drink on the 14th Street corridor. After years of controversy about the redevelopment of the corner lot, Aslin Filling Station—an offshoot of the Virginia-based brewery—has finally debuted with 24 taps, a retail beer shop, food truck fare, and offbeat coffee drinks.

The prime piece of real estate was initially slated to become another Dacha Beer Garden. But a group of nearby neighbors fearful of noise and drunks urinating on their properties fought the venture, scattering their yards with “NO Dacha” signs. A fierce liquor license battle raged on for years with Dacha making numerous concessions, including plans to spend $3 million on more enclosed space and a sound engineer. Ultimately, though, co-owner Dmitri Chekaldin says the neighborhood opposition “murdered” the plans.

While Dacha initially proposed a 600-person beer garden, Aslin started with a more modest plan for 300. Even that has been scaled down—the max occupancy landed at 250. Aslin pro-actively tried to minimize hostility from neighbors by hiring design firm //3877 to help mitigate trash and noise issues. A combination of negotiating with nearby residents and dealing with DC permitting ultimately delayed the opening, which was originally slated for last fall.

Aslin’s beer garden features a mural of Supreme Court Justice Ketanji Brown Jackson. Photograph by Zachary Warmbrodt.

This is the first permanent DC location for Aslin Beer Company, which also has beer gardens and taprooms in Herndon and Alexandria, and co-founded Nighthawk Pizza in Pentagon City. The space was previously a parking lot, and Aslin Filling Station nods to the many body shops and car dealerships that once occupied the neighborhood with a gas station-esque motif. A converted garage hosts a bar and retail beer shop, while the outdoor space is filled with Adirondack chairs and picnic tables. Towering to the side is a colorful mural featuring new Supreme Court Justice Ketanji Brown Jackson, her father (and lawyer) Johnny Brown, and Constance Baker Motley, the first Black woman to serve as a federal judge.

Aslin food truck partner serves bao buns, loaded nachos, and more. Photograph by Zachary Warmbrodt.

The 24 taps will rotate weekly, if not daily, with at least two guest drafts in addition to Aslin’s own lineup of IPAs, sours, and lagers. (Some wines and ciders are available too.) Food truck Bun’d Up is permanently parked to serve bao buns and loaded nachos. Popsicles and ice cream are coming soon, as is breakfast.

Aslin now roasts its own coffee at its new restaurant and bakery, Izzi, adjoining the brewery’s Herndon location. On 14th Street, find pour-overs, teas, plus “fun drinks” like an iced espresso tonic and black sesame snickerdoodle latte as early as 6:30 AM on weekdays and 7 AM on weekends.

Aslin Filling Station. 1740 14th St., NW.

Jessica Sidman
Food Editor

Jessica Sidman covers the people and trends behind D.C.’s food and drink scene. Before joining Washingtonian in July 2016, she was Food Editor and Young & Hungry columnist at Washington City Paper. She is a Colorado native and University of Pennsylvania grad.

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