Food

The Intern’s Guide to Happy Hour in DC

Where to find drinks and grub for $10 or less.

The interior of Sudhouse. Photo courtesy of Sudhouse.

It’s mid-June in DC, which means a fresh class of interns is settling in. Many are eager to network and meet new friends at restaurants and bars around town. But if they’re making typical intern salaries while paying DC rent, $17 cocktails are likely out of reach. Here are places to enjoy post-work drinks and snacks for under $10—and none of these happy hours end before 6:30 PM.

 

Adams Morgan

Death Punch

2321 18th St. NW

Happy Hour Deals: The later the night gets at this dimly-lit Kalorama spot, the better the deal. From 5 to 7 PM daily, get $5 rail drinks and draft beer, and half-price sliders or wings. From 10 PM to midnight or midnight to 2 AM, pay $20 for two hours of open bar (rail drinks or draft beer), or $40 to keep it going from 10 PM to 2 AM.

 

Grand Duchess

2337 18th St., NW

Photograph courtesy of Grand Duchess.

Happy Hour Deals: This small, cozy bar on bustling 18th Street offers $8 wines by the glass, $8 mocktails, $5 bottles and cans of beer, and $8 Old Fashioneds.
Hours: 5 to 7 PM daily.

 

Jack Rose

2007 18th St., NW

The whiskey-lined bar at Jack Rose Dining Saloon. Photograph by Greg Powers.

Happy Hour Deals: Head to this whiskey-obsessed bar and restaurant for beers ranging from $4 to $8 and bar snacks starting at $6 (just say yes to the fried chicken skins).
Hours: 5 to 7:30 PM Monday through Friday.

 

Bloomingdale/Eckington

Boundary Stone 

116 Rhode Island Ave., NW

Inside Boundary Stone. Photograph courtesy of Boundary Stone.

Happy Hour Deals: This casual tavern serves $5 to $7 draft beer; $7 glasses of wine; $7 cocktails (Old Fashioned or Manhattan); and $7 to $9 sandwiches and mozzarella sticks. On Tuesdays, stay for free trivia starting at 7 PM.
Hours: 5 to 7 PM Monday through Thursday.

 

The Pub and the People

1648 North Capitol St., NW

Happy Hour Deals: At this corner tavern, spend happy hour on the patio or inside the brick-walled gastropub. You’ll find $6 drafts and rail drinks, $8 glasses of pinot grigio and pinot noir, and $5 rounds of fries and shishito peppers (it’s non-happy hour food menu isn’t much pricier). On Monday nights, stick around for trivia at 7 PM, but reservations are recommended.
Hours: 5 to 7 PM Monday through Thursday; 3 to 7 PM Friday through Sunday.

 

Penn Quarter/Mount Vernon Triangle

Bar Chinois

455 I St., NW

Happy Hour Deals: This Chinatown spot pairs a Chinese food menu with a French-inspired drink menu. Get $1 dumplings, half-price cocktails (they range from $6 to $8), and beers under $10.
H0urs: 5 to 7 PM Tuesday through Sunday.

 

Cucina Morini

901 Fourth St., NW

Happy Hour Deals: All night every night, this Italian hotspot serves (actually good!) $7 martinis—dirty, espresso, or the house version, which accents gin and vodka with caper and dill— at the bar, plus $6 rounds of rosemary potato chips and orange-and-roasted-garlic-marinated olives.
Hours: 5 to 10 PM Sunday and Tuesday through Thursday; 5 to 11 PM Friday and Saturday.

 

Jackpot

726 Seventh St., NW

Happy Hour Deals: This low-lit basement bar offers free wifi and gratis popcorn, and is located right around the corner from Capital One Arena. At happy hour, get $2 off beer (they range from $5 to $11) and $5 rail drinks.
Hours: 4 to 8 PM daily.

 

Succotash

915 F St., NW

Succotash’s Penn Quarter location. Photograph courtesy of Succotash.

Happy Hour Deals: Ed Lee’s southern-meets-Korean restaurant—which also has a location at National Harbor—serves $7 to $9 glasses of wine, $4 to $6 draft or bottled beers, $7 to $8 cocktails, and discounted bar snacks like wings and deviled eggs. Cocktail pitchers, which serve five, run from $35 to $39.
Hours: 11:30 AM to 8 PM Monday through Friday; 4 to 8 PM Sunday.

 

Dupont Circle/Foggy Bottom

Boogy & Peel

1 Dupont Cir., NW

Wednesday nights at Boogy & Peel, there’s a rotating selection of half-price pizzas. Photograph courtesy of Boogy & Peel.

Happy Hour Deals: At this fun pizza spot right on Dupont Circle, find $9 cocktails, $2 off craft beer, and 25 percent off natural wines by the bottle (or $3 off by the glass selections). Even better: pizzas are half-off during Wednesday’s happy hour.
Hours: 4:30 to 6:30 PM Friday through Wednesday, and 11:30 AM to 9 PM Thursday.

 

Emissary

2032 P St., NW; 1726 20th St., NW

Happy Hour Deals: Both locations are coffeehouses by day and cocktail bars by night. Switch into evening mode with $4 to $7 beers, $8 glasses of wine, and—at the P Street location— $10 cocktails.
Hours: 4 to 7 PM Monday through Friday.

 

Tonic at Quigley’s

2036 G St., NW

The patio at Tonic at Quigley’s. Photograph courtesy of Tonic at Quigley’s.

Happy Hour Deals: If you’re one of the interns living or working at George Washington University this summer, Tonic at Quigley’s is super-convenient. It features $7 to $10 snacks (nachos, totchos); $6 glasses of wine and frosé; $7 beer flights; and $5 to $6 drafts. There’s canopied sidewalk seating, and at 7 PM on Tuesdays, you catch free live jazz outside.
Hours: 4 to 7 PM Monday through Friday.

 

Logan Circle/Shaw

Kingfisher

1414 14th St., NW

The bar at Kingfisher. Photograph courtesy of Kingfisher.

Happy Hour Deals: Logan Circle basement bar Kingfisher hosts Trivia Tuesdays, movies, and other laid-back events throughout the week. Come at happy hour for beers starting at $4, and $12 glasses of wine.
Hours: 4 to 8 PM Monday through Friday; 5 to 8 PM Saturday and Sunday.

 

Pearl Dive

1612 14th St., NW

Inside Pearl Dive Oyster Palace. Photograph courtesy of Pearl Dive Oyster Palace.

Happy Hour Deals: Down cheap drinks and discounted oysters at this Logan Circle staple. Happy hour brings $5 beers; $6 glasses of wine; $8 vodka martinis and Old Fashioneds; and bar snacks under $10. You can get a pound of mussels for $11 or individual oysters for $1.40 each (minimum of 12).
Hours: 4 to 7 PM Monday through Thursday; 3 to 7 PM Friday.

 

Dacha Beer Garden Shaw

1600 Seventh St., NW

Drinks on the patio at Dacha Beer Garden in Shaw. Photograph courtesy of Dacha.

Happy Hour Deals: For less-humid summer evenings, hit up this outdoor beer garden in Shaw. While the place is known for its huge, boot-shaped beers, you can get a more modest (and affordable) selection of food and drink, including $10 burgers, $7 beers, a $7 signature cocktail, and $7 glasses of wine. At its weekend brunch happy hour, it offers a variety of main dishes for $10, accompanied by $5 mimosas, Bloody Marys, beers, and Irish coffees.
Hours: 4 to 10:30 PM Monday; 4 to 7 PM Tuesday through Thursday; 2 to 6 PM Friday; and 11 AM to 1 PM Saturday and Sunday.

 

Ben’s Next Door

1211 U St., NW

Inside Ben’s Next Door. Photograph courtesy of Ben’s Next Door.

Happy Hour Deals: At this small, family-owned diner on U Street—right next door to sibling Ben’s Chili Bowl— you can score chicken tenders, wings, and other bar snacks for under $10. Also, there are $9 to $10 cocktails ( including frozen margaritas and mango daiquiris); $5 bottled beers; and $5 to $7 glasses of wine.
Hours: 3 to 7 PM Monday through Friday (food specials run from 4:30 to 7 PM).

 

Sudhouse

1340 U St., NW

Happy Hour Deals: Sudhouse is known for its vibe and its cheap drinks—$4 to $5 beers, $5 to $6 rail shots and drinks, $6 glasses of wine, and $6 to $7 seltzers. Bonus: foos-ball tables.
Hours: 4 PM to 2 AM Monday; 4 to 8 PM Tuesday through Friday; 2 to 6 PM Saturday and Sunday.

 

Navy Yard

Dacha Navy Yard

79 Potomac Ave., SE

Happy Hour Deals: This beer garden offers easy Nats Park access plus $5 to $7 beer; a $7 cocktail; $7 glasses of wine; and $10 burgers. On Mondays, free trivia starts at 7 PM.
Hours: 4 to 11 PM Monday; 5 to 7 PM Tuesday through Thursday.

 

Walters Sports Bar

10 N St., SE

Happy Hour Deals: If you don’t have ESPN but want to catch a game, park in front of this Navy Yard bar’s 30+ TV screens. Happy hour brings $5 bar food, glasses of wine, beers, rail drinks, and Fireball shots.
Hours: 4 to 7 PM Monday through Friday.

 

NoMa/H Street/Union Market

Carving Room NoMa

140 M St., NE

Happy Hour Deals: Looking for a spot for a group? This bar has long tables and cozy booths, plus $8 to $9 cocktails; $6 to $7 beers; and $8 glasses of wine.
Hours: 3:30 to 7 PM Tuesday through Friday.

 

Last Call

1301-A Fourth St., NE

Happy Hour Deals: This laid-back bar is located next to Union Market. Stop by for $5 glasses of wine and cocktails; and $4 beers, seltzers, and hot dogs. It also hosts Tuesday trivia, and features darts and arcade games.
Hours: 5 to 7 PM Monday through Thursday; 3 to 7 PM Friday; noon to 4 PM Saturday and Sunday.

 

Capitol Hill

Hawk ‘n’ Dove

329 Pennsylvania Ave., SE

Happy Hour Deals: This Eastern Market institution—around since 1967—once got a shout-out on The West Wing. Wind down with $8 cocktails and appetizers and $6 wine and beer, as well as a range of other daily specials.
Hours: 11 AM to 10 PM Monday; 4 to 7 PM Tuesday through Friday.

 

Union Pub

201 Massachusetts Ave., NE

Happy Hour Deals: During peak times, this patio is packed with sports fans and off-duty Hill staffers. At its daily happy hour, get $1 off rail drinks and most draft beers. The latter, along with glasses of wine, are under $10, anyway. There are rotating daily specials such as 40 cent wings (with a 2-drink minimum) on Wednesdays and $5 Fireball Fridays.
Hours: 4 to 6 PM Monday through Thursday; 3 to 6 PM Friday.

 

Bullfeathers on the Hill

410 First St., NE

Happy Hour Deals: This tavern has been serving Hill staffers and neighbors since 1979. Located across the street from Capitol South Metro station, Bullfeathers doesn’t have a happy hour—but also doesn’t need one. Drinks are affordable all day long: glasses of wines range from $9 to $10, and beers and ciders run from $6 to $10.
Hours: 11 AM to 10 PM Monday through Friday.

 

Multiple Locations

Colada Shop

Several locations in DC, Maryland, and Virginia

Happy Hour Deals: At this Cuban-inspired coffee shop/cocktail bar, happy hour might include specials like $8 cocktails and $6 beer and seltzer. The 14th Street location has a colorful rooftop.
Hours: Vary by location.

 

Duke’s Grocery/Duke’s Counter

Locations in Dupont (closed for renovations), Foggy Bottom, Woodley Park, and Navy Yard

Happy Hour Deals: British-inspired Duke’s serves up cheap drinks weekday evenings, with beer, wine, and rail spirits between $5 and $8, plus some $9 cocktails.
Hours: Noon to 7 PM Monday through Friday (Foggy Bottom and Woodley Park); 4 to 7 PM Monday through Friday (Navy Yard).

 

Ted’s Bulletin

Several locations in DC, Maryland, and Virginia

Drinks and food at Ted’s Bulletin. Photograph courtesy of Ted’s Bulletin.

Happy Hour Deals: If you leave the office craving breakfast for dinner, head to any of this upscale diner’s six locations (a NoMa branch is opening later this month). All of them serve $5 draft beer; $8 signature cocktails; and $7 glasses of wine. Starters are $3 off.
Hours: 3 to 6:30 PM Monday through Friday.

Helen Huiskes
Editorial Fellow