The Gibson Launches Huge Marketing Campaign


The Gibson is the cocktail lounge located at 2009 14th Street, NW next to Marvin. Up to now they had purposely stayed away from marketing the spot. That’s why I was stunned to see their door above. So much for flying under the radar anymore.

Seriously, since they’ve been open for 6 months or so – what’s your take on it now? How are the crowds? Does the new outdoor area make it easier to get a table? Any favorite cocktails?


18 Comment

  • They painted that door and placed those numbers there several months ago.

  • Do you not have a ‘macro’ setting on your camera, or are you trying to help them stay incognito with that blur effect? I’m just sayin…

  • And the buzzer label has been there since I went 4 or 5 months ago. Just wondering what’s new here.

  • Prince Of Petworth

    Good lord, people should be relaxed and happy after the beautiful weekend we just had. So I’m just kidding around with the marketing thing. And I’m aware it’s not new and I’m aware it’s not a marketing blitz. Good grief, I just wanted to see what folks thought of the place now that it’s been open for a bit.

  • Over-priced over-rated bad service but looks cool.

  • maybe they were being snarky in their responses, since you were being snarky in your post? ever thought of that, pop?

  • Better than the PX

  • I have to say i love the place. have gone there way too many times. but the drinks and the atmosphere are among the best for a night out in DC (in my book). i hear a lot of overpriced complaints, but come on a cocktail for around $10 is not overpriced. plus how much do you drink when you go? i usually have between 2 or 3 drinks a night which gets me to $30 to $40, and that is what i easily spend at Wonderland on a night.
    on the service complaint … i can’t second that either. i have never had a problem, they are usually extremely friendly. the only thing i have found is that if you get there at the top of the hour (which usually happens when you have a reservation) do not wait a long time to order your first round of drinks because at that time there is usually a rush of drinks hitting the bar and if you miss an early spot you might have to wait a bit for your drink.
    best drink there is hands down the sazerac. but i have to say the improved new holland and the inka are close seconds.

  • I’m scared I’m not cool enough to go in. I fear they will throw me out for being deeply unhip.

  • @Carsten: you don’t think $10 is overpriced?! DC is so skewed on the subject of money. Seriously, stop frequenting these places that charge you inordinate amounts of money for not-so-good drinks/food, and maybe prices will come down.

  • This is really a boutique cocktails place and worth every cent for those who are interested in the origins of the Sazerac (precuror to the Manhattan) and everything else that was being drunk as a mixed drink circa 1900. The bartenders are extremely knowledgeable and can tell you a lot about what they’re pouring and where some of their more obscure labels come from.

    Seriously, the most annoying thing about the place are all the kids throwing around money having no idea what they’re drinking, or why.

  • $10 is a good deal for what they pour, and the specials are a steal. You have to keep in mind that with something like the Gibson, you’re also paying for the fact that there are 40-something seats in a place that could pack in three times that if it were a regular bar, and the fact that you have a service more like what you’d expect at a restaurant. Obviously the outside of the building doesn’t look like anything, but the inside is stunning, at some expense I’m sure, and the building couldn’t have been cheap. All of that factors in to what you pay, and you’re paying for the full experience, not just a drink. It’s not the same as getting some rail-quality watery martini in some basic downtown bar. Which will probably set you back $7, and is overpriced. So yeah, $10 for a top of the top shelf cocktail at Gibson, in the right glass, in a great room, that’s quiet enough to have a conversation? Not overpriced.

  • re Sammy, don’t worry about the being or not being hip. I have never seen anyone being turned away at the door there. The crowd has always been extremely diverse. all ages all level of hipness. I had friends in town and i met them there after a day of walking around the city and they were in their tourist gear (shorts, t-shirt, sandals) … there was no problem for them to get in.

    re nofictiondc … i don’t know where you go and what you drink but just take a look at the beer prices at Wonderland, they range between $4 and $7 … and more. and i have to agree with anonymous … the cocktails are great and certainly justify a premium. plus i agree with the point that the place is not packed but could be … which makes the place quieter and allows you to actually have conversation without people bumping into you all the time.

  • for what it’s worth, there’s a similar place at 14th and Penn SE called Wisdom that has an equally snazzy drink menu and cool atmosphere, minus the shitty waits and ridiculously strict rules of the Gibson. pricey, but i recommend it.

  • @ Carsten – I think you mistake me. The only annoying thing about Gibson is not the price of the drinks, but the kids who are buying them hand over fist without appreciating them.

  • We went there on Saturday and it was roughly 100 degrees inside. All the “mood lighting” (candles) and “classic cocktails” (drinks on fire) killed our spirit and forced us to leave before our 45 minute limit. I mean, seriously, they require a text message and list to get in, but they can’t get the AC working. Lame.

  • Regarding Wisdom, I have been there a few times, and I really like it, but I did have one of the worst drinks I’ve ever tasted there. It was so sweet it hurt to drink. However, the bartender was really cool about it and made me something else. PX is still my favorite “speakeasy” type places though.

  • Ovepriced is an Understatement. I had two single malt scotches from a bottle that sells for $125. They charged me $40 per drink. I didn’t ask the cost in advance because I regularly drink this drink from places like Morton’s, the Palm, etc. Those establishments sell it for $20 and that’s inflated. I felt like I was held at gunpoint just for ordering a top shelf drink from a wanna-be exclusive posh joint. The pricing was usurious. O-U-C-H.

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