What’s Your Favorite Bar in Adams Morgan?

DSCN0160, originally uploaded by Prince of Petworth.

This is a two part question. I’ve been curious for a while with so many new bars and old bars on 18th Street, what’s your favorite? Recently mine has become Bourbon. But here’s the second part of the question sparked by a conversation I had with a friend.

For those that are Dan’s Cafe fans – when are you too old to go? Back in the day I used to go to Dan’s fairly frequently but that’s just because my name is Dan and I’m very loyal. But, I’m 34 now and it’s just not as fun for me anymore. Would you say that the average age of 18th St. bar patrons is much younger than elsewhere in the city? Ed. Note: My stereo is now playing “my my my slow descent into alcoholism it went” by the New Pornographers. Seriously. Great now I’ve probably upset my mom.

So what’s your favorite bar on 18th Street? And when are you too old to go there?

52 Comment

  • The two places I like are Pie (2309 18th St NW) with its coal fired gourmet pizza and friendly atmosphere and appetizers, and the Black Squirrel (2427 18th St. NW) which is now expanding, for its great food & beverage range. Never too old for either of these places, and there’s more quality and variety in Adams Morgan that contradicts the negative template the media often uses.

  • Angles.

  • Love the jazz and international vibe at Columbia Station. But Bossa Bistro is the best with its art and nice bar, friendly people, live music and varied seating. Works solo for me, or as a duo, or with a group. These are ageless, tolerant places; good for any age groups.

  • i still like madams organ on a weeknight. not so much on weekends

  • Chief Ike’s.

  • Most of the bars pretty much turn into suburban-frat-drunk-fests on the weekends after about 9pm.

    There are only a few ‘grown up’ bars that are even tolerable on the weekdays. Pierre [owner of La Fourchette] is my gauge. If he can hangout at a bar [at age 60+] then I’ll probably feel comfortable there too, even though I’m probably half his age.

  • PoP, I am a Jewish mother, certainly younger than your dear mom, though not far behind. And I know she’s very proud of you, just kvelling over her son, the blogger. But the new pornographers, descent into alchoholism??? Oy gevalt.

  • Since finally getting my intangible arse into the Black Squirrel, I go nowhere else on the strip.
    Nine thumbs up.

    (i’m available for endorsement deals. wink wink.)

  • Dan’s Cafe is my favorite place. Use to frequent that place every weekend and eventually met my husband there…and who says you can meet men at bars! Anyhow, we went back being a few years older, got the star treatment as former regulars and didn’t feel a bit old at all.

  • Pharmacy Bar. And not just because I like to support Latvian businesses.

    Also, let’s be honest PoP…the best song on that New Pornos album (well, any of their albums) is Letter from an Occupant

  • I have to agree with Bourbon. I’m excited to see the new place the Bourbon folks are cookin up. Second favorite is Reef on weekends. Bukom Cafe is pretty sweet too.

  • Asylum – say what you will, but it’s my fave place by far. Great vegan food options served to you by folks great folks covered in piercings and tattoos.
    I think I’ll be too old to go there when I can’t make it up the steps. I’m 40 now.
    Like others have noted above, weeknights are way better because the strip is bloody intolerable on weekends.

  • Definately Pharmacy, best window for watching fights.

  • Yeah. im hoping that with the rise of Hstreet that the Weekend Destonation Drinkers from VA and MD and such start heading over there. if they even funnel off 200 d bags a night it would make it more bareable to head out on a saturday with friends to one of the decent bars mentioned.

  • I like(d) Ghana cafe, but since that one’s out, Soussi. Great outdoor seating.

    It makes me sad to see all of my old suburban friends from MS and HS posting photos of their jaunts to H street on facebook. Not saying that they shouldn’t be there, but I kind of liked having a refuge neighborhood from the swarming masses of AdMo, and I feel like HSTNE got discovered by the outer ring a little too soon….anyone feel me, or am I on crack?

  • Well, Asylum, really. But I’ve been enjoying the patio at Adams Mill lately. Although, in all reality, I’ve been going to AM so infrequently it doesn’t even really matter. The rest is pure crap.

  • I really like the beer list at Bourbon and the feel of upstairs when not too crowded. Ventnor’s is a nice little sports bar that needs people to buy food at (they deliver too!) so they dont lose their liquor license.
    The bouncer at Dan’s always hits me up for money everytime I walk by

  • I like Mutley’s for a drinking hole. Black Squirrel and Ghana Cafe (deceased) are my go to places after 10. To agree with other posts it HAS been a while since I ventured out thata way for nightlife, especially when CH, MP, H, Logan, NOMA are finally getting stuff. Now if they would only help Shaw, Ledroit and Eckington out more I owuld be a happy camper.

  • If you’re hanging out at a bar for drinks after age 30 you don’t have much going on in your life. If you’re hanging out in a bar after age 40 then you need to talk to a professional.

  • Some of you should stop being such elitists. You didn’t “discover” H Street and shouldn’t feel these “other people” have no right to go there. Just live and let live. Make people feel welcome and stop being a snob… whether they fit the mold of who you want to be around (superficially since you don’t actually know them on a personal level) or not.

  • Neener – I’ll be sure to pass on your comments to my 68 year old Mother, who is often found enjoying a small Jamieson or a glass of stout at the lovely An B

  • Well, you know what I’m gonna say but I’ll say it anyway…ASYLUM!!! Best bar in the whole world…until Meridian Pint opens of course. Otherwise, I’m a big fan of the Reef and Bedrock.

    Btw, Neener, if your theory on age versus hanging out at a bar is correct, I’m screwed and may as well file for bankruptcy right now. Being over 40 myself, I’d also appreciate a referral to this professional you speak of.

    Fyi, Meridian Pint will hopefully open in early spring…but that depends on the landlords delivery of the space to me.

  • Bourbon, Reef, Black Squirrel, Asylum. Wednesday nights finds me at Cosmos (aka upstairs at Chief Ikes). I avoid AM on the weekends.

  • Like many others, I haven’t been out in AD much lately but I’d second Bukom.

    Ok, I’ll bite…where do good little 30- and 40- year olds go in Neenerworld?

  • miss blue room thursdays!

  • Hear hear, Meridian Pint!

  • Don’t worry, Neener has never been mistaken for someone who knows what they’re talking about.

  • HA!

    Your mother in Kerry is an untreated alcoholic.

    You all can go spend your money on beers in bars. But when I was 20 and 25 we made fun of the divorced men and lonely women who were drunk and hitting on the 25 year olds. We made fun of them a lot.

    I’ve walked three friends through Al-Anon.

    The money you spend on those drinks is not being spent starting your own business. At 25 who cares. At 40, you’re going to be working for a boss the rest of your life.

  • Never fear, within a few years, 11th Street will be just like Adams Morgan.

  • I’ll echo the cheers for Pharmacy Bar, Chief Ike’s, and Asylum. I will add Toledo Lounge to the list of recommendations, and will continue in my disdain for the Reef (I’ve yet to enjoy a beer on the roof without being smashed perilously over the edge of the deck.) I have never been to the Black Squirrel but am looking forward to checking it out but like many it will be a cold, sober, day in hell before I brave a weekend in Adams Morgan.

  • Neener,

    That should apply to restaurants too, right? Every time I see a person over the age of 30 eating a meal out, I think “Well, there’s another closet obese diabetic.”

  • Bourbon, Reef and Black Squirrel

  • Angles and Bourbon. (weekdays only) Occasionally an afternoon on the patio of Adams Mill.

  • Neener – you gots issues. I won’t rant further, except to say that I disagree that everyone over 30 who drinks in a bar is an alcoholic and can’t own their own business. That’s not even syllogistically correct.

    Meridian Pint (whom I’m suspecting has his own business) – Can Meridian Pint possibly match the coolness of Meridian Pint? Totally bummed about having to wait ’til Spring, but I’ll live.

    Vegan wings and a Red Hook at Asylum tonight! Yay!

  • “Your mother in Kerry is an untreated alcoholic.”

    OK, Neener, you’ve lost all credibility with me now. So, anyone who goes to a bar over the age of 30 is a loser, and anyone who drinks is an (untreated) alcoholic. OK.

  • Does anyone know if Bossa got their liquor license back?

  • Neener. You own your own business do you? How’s that all workin out for you? I mean I’m only 29 so I guess I’m still allowed to drink? But I do still plan on drinking past 30. And get this. I own a house and have plenty of savings. But then I skimp on other things you may find important. I have a square TV for instance, not a rectangle. and I only have 2 pairs of shoes.

  • 1) Morgans
    2) The Town Tavern
    3) Ventner Sports Cafe
    4) Grand Central
    5) The Reef
    6) Chloe
    7) Tom Tom’s
    8) Madams Organ
    9) The Left Bank
    10) Heaven and Hell

  • DCDude…Bossa is still open while the appeals/reconsideration process is ongoing.

  • Neener’s just upset because its married with children.

  • it’s not about being elitist; obviously you can’t discover a neighborhood, or whatever. I’m merely saying that areas of DC not frequented by the suburbs (e.g., admo) or tourists (e.g., georgetown), tend to be areas of DC where I don’t need to scream and muscle through to hear myself on the sidewalk on a Friday night. HSTNE was/is largely run by the same people who made admo what it is today, and their vision for H street is, no doubt, similar. soon enough, like admo, it will be a street where you will get punched in the back of the head for no reason and lots of motorcycles with MD/VA tags congregate. I had just hoped it would have been a few years from now, not like, today, when my buddies in frederick made a saturday voyage to sticky rice and palace of wonders. again, not elitist, I realize this is inevitable, and kudos to the developers for marketing the district so well. just hoping I would have been able to enjoy no surging crowds a while longer…

  • neener you are a trip and a half

  • I believe everyone in DC is a transient. Whether you have been here for 1 or 100 years.
    Whether you are a gender friendly hipster who just bought a house in CH, or an old black grandma waiting for prices to go back up in NOMA so she can get the hell out of DC and retire to NC. Whether you are the first time homebuyer couple who NOW have a child and think they need to F@*&ing move because of the public schools or you are a banger whose lifespan will be 19 years so they were never really lived here that long.

  • fyi – marrieds with children still go out to drink…it’s called getting a babysitter

  • The picture of Dan’s and the post about funny graffiti reminds me that the men’s bathroom, while disgusting, has some real gems. my favorite? “Toy Story 2 was OK.”

  • except for all the people who have lived here and always will. born and raised right here with a howard university birth certificate, a degree from wilson hs (and georgetown u), and my own home on 10th and N with two great kids. This is my home and always will be!

  • pharmacy- cheap drinks with easy semi-attractive hipsters girls.

  • Dupont and K Street dust any place in adams morgan!

  • Yeah, K St. Right. If you like expensive, over-hyped, cheesy-ass “international” clubs filled with people who think waaay too highly of themselves, it’s perfect.

  • Black Squirrel all the way. I’m a AdMo local, and that’s my local bar. After Black Squirrel there’s the Reef (kinda cheesy) and then Bourbon (kinda pretentious)…but then I’m usually at the Squirrel anyway. I’m a beerite and there’s a lot of good beer at TBS.

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