Tonic in Mt. Pleasant turns Upstairs into a Sports bar

Always happy to hear about more sports bar options. Stay tuned for more announcements in the Petworth/Park View/ Columbia Heights/Mt. Pleasant areas in the coming weeks and months. Tonic is located at 3155 Mt. Pleasant St, NW. From a press release:

“Tonic, situated on historic Mt. Pleasant Street, just a stone’s throw away from bustling Columbia Heights, has reinvented it’s upstairs dining room with a fun sports bar twist. From the comfy signature high-top wooden booths to the seven flat-screen televisions, watching the game has never been so easy.”

A few more photos after the jump.

20 Comment

  • Nice! A great improvement on their use of the space…and there’s no real “sports bar” competition until you get all the way down to Ust or over to Adams Morgan!

    I hope the menu doesn’t change much though…Mama’s Lumpia are the bomb!

    • Even Adams Morgan and U St don’t have much in the way of sports bars. Have to go to the Hill, Penn Quarter, 18th & M, Cleveland Park for reliable places to watch a game.

      • That’s not even remotely true. I can think of at least a half dozen bars on 18th street alone with Sunday Ticket.

        • Why don’t you share some examples for those of us that can’t think of any? that would be nice, thanks.

  • This actually sounds like a great idea! The food is great there, but I’m usually inclined to eat downstairs, and the neighborhood isn’t teeming with sports bars or anything.

  • Now the big question is… will they get NFL Sunday Ticket?



      Unfortunately their beer specials are Yeungling and Land Shark. Ewww.

    • Tonic has the following sports packages for Directv:

      NFL Sunday Ticket, Big 10 Football, ESPN Game Plan, NHL Center Ice, Fox Soccer, NBA League Pass and ESPN Full Court

      They are also considering allowing patrons to “rent” a TV upstairs to watch games of their choice. It will be a really cool option that ensures no one changes the channel during your big game!

  • I guess a “nice” restaurant can’t make it in Mt Pleasant.

    …or their food wasn’t any good.

  • Maybe the renovation will motivate better service? I used to go there all the time around 2005-2006, but got tired of cold brunch and unattentive wait staff. I don’t think I am the only one — it is noticeably much less crowded than it used to be.

  • Tonics food is generic bar slop so nobody was going out of their way to eat there. On the other hand the basment is always crowded with people on game days so it isn’t surprising they decided to extend the sports bar upstairs. I for one think a “nice restaurant” would rake it in in MTP. It’s just a matter of time to see who takes the leap. Once somebody jumps in more are sure to follow.

  • I haven’t been to Tonic in probably over a year because they kept changing the menu and eliminated the few dishes on it that were tolerable. Wonder if the food has gotten better … nice job on the upstairs, hopefully it’ll be successful!

  • We recently went to Tonic for brunch not knowing about the ongoing renovations and ended up having to eat in the basement. I’m really disappointed they’ve remodeled into a Sports Bar – I won’t ever go to Tonic again.

  • Until I moved, Tonic was my go-to bar of choice. But as a restaurant, it was pretty lacking. This seems to me the right play — focusing on their strengths. They do bar well.

  • Tonic was great about 5-6 years ago, when the service was great, and you could get a delicious cheesesteak with tater tots there. The beers were cheap, and it was a fun place to spend a lot of time with friends.

    These days, the ever-changing menu is usually mediocre and sometimes downright terrible, and the place is unbearably noisy and fills up with the loudest, most obnoxious drunks, even at 6:30 on a Tuesday night.

    Hopefully the renovated upstairs is an improvement, but unless you’re someone who lives in Mt. P and you’re too lazy to walk down the hill to some vastly superior pub in Adams Morgan, there is really no reason to go here.

    • “…the place is unbearably noisy … ”

      The reason that I gave up on Tonic – they’re always *blasting* the radio, pretty much making it impossible to hold a conversation. Hope that doesn’t continue upstairs.

  • We liked the upstairs so much for brunch. It was quiet, and consequently easy to get a seat with pretty good service. We would show up at opening, sit in the window and watch the sidewalk over eggs & mimosas. Plus the brunch menu was great.

    I don’t see how NASCAR improves this scene. (Or any other, frankly; can a sports bar really work in Mt Pleasant?)

    Bye bye Tonic! I hope you ditch this format soon.

  • I’m glad to see them making a move even if I’m a little skeptical of execution. It’s really been a frustrating place the last few years – I kept hoping they’d go on Kitchen Nightmares and Gordon would tell ’em to just settle down and lower their beer prices!

  • How about they turn their menu into something edible insted?

  • Let’s not pretend we haven’t ALL been to Tonic bar to meet friends for beers and maybe a game. They still have Taco Tuesday and cheesesteak night. And when was the last time you went to the upstairs restaurant (brunch not withstanding?) Right. So this is a good move, there must be lots of times when the downstairs looked so crowded people had to resort to Marx, the Raven or walk to Commonwealth, Bedrock or whatever.

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