OK-so we are but two days away from celebrating America and the assorted freedoms that come with it. And because we want you to be well-informed and making all the right decisions, we’ve assembled a fine list of options to celebrate: from BYT pool parties to the best picnic baskets in town, from pro-tips to assorted ragers to apply those pro-tips during, from night-before to the morning after-it is all here. Plus, you know-leave comments about things we may have missed, information sharing is the new caring, after all.
Now, hope you’re as excited as we are for this:
THE DAY BEFORE:
PICNIC/FOOD Planning is necessary. Lucky for those of you who are not super on board with cooking several of BYT’s favorite restaurants to the rescue:
- CORK MARKET is offering two artisanal July Fourth picnic basket meals handmade by chef Kristin Hutter. Price: $25-55.
- SOCIETY FAIR is offering two options: You can pick up this feast for eight on site, or have one of their chefs come over and prep it for you. Call 703-683-3247 for details
- BUZZ BAKERY is keeping up with their excellent occasional track record by offering 4th of July Pie Cupcakes. These “pies” are made of hollowed-out yellow cake with either a cherry or blueberry filling and topped with buttercream frosting. Pie cupcakes are available by pre-order ($22)
- THE BUTCHER’S BLOCK: Picnic dinners can include anything from the store such as olives, cheese, salami, caperberries, pate, crackers, potato chips, housemade brownies and cookies, San Pellegrino, sparkling and still water, wine, beer and an assortment of sandwiches, including roast beef, turkey, goat cheese, chicken salad, prosciutto and brie and ham and Swiss.
- RED APRON is offering BBQ baskets: a rack of spice-rubbed baby back ribs, a pound of brisket, five all-pork hot dogs, four fresh sausages and a pint of housemade Coca-Cola BBQ sauce
- and if you’re in the mood to go big or go home BACKYARD BBQ AND CATERING COMPANY will smoke a whole pig for you overnight, then drop it on your picnic table the next morning
THE NIGHT BEFORE:
- OUTLAWS – BYT’s all time favorite old-school country yet hipster night is back and this time around you actually DON’T have to work the next day. Marx Cafe. Tuesday July 3rd. $5 beer/whiskey. Willie Nelson is on the flyer. 4th of July at Midnight. Special Guest DJs Randy Price and Trey Pollard. Nothing not to like.
- TROPICAL BOOM – for those who prefer funk to country-Fort Knox recordings is back @ U Hall with their annual pre-independence day extravaganza.
- FREEDOM ROCK Couch Night @ Black Cat – A rare and special occasion to see Black Cat owenr owner (and member of D.C. punk icons Grey Matter and Iron Cross) Dante Ferrando spin favorite tunes alongside bartender Matt Brown and “special guests.” Also featuring: specials on American booze.
- also, not particularly Independence day related but definitely “tomorrow I have a day off related”: Peach Pit @ DC9 and Air Sex Championships @ RNR Hotel.
THE DAY OF:
- Stay Hydrated
- invest in some clinical strength deodorant
- Pace Yourselves – this is a day-into-night situation and, chances are, some of you are not 21 anymore
- This includes staying away any containers labeled “Jungle Juice” during the prime sunshine hours (these lessons have been learned the hard way)
- probably make sure you can get Thursday off too
- maybe even Friday
- BYT POOL PARTY: Fat Camp (feat. Fatback) @ Capitol Skyline – I mean, I know this is our party, but objectively speaking, this is going to be super sweet: we have Fatback DJing, there is a Dangerously Delicious Pies eating contest where the winner gets A YEAR’S WORTH OF FREE PIE (!!!), our interns will be forced to wear hilarious costumes for your amusement, there is a pool to jump into, there are inflatables to molest while in the pool and it is all over by 7pm so you have plenty of time to go and watch the fireworks from wherever you wanted to watch the fireworks from. We’re doing limited presale this year too, so just grab your ticket now and don’t worry re: cash or anything. Added motivation bonus…this kick ass graphic Erik, our art director genius just made for you:
- A CAPITOL FOURTH - obviously, there is a party on the Mall. This year, Tom Bergeron hosts the annual celebration, with performances by Matthew Broderick, Megan Hilty, Javier Colon, Josh Turner, Kool and the Gang, Kelli O’Hara, Russell Watson, American Idol winner Phillip Phillips and the National Symphony Orchestra.
- GRILLIN’ WITH DC BRAU @ The DC9 ROOF TOP – good times.
- RED, WHITE AND BOOM @ Kastles Stadium – ($79) Tickets include a five-hour open bar, beanbag-toss games, bocce and access to food trucks. If you buy tickets in advance, you can also attend a July 3 party at George (3251 Prospect St. NW) with an open bar from 8 to 10 p.m.
- STARS AND STRIPES PARTY @ The Fairgrounds. The seven-hour party includes Georgia funk-rock band Perpetual Groove and ’60s soul and R&B covers from Jimi Smooth & Hit Time, food trucks, beanbag toss and other games. A VIP ticket offers access to a rooftop area and a full open bar.
- MADE: In America’s Presidential Picnic @ The Washington Design Center: 1-3pm a fun afternoon of great food and design. The event will be led by Bibiana Osteria Enoteca Chef Nick Stefanelli and will showcase the foods served over the years to America’s first families, from George Washington to Barack Obama. $75 per person; $125 per couple.
- SO MANY HILL COUNTRY Options:
- FREE delivery to the National Mall! Hill Country’s full delivery menu will be available for free delivery to DC’s epicenter of the July 4th festivities with no advance notice necessary – just call up the restaurant, place your order, give your location on the Mall and wait for Hill Country’s delicious smoked meats and classic sides to come to you.
- Texas-style Fourth of July Menu – Everything’s bigger in Texas and that goes for Hill Country’s special Pit-Smoked Cowboy Burgers and Loaded Texas Taters which will be available at the restaurant, while Strawberry Cream Cake and Spiked Frozen Lemonade add a sweet finish to a day of celebrating.
- Red, White, and Booze Happy Hour – From 3-7pm and 10pm-close drink specials like $3 PBRs, $4 red and white wines, $5 well drinks, $5 margaritas, and $20 margarita pitchers will be flowing, as well as $20 pitchers of Texas favorite Shiner served all day, every day.
- America Eats Tavern: As you probably know by now, Chef José Andrés’ year long pop-up nod to American culinary history will close its doors after July 4th. To honor the occasion, America Eats Tavern will be offering a special menu from July 2nd to July 4th, featuring many of the restaurant’s most requested items. Think Fried Chicken with Cole Slaw, Chesapeake Crab Cakes with Pickled Watermelon Salad, BBQ Beef Short Ribs with Hoppin’ John, Maine Lobster Rolls, Strawberry Shortcake, and Key Lime Pie.
- 701 - fresh off of his “Rising Star Chef” win at the Rammy’s, Ed Witt is prepping a special 4th of July menu for everyone to enjoy, right across the street from the National Archives to boot. Menu items include bison chili with aged cheddar and cornbread croutons; chilled tomato soup with avocado and grilled shrimp; smoked Wagyu brisket served with asher blue and bacon potato salad and corn on the cob; as well as crab cake with summer vegetable slaw and chili sauce. For dessert: a red, white and blue parfait made with white chocolate cream, raspberry gel and local blueberries.
- Poste Brasserie - Poste is utilizing their substantial garden space for a “Fourth of July” Picnic: root beer glazed pork spare ribs with bok choy kimchi and black-eyed pea and Virginia peanut salad; a housemade frankfurter with sauerkraut; or a gruyere burger. Both the burger and hot dog come with potato salad, coleslaw and freshly grilled corn on the cob. To finish, a seasonal market cobbler with crème fraiche ice cream or a slice of heirloom watermelon with sea salt will be offered. Reservations recommended.
- The Sou’Wester - The Mandarin Oriental restaurant’s special menu includes chilled iceberg wedge salad; shrimp cocktail; devilled eggs; housemade flat bread with pimento cheese; a seafood broil with Bouchot mussels, North Carolina shrimp, Chincoteague clams, housemade sausage, baby corn and red potatoes; Southern fried chicken; Kanagy Farms grilled shoat; a Sou’wester “hubcap” burger; BBQ pork rib potato salad; parmesan french fries, shells and cheese, corn on the cob; watermelon and heirloom tomato salad; and a selection of summer desserts.
- LINCOLN Restaurant: Fresh off of a visit by President Obama himself, LINCOLN is celebrating with an all-you-can-eat ‘American Dream BBQ Grillout’ from 2pm-11pm, featuring locally farm-raised BBQ Chicken, house-made hamburgers and hotdogs, ’Freedom Fries’, American Apple Pie, and other American classics. Soundtrack wise? Expect the likes of the Beach Boys, Bruce Springsteen, the Eagles, and more.
- J&G Steakhouse at the W Washington, D.C.: Hoping to attract those patriots looking to escape the madness of the Mall on the fourth, J&G is offering a three-course ‘Patio Picnic’ menu from 4-9pm, featuring a Watermelon and Goat Cheese Salad, choice of the J&G Cheeseburger, Gourmet Hot Dogs, BBQ Chicken, or a Lobster Roll, and to finish it off, a house-made Ice Cream Sandwich. $38 per person; prix-fixe. Larger parties might consider the exclusive $3,500 Wine Bar package, which also includes an open bar, dedicated staff, and use of the outdoor fire pits for up to 28 guests.
THE NIGHT OF:
- Obviously-your friends’ backyard with a garage that you can shoot fireworks off of is always an option. But also:
- W Hotel’s BOOM WITH A VIEW is probably the highest end, but totally amazing place to watch the fireworks. After all, you are perched directly ABOVE the White House, there are fancy drinks and beautiful people and more. All the individual tickets are sold out by now, so grab a group of friends and consider this an investment in your socialiting future.
- THEN ALSO:
- BRIXTON, the 9th and U much-anticipated bar that JUST OPENED this weekend is making the most of their awesome rooftop with a “BANGERS AND BUBBLES” night. What better place to celebrate America’s independence than a British Pub and Rooftop Beer Garden? The Brixton will be celebrating with house-made bangers and Chandon! Come enjoy the fireworks, slightly removed from the National Mall traffic, on our rooftop with its sweeping south-facing vista! Doors open at 1pm, first-come, first-served.
- 1905 - The pretty and relatively intimate new rooftop deck at 1905 offers views of the Washington Monument, and the bar is taking advantage of them with a special July 4 party. No cover charge, but bear in mind: No reservations will be taken, it features a limited menu will be offered and admission is limited on a first-come, first-served basis.
- BOAT PARTY! BOOMERANG YACHT PARTY - Boomerang, famous for its party buses that ferry groups from club to club on weekend bar crawls, has expanded to the Potomac River. The Boomerang Party Yacht is a two-level cruise ship with bars, a dance floor and room for 80 passengers. On July 4, the ship sets sail for a four-hour tour that includes a view of the fireworks, drink specials and a dinner buffet.
Stay strong. (also-leave comments with things we missed if we missed them)