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Best Venue Food In DC: The Touring Bands Guide
July 10, 2013 | 2:30PM
By Jonny Grave
Jonny Grave will be performing at this Thursday’s UnStill Life museum party at the Philips Collection. You can see him perform in D.C. and pretty much every city in America that possesses at least one club with a stage. And yes, BYT is working on a definitive guide to venue food. While we’re compiling our empirical sampling, enjoy this taste, courtesy of Jonny:

It’s one thing to get paid for a gig in this city. It’s another thing for the management to give you a couple of drink tickets for the bar after the show. But it’s outstanding when a venue feeds a starving musician. This is my list, in no particular order, of venues, bars, and clubs in the city that take care of their performers.

Nanny O’Briens
Cleveland Park
One of my most frequented gigs. The wings and burgers are beautiful, but the Guinness beef stew cures hangovers, colds, and other ailments.

Marx Café
Mt. Pleasant
“Revolutionary Cuisine,” indeed. Try the grilled octopus.

Black Cat
14th St.
While they don’t exactly feed you (food is half-price for musicians– not free), Food For Thought offers delicious home-cooked, mostly vegetarian food. Vegan lasagna before a set? Yes, please.
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Jonny performing at Black Cat

The Wonderland Ballroom
Columbia Heights
American dive bar comfort food at its finest. Avoid the Hobo Burger, unless myocardial infarction is in your plans.

The best Texas-style barbecue in the city by far. And they’re not shy about how much they serve their musicians. In almost two years of playing there, my band, four grown men, have not once finished the whole platter.
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Photo by Steve Jeter

Honorable Mentions:
Madam’s Organ
Adams Morgan
The grilled cheese and bacon has become the Wednesday night staple for the band.

Acre 121
Columbia Heights
Try their sweet potato fries. They’re good for you.
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Hawk and Dove
Capitol Hill
Their french toast as thick as the bar itself. Lovely Bloody Marys, too.
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