All words: Brittany Martin — All photos: Rachel Eisley
Tryst Coffeehouse-Bar-Lounge, the Adams Morgan stalwart, is many things – a coffee shop, restaurant, and bar; equally social space and co-working site with laptops perched on every bit of intentionally mismatched furniture – but it is pretty much never “tranquil.” However, after fourteen years, there is now a second Tryst location, and this one has a decidedly quiet – even elegant – style. Classiness should come as no surprise, though, as this second Tryst is located inside the Phillips Collection museum.
This should be your go-to spot for a quiet mid-day coffee date around Dupont Circle or to get a bit of inspiration to finish up that next chapter in your novel. From the front door to the coffee counter (admission fee not required – just tell the front desk you are headed to the cafe) you will pass works by artists like Piet Mondrian and special installations and video pieces are even on display within the cafe space, which you can enjoy from a seat in tasteful mid-century modern style furnishings.
On a nice day, take your coffee, lunch, or glass of wine outside to the large, lovely courtyard which will be set up with tables and chairs (and covered by the wi-fi if you need it). Thursday evenings, the space hosts special events from 5:00 – 8:00 while the museum stays open extended hours. These will include live music, interesting pop-up dining options, and more ideas to be revealed as time goes on.
The Phillips Collection wanted something a bit more sophisticated than the standard museum cafe and it seems to be working. Every staff person working at the Phillips Tryst comes from either the Adams Morgan location or one of the group’s other properties, Open City and Diner, and arrived fully trained and ready to whip up all the frothy cappuccinos with milk-and-espresso-hearts you would expect. The food menu is a selection of favorites from the Adams Morgan menu, with sandwiches, salads, and light fare.
Either as a quick stop while viewing the museum’s impressive collection or as a destination unto itself, this tucked-away cafe will be a welcome addition to the neighborhood.