As the summer heat intensifies, you, like any other levelheaded person, will yearn to drink outside and/or on a rooftop. That’s why we made our DC Outdoor Drinking Guide 2015, jam-packed with useful info. It’s full of all our favorite outdoor drinking destinations from around the city because we (obviously) love drinking outdoors and know you do, too. However, sometimes just being outside isn’t enough. Sometimes you’d rather have a quality dopplebock than a fancy cocktail and toast your friends with a sloshing stein rather than a long-stem glass. For these occasions (which we hope are not infrequent in your life), we bring you this short, sweet guide to D.C. beer gardens. We’ll give you a peek at what’s open now and what’s coming soon.
Wunder Garten (New for 2015)
A pop-up garden in NoMa opening May 2015, the garden features a small but carefully crafted selection of German lagers and pilsners, in addition to small selection of wine. Not to be outdone by its small snack selection, Wunder Garten also features a rotating schedule of food trucks, including Sloppy Mama’s and DC Slices. Also, thanks to the new Recreational Equipment Inc. center opening next fall, there’s cornhole and other lawn games on hand to play while you drink. Game, set, match.
Cafe Berlin (New Menu for Summer 2015)
Cozily situated on the Hill, Cafe Berlin combines the rustic garden feel with a wide selection of brews and a killer traditional German menu that changes seasonally. Last month they debuted an asparagus menu, featuring “schnitzel mit spargel, spargelsalat and spagelcremesuppe,” and if you can pronounce all of that, good for you. There’s not a huge amount of outdoor seating available, so make sure you either come early or make a reservation ahead of time.
An H Street staple since its inception, Biergarten Haus offers a massive outdoor beer garden behind its deceptively small indoor space. With 16 German beers available as well as a selection of authentic German food including smoked and cured fish, fresh pretzel rolls, spatzle, shnitzel, and other filling carb-y goodness, Biergarten Haus is your best bet for a true Deutsche beer garden experience.
A relative newcomer to the Shaw scene but already popular, you can bring your dog and/or your kids and enjoy one of their delicious brews in the sprawling outdoor space under the watchful violet gaze of their beautiful Liz Taylor mural. Dacha recently started serving food like brats and wursts as well as sauerkraut and roasted potatoes. Plus their newly opened patio makes Dacha an always bustling spot this season.
Another beer garden in NE (we’re not complaining), this stripped down Bladensburg Road beer garden has 20 beers on draft, an abundance of corn hole stations, a fire pit, and a projector so you can take in a picture while you sip. Bring your dog to meet the resident canine – appropriately called BarDawg – play some games, drink some beer. It’s really that simple here.
(By popular demand)
If you haven’t been to Standard/Garden District yet, you haven’t lived in DC very long. 6 draft beers, 1 beer in a bottle, great food, fantastic location. It’s always crowded on even remotely nice days, so get here when they open to snag a seat and make friends with the strangers at your shared table.
10 drafts indoors, 6 drafts outdoors. Delicious food made from locally sourced ingredients and meat sliced and cured in their own butchershop. A beautiful, cozy outdoor space strung with fairy lights. Live music in the garden on Friday and Saturday nights. This is the perfect relaxing summer evening destination.
Takoda is still in development, but this three story Shaw restaurant on Florida Avenue promises to deliver one of the neighborhood’s more impressive beer gardens. Ryan Seelbach and Eric Lund of the Huxley are behind what the hope to be a location characterized by a “warm, approachable neighborhood vibe.” Keep your eyes peeled on the construction and expect a late-summer opening. Also, this beer garden is on the roof, so that’s exciting.