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If you’re like me, you probably have a lot of bad feelings right now. You probably drank your way through election night, but that’s come and gone and now you need alcohol more than ever and probably a really good cry. That’s why for this week’s (not so) Happy Hour Hotline we’re giving you 5 dark bars where no one will see your tears running down your face and into your gin & tonic.

Harold Black

Sure Harold Black has a pretty big window at the front, but once you get inside it’s dimly lit and mysterious and has cozy tucked away booths for your sob fest. If you sob quietly and hold your old fashioned with as much grace as you can muster, you’ll probably pass as mysterious rather thank disenchanted because of the bar’s speakeasy atmosphere. As a bonus they have potato gnocchi, fish tacos and cheese boards so you can eat your feelings once that instinct inevitable kicks in.

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Wisdom is something we all could use, but this bar is probably more accessible than the actual thing. They have the largest collection of gin in the DC/VA/MD area as well as a collection of authentic absinthe, so you can really clear your mind. I think you deserve bonus points for crying into an absinthe cocktail, there’s just something so poetic about it.

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Velvet Lounge

If you think a grimy dive bar would better suit your crying needs then head to Velvet Lounge. They frequently have loud enough bands and DJs that should drown out your heaving sobs. They also have cheap drinks so you don’t have to feel bad about diluting your beer with saline from your eye holes.

Jimmy Valentine’s Lonely Hearts Club

Maybe you want to live like that early Kesha song “Dancing With Tears in My Eyes” and try to pass off the wetness on your face as perspiration. Even if you don’t want to dance and you just want to linger on a bar stool, this place has great angsty crying aesthetics. The lighting is dark and red tinted, there are skull images everywhere along with other slightly creepy eccentric objects, some of which you could call art.


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Denson Liquor Bar

You have to climb down a flight of stairs to get into this bar, so it’s like crawling into a really nice hole to cry. That also means there are no real windows letting in natural light, even though it’s November and light leaves us so soon anyway. There’s a lot of black decor in this bar which will channel the blackness in your soul, and the dim lighting will give you all the privacy you need to let your tears fall in peace. They’ve got food and cocktail menus that are fairly trendy, so you can feel really hip as you sob into your oyster plate and contemplate oblivion.


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