• Emily Duke Hargan

Show Me the Way to the Next Whiskey Bar

Looking for a way to enjoy sunshine and whiskey this summer? It is still possible in the COVID-challenged environment. There are quite a number of places to sit out on a rooftop deck and enjoy an evening cocktail with friends. We checked out some DC-based whiskey favorites, and have some recommendations for you:


Jack Rose Dining Saloon

This popular Adams-Morgan establishment boasts one of the largest collections of whiskey in the Western Hemisphere. It is the kind of place, pre-COVID, you would go to celebrate a new job or an anniversary and drink a glass of hard-to-find vintage bourbon. However, Jack Rose is adjusting to the current reality—it is open for carry-out food, cocktails and whiskey on it's open-air terrace on Wednesdays-Sundays.

My good friend, Chris, and I enjoyed a few cocktails one evening up on the terrace. Their classic and unique cocktail offerings were perfect on the warm evening we were there. My favorite drink off the summer cocktail menu was the Summer Punch (very much like a mint julep) and Chris gave a thumbs up to the Designer Shades (I forgave him for drinking tequila on a night out in a whiskey bar). We also tried the Ruby Rising Sun and the Pina Corn-lotta—and the grilled shrimp quesadillas were to-die for. Jack Rose's open-air terrace is currently open for brunch on Sundays as well, and I highly encourage you to stop by during the week to purchase a bottle or two from their vast collection. Carry-out is available on Tock.


Crimson Cafe, Diner & Whiskey Bar

This is a trifecta of Southern hospitality located in Chinatown (DC) in the Pod Hotel. Although COVID has most of the Crimson shut down, you can still enjoy the Crimson View on the rooftop of the hotel. Open 7 days a week, this indoor-outdoor porch offers some of the best views of DC—and on a clear night that is quite spectacular.

Chris and I were lucky enough to get a table right as the sun was setting and ordered two classic Old Fashioneds of the summer cocktail menu. And frankly, this Old Fashioned was one of the best I have ever had. Yes, you have heard it here—the Old Fashioned cocktail at the Crimson View at the Pod Hotel in Washington, DC is one of the best anywhere, ever. Both Chris and I were struck by how very few people were out on the Saturday night we were there. Everyone was properly socially distancing and wearing their masks when appropriate. In no way did we feel uncomfortable or unsafe, so I encourage you to take advantage of this time to spend an hour or two out with a friend on a DC rooftop bar like the Crimson.


Falls Church Distillery

This has been one of my favorite finds this summer in the DC area. My husband and I happened upon this distillery/bar/outdoor venue one Sunday afternoon while driving through Falls Church on our way to Target. Often on Fridays and Saturdays there is live music or open mic nights, great food trucks and friendly neighborhood crowds. The bartender, Christy, is a riot and makes the best drinks. In fact, my favorite drink the afternoon we stopped in was Christy's Lemonade Lust made with FC Distillery's own Church Burn Whiskey (we ended up buying a bottle to take home).

This distillery is pretty special. It's a family business and Veteran owned. 100% my kind of America. And it has this community-oriented feel to it, with the picnic tables out front and the front doors wide open. You don't want the summer to pass you by without stopping by Falls Church for a drink.


The forecast for this weekend does look rain but if there is a break in the weather try one or more of these places. You won't be sorry.


And of course, I couldn't end this post without one of my favorite Doors hits—"Alabama Song" (otherwise known as Whiskey Bar).









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