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Good casual meeting place for a drink in DC?

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Looking for cool casual but solid cocktail/wine spot for a date in DC. Any suggestions?

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  1. You might want to check out "The Gibson", a speakeasy behind an unmarked door next to Marvin on 14th at U. Great cocktails ($10-$16) in a casual yet elegant atmosphere.

    1. Dickson Wine Bar on U street would also be a good option. 9th and U.

      1. I think the lounge at PS7 is perfect for this---especially if it's a weeknight.

        Other places that might be good: Poste, Sonoma, or Cafe St. Ex.

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        PS7 Restaurant
        777 I Street, NW, Washington, DC 20001

        Sonoma Restaurant
        223 Pennsylvania Avenue, SE, Washington, DC 20003

        1. The Passenger is terrific. Even better if you can get a reservation to their inner bar, The Columbia room. The owner-bartender, Derick Brown is a a whiz at cool and classic cocktails.

          http://www.passengerdc.com/columbia/h...

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          The Passenger Bar
          1021 7th St NW, Washington, DC 20001

          3 Replies
          1. re: DCDeb

            I second The Passenger on 7th, just across from the Mt Vernon metro. The Gibson just does NOT have the same casual vibe and the drinks are $6 more for the same quality.

            Be prepared to order without a cocktail menu though. Converse with the bar staff - that's the point. If this intimidates your date, steer him towards a Dale's Pale. And definitely sit at the bar. My favorite cocktail I've gotten there is a Lion's Tail, which is a bourbon-based drink, served up, with allspice and citrus notes. I told them I wanted something in a martini glass with whisky or bourbon and maybe some citrus and that's what I got. It's a lot of fun. It does take awhile to order sometimes because of time it takes to craft a good cocktail, but they always see you right away and make a mental note to get around to you in due time.

            Anyway, the atmosphere is just very relaxed and chatty - I've always thought it would a great place to have a casual date.

            I'm sure the Columbia Room would be amazing date, but they're probably already booked for the night you want, and it's definitely not casual.

            ETA: However, the Gibson will guarantee you a seat, because it's reservation-only, although you'll only have it for two hours, unless you make the last reservation at 10pm.

            1. re: Raids

              I walked into Gibson with no reservation and two friends about 9:00 on the night of the rally. Just lucky, I guess. It wasn't crowded.

              1. re: woodleyparkhound

                It could also be that the buzz has just died down and it's not perpetually booked now, also. I haven't been since almost exactly a year ago.

                And it's never crowded, even when it's booked - they don't allow standing. That's really what I meant, sorry. You can't stand around and wait for a seat - they'll give you a buzzer and send you on your way until something opens up if nothing is available when you first show up.

                The night of the rally was probably a great night to go there - I doubt many people think Halloween = Gibson, and I doubt anybody's going to stumble across it on the street...

          2. Second PS7.

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            PS7 Restaurant
            777 I Street, NW, Washington, DC 20001

            2 Replies
            1. re: ktmoomau

              A question about PS7 - what time do you need to show up to actually get a seat in the lounge? Or is there a day that's less busy? I live right by there and have tried to grab a spot at the bar at least 5 times now and have always failed. The first couple times we decided to hover for a bit and see if anything opened up, but it doesn't seem like anybody ever leaves, either. Help me chwohounders!

              1. re: Raids

                If you get there around 6 you can usually snag a seat at the bar or the lounge area. But then again I usually go there by myself so it's easier for 1 person to find a seat.

                Maybe try Tuesday or Wednesday.

            2. Cuba Libre, Matchbox, Proof, PS7 or how about the bar at Citronelle

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              PS7 Restaurant
              777 I Street, NW, Washington, DC 20001

              Citronelle
              3000 M Street NW, Washington, DC 20007

              1 Reply
              1. re: dining with doc

                I really like the Citronelle bar, the cocktails are great and the mushroom cigars are to die for! My other recommendation is the bar at the Four Seasons (Salt? I think) and the bar at URBANA.

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                Citronelle
                3000 M Street NW, Washington, DC 20007

                Four Seasons Cafe
                50 S Pickett St Ste 23, Alexandria, VA 22304