by Lauren Sloat - 260 Reviews - 86 List
After all the time spent in stuffy indoor bars during the Snowpocalypse of 2010, Washingtonians are eagerly staking out outdoor patios where they can imbibe both drinks and fresh, warm air. From chic bars with fancy cocktails to beer gardens with brews on tap, the district has an outdoor bar for every drinking occasion, and we've uncovered the best of the best. Just remember how cold it was in February when the humidity strikes and revel in the heat. (Pictured: Perry's in Adams Morgan)
Updated: July 09, 2010
Grab a new summer cocktail--such as the Lemon Lager or hibiscus margarita--or Masa's signature spiked strawberry lemonade on the 14-seat patio, which is open for summer on 14th Street. By the end of summer, the bar will also have a rooftop deck that can hold up to 50 patrons.
This downtown gastropub unveils a 40-seat outdoor patio at the end of May 2010 where patrons can sip Scotch (stored in their personalized Scotch locker, naturally) or one of the establishment's new spring cocktails, such as The Holy Grail made with St-Germain, Yellow Chartreuse, cava and pear gold dust.
This European import is new to the scene and features an outdoor patio fit for 50 patrons. An extensive sake selection complements the Pan-Asian menu, but specialty cocktails are also a standout. Try the Burn made with vanilla Stoli, pear and serrano chili peppers.
Off the beaten path in Adams Morgan, Perry's doesn't get the foot traffic that some of D.C.'s other rooftop destinations do, so the experience is more relaxing. Reservations are accepted for dinner between 5:30pm and 7pm. Go early to snag a table and snack on sushi before the drinks start flowing.
It's not obvious, but this dark U Street dive has a patio out back. If you need a break from that game of pool or darts upstairs, head downward and squeeze past the kitchen on the first floor to find this small oasis of fresh air, which is often not crowded.
Like the ornately decorated interior of this H Street beer bar, its beer garden is a feast for the eyes. The surprisingly charming space is bedecked in a gurgling fountain, purple lights and lots of detailed metal work. At night, watch a chef prepare jumbo gulf shrimp from the grill.
This Dupont bar, favored by locals for its casual vibe and happy hour specials, has another hidden bonus: a peaceful, tree-surrounded deck off the second floor tiki bar, where patrons can kick back at picnic tables and enjoy one of the 27 beers on tap.
Dubbed the "sky box" in keeping with this Dupont bar's sports theme, Public is said to have the city's largest covered rooftop, which includes two separate bars, lounge seating and an enviable view. Just make sure your glutes are ready for the long ascent up the stairs.