Thanks mainly to the Potomac, the DMV has plenty of bars with beautiful waterfront views. Fortunately, some of them also have great cocktails. We’ve rounded up the most unique bars and cocktail lounges, where you can enjoy a tipple or two as you take in the sun coming off those gentle river waves.
A cocktail lounge and a stylish eatery, this spot boasts spectacular river views. Stick to the classics with one of their delicious martinis or old fashioneds, or branch out to some of their unique drinks. The eatery’s best-selling cocktail, the French 44, takes Tanqueray gin and combines it with lemon and prosecco for a unique flavor. Looking for a way to celebrate the cherry blossom season? Try out the Lady Jane, which combines cherry-and-peppercorn-infused tequila with prosecco rosé. 44 Canal Center Plz., Ste. 401, Alexandria
This midcentury-modern cocktail lounge will transport you back to the 1960s. Sip on classic cocktails as you take in some of the best views Alexandria has to offer. Try out the lounge’s raved-about rum punch or spice things up a bit with their jalapeño-cilantro margarita. The signature mixed-berry sangria is another refreshing option. 101 N. Union St., Alexandria
Old Town Alexandria’s newest riverfront restaurant and bar, BARCA (Spanish for boat) combines Catalonian coastal influences and shipyard-chic details to create a decadent drinking and dining experience. Signature favorites include the Pier Pressure, a vodka, raspberry, and passion fruit drink, and the Barcelona Nights, a rum-and-kiwi mix that will take your taste buds on a trip to Spain. If you’re in for brunch, make sure to try out one of the bar’s bloody Mary options. 2 Pioneer Mill Way, Alexandria
A rooftop cocktail lounge atop the Canopy Washington DC, this bar is the luxe sipping experience of your dreams. With an intimate rooftop deck and an indoor seating area, every inch of this lounge has stunning views of the Wharf. Their refreshing Waterfront Queen, a mixture of gin, strawberry syrup, lime, and Brut, will set the mood for an elegant night. The luxury lounge also boasts an extensive beer and wine list. 975 Seventh St. SW, Washington, DC
For a more relaxed take on a cocktail lounge, try out Cantina Bambina. This bar in Southwest DC sits guests right in front of the water to take in a perfect sunset and the spring air. Cocktails include the Dockside Donkey, a grapefruit-driven take on the Moscow Mule, and the Bananarama, a Thrasher’s Rum take on the classic Bahama Mama. A Latin bar, there are plenty options of tequila to choose from, from 1800 Silver to Dulce Vida Grapefruit. 980 Wharf St. SW, Washington, DC
Sitting on the waterfront at this cocktail bar, you’ll feel as though you’ve escaped to a tropical oasis without ever leaving the DC area. Thrasher’s Rum drinks are, of course, the signature at this bar. Guests can enjoy memorably named drinks, including the Samoan Typhoon, a rum, guava, honey, and passion fruit mixture, and the Missionary’s Downfall, a rum, mint, and pineapple drink. 1130 Maine Ave. SW, Washington, DC
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