Tangy and refreshing, the orange crush is a classic Maryland cocktail where vodka meets triple sec, bright orange juice and sparkling soda. While the summer sip is a staple in Ocean City, it’s not as common inland. But, Northern Virginia has its fair share of places where you can feel like you’re at the beach and get your orange crush fix.
For a classic orange crush cocktail and contemporary American fare, check out Wilson Hardware. Its orange crush has all the ingredients you want in a glass: Smirnoff orange vodka, triple sec, Sprite, and fresh orange juice. The trendy three-level concept of this Clarendon gem has plenty of fun spots to sit but look out for the rooftop bar and garden terrace for an idyllic summer night. 2915 Wilson Blvd., Arlington, $11
Orange vodka, triple sec, and fresh-squeezed orange juice are topped with lemon soda in Crafthouse’s rendition of the orange crush. As if that wasn’t refreshing enough, it offers a grapefruit crush, made with fresh grapefruit juice and ruby red grapefruit vodka. Along with its crushes, Crafthouse carries 50 craft beers on tap for round two and an extensive food menu. Multiple locations, $9
Housemade orange soda sets Bear Branch Tavern’s Orange Crush apart. Combined with vodka and curacao, it’s a vacation-worthy drink. Crank up the vacation vibe even more with live music: The tavern is hosting musicians on Friday and Saturday nights this summer. For another variation featuring housemade orange soda, try the $11 Push Pop at its Arlington sister restaurant Ragtime. 133 Maple Ave. E., Vienna, $12
More of a tequila fan? Try one of Bandito’s Mexi-crushes. Its orange crush mixes 21 Seeds orange tequila with agave, fresh juice, and Sprite. It offers two other variations, the Grapefruit Crush and the Cucumber Jalapeño Crush. Paired with its colorful ambiance and extensive taco menu, Bandito’s is sure to lift your spirits. 1301 Joyce St., Arlington; 10621 Braddock Rd., Fairfax, $11
On the hottest summer days, reach for a crush that’s extra refreshing and try the frozen variety at Vola’s Dockside Grill. Its frozen orange crush is made with Pinnacle orange vodka, triple sec, and orange juice. Vola’s is at the Old Town Alexandria waterfront, where you’ll be able to soak up sun rays on the dock. 101 North Union St., Alexandria, $13
For another icy twist on the classic, try The Salt Line’s D.C. Crush. The D.C. Crush is their seasonal frozen cocktail where the traditional vodka, triple sec, and orange are combined with D.C. Brau Orange crush spiked seltzer. Pair the drink with oysters (their specialty) or New England-style seafood for the full Salt Line experience. 4040 Wilson Blvd., Arlington, $13
For more stories like this, subscribe to Northern Virginia Magazine’s Food newsletter.