Best Place to Grab a Drink in Dupont

Bar Dupont (in the Dupont Hotel)
1500 New Hampshire Ave. NW; (202) 483-6000
Dupont Circle should be a hub of tucked-away booths where think tank-types sip pinot and debate the political blowback from health care reform. But say the words “bar” and “Dupont Circle” and what comes to mind? Big Hunt, a safari-themed madhouse, where you might get knocked into a faux tent if you’re not careful. Not the best atmosphere for a date or a friendly catch-up session, let alone a political dissection. Cue Bar Dupont, located in the newly refurbished Dupont Hotel, where the lounge looks out onto the historic circle. The lounge itself is all beige and brown and leather and suede. A waiter soon delivers a generous trio of mixed nuts, wasabi peas, and corn nuts and a menu with plenty of wines by the glass and specialty cocktails, which include a Dupont White Chocolate, a combo of Stoli Vanil, Godiva liqueur, and Crème de Cacao (many can be had for $5 during the bar’s unusually early happy hour from 4 to 6 p.m.). But the best reason to come here is the low-key vibe. A table is usually easy to come by, even during a Friday night happy hour. Think about that the next time you get knocked into the faux tent at Big Hunt.

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