My Visit to Three Washington, DC Cocktail Bars

The White House at night

Two weeks ago, I had the chance to visit Washington, DC while on a business trip.  I didn’t have a lot of time while I was in the area, and I needed to get up early every morning, but I still wanted to get out and try at least one or two of the many cocktail bars that I had heard about in the area. David Wondrich’s write-up on the best bars in Washington, DC last summer made The Columbia Room sound like a good first stop, and I was fortunate enough to be able to get a reservation.  I arrived a bit early for my reservation though, and I also needed to eat, so I visited another bar from the same owners that is just down the street: Hogo.

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The Portland Connection: Krogstad Aquavit and Calisaya

Two cocktails with Calisaya bottle prominently visible to the right

Tonight started off with a simple goal: use some of the week-old lemons in the fruit bowl in a cocktail. Obviously there are a ton of citrus cocktail options and I wanted to try something that I hadn’t had in awhile. I settled on the Aviation, which is a classic among classics and combines gin, lemon juice, maraschino liqueur, and creme de violette.  After I had all the ingredients out in front of me, including the creme de violette that was hiding behind several bottles on a bottom shelf, I had the following thought: how can I make a new cocktail by substituting the creme de violette for something else? Continue reading