Plenty of spots all over the District offer alcohol-free creations that pair perfectly with your meal.
Whether you’re embarking on a New Year’s resolution, a Dry January challenge or just laying off the booze, toast to high spirits with spirit-free libations all over the District. Continue your exploration of the city’s dining scene by reading up on places that offer hot and cozy drinks and hot chocolate as well as award-winning restaurants, high-value spots and local bakeries.
Binge Bar presents an exclusively alcohol-free experience where you can – yes, binge – responsibly on inventive spirit-free cocktails and a wide selection of non-alcoholic wine, beer and liquor. The booze-less bar also offers small bites and community events.
Old Ebbitt Grill
Chef Fabio Trabocchi’s Penn Quarter outpost sates wine and negroni lovers in addition to offering Lyre’s alcohol-free flavors. Connoisseurs of house-made pastas and Italian-inspired seafood will not want to skip this spot. Head to his other restaurants, including downtown DC pasta house Sfoglina, for an array of delectable dining experiences.
Eaton DC's indoor/outdoor rooftop music venue and bar offers mocktail selections as well as can’t-miss street food from acclaimed Chef Tim Ma. With panoramic views of the nation's capital, the music venue also houses an urban farm on its rooftop as well as fire pits.
The Japanese-inspired eatery doubles as a craft cocktail bar, a brilliant concept from James Beard Award-winning Chef Michael Schlow and executive chef Derek Watson. But don’t worry: the non-alcoholic drinks are amazing too. Try the Matcha Colada with coconut cream, lime, pineapple, matcha and smoked salt.
No, you won’t be punching Brad Pitt at this sleek DC spot and you’re more than welcome to talk about it to everyone. You may even need to join a support group of your own after trying one of the spot’s meticulously crafted sandwiches. There are also plenty of alcohol-free libations, including Live From the Garden, which includes rosemary and grapefruit with Seedlip spirit.
Resident’s Café & Bar
The name of the Dupont Circle eatery recognizes its owners who immigrated to the U.S. and are now proud residents of the country and city. Expect unmatched ambiance full of lush greenery and laid-back vibes, whether savoring a cocktail, mocktail or anything on the food menu, which bounces around Europe and the Mediterranean with dishes like steak tartare, miniature gyros and mushroom risotto.
The local hot spot goes all out in the wintertime, offering outdoor fire pits, six varieties of s’mores and cozy indoor environs decorated for the season. Plenty of mocktails are available, but if you are going to imbibe, you can try the apple pie White Russian, four flavors of espresso martini or a Bailey's hot chocolate flight.
Five-time James Beard Award nominee Amy Brandwein recently added five new non-alcoholic cocktails to Centrolina’s beverage program, each made with fresh ingredients and designed to compliment the restaurant’s Northern Italian fare. Highlights include the Ciliegia (cherry, pomegranate and lemongrass) and the Energia (green tea syrup, lemon, and club soda).
Located at The Wharf, Ilili offers several zero-proof mocktails curated by Beverage Director Rachid Hdouche. Highlights include the Karkadih, a hibiscus and rosehips cordial with rose water and lime juice, as well as the Levantine Lemonade, which features fresh lemon juice, mint and Lebanese simple syrup.
Morris American Bar
Named after Morris Sheppard, a U.S. Congressman considered the father of Prohibition in the early 1930s, the 7th Street haven provides Wes Anderson-inspired surroundings for artisan cocktails and mocktails. A rotating monthly menu of drinks hand-crafted with fresh juices, syrups made on-site and hand-cut ice means you’re always in for a treat here.
One of the coolest additions to DC’s bar scene in recent years, metrobar is an 11,000-square-foot venue situated inside a re-purposed Metro car. The stunning setting is going all out for Dry January with a full menu of mocktails. Of course, you can also sip District-made spirits, beer, wine and craft cocktails if you’re so inclined.
Want to feel like you’re on an episode of Mad Men? Head to Doyle, which built out its décor and its drink menu with 1950s and 1960s style in mind. A small-plate food menu accompanies a vast array of whiskey, rum, gin and vodka, among other spirits. And for those abstaining: non-alcoholic cocktails include the Free Kick (Seedlip spice, honey ginger syrup, lemon, apple, mint, soda) and the Dupont Temple (lemonade, cherry syrup and cranberry).
With locations in Capitol Hill and on 14th Street NW, Ted’s Bulletin has become a DC staple thanks to its distinctive, old-school décor (you’re likely to catch a classic movie playing on one of the TVs) and can’t-miss brunch that brings diners from all over the city. Mocktails are also regularly featured, including the Garden Party, which puts together Ritual Gin, lime, mint, ginger and muddled cucumber.