Photo courtesy of L’Ardente

GuidesWashington D.C.

Resy’s 2022 Holiday Bucket List for Washington D.C.


During the holidays, Washington, D.C. lights up to merry and bright levels with seasonal festivities, holiday markets, and (of course) epic eating and drinking — thanks to a city filled to the brim with bucket-list opportunities.

This year is no exception, and your yule-tide fun can be found around the District from cozy cocktails to decadent desserts, and yes, plenty of bars and restaurants filled with tacky and fun decor.

Head right this way to your bucket list of essential eating and drinking around town.

1. Get a seasonally minded cocktail.

For a bar that’s truly lit during the holidays, head to Jane Jane on 14th Street. This bright and funky bar features a tree adorned with shirtless mermen, plus strings of lights that hang over the bar.

Any grinch will immediately land in better spirits with one sip of their signature winter cocktail. It’s the appropriately dubbed “Seasonal Affective Delight,” and that it is — with refreshingly bright citrus flavors plus vodka, cucumber, and mint.

2. Find the most festive holiday décor.

Stable recently launched a winter menu, highlighting the warmth and comfort of the Swiss alps, with wooden chalets available to book for parties of up to six people. This is also one of the city’s coziest spots to enjoy a pot of bubbling fondue and other interactive raclette feasts, alongside a seriously stiff drink. The spiked apple cider gets injected with bourbon, allspice dram, amaretto, and Goldschlager.

3. Be a tourist in your own town.

From the outdoor holiday trains at the United States Botanic Garden to the U.S. Capitol tree, plus the Eastern Market holiday shops, there are so many reasons to play tourist on Capitol Hill.

After all this merriment, take time to fill your belly. Might we suggest the intimate setting of Beuchert’s Saloon? Chef Andrew Markert serves up savory delights, sourced locally, from roasted bone marrow to grilled pork chops and Maryland blue crab spaghetti.

4. Have a fancy Friday lunch.

Take a day, and enjoy a three-martini lunch alongside L’Ardente’s 40-layered lasagna. This dish is the gift that keeps on giving, especially if you are a pro-carb partisan. Dishes created specifically for lunch include the bucatini cacio e pepe, or a warm grains salad with fresh figs and dried apricots. Lunch runs from 11:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. and includes dessert. Say hello to lunchtime tiramisu flambé!

5. Take advantage of all those holiday specials.

Santa is slinging drinks behind the bar at Archipelago. This popular tiki-themed bar has been transformed into a Sippin’ Santa pop-up bar with festive cocktails, plus beachy-holiday Santa tiki mugs, and stockings hung on the back bar. Dawn your tackiest sweater and order up the signature drink – a Kris Kringle Colada. It is a spicy drink with dark Jamaican rum, amaro, allspice liqueur, pineapple, and cream of coconut.

6. Slow down.

In tribute to Ukrainian culture and food, Restaurateur Rose Previte has put together a family-style menu at Compass Rose meant for special celebrations with friends and family. The Sunflower Coach is a private dining experience for up to eight people and available nightly, with a portion of each booking donated to World Central Kitchen’s Ukrainian relief effort.

Dinner is $75 per person and includes family-sized portions of traditional Ukrainian potato varenyky, as well as dishes from around the world, like Spanish-style patatas bravas and Georgian khachapuri.

7. And whatever you do, don’t skip dessert.

Saddle up to the bar with seats overlooking the wood-fired grill, and enjoy a romantic wintertime meal at the red-hot Red Hen. This Mediterranean-styled menu has been a favorite in Bloomingdale for almost a decade. And the roasted maple panna cotta has been there since day one. You can forget those chestnuts roasting on an open fire because this dish comes served with a generous amount of hazelnut crumble and whipped cream that may have you licking the plate.