The Fourth of July is always a big deal in D.C. Restaurants and bars attempt to outdo one another with all-American fare including barbecue, local brews, over-the-top cocktails, and, of course, pyrotechnics. Some festivities featuring prime views of the D.C. skyline are already sold out — like the Watergate’s annual $175-per-person rooftop bash. But there’s plenty of other celebrations to choose from.
Here are some of the best options around town to ring in the nation's birthday, categorized by theme and vibe.
For an all-day affair
Arlington’s William Jeffrey’s Tavern is throwing an all-day bash, kicking off at 11 a.m. with a holiday brunch including a massive bloody mary bar. Customers can also cool off with boozy tri-color popsicles. There will be live music from 7 p.m. to 11 p.m. 2301 Columbia Pike, Arlington, Va. Sibling bar Rhodeside Grill (1836 Wilson Boulevard, Arlington, Va.) will run the same specials.
For a fee-free evening among the stars
Kimpton’s Logan Circle hotel is hosting a holiday party on its rooftop with no cover charge. Featured offerings include grilled fare, themed cocktails, and slushies. And to kick off the holiday, ground floor bar Radiator is extending its happy hour on Tuesday, July 3 all night. 1430 Rhode Island Avenue NW
For a little something sweet
From Wednesday, July 4 through Tuesday, July 10, Milk Bar’s new flagship location in Logan Circle will be selling to-go snacks for DIY picnic-planners. There’s a six-inch apple pie layer cake (also available by the slice), apple pie truffles, Thai tea cookies, and berry crack pie (available July 4 and July 5 only). 1525 15th Street NW
For a restaurant’s inaugural Fourth of July
Ivy City newcomer City Winery is serving a special menu on Wednesday, July 4, dubbed Red White & Booze. Featured offerings include firecracker shrimp, watermelon mango salad, and a themed strawberry cocktail. 1350 Okie Street NE
For a physical challenge
British-style pub the Brixton is opening at 1 p.m. on Wednesday, July 4 and will offer $10 drink specials all night. There’s also a hot dog eating contest at 5 p.m., plus a DJ playing music on the rooftop. 901 U Street NW
For an iconic view — that comes at a price
The renowned POV rooftop lounge is hosting its annual holiday party featuring soaring views of the fireworks show on the National Mall. At $275 per person — which includes special cocktails and DJ sets from 6:30 p.m. to 10:30 p.m. — this is the priciest pick on this list. 515 15th Street NW
For a dining twofer
Family-friendly neighborhood bar Brookland’s Finest is combining local seafood and pop-up ice cream shops. Bri’s Brookland Creamery will serve $4 scoops of ice cream ($3 for kids scoop) on the patio from 12 p.m. to 5 p.m. Meanwhile, Brookland’s Finest will pair Maryland blue crab with sweet corn, red potatoes, and andouille sausage in a spicy Old Bay broth with flights of Right Proper Brewery beers for $35 from 11 a.m. to 10:30 p.m. 3126 12th Street NE
For the first taste of a new beer
Jack Rose will be the first bar in the city to pour Flying Dog’s Neon Freedom Meyer Lemon Gose and the Brewhouse Rarities Lemon Lime Pilsner as part of its sixth annual holiday party. The terrace opens at 3 p.m. with $4 cans and $5 drafts from the featured brewery. There’s also half-priced snacks ($3-$6.50) such pickled corn hushpuppies, and smoked whiskey wings with habanero and honey bourbon sauce. Jack Rose’s rooftop terrace offers view of the National Mall fireworks. 2007 18th Street NW
For adult time away from the crowds
From 7 p.m. to 10:30 p.m., cozy Chinatown’s Flight Wine Bar will serve a buffet dinner with an open bar. Patrons can head up to the roof to enjoy (partial) views of the fireworks. Tickets are $125. 777 Sixth Street NW
For Maryland brewing fans
The fifth annual Freedom Fest at Republic features smoked brisket sandwiches, sausages, chicken wings, Mexican street corn on the cob, mac n’ cheese and watermelon salad. Expect draft beers from local producers including RAR, Brewer’s Art, Denizens Brewing Co., and Silver Branch. For kids, there’s face painting, Jenga, snow cones, and corn hole. Food and drink tickets can be purchased for $5. 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. 6939 Laurel Avenue, Takoma Park, Md.
For a week-long happy hour
Happy hour deals run all week (Sunday, July 1 to Saturday, July 7) at Landry’s restaurant group. Oceanaire (201 F Street NW) is offering a $1 oysters at the bar all day and a three-course dinner for two for $70 from 4 p.m to 10 p.m. every night. Sibling steakhouse Morton’s is offering $7 -$8 snacks, $5.50 beers, $7.50 wines, and $8.50 cocktails and martinis (1050 Connecticut Avenue NW).
For a pre- and post-fireworks outing
From 5:30 p.m. until 8 p.m. and from 9:30 p.m. until 11 p.m., the Fairmont’s outdoor patio will serve all-you-can burgers, beer brats, grilled jumbo shrimp, corn, and coleslaw. For dessert, an interactive ice cream station will include a selection of flavors and sparkling toppings. The party is $30 per person, and $15 for children 12 and under (sans beverages, tax and gratuity). Private reservations for rooftop lounge seating, fire pits, and canopies are available for an extra fee. 2401 M Street NW