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Daikaya
R. Lopez

16 Places Where A Cocktail Is Less Than $10

In a town where few bat an eye at paying $13 or more for a drink, here's where to go to get an affordable cocktail. And that means more money for another round drinks.

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Daikaya
| R. Lopez

In a town where "cheap" isn't cheap to a lot of the country, knowing where to go for an affordable cocktail is considered priceless information. And that's especially true when everyone's ready to hit the town, but no one's sure where to go that won't max out the credit cards. So here's a list of 16 spots where a cocktail costs less than $10.

But before jumping to the list, some ground rules first. For starters, all the drinks are cocktails. That means they aren't shots, and there is liquor involved. None of the cocktails have double digit price tags. However, that doesn't include the tax and tip. (Always tip the bartender. It'll make the night better for all parties involved.) And finally, these are not happy hour prices – these cocktail prices are the prices whenever the establishment's doors are open.

Keep this list handy because no one knows when they'll need it in a drinking emergency.

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Note: Restaurants on this map are listed geographically.

1. Agua 301

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301 Water Street Southeast
Washington, DC 20003
(202) 484-0301
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What's more classically Peruvian than a pisco sour? Other than Machu Pichu, nothing else. For $9, this upscale Mexican eatery near Nats Stadium serves up a pisco sour with a bit of egg white and a splash of Fernet Valet.

2. Daikaya

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705 6th St NW
Washington, D.C. 20001
(202) 589-1600
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Does anyone remember how to get to Sesame Street? Well, for $8, Daikaya will help drinkers find their way. The Sesame Street cocktail has Beniotome Sesame Shochu, yuzu, ginger beer and bitters. And for those that want to end (or start) the night with half a dozen Dai-drops (aka sake bombs), that'll only be $35.

3. Diego

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2100 14th St NW
Washington, D.C. 20009
(202) 758-3376
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On the "los drinks" menu, which isn't exactly correct Spanish, imbibers can order the Mojito Pasion for $9. It's a mojito with Bacardi Silver, muddled mint and passion fruit. A sip will remind drinkers of the long summer days.

4. The Fainting Goat

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1330 U St NW
Washington, D.C. 20009
(202) 735-0344
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Take moonshine and make it a little more DC-friendly. Now that's Plumshine. For $8, someone who wants to totally enjoy himself or herself and probably regret it in the morning, Plumshine is made with Everclear, plums, star anise and prosecco. Even the menu comes with a note of caution: "seasonal and slightly dangerous."

5. Grillfish

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1200 New Hampshire Ave NW
Washington, D.C. 20036
(202) 331-7310
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Coming in at $9.50, Grillfish has the Hard Core Old Fashioned. It has apple-infused bourbon, bitters, muddled cherries and a bit of orange. So for those who need something more intense than a regular ol' Old Fashioned, here it is.

6. Kramerbooks & Afterwords Cafe

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1517 Connecticut Ave NW
Washington, D.C. 20036
(202) 387-1400
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A more erudite setting for enjoying a cocktail, Kramerbooks offers the Cherry Limeade for $8. The drink may sound innocent enough, but this is not for children. The drink has vodka, lemonade, amaretto and grenadine. So much for reading anything after a few of these.

7. Masa 14

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1825 14th St NW
Washington, D.C. 20009
(202) 328-1414
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The Caipirinha Tradicional at Richard Sandoval's fusion restaurant on 14th Street stays classic: cachaça, lime and simple syrup. And all for $9. Leaves plenty of cash left over for some of the famous sushi rolls.
1110 Vermont Ave NW
Washington, D.C. 20005
(202) 955-0075
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Even downtown has affordable cocktail options outside of happy hour. At Mio near McPherson Square, office workers can grab the rum-based Pasion Urbana for $9. So for those who prefer their lunches to be liquid, here's one that doesn't cost that much.

9. Mockingbird Hill

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1843 7th St NW
Washington, D.C. 20001
(202) 316-9396
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Derek Brown is a mixology magician, and at one of his three bars along Shaw's 7th Street, diners can have a well-made cocktail that doesn't have a double-digit price tag. Call the Bitter Naranja ("orange in Spanish), the cocktail is $9 and comes with Spanish brandy, orange juice, soda made from a myrtle-leaved orange tree and a slice of orange to give it even more orange flavor.

10. The Pig

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1320 14th St NW
Washington, D.C. 20005
(202) 290-2821
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The pork-centric eatery The Pig in Logan Circle has two cocktails to choose from that are only $8. The first is the Buta with sake, vermouth and plum simple syrup. The second is the Berkshire with bourbon, rhubarb bitters and aperol. So the choice is: clear liquor or brown liquor?

11. Piola Arlington

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1550 Wilson Blvd
Arlington, VA 22209
(703) 528-1502
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Across the Potomac, the pizzeria chain has a cocktail called the Caipiroska for $8.50. It's a simple drink with vodka, lime and sugar. A few of these with a pizza and diners will be ready to do the Clarendon bar crawl.

12. Roofers Union

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2446 18th St NW
Washington, D.C. 20009
(202) 232-7663
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Looking for some beer with liquor? Roofers Union has "hop-tails" that are $9. The Here Comes The Sun uses Port City Optimal Wit and includes Jim Bean, some ginger simple syrup and lemon. Best of both worlds.

13. Ted's Bulletin

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505 8th St SE
Washington, D.C. 20003
(202) 544-8337
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When was the last time outside of college anyone drank a White Russian? At Ted's Bulletin, eaters can enjoy a more mature version of that college cocktail in the form of an adult milkshake. For $8.99, the White Russian comes with vodka and Kahlua. And hopefully no regrets in the morning.

14. Tortilla Coast

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400 1st St SE
Washington, D.C. 20003
(202) 546-6768
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Nothing ever goes wrong after a few rounds of tequila-based drinks. At Tortilla Coast on Capitol Hill, $7 gets revelers 10 oz. of Sauza Gold Coast margarita. And for $9, imbibers can up it to 16 oz.

15. Vinoteca Wine Bar & Bistro

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1940 11th St NW
Washington, D.C. 20001
(202) 332-9463
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Before, after or during a round of bocce, have some Fogoso e Exitado Punch for $9. It comes with cachaça, grapefruit, pineapple syrup and a digestif called Cardamaro. And it may help with one's bocce aim.

16. Cuba Libre Restaurant & Rum Bar

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801-A 9th St. NW
Washington, D.C. 20001
(202) 408-1600
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Starting October 28, Cuba Libre is launching a revamped cocktail menu and some totally new dishes. For those looking for a drink, check out the Cuban Iron Beer for $9.50. That's Brinley Gold Shipwreck Rum and Iron Beer married together. For the same price, the Stormy Pryat has ginger beer with Pryat XO rum. Because why choose between beer and liquor?

1. Agua 301

301 Water Street Southeast, Washington, DC 20003
What's more classically Peruvian than a pisco sour? Other than Machu Pichu, nothing else. For $9, this upscale Mexican eatery near Nats Stadium serves up a pisco sour with a bit of egg white and a splash of Fernet Valet.
301 Water Street Southeast
Washington, DC 20003

2. Daikaya

705 6th St NW, Washington, D.C. 20001
Does anyone remember how to get to Sesame Street? Well, for $8, Daikaya will help drinkers find their way. The Sesame Street cocktail has Beniotome Sesame Shochu, yuzu, ginger beer and bitters. And for those that want to end (or start) the night with half a dozen Dai-drops (aka sake bombs), that'll only be $35.
705 6th St NW
Washington, D.C. 20001

3. Diego

2100 14th St NW, Washington, D.C. 20009
On the "los drinks" menu, which isn't exactly correct Spanish, imbibers can order the Mojito Pasion for $9. It's a mojito with Bacardi Silver, muddled mint and passion fruit. A sip will remind drinkers of the long summer days.
2100 14th St NW
Washington, D.C. 20009

4. The Fainting Goat

1330 U St NW, Washington, D.C. 20009
Take moonshine and make it a little more DC-friendly. Now that's Plumshine. For $8, someone who wants to totally enjoy himself or herself and probably regret it in the morning, Plumshine is made with Everclear, plums, star anise and prosecco. Even the menu comes with a note of caution: "seasonal and slightly dangerous."
1330 U St NW
Washington, D.C. 20009

5. Grillfish

1200 New Hampshire Ave NW, Washington, D.C. 20036
Coming in at $9.50, Grillfish has the Hard Core Old Fashioned. It has apple-infused bourbon, bitters, muddled cherries and a bit of orange. So for those who need something more intense than a regular ol' Old Fashioned, here it is.
1200 New Hampshire Ave NW
Washington, D.C. 20036

6. Kramerbooks & Afterwords Cafe

1517 Connecticut Ave NW, Washington, D.C. 20036
A more erudite setting for enjoying a cocktail, Kramerbooks offers the Cherry Limeade for $8. The drink may sound innocent enough, but this is not for children. The drink has vodka, lemonade, amaretto and grenadine. So much for reading anything after a few of these.
1517 Connecticut Ave NW
Washington, D.C. 20036

7. Masa 14

1825 14th St NW, Washington, D.C. 20009
The Caipirinha Tradicional at Richard Sandoval's fusion restaurant on 14th Street stays classic: cachaça, lime and simple syrup. And all for $9. Leaves plenty of cash left over for some of the famous sushi rolls.
1825 14th St NW
Washington, D.C. 20009

8. Mio

1110 Vermont Ave NW, Washington, D.C. 20005
Even downtown has affordable cocktail options outside of happy hour. At Mio near McPherson Square, office workers can grab the rum-based Pasion Urbana for $9. So for those who prefer their lunches to be liquid, here's one that doesn't cost that much.
1110 Vermont Ave NW
Washington, D.C. 20005

9. Mockingbird Hill

1843 7th St NW, Washington, D.C. 20001
Derek Brown is a mixology magician, and at one of his three bars along Shaw's 7th Street, diners can have a well-made cocktail that doesn't have a double-digit price tag. Call the Bitter Naranja ("orange in Spanish), the cocktail is $9 and comes with Spanish brandy, orange juice, soda made from a myrtle-leaved orange tree and a slice of orange to give it even more orange flavor.
1843 7th St NW
Washington, D.C. 20001

10. The Pig

1320 14th St NW, Washington, D.C. 20005
The pork-centric eatery The Pig in Logan Circle has two cocktails to choose from that are only $8. The first is the Buta with sake, vermouth and plum simple syrup. The second is the Berkshire with bourbon, rhubarb bitters and aperol. So the choice is: clear liquor or brown liquor?
1320 14th St NW
Washington, D.C. 20005

11. Piola Arlington

1550 Wilson Blvd, Arlington, VA 22209
Across the Potomac, the pizzeria chain has a cocktail called the Caipiroska for $8.50. It's a simple drink with vodka, lime and sugar. A few of these with a pizza and diners will be ready to do the Clarendon bar crawl.
1550 Wilson Blvd
Arlington, VA 22209

12. Roofers Union

2446 18th St NW, Washington, D.C. 20009
Looking for some beer with liquor? Roofers Union has "hop-tails" that are $9. The Here Comes The Sun uses Port City Optimal Wit and includes Jim Bean, some ginger simple syrup and lemon. Best of both worlds.
2446 18th St NW
Washington, D.C. 20009

13. Ted's Bulletin

505 8th St SE, Washington, D.C. 20003
When was the last time outside of college anyone drank a White Russian? At Ted's Bulletin, eaters can enjoy a more mature version of that college cocktail in the form of an adult milkshake. For $8.99, the White Russian comes with vodka and Kahlua. And hopefully no regrets in the morning.
505 8th St SE
Washington, D.C. 20003

14. Tortilla Coast

400 1st St SE, Washington, D.C. 20003
Nothing ever goes wrong after a few rounds of tequila-based drinks. At Tortilla Coast on Capitol Hill, $7 gets revelers 10 oz. of Sauza Gold Coast margarita. And for $9, imbibers can up it to 16 oz.
400 1st St SE
Washington, D.C. 20003

15. Vinoteca Wine Bar & Bistro

1940 11th St NW, Washington, D.C. 20001
Before, after or during a round of bocce, have some Fogoso e Exitado Punch for $9. It comes with cachaça, grapefruit, pineapple syrup and a digestif called Cardamaro. And it may help with one's bocce aim.
1940 11th St NW
Washington, D.C. 20001

Related Maps

16. Cuba Libre Restaurant & Rum Bar

801-A 9th St. NW, Washington, D.C. 20001
Starting October 28, Cuba Libre is launching a revamped cocktail menu and some totally new dishes. For those looking for a drink, check out the Cuban Iron Beer for $9.50. That's Brinley Gold Shipwreck Rum and Iron Beer married together. For the same price, the Stormy Pryat has ginger beer with Pryat XO rum. Because why choose between beer and liquor?
801-A 9th St. NW
Washington, D.C. 20001

Related Maps