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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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Agua 301

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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.

Cuba Libre Restaurant & Rum Bar

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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?

Daikaya

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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.

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.

The Fainting Goat

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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."

Grillfish

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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.

Kramerbooks & Afterwords Cafe

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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.

Masa 14

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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.

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.

Mockingbird Hill

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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.

The Pig

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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?

Piola Arlington

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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.

Roofers Union

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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.

Ted's Bulletin

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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.

Tortilla Coast

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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.

Vinoteca Wine Bar & Bistro

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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.

Agua 301

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.

Cuba Libre Restaurant & Rum Bar

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?

Daikaya

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.

Diego

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.

The Fainting Goat

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."

Grillfish

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.

Kramerbooks & Afterwords Cafe

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.

Masa 14

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.

Mio

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.

Mockingbird Hill

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.

The Pig

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?

Piola Arlington

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.

Roofers Union

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.

Ted's Bulletin

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.

Tortilla Coast

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.

Related Maps

Vinoteca Wine Bar & Bistro

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.

Related Maps