Metro Weekly

Zagat list of best DC happy hours leans a little too northwest

Chef Todd Gray's Equinox was named one of the best happy hour spots in D.C. by Zagat.

Chef Todd Gray’s Equinox was named one of the best happy hour spots in D.C. by Zagat.

The division of Washington, D.C.’s into four geographical quadrants (NW, NE, SW, and SE) can be confusing; however, it seems that Zagat is completely unaware that the nation’s capital extends beyond the northwest portion of the city. At least that is the case when it comes to the list of ten best happy hour spots in D.C. published Monday on its website. 

Self proclaimed as the “go-to source,” Zagat writes in the introduction to its list that its has “chosen 10 great happy hours that deserve the spotlight, places where you can find deep discounts on a large selection of drinks and nibbles.” As NEcrusader pointed out in a posted comment, the list only includes establishments in northwest D.C. 

While it is a fact that the northwest quadrant of the D.C. is the largest of the four and is home to some of the city’s most popular neighborhoods such as Petworth, Dupont Circle, Georgetown, Adams Morgan, and Columbia Heights, there are many other areas of D.C. with thriving happy hour scenes. It’s surprising that not a single watering hole in northeast’s H Street Corridor or southeast’s Barracks Row was able to make the cut, especially since Zagat is now owned by Google and has plenty of access to maps.

Zagat’s apparent bias for northwest D.C. also shows in its list of recommended places in D.C.  for graduation dinner. Released yesterday, it includes only five restaurants near northwest D.C.’s Georgetown and George Washington universities.  

What is your favorite happy hour spot? Where would you recommend for a nice graduation dinner? Share your thoughts below.

Troy Petenbrink is Metro Weekly's contributing writer for food and travel. He can be reached at