My favorite thing about warm weather (although in DC, this currently translates to hot and muggy weather) and late sunsets is post-work happy hours. Nothing gets me through the 2pm slump like knowing I’m going to spend a few hours with good friends and drink specials after I battle the beltway traffic. While there are plenty of wonderful happy hour options in my neighborhood, and it feels like there is a new restaurant opening up at least once a month, I find myself returning to Pearl Dive over and over again.
Of course, a big reason is their amazing specials Monday through Friday from 4pm-7pm. But I love Pearl Dive for more than just their $2.50 beers. The outdoor patio is great, even though it can get a little packed, the bartenders somehow manage to stay attentive despite being slammed with yuppies demanding sparkling water, and people-watching on 14th street never gets boring. Plus the casual vibe makes it perfect for almost any occasion, whether you’re starting a date off here, or if you decide last minute during a long run that you want a refreshing alcoholic beverage and show up drenched in your own sweat, wearing spandex and french braided pigtails.
During the Independence Day weekend, I spent perhaps a little bit too much time here. I was eager show everyone how ready I was to reenter the glamorous world of dating (this attitude lasted approximately 4 days before I remembered that dating is annoying and stupid 97% of the time), and decided to meet up with a few girlfriends at Pearl Dive to kick off the holiday weekend with a impromptu bar crawl. Usually, I just grab the lightest draft beer when I hit this happy hour. However, my wonderfully supportive friend, Mariam, decided that we would all start off with some dirty martinis (vodka and olive juice), which is one of their happy hour specials for $7. This was delicious. However, a word of advice: maybe don’t go inhale four in a row after a break up because it may lead to a overly long, unnecessary night out consisting of you telling random strangers how this is “THE BEST NIGHT EVER,” shots of tequila with groups of men who drove in the from the suburbs where they eat at only chain restaurants, maybe some tears, and then maybe waking up at 3am to quickly tie your hair into a topknot before heading to the bathroom to vomit. Not saying this from experience or anything.
You would think this would be enough to get me to maybe either 1) not drink dirty martinis for a short period of time and/or 2) take a break from Pearl Dive. You would think. Well, less than 24 hours later, I found myself sitting at the inside bar of Pearl Dive sipping on another dirty martini during happy hour, inhaling another bowl of mussels. In the words of Selena Gomez: