Summertime and the living’s easy…as the song goes. It may be “easy,” but uneventful and non-busy it is not. To get refreshed for the summer season of drinking and bars, I thought it was quite necessary to take a small vacation to Curacao. I’m back, “tan”, and ready to keep you all updated on which bars you should or shouldn’t be attending!
My most recent bar addiction has been Black Jack! Located in Logan Circle, what started off as a random Friday happy hour with a girlfriend has quickly turned into my new weekly trivia destination. I first attended Black Jack about 2 months ago as a second and last stop of a Friday happy hour outing. Having heard good things about said bar and making what at the time was a rare appearance in Logan Circle, it seemed like the perfect opportunity to try some place new. Black Jack is slightly hidden; located directly above Pearl Dive. It offers a tasty selection of mussels and oysters that should NOT be overlooked. Somewhat masquerading as a ‘speakeasy’ because there is no official sign, there is no arrogance here.
The bartenders/wait staff are cordial and accommodating. They were even willing to buy us a round when there was a last-minute cancellation of trivia. These are the rare type of people that I actually feel comfortable engaging in light banter. To describe a little more about the décor, Black Jack is relatively narrow once you get upstairs. There is only one bar, but I’ve never had an issue waiting too long on a drink or food for that matter. The main part of the bar offers a handful of tall tables, a couple booths, and some cozy couches that are great for those looking for a slightly larger gathering of people in addition to seating at the bar itself. Be warned though, grabbing a couch or even a table during popular happy hour times or during trivia has been fairly difficult and requires a little bit of patience. Further away from the blinking GOLF sign in the main bar area, you can find the indoor bocce court, complete with some baseball stadium type seating. Quirky and slightly eclectic in comparison with many DC bars, I think it really is important to stress that the atmosphere here is not pretentious and laid back enough that most people can feel comfortable here.
Tuesday nights, as many of you are aware is my weekly trivia night. At Black Jack, the trivia is hosted by Trivia Kings, which should be your reassurance that it is a quality product. Starting at 8pm, my team is always pleased that Black Jack extends their happy hour deals until 9pm, which means ½ priced drafts. These aren’t your normal shitty drafts though. They go beyond the standard Miller Lite and Natty Boh deals. Seeing as I’m still new to the beer drinkers club, I typically stick with a cider. They offer both Jack’s hard cider ($6) and Strongbow ($9). Beyond the mussels and oysters here, which are quite delicious, I have yet to be disappointed with the food. From pizza to a Cuban sandwich ($11) to just a side of French fries with aioli dipping sauces, you do not need to eat before arriving at this bar.
While I have yet to visit Pearl Dive or some of the other surrounding bars, this establishment has the potential to be part of great bar crawl in Logan Circle for those that are easily bored or need something different to hold their attention. The only drawback to this Black Jack is that the volume can sometimes get on the loud side. If you’re looking for a date atmosphere, it might be more of a struggle unless you manage to snag a more intimate booth or couch or go during an off time (if those exist here). This would even be a decent place to drink solo at the bar because of the ongoing movies projected against the wall behind the bar.
Stay tuned for my next post! Thomas Foolery opens this Wednesday and yours truly can be spotted on the menu 😉