A Guide to the Best Rooftop Bars in Washington, DC

We love everything about DC, but we especially love the food and beverage scene here.  There’s so much to eat and drink, which is why we keep sharing guides on Nomtastic Foods.

We get a lot of DMs asking for recommendations, which is how we’re getting topics for these posts.  People ask us about rooftop bars a lot so we figured we’d share our recommendations today.  Make sure to bookmark and share because everyone deserves to dine and imbibe with a view.

1. Wild Days

wild days dc

Located on the rooftop of the gorgeous Eaton hotel, Wild Days is a stunning indoor/outdoor venue that’s known for awesome music, tacos, and cocktails.  They also have a fire pit for s’mores so definitely make sure to take advantage – reservations are recommended due to high demand so consider yourself warned.

eaton dc

Hours are as follows: Sunday to Wednesday, 4-10PM, Thursday from 4-12AM, Friday and Saturday from 4-2AM.  Last call is 30 minutes prior to closing, and they also have a killer happy hour deal daily from 4-6PM!  PS. if you’re craving craft cocktails, make sure you stop by Allegory, the “speakeasy” style cocktail bar in their library on the first floor…if you can get in.

wild days interior

2.  VUE Rooftop

VUE gets a 10/10 for its amazing view of the Washington skyline. Located on the 10th floor of W Hotel, you’ll be able to spot the Monument and White House with the utmost ease.

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Whether you want to join them for brunch or a fun night out on the town, dress to impress, and be ready to drop $$ on cocktails because they don’t come cheap here.  Hey, it’s DC…and you’re on a fancy rooftop.  That’s to be expected, right?  Hours are as follows:  Monday through Thursday 5-12AM, Fridays from 5-2AM, Saturday from 11-2AM and Sunday from 11-12AM.

3.  The Conservatory

This is definitely more of a destination spot, and the view’s not as great as POV, but it’s still charming, and the food and drinks are exceptional.  Located above and run by Chef Matt Baker and his team at Gravitas, expect to enjoy some truly exquisite eats.

conservatory dc

They offer a fantastic prix fixe in addition to a la carte dining options, and their rooftop also doubles as their garden so plan to visit during the summer as well!  Hours are as follows: Tuesday through Thursday 5-9PM, Friday & Saturday 5-9:30PM, and Sunday from 5-9PM!

4.  12 Stories

A 360 view of the Potomac? YES PLEASE!  Located in the Wharf, 12 Stories has a very industrial-chic vibe, with modern details like concrete flooring, 13-foot floor-to-ceiling windows, and wired pendulum lighting.

The space fits up to 170 guests, and in addition to a thoughtfully curated cocktail menu, they offer non-alcoholic options along with dishes like lobster eggrolls, truffle fries, and lamb bao buns.  Hours are as follows: Wednesday & Thursday 4-10PM, Friday 4-midnight, Saturday 3-midnight, Sunday 3-9PM.  And FYI, it’s 21+ after 6PM – click here for reservations, Nomsters!

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5.  El Techo

With a motto like “good vibes only,” what’s not to love?  This 1,100 square foot space can be closed or open depending on the weather, and it’s available for full or partial buyouts.

el techo dc

Expect to enjoy handcrafted cocktails and Latin-inspired tapas and entrees like birria, paella and fajitas.  The owner describes El Techo as “instagram gold,” and we’ll tell you right now that we wholeheartedly concur.

el techo drinks

You’ll feel like you’ve been transported to the tropics so head on over to escape the concrete jungle for an evening or two.  Hours are as follows:  Monday through Thursday 5-midnight, Friday from 5-1:30AM, Saturday 12-1:30AM, and Sunday from 12-midnight.

6.  801

This multi-story gem has a dining room, three bars and a rooftop deck so you can bounce from floor to floor to enjoy whatever vibe you please.  Their wedge-shaped third-floor bar will give you serious beach vibes so stop by to share delicious food and drink with friends.

Because who wouldn’t want to enjoy a cocktail that’s served in a fresh coconut?  PS.  They offer bottomless brunch so make a note of that as well!   Hours are as follows:  Monday through Wednesday 4PM-12:30AM, Thursday 4PM-1AM, Friday 4PM-3AM, Saturday 10AM-3AM, and Sunday 10AM-10PM.

7. La Vie

This rooftop rivals POV!  Located in the Wharf, their view of the water leave you at a loss for words.  They always do something cool and instagram-worthy, too.  Earlier this year, they had a bunch of art inspired cabanas, and they’re now offering igloos:  a few for lounging, a few for dinner.

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Both can accommodate up to 6 guests, but reservations fill up fast so act quickly.  Note, there’s also a F&B minimum for each person:  $75 for brunch and $99 for dinner.  Pricy, but the experience is definitely worth the splurge.

8.  Whiskey Charlie

This fabulous cocktail lounge is located atop the Canopy hotel in the Wharf.  This spot’s first come-first serve and gets crowded quickly so aim to come sooner rather than later – we recommend before 7 is possible!  There are ample heaters and fire pits so the vibe’s nice and cozy. And like their name suggests, they have an impressive selection of whiskey so be ready to enjoy.

Alright Nomsters, we hope you enjoyed our latest roundup post! Have you been to any of these spots?  Let us know by leaving a comment below, and definitely comment with your place of choice if you have another go-to we need to check out!  For more on DC food, click here.  We update every Monday, Thursday and Saturday so make sure you keep an eye out for fresh new content coming your way soon.


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