The sounds of clinking steins and lively conversations fill Tyber Bierhaus, which embraces the spirit of a Belgian-, German-, and Czech-inspired beer hall. This revelry-inducing eatery is the third restaurant for co-owners Mark Moore, Paul Uppole, and Dan McLaughlin, who also opened the similarly inspired St. Arnold's Mussel Bar. At Tyber Bierhaus, the bar features more than 20 beers that includes everything from relatively light Czech pilsners to rich Belgian tripels. The food menu is equally diverse?homemade goulash, pork schnitzel sandwiches, and the restaurant's signature mussels in an aromatic, beer-based broth with caramelized shallots, garlic, thyme, and duck fat all emerge from the kitchen. At the same time, chefs occasionally find inspiration in Mediterranean cuisine as they prepare dishes such as linguine shrimp scampi and olive and red pepper hummus with pita bread.
As further proof of the restaurant's commitment to creating a European-style beer hall in Bethesda, Tyber Bierhaus features communal picnic tables throughout its dining room. This communal setup encourages guests to chat with their neighbors or even lift their liter-sized glasses together for celebratory toasts. The relatively simple ambiance features mustard-yellow walls adorned with vintage advertisements for European beers and other details, such as the tin cans filled with sheaves of wheat that decorate a small ledge. By remaining open until as late as 2 a.m., Tyber Bierhaus provides guests with a place where they can settle in for the night and enjoy the lively, communal atmosphere even after their cars have turned back into pumpkins.
As 20 high-definition televisions play the latest sports in Uptown Tap House?s dining room, the pub?s cooks tirelessly craft their upscale take on classic bar food. They smother pumpkin ravioli in brown butter-cream sauce, pile hickory-smoked pulled pork and chipotle slaw onto sandwiches, and leave oysters and clams just as they are for raw bar orders. To complement each feast, bartenders decant predominantly local American brews from 22 taps. The full libation menu features more bottled beers, plus wine and spirits, all three of which Uptown showcases at its weekly tastings.
Start a grassroots campaign for flavorful food sharing that’s equal parts communism and cronyism with today’s Groupon to Sabores. For $15, you’ll get $30 worth of tapas, sangria, and paella to nibble, pass, and bump foreheads over at an unhurried Andalusian pace. Located in Cleveland Park, Sabores is a Metro-accessible mecca for small-plate sharing, sangria sipping, and lively conversation.
Peddling potables for almost 20 years, Cleveland Park Wines offers a bevy of grape-centric delights, including organic and kosher vintages as well as champagne and dessert wine. The knowledgeable staff aids guests in picking out a future fermented family, with a variety of red and white wines broken down into pinot noirs, rosés, merlots, cabernet sauvignons, and more. Sniff and swirl the bold and buttery notes of the 2008 Chalone Vineyards Estate chardonnay ($22.99), or realize a resolution to drink more dry fruit by sipping up the XYZIN zinfandel ($15.99). For a more seasonal crash course in Bacchic beverages, Cleveland Park Wines' April offerings include dry rosés from around the world, granting aficionados a passport-less daytrip to exotic vineyards. Grab a bottle of Quinta do Carqueijal ($5.99 on sale), or pair an elegant bottle of Loir Valley, Mareuil J. Mourat, with notes of soft peach and rose petals ($16.49), with smoked salmon. Cleveland Park Wines also plays host to ongoing events, where guests can taste exquisite vintages before snapping up a favorite bottle to fill the shelves of pantries, wine cabinets, or basement speakeasies.
Executive Chef Billy Klein brings a bit of Spain to Cleveland Park, creating inventive interpretations of tapas that marry traditional flavors with contemporary sensibilities. Befitting the name "Pulpo"—Spanish for octopus—menu prominently features a dish of tender octopus simply prepared with the refreshing citrus-herbal tang of oranges and parsley. Chef Klein and his team also keep the meals close to home by sourcing produce from local farms. This dedication is apparent throughout the drink menu, which features three kinds of sangria, an assortment of international wines, and cocktails made with everything from jalapeño-infused simple syrup to earl grey- and sage-infused vodka.
Washingtonian describes the thoroughly industrial dining room as, "something at once more modern and rustic." Given the worn, black brickwork, well-trodden concrete floors, and caged, warehouse-style light bulbs, this assessment seems especially apt. A three-paneled, black-and-white piece of artwork depicting an octopus adorns one brick wall, and a lipstick-red accent wall flaunts flat-screen televisions and a gurgling aquarium.
Nanny O'Briens is a Washington Post editors' pick for its commitment to Irish hospitality. Every Monday eve beginning at 9, traditional Irish seisiuns bring together the musical chops of local strummers and crooners who fill the air with social waves of sound, inviting everyone with a voice or a set of ears to feel the communal power of appetite-whetting tunes. Tuesday night is Trivia Night starting at 8:30, and every night after is content to be merry feasting and drinking night.