Harold Black

4.4
466 reviews
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$30 and under
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American
Harold Black is a warm, intimate bar that is quiet enough to hear your conversation yet lively enough to keep you talking. A list of house cocktails gives you a range of options, additionally, the bartenders are at the ready to work their magic if you have something else in mind. Harold Black serves a light-fare menu till 10pm as well as a late-night menu with a selection of cured meats, cheeses and desserts.

Please be aware of a few house rules:

1. We look forward to having you join us and are happy to hold your table for up to fifteen minutes. To contact us with a special request, please email reservations@haroldblackdc.com
2. Your booking reserves your seats for 2 hours.
3. Due to our small size we cannot guarantee booth seating.
4. Our maximum party size is six people, no exceptions, and unfortunately we cannot book multiple tables for one group. To book Harold Black for a private event, please email events@haroldblackdc.com.
Dining Style
Casual Dining
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Cuisines
American
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Hours of operation
Tue–Thu 5:30 pm–1:00 am
Fri, Sat 5:30 pm–2:00 am
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Phone number
(202) 627-0994
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Payment options
AMEX, Discover, MasterCard, Visa
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Dress code
Business Casual
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Neighborhood
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Parking details
Parking on 7th street is free after 6:30
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Public transit
Eastern Market Metro
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Gift Card
Additional
Bar/Lounge, Beer, Full Bar, Late Night, Wine
What 466 People Are Saying
Overall ratings and reviews
Reviews can only be made by diners who have eaten at this restaurant
4.4based on recent ratings
4.4
food
4.1
service
4.6
ambience
3.8
value
Noise · Quiet
83% of people would recommend it to a friend
5
4
3
2
1
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Denver
2 reviews
Dined 3 days ago
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Amazing! First time and I will definitely be back.

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MK
1 review
Dined on November 25, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Shhhhhhhhh. Speak Easy. A perfect throwback to an earlier time. Great drinks, fantastic bartenders. Nice little snack and dessert menu for light late night bites. Make reservations or you most likely will not get in. This is our favorite bar in DC.

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I
Washington DC
1 review
Dined on November 24, 2018
Overall 3food 5service 4ambience 4

Ordered dirty martini and for a spot that focuses on alcohol, I was surprised to receive it in a wine glass and it was not that great either.

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OT
Richmond
1 review
Dined on November 18, 2018
Overall 3food 4service 3ambience 4

Service was extremely slow. Waited around 15 minutes to order first drinks. And around 20-30 minutes to order small plates, calling the server each time to grab his attention. The food was delicious, but for a party of 4 who ordered a couple of drinks pp and 5 small app. ended up paying around $400. Very overpriced for the quantity of food provided. Cocktails were also on the smaller size. Good but pricey.

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KF
1 review
Dined on November 18, 2018
Overall 1food 5service 1ambience 5

We have been to Harold Black five times now and up until our last visit counted it among our favorite neighborhood restaurants. On this last visit we had to beg for any service at all. No drinks, no menus, no appetizers, no flatware, nothing was offered until we physically stopped an employee and directly asked for it. This was true of everyone in the restaurant that night, not just our table. I understand sometimes you are short staffed or have other problems. A quick “so sorry we are not up to our normal service but we will do everything we can” and I would have been fine. The staff was polite but did not seem the least bit concerned when told we had been sitting there for 30 minutes with no menus or drink orders. There were at least 4 on staff that night, not sure what their problem was.

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J
Washington DC
5 reviews
Dined on November 15, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Popped in here for after dinner drinks for the gfs birthday. service and drinks were perfect. this is a must check out

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M
Miami
2 reviews
Dined on November 14, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

Fantastic drinks and food.
Seating setup was a little odd and felt kinda cramped but it didn’t make it any worse or any better

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k
Washington DC
1 review
Dined on November 11, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Great atmosphere! Very interesting, even my 21 year old son loved it, and has already made a reservation for when his gf is in town! Great staff!!

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TO
1 review
Dined on November 11, 2018
Overall 1food 1service 1ambience 1

We arrived for our 12:30am reservation shortly before the time after a quiet dinner in Old Town. There was four of us, who are all very respectful and professional people in our early 30’s. After a half hour had passed the doorman came out and insisted that we leave and they could not serve us in the fear that we were too intoxicated. I, of course, questioned this and then a bartender came to the door and informed us that that entry was upon there discretion, which of course is their right. I was just absolutely blown away by this as we had had very little to drink prior and was not at all being disruptive. Soon after, we left and ended up having a much more enjoyable, relaxed, and less expensive time downstairs. If you’re a stiff this place may be for you-if not give this spot a pass.

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OT
Portland
3 reviews
Dined on November 9, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

This place is as cool a speakeasy as I’ve ever seen, not that I’ve seen a lot but finding the entrance isn’t the easiest if you don’t know where to look as an example. The hallway and stairs leading up to the secret entrance inside is very well painted in distressed motif to match the feel. Knock on the sliding door and wait for it to be opened or your entrance might be interesting. The Bartenders are great, chill and very creative with a basic understanding of the type of cocktail you are thinking, allow them to create it, be adventurous. Didn’t prefer food but I believe it comes from the retaurant downstairs. The ambiance is is dark with button pleated upholstered booths and a cool small bar. They hallway to the restrooms is long and even darker with custom welded sliding doors and pull string toilet flushing, sorry for that detail. Don’t miss this if you can help it. Make a reservation it can get busy.

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NY
1 review
Dined on November 6, 2018
Overall 4food 5service 4ambience 5

Perfect place for a date or to unwind. Will be back for sure!

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TG
Washington DC
1 review
Dined on November 4, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

This place never fails to impress me on each visit. Cheers!

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ME
Washington DC
4 reviews
Dined on October 28, 2018
Overall 2food 4service 1ambience 4

We love to visit Harold Black, but service this Friday was exceptionally slow. They really should have been better prepared for a busy Saturday -- especially the one just before Halloween. The slow service really ruined the otherwise good experience.

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P
1 review
Dined on October 28, 2018
Overall 3food 5service 1ambience 3

Excellent cocktails but the experience was soured by terrible service. After 15 minutes had to beg to be able to order a drink. Waiter was gleefully inept, and spent more time meeting the customers (hand shakes and all) than preparing drinks or in service. Spent two hours there and only managed to get two drinks. On a Saturday night they should have more staff than one waiter and one bartender for a full house.

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AA
1 review
Dined on October 27, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

I was searching around for a place that would set me in the era of the early 1900's vibe since me and a friend had just come from a photo shoot dressed in theme and Harold Black did not disappoint! I'm actually happy the first place I'd found was closed that night because this place was everything I'd been wanting. Soft jazz music played that was a lovely addition, and made conservation easy. The candle lighting was great for the mood, and the place was easier to find than I had worried about. The drinks were yummy and strong and the food was amazing (I loved the Hummus). Staff were all super friendly and polite and a delight to be around- I think by the end of the night everyone working had swung by to chat or introduce themselves which was nice and welcoming. I definitely plan to go back and highly recommend this location.

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OT
New Orleans
1 review
Dined on October 23, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Pretty cool place. Drinks were a little pricey but very tasty. Fish tacos were 10/10.

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JB
1 review
Dined on October 21, 2018
Overall 3food 3service 2ambience 4

We were initially disappointed in our experience with Harold Black because we were used to incredible service, cocktails, and recommendations. However, this time, after arriving for our reservation on time, we were told to go back outside and then waited for another fifteen minutes. When we decided to order cocktails, we wanted the bartender creations/recommendations, and the server seemed clueless in serving anything other than what was listed on the menu. After getting a different server, we were able to order our requests easily. We were grateful to have the evening end well, but we initially were very disappointed in how we were treated when we arrived and initially ordered. Every other time when we have been to Harold Black was nothing short of wonderful. This time was not that, though.

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k
Washington DC
9 reviews
Dined on October 20, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Harold and Black is one of our favorites! We have been going for a few months now and each time, they exceed our expectations! Whenever we have friends or family in town, we bring them to H&B! The staff/team is amazing and always make it a great time plus the cocktails are on point! Thank you so much for always taking great care of my husband and I!

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P
1 review
Dined on October 20, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Excellent experience!!! Quiet and a great spot!! Excellent craft cocktails !Will return soon!

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c
Washington DC
3 reviews
Dined on October 20, 2018
Overall 3food 3service 2ambience 4

Ambiance was nice, however, service was very slow and two of our waiters not as welcoming or friendly as we expected. Two drinks we tried to order were not available.

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OT
New York Area
1 review
Dined on October 6, 2018
Overall 1food 4service 1ambience 1

VERRRY SLOW SERVICE! We were first reservation and took 45 minutes to get one round of drinks.

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OT
Chicago
2 reviews
Dined on September 30, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Went for drinks which are always amazing

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C
Washington DC
1 review
Dined on September 8, 2018
Overall 1food 1service 1ambience 2

Worst service I’ve experienced in DC. The host was very rude, and our drinks never arrived after more than 20 mins, we decided to leave.

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M
Minneapolis
1 review
Dined on September 6, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 4ambience 5

Lamb and fish tacos were delicious!

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b
Washington DC
4 reviews
Dined on September 6, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Great spot. Great drinks. Great ambiance. Music could be quieter

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NR
Washington DC
1 review
Dined on September 5, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

This is a speak-easy, complete with hidden entrance - for quiet conversation, great and creative cocktails, good beer, and nice food. We've been there multiple times since it opened and keep going back - highly recommended for ambiance and good conversation - don't go if you want bustling people watching, obtrusive music, or big portions of food. It is a genuine hidden gem.

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OT
Washington DC
1 review
Dined on August 25, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Long-time friend get together

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OT
Washington DC
1 review
Dined on August 18, 2018
Overall 1food 4service 1ambience 2

Once seated, it took 3 hours to order 3 appetizers and 1 round of drinks. No water refills, and a waiter never came back for another order of drinks. It was also way too expensive for the value. There were cocktails on the menu for over 25 dollars. That’s such a rip off. Will never be going back.

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S
Washington DC
1 review
Dined on August 17, 2018
Overall 2food 3service 1ambience 4

Unfortunately, the last two times we have been to Harold Black, we have had sub-par service. This last time we went it took us so long to get our drinks we couldn’t order as many as we wanted before we left. We shared a taster - 5 half drinks, and would have liked to get a full drink after that. We also asked for nothing smoky, and said we preferred whiskey/bourbon. The first drink they gave us was a smoky mezcal drink - they did acknowledge this mistake when we reminded them, but of all 5 tasters, not one was bourbon or whiskey. The time before that, we sat at the bar and still had slow service.

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MO
Chicago
3 reviews
Dined on August 17, 2018
Overall 3food 5service 2ambience 4

Service agonizingly slow. Got some attitude for being late for reservation but given a table. Forced to cash out for later reservation that never showed up. Good food and drink but high priced

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OT
Washington DC
1 review
Dined on August 16, 2018
Overall 2food 4service 1ambience 4

Poor service long wait for first drink. Over 30 minutes.

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BN
Washington DC
9 reviews
Dined on August 9, 2018
Overall 3food 2service 2ambience 3

The drinks were OUTRAGEOUSLY expensive! If you want to charge $28 for a cocktail you have to be offering something else as well. I mean speakeasies are supposed to be fun and the whole time all I coukd think was how expensive it was - we got one drink and left.

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y
Washington DC
2 reviews
Dined on August 8, 2018
Overall 4food 5service 4ambience 5

Drinks and presentation are excellent. Only thing, staff have apparently have a very loose dress code which took a little away from the old school speakeasy feel. Unlike others "the Gibson... PX. , but they were very pleasant and knowledgeable. I would still recommend.

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DZ
Washington DC
1 review
Dined on August 1, 2018
Overall 4food 4service 5ambience 5

Great place...highly recommended. 1920s speak easy vibe. Mocktails were amazing

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TA
Washington DC
1 review
Dined on July 28, 2018
Overall 2food 3service 1ambience 2

We had a reservation and still waited to be seated. It was so dark that we could barely read the menu. We ordered an appetizer and 2 main dishes but all the food came out at the same time. The food and drinks were pretty good but overpriced for the portions. I was excited about the concept of the speakeasy, but there wasn't anything special about it. We went for my husband's birthday which the server knew but we were basically ignored once she took our order. The staff was not very friendly and overall we were disappointed. There are so many better options in the area.

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P
Washington DC
2 reviews
Dined on July 28, 2018
Overall 5food 4service 5ambience 5

Min is always a great bar tending host!

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K
1 review
Dined on July 28, 2018
Overall 3food 2service 2ambience 5

Location is fairly easy to find. We had a reservation so my friend and I knocked on the wooden door and about 10 minutes later, a hostess opened it, looked straight past us and proceeded to assist the people behind us. She then let in the people behind us and shut the door in our face saying she’d be with us in a few minutes. When she finally did let us in, we were told we’d be given a booth but we’d have to move to the bar as soon as some seats opened up. Each of of the 1 drunk a piece that we got were over 20 dollars, incredibly small, and terrible. I am not a hard person to please but the employees at Harold Black were only accommodating after we said we’d like to get our checks so we could leave. The bar itself is fantastic, 10/10 on decor, but the people working truly ruined what could have easily been a wonderful experience.

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BJ
Orlando
1 review
Dined on July 27, 2018
Overall 5food 4service 5ambience 5

We loved everything about this place. The ambiance way super cool, the service was great and the drinks were delicious. What more could you ask for.

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S
Washington DC
1 review
Dined on July 26, 2018
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 4

Harold Black recently changed their prices. Their drinks usually spanned between 12-14 dollars. Now a drink I used to pay 14 bucks is 19 and there are drinks on the menu for 30 bucks.

I still believe that Harold Black is the best bar I've been to in DC. It oozes character, but these new prices kind of changed the ambiance. It went from this really cool down to earth spot were you could get crafted cockails for a very modest fee to something that is now a bit bougie. I wouldn't say it's my scent to drink at places where the majority of drinks are between 16 - 30 bucks. It's just not my vibe. Because of the prices it's also no longer a 'chill' place to bring a first date - but with these prices its now more of a 'Special Occasion Bar'

I'll still go to HB, but not as often as I used to. They are always busy, so perhaps that's why they changed the prices. I wouldn't say that the aren't worth the prices - perhaps they are -but it's make HB lose a bit of that sparkle. It's no longer "the best dam cocktail you've ever spent 12-14 bucks on."

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AB
Washington DC
1 review
Dined on July 21, 2018
Overall 2food 3service 2ambience 4

Pretentious. Drinks were decent but many other options in the area. Took forever to get service. Hosts made almost a show of making people wait outside the sliding door. Had been curious to check it out but can’t see myself returning.

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