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  3. Washington, D.C. Area
  4. District of Columbia
  5. Penn Quarter

Denson Liquor Bar

4.7
4.7
187 Reviews
$30 and under
American
Denson Liquor Bar is a hidden gem in downtown DC. Located on the corner of 6th and F Street in the heart of Penn Quarter, look for the Denson lights, descend the stairs, and discover the warm welcoming glow of Denson. Modeled after a classic 1920’s hotel, this proper liquor bar with it's cozy leather booths and timeless atmosphere provide a welcome civilized reprieve from the hustle and bustle above.
From the bar, you'll find an emphasis on classic cocktails and an expansive but carefully curated selection of spirits that includes known favorites, interesting explorations, and rare and luxurious indulgences.
We accept reservations for just drinks as well as drinks and dining. Each booth reservation is for two hours.

Not available on OpenTable

Unfortunately, this restaurant is not on the OpenTable reservation network.

If you like, we'll notify you by email if this restaurant joins.


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Additional information

  • Dining style

    Casual Elegant

  • Cuisines

    American

  • Hours of operation

    Mon–Thu 4:30 pm–1:00 am Fri, Sat 4:30 pm–2:00 am Sun 4:30 pm–11:00 pm Happy Hour Daily 4:30 pm–7:00 pm

  • Phone number

    (202) 499-5018

  • Payment options

    AMEX, Discover, MasterCard, Visa

  • Dress code

    Smart Casual

  • Private party facilities

    Denson Liquor Bar is currently available for buy-outs. Contact events@densondc.com for pricing and scheduling information.

  • Neighborhood

    Penn Quarter

  • Cross street

    6th and F St NW

  • Parking details

    Street Parking

  • Public transit

    Denson Liquor Bar is walking distance from Gallery Place and Judiciary Square metro stations

  • Additional

    Bar Dining, Bar/Lounge, Beer, Cocktails, Corkage Fee, Entertainment, Full Bar, Happy Hour, Late Night, Non-Smoking, Private Room, Wine

What 187 people are saying

Overall ratings and reviews

4.7
4.7 based on all time ratings
  • 4.3Food
  • 4.5Service
  • 4.7Ambience
  • 4.2Value

NoiseModerate

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Filters

  1. V

    Volo

    Washington DC

    52 reviews

    vip
    5.0

    52 reviews

    Dined on May 28, 2019

    overall5food5service5ambience5
    Charming underground lair with seasonally updated cocktails.--it's never the same experience twice so I keep coming back!
  2. OT

    OpenTable Diner

    Washington DC

    3 reviews

    5.0

    3 reviews

    Dined on May 26, 2019

    overall5food3service5ambience5
    Great ambiance. Great drink and cocktail selection. Great for an intimate date. Went for my birthday and loved it.
  3. MP

    MP23

    Washington DC

    8 reviews

    5.0

    8 reviews

    Dined on May 10, 2019

    overall5food1service4ambience5
    Definitely a great spot, a hidden gem! I've been back a few times over the years and I love this place, unique and great ambiance!
  4. N

    Noosha

    Washington DC

    4 reviews

    5.0

    4 reviews

    Dined on April 28, 2019

    overall5food5service5ambience5
    Pleasantly surprised by the venue. The drinks were very good, the service outstanding. However it is a little difficult to hear conversations around you as the music is so loud.
  5. CR

    CelestinaR

    1 review

    5.0

    1 review

    Dined on April 25, 2019

    overall5food5service5ambience5
    I love Denson Liquor Bar. Always a great place for a few drinks with friends or a fun first date.
  6. J

    Jillnancy

    Washington DC

    123 reviews

    vip
    3.0

    123 reviews

    Dined on April 25, 2019

    overall3food2service2ambience3
    Cute place below ground although we had to call to find out how to enter. Menu was just ok. Not much to choose from. Sent I back the artichoke hummus. Service was very slow but we weren’t in a rush. Still an occasional visit by the waiter would have been nice.
  7. XB

    XimenaB

    1 review

    5.0

    1 review

    Dined on April 6, 2019

    overall5food5service4ambience5
    I wish there were 4 short rib tacos - they're so good!
  8. JS

    JoanS

    New England

    10 reviews

    4.0

    10 reviews

    Dined on March 25, 2019

    overall4food3service5ambience5
    The wait staff was fantastic! Available but not overly “in your face.” Very attentive!
  9. t

    timothy

    1 review

    4.0

    1 review

    Dined on March 9, 2019

    overall4food5service3ambience5
    Atmosphere was fantastic and we enjoyed the food/drink
  10. OT

    OpenTable Diner

    Washington DC

    13 reviews

    vip
    5.0

    13 reviews

    Dined on March 7, 2019

    overall5food5service5ambience5
    Great Happy Hour location! The cocktails were robust but delicious. Nice selection of small sharable bites to keep you toasting till last call. Another DC style speakeasy with style and excellent service!
  11. OT

    OpenTable Diner

    Washington DC

    2 reviews

    vip
    3.0

    2 reviews

    Dined on March 6, 2019

    overall3food2service3ambience5
    Slow service on a Tuesday night. Cool ambiance and feel but just understaffed. Food isn’t good
  12. P

    Panko

    Baltimore

    260 reviews

    vip
    5.0

    260 reviews

    Dined on February 26, 2019

    overall5food5service5ambience5
    First visit. Pre-Caps game experience. Big thumbs up. Denson Liquor Bar is literally a hole in the wall. It’s not so easy to find. Once you’re at 600 F Street you’re staring at a corner pizza joint. Walk there; Denson is below ground—just down the stairs—adjacent to the pizza place, directly across from Capital One Arena. Denson is dark and cool. The ambiance is cooler. Small place that packs people in, but strategically rather than like sardines. Leather booths mark the perimeter. Bar seating is plentiful. This is a place for the serious drinker. The list of spirits is eclectic and vast. Plenty of wine and beer selections too. The food menu is interesting. It’s bar food, but upscale. You can tell that the kitchen is manned by people with formal food training. My friend and I had good single malt Scotches (me) and mules (him). We started with raw oysters. Nice presentation; good oysters. He had a “pot pie” with chicken and sausage. I had a grilled cheese/mushroom sandwich. We both loved our dishes. Service was excellent. Very attentive. Lindsey was our server. Solid A. A booth reservation is good for two hours. You’re paced well here. It’s really a solid pre-game joint. Going back next game.
  13. AB

    AlisonB

    Las Vegas

    7 reviews

    5.0

    7 reviews

    Dined on February 23, 2019

    overall5food4service5ambience5
    Really fun. Busy on Friday night, but service was great!
  14. p

    peep

    New York Area

    9 reviews

    5.0

    9 reviews

    Dined on February 14, 2019

    overall5food5service5ambience5
    Beautiful space and delicious cocktails. Great little hideaway from the commercial character-less area above.
  15. PM

    PatM

    Indiana

    48 reviews

    vip
    5.0

    48 reviews

    Dined on February 11, 2019

    overall5food5service5ambience5
    Great find! Excellent service. Cool vibe, food and drinks were very good. A little pricey, but a small intimate speakeasy that is well worth the time!
  16. BW

    BryanW

    1 review

    5.0

    1 review

    Dined on January 26, 2019

    overall5food5service5ambience5
    Great place to grab a cocktail and chill. Music is exceptional. Great service
  17. C

    Christian

    London

    8 reviews

    4.0

    8 reviews

    Dined on January 17, 2019

    overall4food4service3ambience5
    Hard to find but worth the hunt, Denson Liquor Bar has all the ambiance you ever wanted from a speakeasy styled bar. Elegant and dimly lit, it’s a fun place to just be. Also a great spot to meet for a date or a few drinks with friends. The downside - it’s a small place and frankly the service (granted it was a Wednesday) seemed a little disorganized. Everyone was friendly and the drinks were good - but at this price point 30 mins between ordering and getting a drink is just a little much.
  18. KS

    KristinS

    1 review

    5.0

    1 review

    Dined on January 6, 2019

    overall5food5service5ambience5
    Denson's was outstanding! We arrived for our table on time, but our table wasn't ready for us yet. To make up for this, a staff member brought us complimentary champagne to drink while we waited. Our waiter once we got to the table was knowledgeable about the cocktails and ingredients of the food. He made excellent recommendations based on my husband's difficult drink palate, and was easy to talk to. The mood was appropriate for a small thank you dinner to our friends, but could easy be appropriate for a date or celebration as well. We would absolutely recommend this establishment to any friends living or visiting D.C!
  19. OT

    OpenTable Diner

    Washington DC

    2 reviews

    vip
    5.0

    2 reviews

    Dined on January 4, 2019

    overall5food5service5ambience5
    loved our service and the environment!
  20. K

    Katie

    Washington DC

    11 reviews

    5.0

    11 reviews

    Dined on December 29, 2018

    overall5food4service5ambience4
    Had a lovely time after an afternoon show. Quaint spot. Attentive waitstaff. Great quick bites and drinks.
  21. OT

    OpenTable Diner

    Washington DC

    2 reviews

    5.0

    2 reviews

    Dined on December 29, 2018

    overall5food5service5ambience5
    The drinks and the service were great. Very cool atmosphere!
  22. EC

    ElizabethC

    Washington DC

    1 review

    4.0

    1 review

    Dined on December 17, 2018

    overall4food4service3ambience5
    only complaint is the service was almost slow. We would've had another round or two if the server had come around more quickly! this seems to happen in a lot of DC cocktail bars.
  23. SR

    SoonerRico

    Washington DC

    29 reviews

    vip
    5.0

    29 reviews

    Dined on December 8, 2018

    overall5food5service5ambience5
    The meat and cheese boards were great. Particularly liked the truffle cheese and spicy capicola ham. Loved the zucchini carpaccio also. Happy hour pricing on oysters and wine made for a pleasant surprise. Will go again
  24. N

    Nick

    Richmond

    2 reviews

    vip
    5.0

    2 reviews

    Dined on December 1, 2018

    overall5food1service5ambience5
    OpenTable forced me to rate Denson for their food. I did not eat there.
  25. c

    chelsea

    Denver

    16 reviews

    5.0

    16 reviews

    Dined on November 13, 2018

    overall5food5service5ambience5
    I've been to Denson's Liquor Bar both on a quiet weeknight and on a very busy weekend. I highly recommend advance reservations to secure one of the booths. They're comfortable and swanky. Bar atmosphere is fantastic, though the crowds on the weekend definitely put a damper on enjoying the ambience. That's not the fault of Denson's, but rather just a caution that if you want to enjoy the full experience, I'd pick a weekday evening.
  26. JT

    JayT

    Washington DC

    9 reviews

    4.0

    9 reviews

    Dined on November 11, 2018

    overall4food3service3ambience4
    Cocktails and food were okay. Overall good vibe for the place. Prices on par with similar spots in the city.
  27. AK

    AmyK

    New York Area

    1 review

    5.0

    1 review

    Dined on November 10, 2018

    overall5food4service4ambience5
    If you are coming here on a date, reserve one of the cozy, private booths ahead of time. They are perfect for a romantic evening and to actually hold (and hear) a conversation. Cocktails were great, but the food was only so-so. We will definitely be back.
  28. OT

    OpenTable Diner

    Baltimore

    3 reviews

    vip
    5.0

    3 reviews

    Dined on November 3, 2018

    overall5food5service5ambience5
    Fantastic! Will return! Great ambiance, service, cocktails and food.
  29. LT

    LoveToEat

    Washington DC

    13 reviews

    4.0

    13 reviews

    Dined on November 3, 2018

    overall4food4service4ambience5
    Great place to duck in before the Caps game or to relax with friends. Tasty cocktails!
  30. NR

    NneyaR

    New York Area

    123 reviews

    vip
    5.0

    123 reviews

    Dined on November 1, 2018

    overall5food3service4ambience4
    Great cocktails. Good spot for a date and definitely will be heading here again.
  31. DT

    DocTShine

    Washington DC

    10 reviews

    vip
    5.0

    10 reviews

    Dined on October 28, 2018

    overall5food5service5ambience5
    Per usual the Denson was amazing! Took some friends for the first time and they loved it! Frank was incredibly professional and welcoming! Thank you!!
  32. KD

    KellyD

    Washington DC

    11 reviews

    vip
    5.0

    11 reviews

    Dined on October 26, 2018

    overall5food5service5ambience5
    Amazing Old Fashion, would highly recommend for someone who's looking for a hole in the wall, classy, bar
  33. OT

    OpenTable Diner

    Washington DC

    21 reviews

    vip
    5.0

    21 reviews

    Dined on September 16, 2018

    overall5food5service5ambience5
    The doorman, host and wait staff were all excellent. It was extremely busy after a show at Capital One Arenas, yet they handled it very well.
  34. MD

    MDvadc

    Washington DC

    39 reviews

    vip
    3.0

    39 reviews

    Dined on September 1, 2018

    overall3food2service3ambience3
    This was my second visit to Denson, to celebrate my birthday. I was excited to return but was disappointed. Their cocktail menu seemed limited, the crowd was unusually rowdy and service was poor. I don’t anticipate on returning again.
  35. JB

    JamesBeam

    Washington DC

    10 reviews

    5.0

    10 reviews

    Dined on August 28, 2018

    overall5food5service5ambience5
    If you are the type of person who thinks they love craft cocktails, but not well enough to know exactly what you want - this place is for you. The bartenders are extremely friendly and knowledgeable about all sorts of liquor and craft cocktails. They mix them right, and take pride in their work.
  36. OT

    OpenTable Diner

    Dallas

    3 reviews

    5.0

    3 reviews

    Dined on August 19, 2018

    overall5food5service4ambience5
    I was searching for a place that had a very grown and sexy ambience as I continued to celebrate my 30th birthday. Good music, good drinks, good vibes, good crowd, etc. This place did not disappoint. Very intimate vibe, with a great music soundtrack, and awesome drinks. My interactions with the staff were short but they everyone was professional . Our waiter went out of his to take pictures of my significant other and I as well. I also thought it was accommodating of them to allow me to change my reservation time at a last minutes notice from 10:30pm to 11:00pm. I was running late from my birthday dinner, so I appreciated that. My only con is that drinks can be a little more on the expensive side but they are worth it and it is DC so I get it. The ice cube in your drink allows the drink to last longer so you can sip and enjoy the quality of your drink and your company. Thanks Denson!
  37. OT

    OpenTable Diner

    New England

    3 reviews

    3.0

    3 reviews

    Dined on August 16, 2018

    overall3food3service2ambience3
    Waitress was a bit rude.
  38. OT

    OpenTable Diner

    Washington DC

    1 review

    5.0

    1 review

    Dined on August 10, 2018

    overall5food5service5ambience5
    Total hidden gem. The staff is lovely. Very knowledgable and creative without being pretentious. Recommend offering the server or bartender your spirit base and flavor profile to create a custom cocktail. They're also good at the classics. The space itself has a cool 30's hotel decor, but a completely modern vibe. It's a super small space, but they're very accommodating. We'll be back!
  39. I

    Intelqubed

    Washington DC

    122 reviews

    vip
    5.0

    122 reviews

    Dined on July 20, 2018

    overall5food5service5ambience5
    Made a reservation here, not knowing what I would find. It is a little hidden as you have to walk down a flight of stairs on the side of the building to enter. I will say, I do like this place and want to get back to it. We were seated at one of the tables and it is a dimly lit place that gives it a great late night feel. There are hand crafted cocktails and they do know what they are doing. They also have small bites and their grilled cheeses are good, particularly the mushroom. Definitely a great find!
  40. EJ

    ErinJ

    Washington DC

    6 reviews

    5.0

    6 reviews

    Dined on July 18, 2018

    overall5food4service5ambience5
    I took my boyfriend here on a date for his birthday! Absolutely loved it, had great drinks and got a few appetizers. It was a little dark in our booth as the night went on, but overall great atmosphere and was perfect for a date night.

FAQs

Denson Liquor Bar is rated 4.7 stars by 187 OpenTable diners.

Not available on OpenTable

Unfortunately, this restaurant is not on the OpenTable reservation network.

If you like, we'll notify you by email if this restaurant joins.


Is this your restaurant?
Claim this listing

Additional information

  • Cross street

    6th and F St NW

  • Neighborhood

    Penn Quarter

  • Hours of operation

    Mon–Thu 4:30 pm–1:00 am Fri, Sat 4:30 pm–2:00 am Sun 4:30 pm–11:00 pm Happy Hour Daily 4:30 pm–7:00 pm

  • Cuisines

    American

  • Dining style

    Casual Elegant

  • Dress code

    Smart Casual

  • Parking details

    Street Parking

  • Public transit

    Denson Liquor Bar is walking distance from Gallery Place and Judiciary Square metro stations

  • Payment options

    AMEX, Discover, MasterCard, Visa

  • Additional

    Bar Dining, Bar/Lounge, Beer, Cocktails, Corkage Fee, Entertainment, Full Bar, Happy Hour, Late Night, Non-Smoking, Private Room, Wine

  • Phone number

    (202) 499-5018

  • Private party facilities

    Denson Liquor Bar is currently available for buy-outs. Contact events@densondc.com for pricing and scheduling information.

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