Party Earth Review Rainbow flags don’t blanket the green awning out front, but nobody inside JR.’s Bar & Grill could argue that this place is in the closet – even when it gets as crowded as one. A Dupont institution since the 80s, the narrow... ... read full review
1519 17th Street NW
Washington, DC 20036
Red Line: Dupont Circle
M–Th, Su 2pm–2am, F–Sa 2pm–3am
Dupont Circle, Washington, DC –
Rainbow flags don’t blanket the green awning out front, but nobody inside JR.’s Bar & Grill could argue that this place is in the closet – even when it gets as crowded as one.
A Dupont institution since the 80s, the narrow two-story venue attracts a diverse mix of young professionals, students, and older regulars with ever-changing theme nights, sing-a-longs, and deeply discounted all-you-can-drink specials.
Considering the exposed brick walls, mounted moose head, and massive flat-screens above the mahogany bar, the uninitiated eye could mistake the place for a rowdy Irish pub – except that these TVs blast Lady Gaga videos and showtunes instead of sports, and there’s a large disco ball hanging from the high pressed-tin ceiling.
Rich stained glass frames the second story loft space, where guys straight from a J. Crew ad exchange coquettish glances over $2 highballs, and couples or friends play a round on the lone pool table.
The clientele can be as diverse as the myriad fruity vodkas on the menu, from interns in jeans to executives in suits, but the vibe trends casual regardless of the dress. And yes, the guys wear those, too.
Often described as the gay Cheers of DC, JR.’s Bar & Grill is an upbeat option for carefree coziness and coyness.
Mostly gay mix of students, young professionals, mellow Dupont locals, older regulars, guys who love showtunes, and the women who wish they’d love them back, mid-20s to early 40s. No dancing, but singing is encouraged.
Eight TVs tuned mostly to Top 40 and music videos.
Even with ‘Grill’ in the name, there is no food at JR’s. Popcorn served occasionally. Happy Hour M–Th 4–7pm.
Beer $3–$6, wine $4–$7, cocktails $4–$7.
Anything goes, but mostly casual with some business attire: suits, jeans, shorts, athletic apparel.
Mondays and Saturdays for showtunes, Tuesdays for retro music, Thursdays for the $15 Happy Hour all-you-can-drink rails, Friday and Saturday nights for raucous crowds, and Sunday afternoons for packed action and vodka specials.
Trio’s Fox & Hounds (1537 17th Street NW) is a relaxed bar with a spacious patio and some of the cheapest mixed drinks in the city.