D.C. for Graduate Students

Lindsay Moore | Dec 1, 2007

Graduate students attending the annual meeting will be relieved to find that there is plenty of fun to be had in D.C., despite its reputation for spin, graft, and pomposity. The city offers a variety of affordable museums, dining, and music. Most of the museums along the National Mall and the newly renovated National Portrait Gallery and Museum of American Art (at 8th and F Streets NW) offer free admission. For fresh air and old-fashioned fun, try the outdoor ice-skating rink at the National Gallery of Art’s Sculpture Garden. Ice skates are available to rent, and hot drinks are served indoors in a nearby pavilion.

There are affordable restaurants, cafes, and bars within walking distance of the meeting hotels where you can grab some food, check e-mail, or drink job-market anxieties into oblivion (while remaining fresh for the next day’s interviews, of course). One of the best cafes in the area, Open City (2331 Calvert St. NW), serves up great salads, sandwiches, and coffee drinks and also offers free wireless Internet. Mama Ayesha’s (1967 Calvert St. NW), a Syrian restaurant, serves authentic hummus, babaganoush, and lamb kabobs, and Arak, a licorice-flavored Arabic liqueur. Pasta Mia (1790 Columbia Rd. NW), one of the most popular Italian restaurants in the area, offers fresh pasta with homemade sauces in a small and intimate setting. Entrees range between $10–15 and are large enough to split. (Though the wait for a table can be up to 45 minutes, the restaurant is well worth it.)

Cleveland Park, just one Metro stop north of Woodley Park on the Red Line, boasts a number of great opportunities for fun and relaxation. After catching a movie at the historic Uptown Theater (3426 Connecticut Ave. NW), head across the street for beers, burgers, and pizza at Cleveland Park Bar and Grill (3421 Connecticut Ave. NW), a neighborhood sports bar with 12 good beers on tap. If you’re looking for something on the lighter side, walk down to Spices (3333-A Connecticut Ave. NW), a pan-Asian and sushi restaurant.

Dupont Circle, an area with great museums, restaurants, and shopping, is also close to the meeting hotels. The Philips Collection (1600 21st St. NW), a museum with an unbeatable collection of American and European Impressionist art, is free Tuesday through Friday, and $8 for students on Saturdays and Sundays. For some after-art refreshment, go to Bistro du Coin (1738 Connecticut Ave. NW), a French restaurant serving great mussels and an impressive collection of reasonably priced French wines. Or sip some coffee, listen to live music, and browse the bookshelves at Kramerbooks (1517 Connecticut Ave. NW). Beer connoisseurs will enjoy a trip to the nearby Brickskeller (1523 22nd St. NW), which boasts a beer menu over 30 pages long.

For a night on the town, try Café Citron (1343 Connecticut Ave. NW), a Latin-inspired bar and dance club offering mojitos, caipirinhas, and great music. The stretch of bars, restaurants, and clubs lining 18th Street below Columbia Road in Adams Morgan is packed with twentysomethings every Thursday, Friday, and Saturday night. Try Bourbon (2321 18th St. NW), a club boasting over 30 top-shelf whiskeys and bourbons as well as tasty appetizers, or the Adams Mill Bar and Grill (1813 Adams Mill Rd. NW). If you’re craving a late-night snack, The Diner (2453 18th St. NW) serves yummy sandwiches and fries all night long. Local favorite Pizza Mart (2445 18th St. NW) serves jumbo slices well into the wee morning hours.

—Lindsay Moore is a doctoral candidate at George Washington University and the assistant to the Local Arrangements Committee.



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