If you like inexpensive, relaxed bars with a good vibe, the Red Derby is the spot for you. The Derb’ has tons of beer but only in cans, as well as a full bar, and is located in northern Columbia Heights.
You can get beers starting at $2, plus they have a raft of shot-and-beer specials, ranging from $ 6 for the cheap stuff to more for fancier. There’s also a fun let-the-bartender-choose option for $ 10. Happy hours deals are good, too, like inexpensive daily cocktails, classics like a gin fizz or white Russian. (It’s cash only, but they do have an ATM.)
The vibe is neighborhoody and friendly, and they also have a lot of board games and darts, from Connect Four to Rock-em Sock-em Robots to my favorite, Cards Against Humanity (a dirty card pairing game, which always seems to attract the interest of folks sitting nearby.)
They also have a big, heated roof deck overlooking 14th Street.
Their food is basic bar food but tasty, with specials during the week like the Monday half price burger one is solid – the Derby Burger (sprouts, avocado and more) is delicious, one of my favorite burgers in the city. The seafood is good as well, especially the fish dog (basically a fish sandwich) and the fried shrimp po’ boy. Brunch is also good: I’m a big fan of the tater tot, egg, bacon and tomato bowl.
It’s a fun, chill neighborhoody spot with cheap eats and drinks – what’s not to like?