Since moving here a year and a half ago, I’ve heard that H St NE (a small stretch of bars and clubs between 12th and 14th and H) is the next rapidly gentrifying hot spot. The two block strip, across from an Autozone and several fried chicken/subs/Chinese food/seafood carry out joints, is the baby of DC nightlife mogul, Joe Englert. You’ve probably gone all sloppy-faced at his joints and didn’t even know it (Lucky Bar, The Big Hunt, Pour House, DC9… the list goes on). For better or for worse, he knows what he’s doing.
My first trip to H St occurred several months ago in the form of dinner at Dr. Granville Moore’s and local band night at Rock and Roll Hotel. I’ll admit, I was kind of stressing out. I find that DC nightlife can be rather depressing due to certain breed of suburbanite that flocks to Georgetown and Adams Morgan on the weekend, acts like an obnoxious, then drives drunkenly home, thankful they don’t actually live in the scary city.
But I also keep reading about this mythical creature known as the DC hipster (or “hip-tard” by so-called suburban haters), mostly in the DCist comments threads. Since H St is still a little rough, I figured it might have just enough street cred to keep the striped shirt crew away. Like, there might actually be cool people there. People so cool, they would take one look at me and know that I wasn’t cool enough. I might walk into Granville Moore’s and encounter a sea of shrunken striped sweaters, unwashed hair, and Chuck Taylors. I obsessed that my poser status might be given away due to my lack of canvas messenger bag and 1970s ski vest.
It turns out that H St is cool. But not in the way I was expecting.
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