Cheap Eats 2014 - Best Bar Food

Cheap Eats 2014 - Best Bar Food

Photo of Washingtonian Magazine

From a Japanese izakaya to a ham-and-sherry bar, our favorite places to eat while imbibing.

8 Places
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    We head there for the Southern-inflected parts of the menu, like pork rinds with pimiento cheese, a riff on a Chick-fil-A sandwich with fried chicken and pickles, and peppery mac and cheese.
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    We’d be happy skipping the pizza and sticking with the snacks at these bistros. Start with a Buffalo-wing-inspired dip, then move on to pork-belly sliders and a marvelous grilled Caesar salad.
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    Linger over plates of Mangalitsa ham, and order a small plate—such as the smoked-trout-and-potato salad, so good we often put in for a double—to go with it.
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    You’ll have to skip the larger plates and anything with Ibérico in the name to stay within the Cheap Eats budget, but there’s still plenty to devour at José Andrés’s tapas houses.
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    There are rewards aplenty for the cost-conscious chowhound at Mike Franklin’s brewpub: salt-roasted mussels; a rich crab dip; and burgers ground from Roseda Farm beef.
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    Despite an annoying “small plates come out as they’re prepared” serving ethos, which can lead to a traffic jam at the table, this wine bar is one of our favorite grazing spots.
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    Happy hour brings creatively topped pizzas and crocks of decadent mac and cheese for $5 each. And it’s hard to say no to the zesty half-smoke, laden with bacon jam and fried onions.
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    You can while away an evening over Japanese beers and whiskeys plus a parade of small plates that range from sake-grilled oysters to crab croquettes.
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