Washington, D.C. Neighborhood Walk: H Street
Washington, D.C. may have been the world’s first planned capital, but it’s a city that continues to grow, with neighborhoods, and even single streets, becoming showcases for the capital’s up-and-coming restauranteurs, artists, and shop owners.
Tip: To avoid crowds, go to the Smithsonian museums on holidays.
A local chain with eateries in D.C., Virginia, and Maryland, this deli channels the City of Brotherly Love with its hoagies and sandwiches—all its sandwiches are named after streets in Philadelphia. Located next to the Capital Bikeshare station, the Atlas District outpost of Taylor Gourmet attracts lines at lunch with its easy online ordering system and unique menu. Options include the Lombard Avenue, made with sopressata, Genoa salami, roasted red peppers, pesto, and fresh mozzarella, and the Island Avenue, made with grilled chicken, arugula, pesto, and brie.
Urban grit melds with high art in this former auto repair shop turned gallery space. The 4,300-square-foot room has whitewashed walls to showcase installations, as well as imposing ceilings and concrete flooring. The H-Street gallery focuses on 21st-century artists and design, especially functional art from industrial materials. It holds temporary, single-artist exhibitions to illuminate a broad spectrum of international design. Past exhibitions have included the first U.S. solo show of London-based designer Tom Price, and Belgian industrial design artist Jens Praet.
For Belgian beer and gastropub grub, Granville Moore's has become a staple in the H Street NE neighborhood (also known as the Atlas District)What. The dark and narrow dining room creates a snug ambiance in this retrofitted two-level terrace house. Chefs Teddy Folkman, Maria Evans, and Mike Lunsford serve usual Belgian fare: moules and frites (mussels and twice-fried fries), as well as freshly ground bison burgers and daily specials. More than 60 Belgian beers are available by the bottle, including Monk's Cafe Flemish Sour, as well as six beers on draft. For those busy earlier in the evening, the pub's nightly happy hour runs from 10 p.m. to close.
Atlas Performing Arts Center
Beyond the throwback façade and ticket window, visitors find a sophisticated lobby worthy of cocktail parties. The Atlas Theater was originally built in 1938 by the Kogod-Burka movie chain, the same company which built Cleveland Park’s Uptown Theater. Ascend the stairs to the two theaters, which have comfortable seating, an oversized screen, and a revolving line-up of live performances. Events range from theatre performances to dance to music, even film. During the summer, the Atlas offers a summer film series, which has Sunday screenings for $2 a person.