This week I had the chance to check out two new spots that have recently opened: Mari Vanna
. Mari Vanna comes to us from New York, London, Los Angeles, and the mothership Russia. It’s one of the most amazing interior spaces I have seen, partially because it makes you completely forget you are in Dupont Circle. Mari Vanna is three floors with the first two best described as “Grandma chic” in terms of decor. There are comfortable corner booths with upholstered couches and decorative pillows, lots of doilies, and beautiful colored hutches filled with dishes and pottery. The third floor is where things take a turn: disco balls, a DJ booth, dimmed lights, and it is sure to have a fun club-like atmosphere. I loved the cocktail I had with strawberry infused Vodka, and I sampled a few bites of food as hors d’oeuvres were being passed and especially liked the little stuffed pies with egg, meat, and cabbage. I think Mari Vanna is likely to get a little wild, but I think it will absolutely be a fun place for a group celebration. Mari Vanna is located at 1141 Connecticut Avenue NW, Washington, DC 20036. Twitter: @MariVannaDC
Last night I finally made it over to the new Hogo rum bar located just a few steps down from The Passenger. It’s a small, quiet, and a straightforward space, but the drinks speak for themselves. With an island theme, we sampled the Pisco Punch served in an adorable tikki glass. The drinks at Hogo focus on “unheralded spirits” such as Tequila, Mezcal, and Pisco. I also sampled a Queens Royale with a touch of sparkling wine and am happy to report that the cocktails here are well made and legit. Hogo is serving a few small dishes should you get hungry while filling up on island inspired drinks. Hogo is located at 1017 7th Street NW, Washington, DC 20001. You can find them on Facebook and Twitter.