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I’ve recently been exploring the West End area, south of Dupont Circle and there’s a new restaurant spot called Bar and Lounge 54 located in between the Palm, Teddy’s, and Boqueria.
Bar and Lounge 54 is a Vietnamese-based restaurant – it’s not just quick food or street food – it really has some multi-dimensional layers to it and a lot of different flavors.
They do have a great happy hour from Tuesday to Friday from 4 pm – 7 pm. They have five dollar cocktails – that’s a mojito, that’s a martini, margarita, Moscow mule, an old-fashioned – A lot of their appetizers are offered at a happy hour price. Those are; the crispy tofu spring rolls, veggie rolls, summer rolls – those are all four dollars. They have three dollar beers on draft, and seven dollar wings. On Tuesday, they have Tito’s vodka Tuesdays – all of their Tito’s based drinks are only five dollars. They also celebrate whiskey Wednesdays with five-dollar Jameson.
One of the stand-out martinis was the 54 Martini – they use Empress 1908 gin, lemon juice, and sparkling wine. It’s blue!
I was able to try the rocket shrimp rolls, and stuffed grape leaves – filled with grilled beef and served with their sweet chili fish sauce – very good. Their wings are amazing! They have their signature sauce with their own spices. They have Bon Mi, they also have a Bon Mi burger. They share new menu items on their Instagram, so you should follow.
I also tried the Saigon clay pot, and their curry 54. One of the best things that I tried there was the bird’s nest. You can order it with shrimp, beef or chicken. It is served with these crispy yellow egg noodles and vegetables. Then it is assembled with mushrooms, bok choy, onion, green and red peppers, carrot, broccoli, and cauliflower. Definitely shareable, a fun thing to have on the table.
They also have a market price rockfish, a whole deep-fried rockfish. I did have the whole lobster, which is tossed in their signature spices – it is amazing and delicious.
They offer the classic Vietnamese Pho. They have at least 13 or 14 different kinds of Pho flavors. You can’t go wrong with that, especially during lunchtime – pop into their restaurant and get a nice big bowl of Pho.
For something sweet, they have mochi – green tea, sesame, strawberry – those are pretty good too. Stop by, they have a great happy hour and they have a great expansive menu of their Vietnamese cuisine – just step inside.
There is a cool party area upstairs you can rent out that whole room and have a social-distanced reception or any kind of event up there.
Address: 1207 19th St NW, Washington, DC 20036. http://barandlounge54.com/