Four months ago the W Hotel went under the putty knife for a restaurant transformation. Out with the old J & G Steakhouse, in with the new Mediterranean inspired Pinea headed by Chef Barry Koslow. J & G’s 515 Bar also said it’s final farewell, and in its place opened Root Cellar Whiskey Bar.
Heading through Pinea to the back, down the stairs to the right through the curtains, guests will enter a dark cozy space that exudes privacy and class. A secret hideaway for adults. The patio is available in the warmer months, with a fun view ideal for people watching as they drive or walk by.
Root Cellar’s drink menu includes “some of the world’s best whiskeys, award-winning scotches, rare bourbons, and local ryes” all lined up on brick framed shelves behind the bar counter. Of course there’s a selection of wine, beer, cider and cocktails available. If you’re not sure where to start, we suggest either the Barrel Aged Negroni (Dolin rouge Vermouth, Casoni 1814, Plymouth Gin) or the Kir Normandy (Foggy Ridge Virginia Dry Cider, Domaine Sathenay Creme de Cassis) cocktails.
We never advise drinking on an empty stomach, so (obviously) we have some suggestions for that too. Depending on what your feeling and whether you want to make your selection from the bar menu – only available downstairs – or Pinea’s full dinner menu, some safe bets for shareable delicious snacks are the House Made Fougasse (artichoke tzatziki, mediterranean and red pepper feta dips), Vegetarian Fritto Misto (with green olive aioli), Polenta Fries, Charred Octopus (saffron potatoes, green olives, chorizo, sherry dressing), and a dish we fell in love with since first dining at Pinea, the Crab and Guanciale Croquetas (with spicy remoulade).
Outside of the food and drinks, the one thing that won us over is Root Cellar’s happy hour. Offered Monday through Friday from 5pm to 8pm we’re excited that we won’t have to miss out on weekday drink and snack specials – what normally happens to us when happy hours stop at 7pm.
In other words *channeling Arnold Schwarzenegger* we’ll be back. Definitely.
*Photos courtesy of W Washington DC
515 15th Street NW
Washington, DC 20004
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