Paradise in a Parking Lot?

Local resident and blogger FrenchTwistDC offers her abbreviated review of the NY Ave Beach Bar below. For her full posting visit this link.

The Triangle is definitely not just parking lots anymore… the parking lots have turned to condos and high end apartment buildings. And a beach! In what has to be the most creative use of an empty parking lot, Tom Brown, co-owner of The Passenger, has covered an underused asphalt area with 70 tons of sands (from Ocean City we hear… so kind of locally sourced right?) and opened the most anticipated outdoor bar of the summer. The New York Avenue Beach Bar officially opened Friday night, with Mayor Gray cutting the ceremonial ribbon (and sticking around for a few rounds of corn hole) and over 700 people showed up for $10 rum cocktails and lukewarm canned beer ($5-6 each). That was definitely more than the owners expected or were prepared for 😉

Mayor Gray playing corn hole - picture courtesy Vlasta Hakes

[Editor’s note: Joni Mitchell once sang “They paved paradise and put up a parking lot.” Does the Beach Bar mean we’ve come full circle?]

The decor was Corona heavy but they didn't carry Corona beer on opening night

$10 margarita (but free corn hole) at New York Avenue Beach Bar

Hopefully, the crowd will thin out and “new” venue will be able to better serve their customers and a line up of guest bartenders have apparently already signed up to try their had at rum-based tiki type cocktails. As far as beach eats are concerned, Shaw sandwich shop Sundevich has set up a food truck that’s not actually rolling the street but staying put on the “beach” and serving chipotle-mayo corn, pulled pork and chorizo sandwiches as well as peel n eat shrimp ($5 each).

Peel -n- eat shrimp from Sundevich truck

So far, the New York Avenue Beach Bar seems to be a resounding success with the left-behind in the city on Memorial day weekend crowd. I do recommend going to the bathroom before you head there… the porta potties are definitely one of the downside of setting up a bar on an empty parking lot. But if that’s the price to pay to wiggle your toes in the middle of the city on a hot summer night… well, I think that’s a fine trade-off 😉

[Editor’s note: on twitter the Beach Bar tweets increasing their restroom capacity is planned for week two.]

In addition to corn hole, beach chairs and hammock there's also a jet ski..

4 people like this post.

Related Posts

SociBook Digg Facebook Google Yahoo Buzz StumbleUpon


  1. 2

    Mike says

    Walked by there yesterday (Memorial Day) just to see the place. It was closed, but two obeservations were made.
    1. It smelled reallly bad. I don’t know why, but from the sidewalk there was a definite stench in the air from the sand. I guess that is expected if it is the real deal, and came straight from the beaches of Ocean City.

    2. Where are the palm trees??!! I envisioned large (real) palm trees shipped in from a nursery, to help give the place a real feel. Sadly, I only saw one tiny, plastic palm tree in along the wall. Very very sad.

    Oh well…

  2. 4

    FourthandEye says

    @Mike – The Beach Bar’s website states the bar will be closed every Monday. They may have left money on the table sticking to that strategy on the holiday weekend. But logistically it is never easy ramping up to full hours immediately with an entirely new staff.

  3. 6

    TheJCG says

    It’s $5 for cans of beer at Chinatown Coffee, how is it a bad thing at a locale like this? The Passenger charges $9+ for all their drinks.

    How in the world are these prices considered out of line with anything else in the neighborhood, much less the city?

    I’m looking forward to trying this place out very soon.