City Cast

How To Spend a Day in Foggy Bottom

Kaela Cote-Stemmermann
Kaela Cote-Stemmermann
Posted on August 24

We marked all the below recommendations on this map! (Google Maps)

Home to government workers and wannabe government workers (a.k.a. GW students), Foggy Bottom is filled with brutalist office buildings and frat houses. The neighborhood is often seen as a restaurant and activity desert, but that’s only if you don’t know where to look.

First, Coffee:

The best place to start your day is Swing’s Coffee, across the street from the White House. They have lots of blends and single origins to choose from, and the latte art is 10/10. For somewhere with slightly fewer suits, try Cup’a Cup’a Cafe with classic Ethiopian coffee and food.

What To Eat:

With over a dozen vendors, Western Market has something for everyone. Some favorites of ours include Roaming Rooster, Arepa Zone, and Captain Cookie and the Milkman (for their ice cream sandwiches 😋). Right around the corner, Bindaas has 14 types of chaat as well as reasonably priced Indian dishes.

The outside of Western Market.

The outside of Western Market. (westernmarketdc/Instagram)

What To Do:

Catch a performance at the Kennedy Center or an event at their neighboring outdoor space The REACH. On Saturdays, they have their Summer Sunset Series with live DJs, dancing, and lawn games from 6 - 11 p.m. Or check out the Art Museum of the Americas, a hidden gem which has contemporary work from Caribbean and Latin American artists.

What To Drink


The Hive Bar is a classic government employee hangout, but the rooftop views, large tap beer selection, and incredible frozen margaritas make it a great option for everyone. Tonic At Quigley’s also makes a decent cocktail, but let’s be honest, the real pull is their tater tots.

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