Happy Hour Guide

Margarita Madness: Your Guide to DC’s Best Margarita Happy Hours

Some refer to it as the “Nectar of the Gods,” while some simply call it a Marg! No matter what you call them, margaritas are synonymous with fun. Good times and good margs go hand in hand, and good margs on Happy Hour are like a hand in a boozy cookie jar.

Here’s where to get the best margaritas at the best Happy Hours in DC.


True to it’s name, Mezcalero pours a mean mezcal margarita. Classic, strong, smoky, and rimmed with chili lime salt to bring out the flavor. At only $6 a pop, this is the best deal on quality Mezcal margs in the district. (Believe us, we’ve had a good time doing the research!).

You can also grab a traditional tequila margarita for the same 6 bucks if you’re not in the mood for mezcal. The tacos aren’t on HH, but they’re always reasonably priced at $2.50- $3.00 each. The shrimp taco tops our best of DC list, so do yourself a favor and GET.IT.

Photo by @HappiedDC

Normally when you think of frozen margaritas, you probably think overly sweet, light on the alcohol concoctions. The La Frozen ($6) at Mi Vida breaks this mold with complex layers of mango, ginger, and passion fruit blended with a hefty amount of blanco tequila. It’s a thick, fruity slush that doesn’t water down as you take your time to sip and savor. And please, do take your time, as the La Frozen is a potent little marg.

If you’re in the mood for a classic marg, Mi Vida also offers its house margarita for $6. To nosh, there’s an array of Mexican fare. Grab a few fresh Oysters (topped with Meco Chili Cocktail Sauce and Hibiscus Red Onions) and follow with the Tatanachos or Tacos Dorados to get in your carbs. 

Photo by @HappiedDC

El Techo offers up a fiery spicy mezcal margarita on Happy Hour, which is super fitting since this Shaw newcomer has quickly become a hotspot. But if you need to cool down, El Techo also has you covered with their garden district marg (yes, veggies and tequila go quite well together) and classic margarita.

Each of these signature cocktails are on HH for just $8. The rooftop can get crowded so get their early. Pro-tip: Hit up El Techo HH on Tuesdays for $2 Tacos too!

Photo by @HappiedDC

Most places on our list use house made sour in their margs, but MXDC steps it up a notch as the only spot to use a house made cordial. Instead of the standard Cointreau or triple sec, MXDC’s house cordial infuses cinnamon into the margarita liqueur component. The cinnamon spice is subtedly blended with lime and orange to create a uniquely satisfying margarita.  And to that, we say “hells yes!” Of course, every great marg deserves an equally great bite. Enter bacon and blue cheese guac. It’s as good as it sounds.

Photo by @HappiedDC

We love a good classic, hand shaken margarita, and this Ivy City hot spot delivers. Grab a seat at the Mexico City inspired bar for tequila, lime, and triple sec in the perfect proportions.

Surrounded by the industrial charm of one of the district’s trendiest neighborhoods, you’re in for a visual treat as you peer through the wide window patio on a warm day. Pair the Classic Margarita ($8) with elote ($4) or choose from a variety of tacos at only $2.50 a pop. 

Photo by @HappiedDC

Margaritas are synonymous with good vibes, and Lauriol Plaza brings plenty of them with their signature swirl and Sangrita margaritas. The frozen drinks are served in big glass mugs, showing off the bright margaritas within and enticing you to grab one even if it’s not your normal go-to.

The lively two-story spot is filled from the patio to the rooftop with patrons sipping on the two-toned cocktails, and you’ll want in on the action. While you shouldn’t expect hand crafted margs here (we suggest skipping the rocks marg), Lauriol Plaza is a DC frozen margarita cult classic. Grab a glass ($4.95) or a pitcher ($28.95) on HH with your crew.

Photo by @HappiedDC

This Capitol Hill spot serves up uber refreshing draft margaritas ($5) in a fast casual setting. If you get two margaritas, you get a gratis order of chips and queso. Win friggin win. And don’t let the fact that these margaritas are on tap fool you. They’re balanced, potent, and light on the sweet and sour mix. So grab your HH fam and stop in for a quick HH margarita. No frills, no wait, just great margs and eats.

Photo by @HappiedDC

The margaritas at this Woodley Park cantina are bringing double the goodness with a blend of tequila and mezcal in their house and spicy varieties. They’re powerfully potent at only $7 a glass on HH.  Mayahuel was also recently crowned the champ of DC’s Margarita Rumble, so you know the margs are top notch.  

Photo by @HappiedDC

Fresh squeezed margaritas are the best margaritas (obvi). At El Centro, each marg gets a fresh squeezed lime and is packed with nothing but the all natural goodness of agave, that fresh lime juice, and Sauza silver tequila. At only $5 each, this is one of the highest quality margaritas you can find at this type of deal. And to top off your rim, a trip to El Centro guarantees lively vibes, with locations in both the popular 14th Street Corridor and Georgetown neighborhoods.

Photo by @HappiedDC

 

Been to any of these spots? Let us know in the comments!

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