Nightlife Agenda: Adroit Theory’s D.C. debut, Martini Day and solstice celebrations

June 19

The DJs, bands, dance nights and parties you need to plan for in the next seven days.


This month's History and Hops happy hour at the Heurich House features the buzzy new Adroit Theory brewery's D.C. debut.(Photo by Craig Hudson/For The Washington Post)

Thursday, June 19
Adroit Theory’s edgy beers and non-traditional brewing styles are generating a lot of buzz in Virginia, but it can be hard to sample their ales without driving to the Purcellville brewery. Washington gets its first official taste of B/A/Y/S Russian imperial stout and two other beers during the monthly History and Hops happy hour at the Heurich House museum. A $30 ticket includes unlimited drinks, food and tours of the historic home of 20th century brewery magnate Christian Heurich.

Last Saturday was World Gin Day, and this Thursday is National Martini Day. Some might say that the two are not mutually exclusive, but hey, another excuse for celebratory cocktails is fine with us. Mixologists Frank Jones of the Gibson and Jo-Jo Valenzuela of City Tap House are joining forces for a party at the Gibson, inspired by H.L. Mencken's quip that a martini is "the only American invention as perfect as a sonnet." The event features "pop-up performances" and readings of classic American literature from 6 to 9 p.m., while the bartenders pour $10 martinis. Admission is free, but you must RSVP to TheGibson@BrandLinkDCrsvp.com to get on the list for admission.

The '95 Live dance party has had some heavyweight guests over the years, excavating and sharing the great hip-hop, R&B and dancehall that dominated clubs and airwaves in the 1990s. They welcome another titan of that era this week: DJ Doo Wop, whose classic '95 Live mixtape gave this party its name. Doo Wop came up among a crowded field of hot New York mixtape DJs who defined that artform, long before mixtapes devolved into promotional compilations for rappers. The Bounce Master rocks with Washington vinylologist DJ Roz at Patty Boom Boom.

Friday, June 20
June 21 is the summer solstice -- the longest day of the year and the official beginning of summer. To celebrate the lengthening of days, the guys from 3 Stars Brewing are taking over Poste's patio on the eve of the solstice. Between 4:30 p.m. and sunset, the courtyard bar will pour four 3 Stars beers for $6 to $7, including the refreshing Citra Lemon Saison and Samsquantch White IPA. Snack on freshly shucked oysters from Virginia's War Shore Oyster Company, which cost $2 each. Admission is free.

Any rapper who decides to use a go-go band to back them when they perform in the District immediately rises in esteem. One of the major female voices from the Dirty South gets a boost from the bad boys of go-go when Trina takes the Howard Theatre stage with Backyard Band.

Saturday, June 21
The second-annual D.C. Bourbon Bash is more like a whiskey bar crawl around Penn Quarter: Participants visit eight bars between noon and 10 p.m. for complementary pours of eight different bourbons, $4 Brooklyn, Shiner and Saranac beers, and various food specials. Host locations include R.F.D., Penn Social and the Hill Country Backyard BBQ, where Cannonball Coming performs bluegrass and country music. Major caveat: If you're familiar with the bourbon lists at Southern Efficiency or Jack Rose, the whiskey offered during the crawl won't be particularly enlightening: Four of the eight come from Jim Beam, including Jim Beam Honey, and others include Maker's Mark and Old Grand-Dad. Think of it as a chance to spend Saturday afternoon hanging out on an extended bar crawl with your friends. Tickets are $55 in advance, but there are discounts on Living Social and Groupon that knock the fee down to $29.

On June 21, France comes alive with the sound of music. The Fete de la Musique brings free concerts and dances all over the country, from small town squares to the Champs Elysees. The tradition comes to Washington every year, thanks to the Embassy of France and the Alliance Francaise. The Alliance is taking over the bar and ballroom at the Sofitel Hotel for a full day of tunes. Start with a free, family-friendly afternoon of songs and crafts from noon to 4 p.m., before jazz, funk indie bands take the stage from 6 to midnight, and electronica DJs spin in Le Bar. Tickets for the evening program are $15 in advance and $20 at the door. Over at the French Embassy, the French garage-rock band Magnetix performs a live score to the 1924 Buster Keaton film "Sherlock Jr," which will be shown on the embassy's lawn at 9 p.m. French guitarist David Lewin takes the stage for a solo show at 7 p.m. Admission is free, but reservations are required. Also, bring cash to buy food and drinks, as no cash will be accepted.

Fritz Hahn has covered bars, drinks and nightlife for the Washington Post Weekend Section since 2003, but he also writes about everything from Civil War battlefields to sailing classes.
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