July 10, 2018 at 10:30 AM
Four teams remain in the World Cup, and no matter which team you are cheering for, there's a place to watch them face off this week. (If you're neutral, consider D.C.'s official outdoor viewing parties on Freedom Plaza, with food trucks and a giant screen.)
France vs. Belgium (Tuesday at 2 p.m.)
France: All the free tickets for the official viewing party at the French Embassy were quickly snapped up. (Lesson learned: Watch the embassy's Facebook page very carefully if Les Bleus advance.) Where else to go? Penn Social in Penn Quarter is showing the match on its giant screens for groups of French expats, and Opaline bar in the Sofitel hotel downtown has a special French-themed menu on match days, with jambon-beurre sandwiches and spicy merguez dogs.
Brasserie Beck, run by the Belgian chef Robert Wiedmaier, has an interesting happy hour for the semifinal: All Belgian beers are half-price, and all French wines are double their usual price at the downtown spot.
Other hotspots for viewing include the Belgian beer bar the Sovereign in Georgetown, where selected drafts, including Saison Dupont and De la Senne Taras Boulba, are $4 beginning at 1 p.m., and Capitol Hill's Belga Cafe, which offers half-price draft beer, wine and bar snacks during the match.
Croatia vs. England (Wednesday at 2 p.m.)
Croatia: The Association of Croatian American Professionals has held several loud and beery viewing parties at Georgetown's Church Hall, so expect to see even more red-and-white checkerboard jerseys at the bar this week. Unlike previous matches, no tickets are required. Doors open at 1:30 p.m.
England: The last time the British Embassy threw a World Cup viewing party, former England captain Wayne Rooney showed up at Wunder Garten. The British will be back at the NoMa beer garden for their all-important semifinal, with English beers on tap and the London Chippy food truck serving fish and chips. “I unfortunately can’t promise another Wayne Rooney appearance,” says the embassy's Joshua Stanton, but maybe the newly signed D.C. United player will be tempted.
Elsewhere, lines for England matches at the Queen Vic on H Street NE have been down the block, so don't just show up at 1:45 and expect to get comfortable with a pint of London Pride. Doors open at 1 p.m. As always, Dupont Circle's Lucky Bar is a popular destination for England fans. While ChurchKey in Logan Circle isn't very English — or much of a sports bar — it has a great deal planned with half-price British cask ales, including selections from Ridgeway and Fyne, starting at 1 p.m., plus food specials.