Northern Virginia & Washington, DC

Northern Virginia

Clarendon Ballroom
3185 Wilson Blvd, Arlington, VA

Cover: Depends on time/day

One of my favorite places to go in Arlington. Great Atmosphere and setting. It is a bit on the dressy side (if you go in jeans, sneakers and a t-shirt while acceptable you will feel underdressed) but has a lot of good looking women in the venue generally.
When it is warm the outdoor patio (upstairs) opens up and is a great place for happy hour and to approach sets without much noise. The club/band area is loud, but you can raise your voice and talk without shouting. The bathroom/lounge area is a level below the club so its a good place to talk in a quieter environment.
They allow re-entry with a stamp if you paid to get in.

Whitlow's On Wilson
2854 Wilson Blvd, Arlington, VA

Good alternative to Ballroom if you want a lower key night with music at a lower level and want to dress down a bit. Small stage area for a small live band or performer. The sets here are usually lower then Ballroom but that is expected. Easy to approach areas, a lot of sitting room, and games to play if you stall on what to do or say.

Bailey's Smokehouse & Tavern
4238 Wilson Blvd, Arlington, VA

Great for sports fans. Might find the love of your life (and team) here if you approach the right set. Huge place many different areas for approach. The first room has music and a bar, the other two areas are primarily for showcasing sporting events. The only problem is that the girls generally come with guys so prepare for mixed set approaches.
During football season, get there early so you have a place to sit and can invite people to your table.

Ireland Four Courts
2051 Wilson Blvd, Arlington, VA

Irish Bar, great atmosphere and nice people. Sets are generally average but people seem very open to meet new people here. Expect everyone to be in the mood for Irish Car Bombs throughout the night. If there isn't a single performer on, expect Irish music at a reasonable volume.

Front Page
4201 Wilson Blvd, Arlington, VA

Good place for happy hour or if you want to chill out one night. Friday's seem better then Saturday nights for sets. Just your average default bar that doesn't usually disappoint. After a while you notice regular crowds and may want to move on to find new sets for approach.

Rock Bottom
4238 Wilson Blvd, Arlington, VA

This place is packed for happy hour as they make their own beer and it is ridiculously cheap on Tues and Thurs before 9. Many different sets and a lot of fun to be had, easy to open people and talk about something other than work. Don't expect a lot of people at other times though, and the beer seems to give tremendous hang overs so sip lightly.

Washington, DC

Rhino Bar & Pumphouse
3295 M St NW, Washington, DC

Philly fans this is the bar for you, showcasing football games when they are on, primarily on the top level. Street level has a small dance floor and music that is medium to high. Packed for philly games but has a good amount of sets of all types on the weekends.

Tony & Joe's Seafood Palace
3000 K St NW, Washington, DC

Great place on the Waterfront that has both indoor and outdoor dining AND bar areas. Around this place there are a lot of other outdoor bars so it is easy to bar hop and approach many sets. It is also right near where you can pull up a boat and hop off or back on for some boat parties.

The Guards
2915 M St NW, Washington, DC

Great place to meet people from Georgetown (college). Head downstairs to dance or upstairs to talk and hang out. A lot of girls-only set as they "just want to dance."