Shaw is one of Washington, D.C.'s most "happening" neighborhoods right now.
In Shaw, there are so many new nooks and crannies to discover every day, and at the same time, so much cultural history to appreciate. The neighborhood has done a beautiful job intertwining the two. Here is your complete Shaw neighborhood guide.
Shaw is one of the most culturally historic neighborhoods in Washington, D.C. Traditionally an African American hub, it’s experienced a great deal of change in the past 10 years. It’s still very much culturally significant, but it’s gotten a major facelift, with new restaurants, bars, and stores popping up almost before you have a chance to try them all, row houses finally getting the major love they deserved (and real estate prices skyrocketing), and mural art to celebrate the blending of new and old in the neighborhood. Though it's large in personality, it’s actually fairly small in size, and all the old-time residents, young professionals, and creatives definitely feel a sense of community.
Courtesy of http://shawdcliving.blogspot.com
Most of the action happens on 7th and 9th streets in Shaw. Both are filled with restaurants, bars, shopping, and anything an urban Washingtonian might want. There are also cool art studios, event spaces, hotels with fabulous rooftops, and so much more. If you want something a little more secluded, but very cool, check out Blagden Alley, which is an alleyway behind 7th Street and the home to tons of street art, boutique fitness studios, a coffee shop, and some of the city’s best-rated outdoor patios and watering holes.
Best Green Space
Unfortunately, there really isn’t too much green space in the neighborhood. However, you’re not too far from Logan Circle, which boasts a lot more parks and recreational areas perfect for relaxing outside.
Courtesy of truedistrict.com
Nearby Grocery Stores
The Giant grocery store holds a prominent position in Shaw, both because of its size and its location. It’s located right in the middle of the neighborhood on 9th Street and is one of the largest grocery stores within D.C. proper. Here you’ll find all your essentials, as well as a robust and cost-effective selection of wine and beer. If you're searching for a more curated selection of wine, you should visit the Grand Cata Latin Wine Shop, which is one of the cutest wine shops in all of D.C.
Courtesy of wdcep.com
If you want a trendy new bar, head to Shaw. During the summer months, Calico (tucked away in Blagden Alley) is especially popular, particularly on nice weekend days. The self-proclaimed “urban backyard” boasts craft cocktails, cold beer, and all the wine you could want, which you can enjoy on the picturesque patio. Columbia Room is another gorgeous patio and roof deck bar in Shaw, with greenery and twinkling lights setting the mood. They’re known for their cocktails, so make sure you ask your bartender for the best and most seasonal recommendation. This is the place to be seen around town, so make sure you dress the part.
Courtesy of dc.eater.com
It’s pretty clear that once you figure out where Blagden Alley is, you’ll know it’s got the trendiest, yet most hidden spots in D.C. The Dabney is a must-try if you’re looking for local and fresh mid-Atlantic cuisine. The restaurant is also designed out of a former farmhouse, so the décor and the food will make you feel like you’re out in the country. Asian fusion restaurants have been really popular recently, and Kyirisan will not disappoint. The dishes are a blend of Asian flavors with a sophisticated French flair. If you’re into trying new food, this is your spot.
Courtesy of dc.eater.com
What to Do
There is a lot to do in Shaw. Of course, there’s plenty to eat and drink. You’ll never tire of the dining options in this neighborhood. It’s also highly recommended to spend some time in Blagden Alley checking out all the murals -- maybe snapping a few photos for that Instagram feed. There are also lots of summer festivals, especially with the influx of a younger resident population. Art galleries often double as event venues for wine festivals, artist fairs, and local conventions.
Courtesy of Washington.org
Want to get to know more neighborhoods in Washington, D.C.? Check out the Dupont Circle, Logan Circle, and Petworth neighborhood guides! What do you love most about the Shaw neighborhood? Tell us in the comments below!