Looking for a neighborhood so quintessentially DC that it has been featured in scores of television shows and movies as an ideal DC neighborhood? Look no further. Adams Morgan is the center of the DC universe, bringing together politics, nightlife, and a cultural cross-section of residents that make this one of the great neighborhoods not just in DC, but in the entire country.
Named by the American Planning Association as one of the country’s Great Neighborhoods for its architecture, diversity, walkability, bikeability, and more, Adams Morgan is truly one of the best places to live in DC. Located in the center of favorite neighborhoods like Dupont Circle, Kalorama-Sheridan, Mount Pleasant, and Columbia Heights, and bounded by Rock Creek Park to the west, Adams Morgan is at the center of all of the things that make DC great.
The neighborhood’s name comes from the two pre-segregation elementary schools—Thomas P. Morgan and John Quincy Adams—forming the Adams-Morgan Community Council following the desegregation of District schools. That past is reflected in the inclusive, progressive values that are inherent to this area and the activism of its citizens.
The community hosts a Farmers Market every Saturday morning from May through December in the same location at 18th Street and Columbia Road where it has taken place for more than 30 years. It features produce and herbs, of course, but also baked goods, cheeses, and fresh flowers. In September, there is an annual street festival, Adams Morgan Day, with live music, food, and crafts. It is DC’s longest running neighborhood festival and will celebrate its 39th anniversary this fall.
Adams Morgan is known for its distinctive row houses, and the DC Planning Commission has made a commitment to protecting these architectural wonders. In addition, the recent Streetscape Project upgraded public spaces and infrastructure to make the area more pedestrian and bike friendly, turning this already-walkable neighborhood into an even more accessible area.
Want to while away the hours, and maybe spend a little money? Idle Time Books will keep you occupied for as long as you wish, with their collection of books and albums. With more than 50,000 used, rare, and out-of-print books, you will definitely find a treasure or two. Speaking of which, Meeps is the vintage store of choice with two decades of Best of DC titles for their gorgeous, curated collection of clothes and costumes. Be sure to check their website for special events and pop-up collections.
Adams Morgan has always been known for its nightlife, but its restaurant scene is also one to watch. The Line Hotel has brought in star chefs like Baltimore’s Spike Gjerde and Maketto’s Erik Bruner-Yang to create destination restaurants. Gjerde’s restaurant, A Rake’s Progress, features his emphasis on the terroir of the region—hyper local and inventive. Spoken English is Bruner-Yang’s tasting menu experience, combining American diner cuisine with fusion specialties. These join Adams-Morgan favorites like Mintwood Place, Julia’s Empanadas, and Tail Up Goat to make this area the go-to for excellent DC dining.
Great bars abound in Adams Morgan, whether you want to dance or chill. Roofers Union is a perennial favorite, with great food, great cocktails, and one of the best rooftops in DC. Tryst coffeehouse is sure to suit your taste, whether your taste runs to cocktails or coffees. Serious whiskey connoisseurs will love Jack Rose (current bottle count 2,687) and its craft cocktail speakeasy Dram & Grain. And if you are looking for a great place to dance, Madam’s Organ blues bar has live music every night of the week.
There’s so much to love about Adams Morgan. What’s your favorite AdMo haunt? Let us know in the comments. And if you’re looking for your own little corner of this eclectic and beloved neighborhood, let us know that too! Sign in and begin your search, and let an Eng Garcia Grant Realtor be your guide. We can’t wait to help you find the right DC home for you.