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American Tap Room Prepares to Open in Clarendon

by ARLnow.com September 2, 2011 at 3:14 pm 7,470 26 Comments

American Tap Room (3101 Wilson Blvd) is putting the finishing touches on its new Clarendon location in hopes of opening after the long holiday weekend. Today the restaurant is doing a trial run for friends and family, but ARLnow.com got a sneak peak.

Dozens of taps line the wall of the bar, which opens up into a large dining room. Beyond the dining area is a glass-enclosed martini bar. During warm seasons, patrons can head outside to the sizable patio and get toasty next to the three fire pits.

“We’re excited to be a part of the Clarendon community,” said Vice President of Marketing Wade Breaux. “We can’t wait to see everyone in a few days.”

Breaux says there’s not any one thing that will set apart American Tap Room from the many other restaurants in the area. Instead, he said, it’s more about the overall experience. He notes the welcoming atmosphere, more than 60 beers on tap, martini room, patio and moderate prices as some of the special features.

“We’re not trying to be the cheapest and we’re not trying to be the most expensive,” Beaux said. “We want to have broad appeal.”

There are still some tweaks necessary before the expected opening on Tuesday, such as getting phone lines up and working. American Tap Room plans to hold a formal grand opening sometime in the next few weeks, when everything is running smoothly.

This is the company’s third American Tap Room location, in addition to locations in Reston and Bethesda.

  • GreaterClarendon

    Welcome to the neighborhood. Look forward to your IPA’s on tap.

  • KARLington

    What is with all the places that look like a Marriott lobby bar – Circa, 3, Harry’s Tap Room, now ATR? Boring.

    • Cyrus

      Grumpy comment. Yawn….

  • Ed

    What is listed on that red Happy Hour flyer? I can’t read it.

  • Clarendude

    I really like their Bordello-esque red exterior and that giant flame bowel over their door. It livens up an otherwise drab beige office building.

    • Clarendude

      bowl, not bowel ! 😮

      • Stu Pendus

        That’s down the street at Hard Times.

        • CW

          Delhi Club…

    • JEB

      . . . hmmm, well, I wish ATR and Cheesecake Factory were next to each other and then I could avoid that block altogether . . .

      • JEB

        . . . I’m only commenting on the red exterior of ATR – the interior and patio look beautiful and elegant . . .

  • PikerShorts

    Can’t wait to pay $5.50 for a 12oz Bud Bottle

  • Chris M.

    I miss Kitty O’sheas.

  • charlie

    those chairs look comfy…

  • CW

    I have doubts about spending my money at any place with a Vice President of Marketing.

    That said, the environment looks very dbag-friendly. I would be enticed over there if they had some absolutely bangin happy hour specials on those 60+ beers. I think that in the tradition of the deceased Sette Bello, they should offer all those beers for $2.50 a pint every night of the week from 4-7.

    • Henry Spencer

      I’d say that the existence of a glass enclosed martini bar ensures d’bag friendliness.

  • R0bespierre


    • Clarendude

      I never really cared for a place being called “hip”, but nice graph nonetheless. Sadly, it’s true but inevitable. I think (hope) when I retire the red line will have bottomed out. Maybe about 20-25 years from now.

  • Mick Way

    Their Bethesda and Reston locations have the lamest draught lists.

    BTW does anyone here not know that the new Dremo’s location is the Costa Verde restaurant space (assuming he got his investor base). This is not a guess. I was in on it. The non-disclosure agreements are expired now so passing it along.

    • Lou


    • Lee-n-Glebe

      Fairly small space, no? Or am I thinking of the wrong place?

    • GreaterClarendon

      Awful parking situation there, but maybe I can grab a beer while waiting for Jiffy Lube next door to change my oil.

  • TuesdaysChild

    I walked by on Saturday night. It was not yet open, but it had all the TVs on. Way too many flat screen TVs. Ugly and distracting. Looks more like a regular sports bar.

  • Mick Way

    6,000 sq ft. 3k down and 3k up.

    Food will be microwave fare. Grill and cooktop area needs $$$$ to get up to code.

    CV is leaving their PA and DJ gear upstairs. Dremo karaoke maybe?

  • Matt

    Why oh why can’t a single place in Clarendon find decent servers, or at least emphasize service?

    Had dinner at the new ATR the other night. Took 5 minutes to get water. 10 more minutes to get our waiter. 10 MORE minutes to get our first drink.

    The place was a little crowded, sure, but the wait staff seemed to be operating in slow motion rather than hustling.


  • Elspet

    The first time I visited this Clarendon location, a waiter dumped a pitcher of ice water on my coworker’s crotch. A few minutes later, a different waiter started to tip over a glass while he was bringing our entrees. In his rush to grab the glass, he shot his hand out and slammed a dinner plate full of food into the bridge of my nose.

    This week I had a work function at American Tap room. I ordered a drink, and when it came, I found several dead, desiccated brown bugs floating in my glass.

    The next time somebody suggests visiting, I will bow out. If I want to be punched in the face and fed bugs, I’m sure I can get that service through Craigslist.


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