The Sovereign

BA SCORE
97
world-class

20 Ratings
PLACE INFO

Type: Bar, Eatery

1206 Wisconsin Ave NW
Washington, District of Columbia, 20007-3220
United States

(202) 774-5875 | map
thesovereigndc.com

Notes:
No notes at this time.

Added by Sludgeman on 02-06-2016

PLACE STATS
Score:
97
Ratings:
20
Reviews:
7
Avg:
4.6
pDev:
3.04%
 
 
Taps:
50
Bottles/Cans:
325
Cask:
N
Beer-to-Go:
N
View: Place Reviews | Events
User Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
Ratings: 20 |  Reviews: 7
Photo of Cpmitchno1
4.55/5  rDev -1.1%
vibe: 4.25 | quality: 4.75 | service: 4.25 | selection: 4.75

Photo of zonker17
4.54/5  rDev -1.3%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.75 | food: 4.25

Walked down the alley and first looked upstairs. TVs and dance/pop music playing not for me. Downstairs however was like a special Belgian beer lovers haven. Dark with bar lamps, big swivel chairs, and a Belgian draft list like I have never seen before. They offer 4oz taster pours at a slight premium but well worth it if you want to roll through many beers. The bottle list is even more impressive with offerings up to 6L size. Really nothing but Belgian/Farmhouse styles available for beer and a full liquor bar including proper absinthe presentation.

Food-wise, I had the bitterballen, dry sausage, and cheese croquets appetizers, and all were delicious.

 659 characters

Photo of dcisco44
4.95/5  rDev +7.6%
vibe: 4.75 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 5 | food: 4.75

Photo of d_stack
4.58/5  rDev -0.4%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.75 | service: 4.75 | selection: 4.25 | food: 4.5

Photo of DoubleSimcoe
4.21/5  rDev -8.5%
vibe: 4.25 | quality: 4 | service: 3.75 | selection: 5 | food: 4

Photo of SaisonRichBiere
4.6/5  rDev 0%
vibe: 4 | quality: 5 | service: 4 | selection: 5

Dark upstairs brick and mortar vibe. long bar and long wood community tables. Feels like an exclusive speakeasy with an old European charm. Great beer selection, heavy on the Belgians. Very fitting for Georgetown.

 217 characters

Photo of BMMillsy
4.9/5  rDev +6.5%
vibe: 4.75 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 5 | food: 4.25

Photo of spoony
4.19/5  rDev -8.9%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.25 | food: 4

V-The Sovereign is in the heart of yuppie-ass Georgetown, located towards the back of a yuppie-ass alley near an interior design firm office. I sat at the medium-sized bar, which was dark and appropriately bar-like with dark wood and a cozy but slightly contrived feel. I visited on a Tuesday evening shortly after 5 pm and the place was mellow, but filling up with yuppie-ass and a few beer geeks. Confession: I'm a yuppie-ass.

Q-The tap and bottle lists are heavy on the Belgians and wild ales. The tap options include some good and little-seen-in-the-States offerings from across the pond, but nothing crazy unusual or amazing. Things like De La Senne and Allagash. The bottle list is also heavy on the Belgian and wild offerings and includes things like Cantillon, 3F, Jester King, and Crooked Stave.

Ser-The two bartenders were knowledgeable about the beers they were slinging and could offer good advice if you asked. The pours were in appropriate glassware and served promptly. Very solid service.

Sel-If you just want to drink IPAs and 12% ABV stouts, this is not your best option, but if you are on the hunt for unique tripels or some Jester King sours, you have found the right place. I like Belgians and wild ales, so the selection suits me, but it might be a bit limiting for other beer drinkers.

F-I did not eat much, but the salad and mussels were decent. The menu, like the beer list, leans toward Belgian offerings like cheese and mussels (not cheese with mussels, but...) with a few fancy burgers.

O-This is a great place to drink Belgian beers with really good service, but it is a tad expensive and if you want a BA stout look elsewhere.

 1,662 characters

Photo of Barracudas
4.5/5  rDev -2.2%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4.5

Photo of SveNss0N
4.73/5  rDev +2.8%
vibe: 4.75 | quality: 4.75 | service: 4.75 | selection: 4.75 | food: 4.5

Photo of mig100
4.61/5  rDev +0.2%
vibe: 4.25 | quality: 4.75 | service: 4.25 | selection: 5 | food: 4.5

Photo of Emersonio
4.19/5  rDev -8.9%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4.75 | food: 4

Photo of Dmcdonald33013
4.78/5  rDev +3.9%
vibe: 5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 5 | selection: 5 | food: 4.25

Love love love this spot. Any pub down a dark alley like this is worth going to. Sit at the bar downstairs for something intimate or upstairs for a little noise.

 161 characters

Photo of Sludgeman
4.45/5  rDev -3.3%
vibe: 4.25 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 5 | food: 4.25

Rereview July 5, 2016

Most of the kinks have been worked out. At least one bartender knows what she is talking about.
V - 4.25 - Wish they would just make it a bit brighter, at least in the down stairs bar.
Q - Taps are working fine. They clean each line when a new beer comes on, which is great. Then again if multiple kegs blow then multiple taps could be without a beer for hours on end. - 4.5
Ser - Still haven't been during a real busy time yet. - 4
Sel - 5
F - Cheese platter is good as well.- 4.25


-----
Visited on a Monday around dinner time. The place was pretty slow.

Overall, I was a bit disappointed with my first visit. I thought they would have some of the kinks worked out after being open for a few months. Great selection, but to be a truly great beer bar (which I assume is the goal with such a great beer list) they will need to hire more knowledgeable bartenders.

V – Indirect lighting but dark, a bit loud, lots of wood. Sort of a high end pub feel. 4

Sel - Outrageous tap and bottle list. If Belgium styles are what you want or if you want to tick that special beer come here. I hide the wonderful Cuvee Delphine and a saison by Saint Somewhere. 5

Ser – Bartenders not knowledgeable like at their sister restaurant Church Key. The bar manager did not know which Saint Somewhere saison was on tap. Otherwise they were friendly, appropriately talkative, with fine restaurant service. 3.75

Q – Appropriate glassware and clean but what’s going on with their tap system. Most lighter beers pouring very foamy. Asked if they were having a system problem and received some BS answer that the beers were foamy because they were fresh and from overseas (i.e. still shaken up a bit)? Probably not dirty lines, these guys would know better than that, but maybe the lines are too long, the beer warms up too much and thus the foaming issue. 3.75

FOOD – Had “The Sovereign” burger which was fantastic but a bit expensive. Not happy with the $2 up charge to convert from fries to green beans. 4.25

 2,029 characters

Photo of Dave_Treat
4.9/5  rDev +6.5%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 5 | food: 4.5

Photo of jcoleMA66
4.85/5  rDev +5.4%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.75 | service: 5 | selection: 5 | food: 4.75

Photo of needMIbeer
4.63/5  rDev +0.7%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.75 | selection: 4.75 | food: 4.5

Photo of Mpontiakos
4.81/5  rDev +4.6%
vibe: 4.75 | quality: 4.75 | service: 5 | selection: 4.75 | food: 4.75

Photo of Huhzubendah
4.95/5  rDev +7.6%
vibe: 4.75 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 5 | food: 4.75

I was beyond excited to find out about this place. Tucked away in an alley in Georgetown. A lighted path guides you to the best Belgian beer selection any DC bar or restaurant has to offer. I was fortunate to find a sequestered seat at the end of the bar. I split a 3 Fonteinen Framboos and a Cantillon St. Lamvinus with my friend, Matthew. I'm in utter disbelief that I was able to order these at a bar in my neighborhood. The prices were more than reasonable, given the scarcity and quality of the aforemntioned beers. The bottle list is impressive. I was given a personal tour of the cellar. Professional, organized. Service was top notch. The food was delicious. I can't wait to go back. A+

 694 characters

Photo of jrubenst12
4.76/5  rDev +3.5%
vibe: 5 | quality: 5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.75 | food: 4.5

The Sovereign just opened last week and I ventured out there yesterday. I was extremely pleased with the overall experience. It's a bit hard to find - tucked in an alley in Georgetown. Once you do find it, you'll see that it's totally worth the visit.

I'd call it the most interesting beer selection in all of DC. Had my first ever bottle of Cantillon (got the last bottle of Lou Pepe) and it was so worth it. In general, I felt they had some great offerings. Some of the special bottles were hit hard right out of the gate so it will be interesting to see how often they can replenish. I personally plan to check the website quite frequently to hopefully return for a great/diverse beer experience.

Outside of the beer, the ambiance was solid and I enjoyed the music selection. My party ordered a few apps and all were excellent. Just looking at the food in the room, it seemed solid. I rated this a 4.5 but subject to change based on eating a complete meal. In general, Sovereign was a great experience and I'm very excited to return.

 1,040 characters

The Sovereign in Washington, DC
4.6 out of 5 based on 20 ratings.
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