We Love Drinks: Cantina Marina

"cantina marina" by Somewhat Frank, on Flickr

"cantina marina" by Somewhat Frank, on Flickr

Sometimes you don’t care about lovingly crafted cocktails or the beautiful people or even 12% ABV beer. Sometimes you just want a drink in a plastic cup. With a view.

Cantina Marina is the kind of place you could easily find in Florida, a simple almost shack-like atmosphere on the Gangplank Marina, with three sides open to the elements and the waterfront view. This is an extremely casual scene where flip-flops, beach dresses and short shorts reign. It’s getting to be quite packed now that the weather is warm – whether we’ll ever see sun again is anybody’s guess – but you can easily hang out here on an overcast drizzling day like I did.

It’s really a perfect spot for an afternoon delight, with spots to perch on ranging from the center square bar surrounded by tables or the outside seating right on the water. Decent but not too exciting bar food means noshing of the mostly-fried Gulf Coast variety. Happily they feature my favorite summer drink of the moment, the Dark ‘n Stormy, made with rum and ginger beer. Oh, sexy steel drums… no wait, that’s just my head.

"IMG_3472" by el swifterino, on Flickr

"IMG_3472" by el swifterino, on Flickr

For the margarita lovers there’s a choice between several types of tequila including Cuervo and Cazadores Reposado (to really make it happy add Grand Marnier). If you’re having a particularly glum week, head over for Tecate Tuesdays, where the Mexican beer is $3. Beer is baseline Bud, Corona, Red Stripe, Dos Equis… and any can be made a michelada, the “beer bloody mary” that makes everyone squeal in disgust when I order it. They’re crazy wrong.

on Flickr

"DSC01896.JPG" by lizkdc, on Flickr

It’s all pretty simple stuff and you shouldn’t expect any frills. But that is precisely the charm. Plastic cups and boat bums. In DC. Yeah, there’s more to us than a “pinky-up” wino town…

Cantina Marina
600 Water Street SW
Washington, DC 20024

As one of the founding editors of We Love DC, Jenn’s passions are theater and cocktails. After two decades in the city, she’s loved every quirky, mundane, elegant, rude minute of her DC life. A proud advocate for DC’s talented drinks scene, she’s judged the Corcoran Gallery of Art’s ARTINI contest, the DC Rickey Month contest, the Jefferson Hotel’s Quill Cocktail competition, and is a founding member of LUPEC DC. A graduate of Catholic University’s drama program, she toured the country as a member of National Players, and has been both an actor and a costume designer before jumping the aisle to theater criticism. Writing for We Love DC restored her happiness after a life-threatening illness, and she’s grateful to you, dear readers. Send your suggestions to jenn (at) welovedc (dot) com and follow her on Twitter.

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4 thoughts on “We Love Drinks: Cantina Marina

  1. Oh gosh, I am so sorry for the tease!!! It’s just that every time I drink a dark ‘n stormy I think I hear steel drums.

    But… isn’t the Georgia Ave Caribbean parade soon? Then you can get your fix, Katie dear.

  2. Pingback: Cantina Marina Open Outside This Weekend » We Love DC