The District had been missing a true Tiki hub until Archipelago came along and officially opened in March. The multistory space on the corner of 12th & U Streets is a product of four bartender buddies who collectively wanted to leave all pretension on the door, rock some Hawaiian shirts and serve excellent Tiki libations. The team sticks by the quality of its classic Mai Tai, but the drink menu largely offers original concoctions, and most every ingredient is made in-house, including its own orgeat and falernum syrups. A modest Polynesian-and-Chinese-inspired food lineup is available.
THE DRINK TO DRINK: The house frozen Piña Colada has a delightful just-right texture that’s sure to please. The large-format drinks, including the Pineapple of Hospitality, are also crowd favorites.
KNOW BEFORE YOU GO: If you’re at a Tiki joint but for some reason Vodka Soda is really your thing, that’s what they’ll make you. Keep in mind, though, that there’s only a handful of beers by the can or wines available.