There are few occasions not improved by a fine cigar. I’d smoke cigars everywhere if I could, yet we live in times where lighting up while flying or in surgery is no longer acceptable. For the displaced like me, the tobacconists at W. Curtis Draper have brought the exciting Civil Cigar Lounge to Chevy Chase Pavilion. Like the name implies, Civil brings a vibe of sophistication.
Aficionados will feel at home in the retail shop, which houses a wide variety of cigars from Nicaragua, Honduras and the Dominican Republic. You’ll find familiar names like Macanudo, Padron and Cohiba alongside specialty cigars like the Draper Anniversary Editions. There’s something for all tastes and budgets, so the casual smoker shouldn’t be put off–this is not your grandfather’s boys club, smoke-filled back room. The staff will help you choose a cigar that won’t have you exhaling smoke that’s more expensive than your rent–unless you want them to.
Think of Civil as a lounge with a fine cigar at the ready. Ashtrays and plush leather armchairs
may look familiar to old hands, but the look and feel of Civil is decidedly modern and sexy, right down to the damask wallpaper with skulls.
The spacious full bar has too many great liquors and wines to name here. Let’s just say that you should order a Pappy Van Winkle 15-Year. “Pappy Van Winkle” is fun to say (and anyone who doesn’t like bourbon is suspect in my book). An exclusive menu of small plates to pair with such wide and varied libations is designed by next-door neighbor, Chef Bryan Voltaggio of RANGE.
Upgrade your experience by renting your own cigar locker, which comes with a discount off retail, first dibs on special events and access to Civil’s private rooms–perfect for the Super Bowl. Or, the Puppy Bowl. Your call.
The most attractive feature for those who aren’t stoked for stogies is the workhorse of a ventilation system. Civil boasts a system that filters and replaces the air in the entire 5,000 square foot space every 2 minutes. That means Civil doubles as a great date spot, free from hovering clouds and campfire stank. I’m not saying that you should play out your Mr. and Mrs. Smith fantasies but…no, I am saying that, actually. Absolutely do that, you crazy kids.
Civil Cigar Lounge
5335 Wisconsin Avenue NW
Washington, DC 20015
Mary was born and raised in New York City where her family owned restaurants. Instead of eating dirt on the playground, she ate duck blood, beef tripe and pork belly. She cut her teeth at The Mandarin Oriental and The Ritz-Carlton hotels, working with Barbra Streisand, Vanessa Williams, Michael Stipe, LeVar Burton, Jane Krakowski and others. Mary founded Girl Meets Food in 2009 as a cover for her debilitating addiction to fried chicken and was named Washington Post’s “Favorite Local Foodie.” After 13 years in hospitality, she started freelance writing for USA Today, The Washington Post, Eater, Washington City Paper, and more. Today, she provides digital marketing for hospitality clients as a content creator who’s contently creating content.