It's almost the end of April, and the famous Tidal Basin cherry trees have lost their blooms, so I feel safe declaring this weekend as the end of the Cherry Blossom season.  I have mixed feelings on the cherry blossom tourism craze as a resident of the D.C. metro region.  The flowers are gorgeous, but after so many years of dealing with the traffic jams they create, this season in particular I just couldn't really get into them.  I did one sunrise visit, with overcast skies, but only brought my iPhone for photos.  Other than that, I somewhat celebrated the annual festival by trying two new themed offerings.  The first is a pop up bar and the second a cherry-based afternoon high tea.  

Good news, there is still time to visit the Cherry Blossom Pub before it closes after this weekend.  Pop Up Bar DC  by The Drink Company is known for super elaborate themed drinking experiences that change quarterly at the same venue.  I've been once before last year for a Game of Thrones themed bar around the time of the season premiere of the show.  Like that GoT bar, the Cherry Blossom Pub was divided into four rooms with different decor.  The four themes were cityscape Japan with exposed lighting wires and hanging lanterns, sushi bar with origami swans, a small garden scape with butterflies clustered on large sphere paper lanterns, and the beautiful cherry blossom bar with the ceiling covered in pink blooms (fake of course).

At the Game of Thrones bar, they had a "photo booth" room with the iron throne.  With the Japan themed, the Cherry Blossom Pub's photo op was perfectly paired with a mechanical Godzilla that breathed smoke periodically.  The drink menu was also cleverly curated.  I opted for the bean paste take on a piña colada, the beaña colada, that was served in a cute ceramic cat mug.

Don't worry if you can't make it into Washington D.C. to catch the tail end of the pub.  Since they have already announced the next theme will be The Royals, I suspect that we will know soon the opening date and that it will likely be around the upcoming wedding of Harry and Meaghan.

The second cherry blossom offering I tried was high tea at the Fairmont in D.C.'s west end near Georgetown.  This hotel does regular high tea seatings, however this one in particular was cherry based - desserts and tea.  

The tea sandwiches served were all delicious:

  • Curried chicken, mango, toasted almonds, and cherry marmalade on a brioche
  • Smoked salmon, horseradish creme fraîche, and salmon pearls on dark rye
  • Prosciutto, cucumber, and Boursin cheese on a mini croissant
  • Heirloom tomato, burrata cheese, and butter on sourdough
We actually opted out of the salmon sandwich and were served a sliced turkey on brioche.

The tea options had your standard tea selection with an additional black cherry almond tea specifically for this service.  The hint of tart cherry was fantastic!
For the desserts, there were four items, each with a cherry ingredient:

  • Chocolate cherry donut
  • Sour cherry almond pound cake
  • Rose panna cotta with rooftop honey
  • Rooftop honey tea scone with cherry jam

While this particular menu is no longer available due to the end of the cherry blossom season, I highly recommend the venue for high tea on any week - theme or no theme.  

Happy end of cherry blossoms!  (some morning iPhone shots below)