I’ve been a huge fan of the Matchbox restaurants in DC and going there has been an exception to my usual “happy hour” rule.
But today was the official first day of Matchbox’s happy hour.
Matchbox specializes in wood-fired brick oven pizza but has also had amazing house-made vodka-infusions. I enjoy ordering vodka sodas with whatever new infusions they have.
They have multiple locations in the DC area, plus one in Palm Springs, CA.
If you know Ted’s Bulletin in the DC area, the same guys run both.
So today I tried their brand new happy hour at the Merrifield location.
The cocktails are $7 on happy hour, but are all high-end liquors with craft ingredients, so it makes sense.
The items are roughly 40% off.
The Patio Pounder is made with their house-made watermelon vodka, lemonade and fresh pieces of vodka. I was worried this was going to taste too sweet, but it tasted fresh and tart.
The gin & tonic was made with a tonic syrup rather than tonic from a soda gun. It gave it this almost-martini-like taste while still being incredibly light and refreshing.
Don’t let the “peach nectar” in this drink’s name fool you. The Southern Charmer is very much bourbon with the added kick of the ginger and pepper. I enjoyed it very much but it also went down very slowly.
As for food…
The lobster rolls were drenched in butter–no mayo in this set. The bread was buttery as well, and I’m probably going to come back to this happy hour–if just to get another set of these rolls.
These were described as cheese garlic toast–but it didn’t have a huge, thick layer of cheese on top or anything. Whatever it was, was great. The tomato sauce was almost like a penne vodka rather than a marinara, which I preferred to dip this toast it. It lacked the high levels of acidity that marinara usually has and paired really well with our drinks.
The moz was surprisingly good. I expected it to be too dense since it was basically a ball of mozzarella, but the plate of olive oil and balsamic it sat on went really well with it. The fruit on it is sliced nectarines, which went really well too.
All in all, it is a welcome addition to the happy hour scene. I recommend getting there early, having some cocktails and appetizers at the bar, and then moving on to wine and pizza at a table. If you haven’t had their fig pizza, I recommend starting with that along with one of their white wines (though their official Matchbox blend of red, I’ve heard, is good).