DC’s newest cocktail lounge opens from Rose Previte, co-owner of the Michelin-starred Maydan restaurant just steps down the alleyway. Named for the Arabic word for a historic old town, Medina channels the mystery and romance of a walled city fortress where commerce and commotion lie at the center. In this secluded spot, guests are welcome to come as they are, with an open mind and curiosity.
“Medina nights are exciting, chaotic, joyful and full of intrigue. The Medina of ancient cities like Tunis and Fez were designed to shield people from the outside world. My hope for our Medina is to be that protective fortress where your imagination can run wild and everything is illuminated over cocktails and conversation,” shares Rose Previte.
A colorful haven draped in tapestries, muraled walls and glowing lanterns, Medina envelopes guests and invites them to explore cocktails and wines from the islands of the Mediterranean. Beverage Director Drew Hairston has created signature drinks including the Rose Tinted Glasses blending Bombay Bramble gin with pickled raspberry-rose sorbet, pink peppercorn, pomegranate liqueur, meyer lemon and Txakolina; Medusa with Ilegal mezcal, passionfruit, banana, super orange, butterfly pea, salt air; and Martini Service for Two using Moroccan olive oil-washed vodka, dry vermouth, and choice of Castelvetrano or smoked & spiced olives, lemon zest or sumac onions, as well as an optional Sardinian Bottarga service.
Wines hail from the islands of the Mediterranean and – like those on Maydan’s James Beard nominated wine list – spotlight lesser known producers and wine regions. Offerings include Reine de la Ville “Ile de Beauté” Pinot Noir 2021 from Corsica; Ca’n Verdurra “Supernova” 2021 from Binissalem-Mallorca; and Bodegas Vinãtígo 2021 from Tenerife, Canary Islands.
To complement these drinks, the small plates and shareable menu ranges from a Tunisian brik to mezze board to salads and snacks. In the evening an arak tea service is also offered. Medina will serve as both a casual neighborhood destination and an option for private parties. A portion of proceeds of nightly sales will also support Global Giving’s Morocco Earthquake Relief Fund goal.