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Posted at 12:07 PM ET, 01/31/2011

Valentine's Day: Where to find bromance

By Fritz Hahn and Justin Rude

Take our advice and you can enjoy your own "Hangover"-style bromance. (Warner Bros. Pictures)

In honor of Valentine's Day, we're coming up with lots of ideas for dates and for girls' nights out, and suddenly we realized ... we never write about hanging out with our guy friends.

But as the popularity of "The Dilemma," "The Hangover" or, nearly any Judd Apatow film tells us, it's okay -- heck, maybe even good for you -- to be in touch with your bromantic side. So why should the fellas be left out?

Next time you're looking for an excuse to get your buddies together, consider one of these five ideas. They'll be the perfect setting for your own bromantic comedy.

Meaty, manly meals
What's more masculine than meat cooked over an open flame? When it comes to portion size, no restaurant can touch the eat-to-you-burst, neverending meat parade at Fogo de Chao. A reservation there guarantees two things: brotherly love and a meat coma. On the other hand, if you and your bros are looking for something a little more buttoned down and swanky -- the kind of place where your servers wear waistcoats and you precede your porterhouse with a perfect manhattan, then your destination is the Prime Rib. It's old-fashioned and fussy in the most manly way. And it practically begs you to follow your meal with a cigar.

Buckets of beer, buckets of balls
Look, if it was April or May, we'd happily suggest a day trip up to Whiskey Creek Golf Club in Ijamsville, where you can play 18 holes on one of the area's best-looking public courses, followed by a nice Scotch or bourbon in the clubhouse afterward. However, walking a golf course isn't as much fun in the winter. That's why we like Top Golf in Alexandria. The outdoor driving ranges are covered and heated, so you don't have to worry about rain or bitter cold. The high-tech greens are equipped with targets that track the length and accuracy of your shots, so you don't have to argue about who hit the green the most (even if that is a lot of fun). Oh, and the servers will bring food and beers right to the "golf suite" on the range. A perfect day, and it's not that expensive -- $5 buys 20 balls per player.

Scotchy Scotch Scotch
Every guy should know something about whisky -- something other than "Oh, I've heard of Macallan." If you've ever wished you knew more about single malt Islay or what a vatted malt is or even why some Scotches are called "peated," call the Willard Hotel and see if you can book some time with bartender Jim Hewes at his tiny little Scotch Bar. After running the Willard's Round Robin Bar for 25 years, Hewes is one of the area's foremost cocktail historians, and he knows his way around a glass of Scotch. There are dozens of bottles of rare and hard-to-find single malts to sample at the Scotch Bar, a manly little enclave of marble and dark wood off the main bar, and since each comes in pours of an ounce, half-ounce or quarter-ounce, you can try lots of amazing booze without breaking the bank.

A draft and the Caps
Beer and hockey is an easy bromantic date. From R.F.D. to Rocket Bar, many bars near the Verizon Center can help you celebrate this great pairing, but few are as comfortable as the recently opened Redline. There, lush booths outfitted with taps give bromancers the opportunity for pre-game drinks where you control their consumption, unencumbered by the speed of your server. It's a good idea to meet up before a game, when a hometown loss can't yet cloud your enjoyment of the puck sodas. On the other hand, should the Caps suffer yet another hometown shutout, beer is there to lessen the sting.

Beer. Bacon. Repeat.
Beer dinners are a staple of the boys' night out -- a chance to sit around, eat and drink some brews and maybe even learn something before it's done. But the underrated beer bar Tuscarora Mill -- fondly known as Tuskie's -- does that one better with an annual party that pairs five craft brews with five dishes based on bacon. The menu hasn't been finalized yet, but we can tell you that dessert is slated to be a peanut butter and chocolate torte with bacon crumbles, accompanied by a strong, sweet Belgian ale. And Tuskie's is known for excellent brews; this weekend's drafts, for example, included Bell's Hopslam, Terrapin Hopsicutioner, Left Hand Sawtooth ESB and Firestone Walker Nectar IPA. Tickets are $85, which includes food, drinks, taxes and gratuity. Seats are limited, so reserve a spot at www.tuskies.com.

By Fritz Hahn and Justin Rude  | January 31, 2011; 12:07 PM ET
Categories:  Bars and Clubs, Restaurants, Valentine's Day, Valentine's Day 2011  
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Comments

I go out with friends and coworkers 3-4 days a week. Sometime it is for Happy Hour, other times it is for trivia. I have had some good success with a site called http://dc.barhopolis.com. I have an Iphone and usually browse the cities nightlife on my phone. The App is Barhopolis and was free to download.

Posted by: charles1985 | February 1, 2011 1:56 AM | Report abuse

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