O.K.P.B. is your favorite new speakeasy. We mean it. Nestled in the quaint Mt. Pleasant neighborhood, its daily rotating cocktail menu, disarming charm, and a trove of surprises keep you coming back again and again.
OUR ARTICLEBY: Andrew Williams Contributing writer
When the Sheppard closed its doors in January 2019, who knew what form the next iteration of the bar would take after it reemerged from the proverbial ashes.
In June 2021, we got our answer. The team behind O.K.P.B. introduced their latest speakeasy concept, bursting onto the local cocktail scene. They’ve nestled their drinking den in the quaint, whimsical Mt. Pleasant neighborhood — known for its family-friendly atmosphere, aging hipsters, and impressive offering of dining destinations, dive bars, quirky corners, pristine homes, one badass throwback movie theater, and tons of streetaries.
The neighborhood is a true gem — in every sense. The only feather missing from its cap, until recently, was a craft cocktail worthy of its affection, fierce protection of its mainstays, and station in the District.
In walks O.K.P.B. The mixologists, several of which are part owners, constructed many elements of the space with their bare hands. Their grit and disarming hospitality have paid off, charming everyone in their path.
You have to know it to find it. Marked only by a small buzzer on a Dentist’s door, one push and it’s not long before a host comes dashing down the steep stairwell to greet you. Up above is a moody, intimate space — only accommodating seated guests, except on special occasions — with a skylight, a window to the world where light pours in during the golden hour.
Wonderful flora and fauna, brilliant walls of red and gold, black octagonal floors, exposed brick above the bar, and two bathrooms in the back, hidden by two bookshelves, set the scene. It’s everything you want in a speakeasy (and then some). There’s intrigue, surprise, naughtiness (just check out the bathroom walls), and just plain merriment at every turn.
The best part? The menu rotates every day, keeping regulars on their toes and delighting first-timers — who we call would-be regulars in waiting. It’s the kind of convivial place that shuts down (literally) so everyone can attend a colleague’s wedding.
It’s a modern-day Cheers, that’s much (much) slicker and stylish.
When prodded about the mystery behind the bar name, they finally confess that it stands for “An Okay Place to Be.” We disagree. It’s anything but “okay.” The enchantment, every time we visit, is tangible.
It feels more like having a drink with your buddies, who, while f*cking around in the liquor cabinet, concoct some delicious, knock-your-socks-off creation. It’s an experience tailor-made for cocktail aficionados; if you can pinpoint your ideal flavor profile, they’ll deliver the off-menu goods, every time.
Give them a buzz —and don’t worry, it won’t be the last time you find yourself at their doorstep