Emissary is a great spot tucked away right off the main Dupont circle. It’s in the basement of a few connected row houses which just adds to its charm. Emissary is easy to miss, as it is a few steps down from street level. However, this is such a cool spot you’re definitely going to want to check it out. It’s a good combo spot whether you’re looking for a coffee shop for a Sunday afternoon or a low key Happy Hour on a Tuesday night.
Although the coffee shop-turned bar (in the evenings) isn’t street level, you’d never know by how light and airy the interior is. Emissary is furnished with a mix of your basic coffee tables, vintage furniture in the back, and a long marble bar.
However, the one thing we will note is that the set-up is a tad confusing after about 5pm. We went in the evening, right at Happy Hour, so I think they were expecting dine-in guests. After a slightly confusing moment, we decided to get our drinks to go. If you’d like to sit, you have to order food. While the menu had a bunch of good looking options, we had plans for dinner and only wanted grab and go drinks. Since we weren’t regulars, it took us a minute to figure out the whole “process” during HH time. That being said, the staff was really friendly and probably gets that a lot.
The coffee menu offers a lot of different options (and 4 different flavorings) for coffee and other breakfast beverages like tea and matcha. We didn’t look as closely at the drink & dining options, but we are planning on returning and checking them out so stay tuned.
I went with a caramel iced-coffee, a pretty basic order. I was a bit disappointed since it felt like it may have been the morning brew. E mentioned that it might be because I ordered iced coffee at 5:30pm. But, I think, if you’re a coffee shop/bar combo open until 11pm you should at the very least have fresh coffee until 7pm.
I (E) got an iced matcha latte with almond milk which which was made quickly and tasted perfect. I literally drank it in 2 minutes so it definitely hit the spot. We definitely want to go back during HH now that we have a better idea of the flow/vibe during that time of day. We loved that it was more of a DC favorite as opposed to a “tourist” spot especially for being so close to Dupont Circle. We know a lot of you love going there so definitely let us know your thoughts in the comments/insta if you have any recommendations for next time!