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“Favorite place in Bethesda when I visit” 5 of 5 bubbles
Review of The Barking Dog

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The Barking Dog
Ranked #112 of 347 Restaurants in Bethesda
Price range: $0 - $10
Cuisines: American, Bar, Pub
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Good for: Bar scene
Dining options: Dinner, Drinks, Lunch, Late Night, Seating, Serves Alcohol, Waitstaff
Fort Collins, Colorado
Level Contributor
10 reviews
6 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
“Favorite place in Bethesda when I visit”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed June 17, 2014

I love the Dog! For several years I have traveled to Bethesda 2-4 times per year for business. I never miss a night at The Barking a Dog on at least one night of my trip. The staff is the absolute friendliest. Matt, one of the bartenders, always remembers our group and often remembers our favorite beverages--feels like "home". Whenever we have new colleagues join us in Bethesda, we make sure to "indogtrinate" them :)

The menu is definitely bar food, but, hey, it's a bar! Their burgers are awesome and I have never left hungry. Different visits have brought different bar experiences, karaoke, trivia night, poker tourney, etc. Always fun!

  • Visited June 2014
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Food
Helpful?
Thank Michelle M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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36 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
    11
    8
    14
    1
    2
Rating summary
    Food
    Service
    Value
    Atmosphere
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Any
English first
Manassas, Virginia
Level Contributor
14 reviews
6 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 18 helpful votes
“Great Space for Rehearsal Dinner or Party!”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed May 5, 2014

This review is specific to hosting a party at the Barking Dog, although we have eaten in the restaurant and the atmosphere is great as is the food!

My (now) husband and I were looking for a laid back location for our rehearsal dinner, walking distance from our Bethesda venue. After an endless stream of vendors who weren't quite right for us (couldn't work within our price point, didn't seem right for us) we e-mailed Paul, at the Barking Dog. Immediately, he was enthusiastic and a joy to work with. The space, the second floor of the restaurant is very cool, with windows, a dance floor and a 1970's party in a haunted house sort of vibe (we didn't decorate it - I'm sure the vibe is easily converted). The menu was completely flexible, and we were able to change it several times with no problems (thanks so much Paul!). Although our guests loved the food, thought the wait staff was the friendliest ever, and the venue very cool, our favorite part was how much fun the kids in the wedding party had! After a long rehearsal (and a lot of travel), our many young wedding party members (and siblings, ages 1-5) tore around the space, laughing and playing games! Many of our guests commented that this was the first time they had been at a rehearsal dinner where the children were having a blast, as opposed to miserable, and that is all thanks to the great staff and setting at Barking Dog!

  • Visited April 2014
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Food
Helpful?
Thank Sarah T
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
Level Contributor
22 reviews
13 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
“Good stop for a drink”
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed January 9, 2014

Place is a good stop for a drink. It is the closest you'll find to a 'dive' bar in Bethesda. Food is typical bar food.

Visited August 2013
Helpful?
Thank Scubadooda
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Baltimore, Maryland
Level Contributor
35 reviews
24 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 12 helpful votes
“Different the the Bethesda norm, but meh.”
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed September 11, 2013

This is not your typical Bethesda bar. As for decor this is what an old school bar looks like, old wood bar, old wood and tile floor, that old school tavern look. Something far out-of-place then the rest of the place in Bethesda, something more that would think to see in the Fells Point section of Baltimore.

I happened to visit on a Friday, not long after working hours were over. I would have though it would have been busier. A pretty good crowd was on one side where the tables were, but their was practically no one at or around the bar.

Was greeted pretty quickly and would have to say that the bartenders were pretty friendly and engaging. The beer selection, at least draft wise, isn't to bad. Usual mix of your macro brews, but they have several craft brews on tap to balance it out, from some local brewhouses to some of the bigger ones. To my surprise they actually ran a drink special on a Friday, i say that because well you don't usually see a drink special on a Fridays as much as you used to, unless you go early and this one was an all day thing, and particularly less so in the DC area, at least that has been my experience. My drink of choice, and the special, was Red Hook ESB, which as much as a drink beer i have passed on a number of time before. And to be honest, i liked it.

I did order food while i was their. ANd the only thing i could tell you is that it was a burger and it came with fries. Can't tell you which one, but they do have several. It was cooked to order, wasn't that bad, but noting impressive, which is why i perhaps can't recall which one i had.

All in all it wasn't a bad experience. So why didn't i score it higher. Well several things. While it was a pretty warm day outside, the Barking Dog was like an ice box. Seriously AC felt like it was on full blast. I considered going back to may car to grab a hoodie.

Next the vibe, i just didn't feel it. It seemed like their should be something more to this place, but i couldn't say what. But something was missing. Perhaps it was the time of day, maybe things are different later. Or it could have been how i was feeling, didn't have that great of a day. Granted the DC vibe is a bit different then what i am used to, but still, i just didn't feel it.

Last was the price. While the drink special was good, think it was $3 for a pint, which for a DC area bar, and for a craft/micro beer (if you want to place Red Hook in that category, which some don't), that's a pretty good price. The food though, well that's another story. The burger ran almost $14 including a couple extra toppings that added to the price. Now ok, it's the DC area, yeah i figured it was gonna be a bit more pricer, the type of establishment besides the fact. What i wasn't expecting was the portion size. Pretty much a normal serving of fries. The burger however, ugh, was in between a slider and a what one would think of a regular sized burger. For $14 i would have expected not only something bigger, i mean a regular sized one would have been nice, but also something a little more impressive and less pedestrian taste wise.

Would i go back? Yeah, maybe. Perhaps things are different later in the evenigs/night or on the weekends. But you have a grab bag of establishments in walking distance and nothing really makes me say that the Barking Dog is a must go to.

  • Visited August 2013
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Food
Helpful?
Thank boothy443
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Bethesda, Maryland
Level Contributor
113 reviews
84 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 39 helpful votes
“Old-timey bar with good selection of draft beers”
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed August 21, 2013

Nine of us enjoyed beers and burgers here in this dark, popular bar. The dinner menu is principally hamburgers with different accompaniments: bacon, blue cheese, cheddar cheese, barbecue sauce. Burgers appeared to use good beef and were cooked to order. Fries were good, too. A dozen interesting brews were on tap. Service was cordial. Bartender responded promptly when we complained about the taste of the stout. He agreed that it was "off" and offered a replacement. Entertainment varies with the day of the week: karioke, quiz night, etc. Good time was had by all.

  • Visited August 2013
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Atmosphere
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Service
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Food
Helpful?
Thank Dr_J_F_M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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