Best jazz club: Blues Alley Jazz Club

Media Credit: Camille Ramasastry | Hatchet Photographer

1073 Wisconsin Ave.

Every day after 6 p.m., in a nondescript alley off of Wisconsin Avenue, you can find a line forming by the Blues Alley Jazz Club. Most people come here to listen to the live musical performances, but you can visit the club to simply absorb Blues Alley’s rich history too.

With its quaint tables and brick walls, Blues Alley is an intimate space and has hosted jazz legends like Lee Ritenour, Mose Allison, Eva Cassidy and Kevin Eubanks since it first opened in 1965.

One of the longest-running jazz clubs in D.C., Blues Alley attempts to recreate the atmosphere of jazz clubs from the 1920s and 1930s. During performances, the lights are dimmed to create a cozy candle-­lit vibe, and you won’t be bothered by other guests trying to snap the perfect photo because cellphones are not allowed.

The club offers two shows every day at 8 p.m. and 10 p.m. While the tickets can cost between $20 to $45, students with a valid student ID can nab a 50 percent discount on most tickets. There is no dress code, but Blues Alley’s patrons, who are mostly older professionals, dress in business casual.

Blues Alley features Creole cuisine, but beware because dinner can be costly. But if you’re feeling bold, treat yourself to a cocktail and Maynard Ferguson’s Cajun chicken ($20.50). You can also try the cheaper “late fare” menu, which is available during the 10 p.m. show and after and features items such as Keter Betts’ chicken fingers ($9.25) and Eddie Palmieri’s Beef Po’ Boy ($12.50).

Readers’ pick: Blues Alley Jazz Club

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