As You Are Bar, the newest queer bar on the circuit, launched its soft opening on Tuesday, with some special guests in attendance.
Out Secretary of Transportation Pete Buttigieg and his husband Chasten were among those who dropped by As You Are Bar, which opened Tuesday in the Southeast quadrant of Washington, D.C., the Washington Blade reports.
“It was wonderful,” co-owner Jo McDaniel told the Blade of the soft opening. “It was like a salon of people who sat together and chatted, and many stayed the whole night.”
Of Buttigieg and his husband, she said, “They wanted to show their support. They live in the neighborhood. And he took a lot of pictures, which was nice.”
McDaniel and Rachel Pike, who are both co-owners of the bar and life partners, first announced plans for As You Are Bar, an all-inclusive queer space, in 2021. They moved into their current location in December.
The bar is currently operating its first-floor cafe, which serves food and beverages. A bathroom-expansion is needed before Pike and McDaniel can open the second floor, which is slated to include a dance floor and entertainment venue. The expansion is pending approval in the Department of Consumer and Regulatory Affairs, the Blade reports, with the couple planning on a full opening later this year.
As You Are Bar is currently open Tuesdays through Thursdays, 12 p.m to 12 a.m, and Fridays through Sundays 12 p.m. to 3 a.m.
“All the rumors are true,” Pike and McDaniel wrote in a Facebook message posted this week. “We are open. Y’all come through!”