Meet: Chris Burdette

The Corner Pub drinksmith knows everybody's name.

If Silver Spring had its own version of Cheers, the bar featured on the popular NBC TV show, the Corner Pub would be it. This long-standing Four Corners destination is truly a place “where everybody knows your name,” and if not, bartender Chris Burdette is more than happy to make introductions.

“This really is a neighborhood bar, with a lot of regulars – most days, I can look around, and I know everyone,” said Burdette.

A former real estate agent, Burdette had to change career path when the housing bubble burst several years ago. Since 2007, he has been behind the bar at the Corner Pub, but cut his teeth at Carraba’s Bar & Grill in Germantown. He prefers the casual and relaxed atmosphere better in Silver Spring, and enjoys having a good time with his customers.

“We have this one trick we like to play on some of our regulars,” Chris said with a sly smile. “Everyone does the green beer thing on St. Patrick’s Day, but we have our own version. When a regular gets up to use the bathroom, sometimes we take the green dye [used to color draft beer green on St. Patrick’s Day] and smear it around the lip of their beer bottle, turning their mouth bright green.”

While locals are the norm, the Corner Pub does get its share of local and national celebrities. Sports broadcasters chick Hernandez and Kelli Johnson are semi-regulars, and Burdette was a bit surprised to see NBC Nightly News anchor Brian Williams just last Sunday.

Draft beer and rail drinks make up the majority of customer orders, but like any good bartender, Chris has a special drink for those who ask him for something different. The Dirty Girl Scout is a combination of crème de menthe, Bailey’s, Kahlua and peppermint schnapps, chilled and served in a shot glass.

“I’ve been coming here for more than 20 years,” said Kenny McCaw. “This place has a great atmosphere, and there are always friendly faces. McCaw’s point was proven as he greeted the next five patrons who walked through the door by name.

Burdette recalled some of the highs and lows of his time at The Corner Pub. He described a few scuffles, but likens the near-fights to a family, where “sometimes people spend too much time together and end up going at it a bit, but they make up quickly after.”

When asked about the highs, the answer came quickly “Once, I got a $200 tip on a $200 tab!”

The Corner Pub is a popular place for Washington Capitals fans, and is located at 10111 Sutherland Road.


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