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April’s New and Almost Open restaurants in Northern Virginia

Posted by / Wednesday, April 23rd, 2014

New and Almost Open restaurants in Northern Virginia

Photo courtesy of 360b/

Need a new spot to nosh? Here is a list of new restaurants now open and soon-to open.

Adventure Brewing Company, Fredericksburg, Beer, $; Expected May

Al-Huda Hookah and Smoothie Bar, Arlington, Hookah, $; Expected May

Anthony’s Restaurant, Falls Church, Italian, $; Expected May

Ben’s Chili Bowl, Arlington, Hot dogs, $; Now Open.
| MORE: Ben’s chili cheese fries.

Burapa Café, Haymarket, Thai, $; Opens Friday, April 25

Caboose Brewing Company, Vienna, Beer, $$; Expected June.
MORE: Caboose’s kid-friendly brewery plan.

Corcoran Brewing Company, Purcellville, Beer, $; Now Open.
| MORE: Corcoran reopens in booze-packed Purcellville.

Fiona’s Irish Pub, Alexandria, Irish, $$; Expected May

Four Sisters Grill, Arlington, Vietnamese, $; Now Open

Monument Coffee Roasters, Manassas, Coffee Tasting Room, $; Expected May.
| MORE: Monument’s pledge for single-origin roasted beans.

Paladar Latin Kitchen & Rum Bar, Tysons Corner, Latin American, $$; Expected May

Tres Hermanas, Alexandria, Mexican, $$; 703-370-3800; Expected May.
| MORE: Tres Hermanans takes over Mango Mike’s.

Republic at Arlington, Arlington, Southern Comfort, $$; Now Open.  
| MORE: Republic crowdsources favorite cocktails.

Urban Pantry, Arlington, Market & Sandwiches, $, 571-335-4983; Now Open.  
| MORE: Urban Pantry combines retail, sandwiches and gelato

(April 2014)


Hungry for Linkage: ‘Save Our Sound’ Campaign Continues in Leesburg + Tank-Farmed Salmon in NoVA + Taste of Vienna this Saturday

Posted by / Wednesday, April 23rd, 2014


By Evan Milberg

Atlantic salmon grown at a “recirculating aquaculture facility” in Shepherdstown, W.Va. is available for a brief period in some Northern Virginia restaurants, reports Whitney Pipkin, including: River Falls Seafood, Trummer’s on Main, Victoria Gastro Pub, Wegman’s, It’s About Thyme, The Meat House and River Creek Country Club. “They have been chipping away at the sustainability issues that plague this farmed fish’s reputation by growing it in land-based tanks without the use of antibiotics or hormones.” [WaPo]

Tysons Corner is getting a new restaurant at 8605 Westwood Center Drive with hookahs and cocktails. [Eater]

Reevaluating the scientific link between diet, superfoods, vegetables and cancer. [NYT]

“Our current sound ordinance is very business unfriendly, and places such severe limits on outdoor music that it effectively bans it. I urge you to remind the Town Council ( to pass a reasonable noise ordinance of at least 70dBA, that balances the rights of both the businesses and property owners,” writes Leesburg’s Vice Mayor Dave ButlerMacDowell Brew Kitchen is leading the fight to “Save Our Sounds” in Leesburg. The next meeting is scheduled for June 9. [, Leesburg Today]

Coming this Saturday: Taste of Vienna, hosted by the Vienna Volunteer Fire Department. [Taste of Vienna]

Robert Wiedmaier (of Braboplans for a restaurant at Reagan Airport. [Eater]


Don’t Wait for The Italian Store’s New Market in Westover: Here’s a Dessert Preview Available Now

Posted by / Tuesday, April 22nd, 2014

Photo Courtesy of the Italian Store

By Stefanie Gans

After five years and several failed offers, Robert Tramonte found another location for The Italian Store: in Westover, between Arlington and East Falls Church. “It’s going to be The Italian Store on steroids,”  says Tramonte, with the new location—expected to open this fall—complete with an onsite bakery, espresso bar and coveted in-store and patio seating.

Besides sandwiches, there will be charcuterie boards and gelato, from former Laboratorio Del Galileo (D.C.) pastry chef Gianluigi Dellaccio who studied gelato-making in Italy and started his own company, Dolci Gelati.  

While the construction continues in the former 7-Eleven space (which used to be a Safeway), a few of the Italian desserts are now available at The Italian Store on Lee Highway. “You see them in Italy in the mornings,” says Tramonte about his in-house pastries, which started to be available under-the-radar for the last few months. 

1. Cannoli
The most recognizable treat, a pastry shell rolled like a cigar filled with sweetened impastata ricotta and chocolate chips. This thicker ricotta stays better within the shells, and says Tramonte, makes “ours are a little more authentic.”

2. Genovese
A dome-shaped pastry filled with custard, chocolate chip bits and orange blossom, “it has more cream in it than all the rest,” says Tramonte. “I think we’re the only place I’ve seen it” in Northern Virginia.

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MacDowell Brew Kitchen’s Campaign to ‘Save Our Sounds;’ Town Council Meeting on Decibel Level Tomorrow

Posted by / Monday, April 21st, 2014


A chart of common noises at least 70 decibels / Evan Milberg

By Evan Milberg

Once again, MacDowell Brew Kitchen is fighting to keep the party alive. Last year, the bar’s sandy beach area was in jeopardy due to a zoning violation, but was saved by a 5-1 vote by the Leesburg Town Council. This year, a sound ordinance limiting the amount of public sound in Leesburg to 70 decibels could mean the end of live music at MacDowell’s and other businesses in Leesburg.

To combat the ordinance, MacDowell’s is hoping to garner public support through a petition,“Save Our Sounds.” The petition asks the Council “to make a rational decision allowing a more reasonable [decibel] range … from 8 a.m. – 10 p.m. Sunday through Wednesday, and from 8 a.m. – 11 p.m. Thursday through Saturday.” Among the businesses supporting MacDowell with the petition is Shoe’s Cup & Cork, another Leesburg bar that residents have filed a noise complaint against.

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Hungry for Linkage: VA Politicians Pledge for Veg Week + Powdered Alcohol + Women Food Critics

Posted by / Monday, April 21st, 2014


By Stefanie Gans

Why it’s important women are hired as food critics. [Grub Street]

US VegWeek starts today and NoVA’s Patrick Hope, State DelegateIngrid H. Morroy, Arlington Commissioner of RevenuePaul Ferguson,Arlington and Falls Church Clerk of the Circuit Court; and Bruce Shuttleworth, Democratic candidate for Congress took the pledge to go meatless for seven days. [US VegWeek]

Loudoun County: full of upscale burger chains and craft beer. [Loudoun Times]

Ikea meatballs move from horse-filled to vegetarian friendly. [Grub Street]

Millennials on food: “We like shiny things and organic everything.” [The Braiser]

The world is doomed. Welcome, powdered alcohol. [Gawker]


Cravings: The Ramen Burger at Parallel Wine Bistro

Posted by / Friday, April 18th, 2014

Photo by Stefanie Gans

By Stefanie Gans

Dish: Ramen Burger, served with duck fat fries, $12

Where: Parallel Wine Bistro43135 Broadlands Center Plaza, Suite 121, Broadlands

Taste: Served at brunch only, this beef patty seasoned with salt, pepper and a little soy is sandwiched not in a bun, but with two squares of ramen noodles. The ramen burger trend started in New York last summer by Keizo Shimamoto of Go Ramen (he’s now opening a restaurant) and it hit Northern Virginia at Parallel Wine Bistro.  

The effect turns the ramen into something resembling kugel, the Jewish dish of noodle pudding. The ramen is cooked three-quarters of the way through and mixed with sesame seeds, ginger, sesame oil and a beaten yolk. It’s reshaped with pie cutters and then placed in the freezer for 15 minutes. At order, the noodles fry for just a few minutes to crisp up. The beef is certainly the star here, as it should be with burgers, but the noodles add an extra element of fun—and have sparked the interest of one of Parallels’s chefs, Sam McGee.

“I saw someone doing a ramen taco,” says McGee. “That’ll probably never get on the menu.  That’ll just be more for personal glory.”

MORE | Cravings


Hungry for Linkage: Yoga & Brunch + NoVA Easter Dining + Matzah Nail Polish

Posted by / Friday, April 18th, 2014

Brunch at La Tagliatella / Photo Courtesy of Black Door Photography

 By Natalie Manitius

Start the morning with poses, eggs and bubbles at La Tagliatella‘s Yoga Brunch, starting this Saturday: An hour-long outdoor lesson from Mind The Mat Pilates & Yoga (starts at 10 a.m.) comes with an entree and choice of a bellini or mimosa for $35.  (Check Facebook for weather cancellations.)

Where to eat this Easter Sunday. [NoVA Mag]

Celebrate Passover with some matzah nail polish. Disclaimer: Nail biting may increase.

NoVA eaters get spoiled with the upcoming opening of Nicecream Factory, a made-to-order ice cream shop coming to Clarendon. [ARLnow]

Give the kids a taste of adulthood this Easter with the new beer-flavored Jelly Beans.[NPR]


Absinthe-Soaked Cheese from Brooklyn and More Cheeses to Know, Curated by The Curious Grape’s New Cheesemonger Katie Carter

Posted by / Thursday, April 17th, 2014

Cheesemonger Katie Carter at The Curious Grape / Photo Courtesy of Christopher Byrne

By Natalie Manitius

At age 11 Katie Carter visited a creamery in the Savoie region of France, “back in the ’80s when brie was a big deal,” she says, and from there, became hooked on the ways of cheese. Before being named earlier this month as the new cheesemonger at The Curious Grape in Shirlington, Carter: dropped out of college to work at McLeod Creamery of Oak Grove Farm in Marshall and with just six months of cheese-making experience was recruited to work as the cheese buying manager for Arrowine Cheese in Arlington, while attending artisanal cheese classes in New York. She also helped open Cowgirl Creamery in D.C. and started her own cheese-making company. 

Carter says she plans for “a more intelligent, thought-out cheese plate that will kind of mimic what’s coming out of the kitchen,” like pairing cheeses with a spring strawberry basil compote. She also wants to hold tastings to teach the science behind beer and cheese pairings, offer cut-to-order cheese for retail (instead of letting wedges sit in “plastic, [the] enemy of cheese,” says Cater) and debut housemade cheese for the kitchen’s use. 

Here, Carter walks through new cheeses from  The Curious Grape:

Absinthe-Soaked Cheese from Brooklyn
A cheese called the Miranda, initially made and aged in a Brooklyn apartment, will be part of the new cheese menu. Bringing in his Dutch background, Jos Vulto crafts a half-pound wheel using raw cow’s milk, washing it after production in absinthe. Carter describes it as “beautifully sweet, it’s amazing. Like you would think it would take on that liquor-ish quality, kind of really super strong, but it actually sweetens the cheese. It’s so lovely. The texture is this semi-soft, silky, really smooth texture.”

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The New CSA: Community Supported Medicine

Posted by / Wednesday, April 16th, 2014

Lancaster Farm Fresh Cooperative's Harvest Tea Blend / Photo Courtesy of Michael Donaghy

By Evan Milberg

“Food is medicine and medicine is food,” says Casey Spacht, the co-founder of Lancaster Farm Fresh Cooperative (LFFC), a network of 85 different farms, selling herbs, tonics and syrups throughout the East Coast. One of the farms in the cooperative is Spacht and Elisabeth Weaver‘s Lancaster Farmacy in Pennsylvania. 

If an apple a day keeps a doctor away, then Spacht and Weaver are looking to keep you out of the doctor’s office with their collection of herbs and medicines. Lancaster Farmacy offers a unique form of community supported farming: shared medicine, also known as community-supported medicine, or CSM. The idea was inspired by Weaver’s work at Goldthread Herb Farm in Massachusetts where Weaver learned about CSM and applied it to her farm with Spacht.  

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Hungry for Linkage: Peter Chang’s Following + Nat Geo’s New Food Site + Menchie’s Opens in Sterling

Posted by / Wednesday, April 16th, 2014

Chef Peter Chang / Photo by Jonathan Timmes

By Evan Milberg

Menchie’s Frozen Yogurt has opened a frozen yogurt location at 45591 Dulles Eastern Plaza in Sterling. [Eater]

Where Peter Chang cooks, they will follow. According to the New York Times, that could include Fairfax later this year. [NYT]

Red Apron Butchery carries Nutella soft-serve, available in Mosaic District. [Twitter]

National Geographic has launched a new site dedicated to “the future of food.” [Nat Geo]

Tandoori Village in Manassas has closed for renovation. It will re-open some time in May. [Twitter]


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