Posts Tagged ‘Reston’

A Food-Inspired Gift Guide

Posted by Editorial / Wednesday, December 10th, 2014

NoVA shopkeepers reveal the hot items of the season. —Nicole Bayne & Susannah Black

Northern Virginia Magazine Foodie Gift Guide 2014

Photo by Mollie Tobias.


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By the Number: 225 Pounds of Powdered Sugar on Display Today at Reston Regency Hyatt’s Gingerbread House

Posted by Editorial / Friday, November 28th, 2014

Reston Regency Hyatt's Gingerbread Village / Photo courtesy of Dustin Imbesi

Reston Regency Hyatt’s Gingerbread Village / Photo courtesy of Dustin Imbesi

By Nicole Bayne

The total number of pounds of powdered sugar used as “snow” for the Gingerbread Village on display at Reston Regency Hyatt, starting today. This number does not include sugar in the peppermints, gumdrops, candy canes and crushed Oreos also used as decoration. 

In addition, Reston Regency Hyatt estimates this year they are using:
-4 cases of egg whites
-6 quarts of honey
-6 quarts of molasses
-2 cases of brown sugar
-72 ounces of baking soda
-27 ounces of ginger
-18 ounces of allspice
-18 ounces of cinnamon
-8 pounds of shortening
-6 six pounds of eggs
-50 pounds of bread flour
-30 pounds of cake flour
-1 case of each of the following: strawberry licorice, gummy worms, cherry sours, flavor rods, green gems, red gems, white gems, jelly belly Sunkist, wrapped fruit gems, spice jelly drops, starlight mints peppermint and starlight mints spearmint. / 1763 Fountain Drive, Reston

(December 2014)

Doctor Strange Love

Parting ways with my physicians left me at a crossroads.

City Sprawl By Susan Anspach  •  Illustration by Matt Mignanelli

Illustration by Matt Mignanelli.

By Susan Anspach  •  Illustration by Matt Mignanelli

I don’t like to brag, but I’ve always been good at seeing the 3D image in 3D Magic Eye posters. Look once, you see a field of zigzagging blue shards; look a second time, see something that could pass for a dolphin swimming through a field of zigzagging blue shards. It’s a skill, and it’s marketable, in beach boardwalk shops and a few very specific illusionist Pinterest boards.

I had the sensation of that strange second look the year I went off my parents’ health insurance and purchased my own, because there are a lot of good doctors in Northern Virginia. But look again, and there are a lot of bad doctors, too.

I don’t fault the insurance. I am sure there were many fine doctors on that plan, only I had never selected a doctor before. Having called the same Manassas address home for 23 years, I went to the same doctors. In that time, my doctors came to know my charts backwards and forwards. They didn’t call me by my first name; they called me by my nickname. These were the people who taught me how to put in contact lenses, to floss my teeth, to take my birth-control pill at the same time every day. In grade school, I spent every third Tuesday morning getting my braces tightened by the same man. I felt loyal to my doctors. They were loyal to me. I was my general practitioner’s daughter’s maid of honor.

Even so, I didn’t realize how many doctors I had, until I didn’t have any doctors. When I changed plans, I asked a girl at work for the name of her dermatologist. She had been hired even more recently than I had been, but she gave me a name and it was on the list. A phone call to the Alexandria office didn’t raise any red flags.

On arriving, there were a couple red flags. Gray stuffing was spilling out the armrests in the waiting room. The fish were practically panting from their low tank water levels. The lights flickered, and there were flyers advertising the lawn-work services of one of the firm’s doctors. I signed in, then called my coworker on her cellphone to ask where she had gotten the name. She folded fast, admitting she found him on the Internet and hadn’t yet met him herself. If it’s uncomfortable, she told me, get out of there. I could practically hear her other hand punching the numbers on her work phone to cancel her own pending appointment.

To myself, I reasoned that I didn’t want to be classist. I reasoned further that I’d been planning on taking the whole morning off work. Plus I had already told the front desk I was there. It would be rude to take the free lawn-work flyers thrust upon me and run.

Eventually I was called back to see the doctor, whose very watery, very protruding eyes made me feel as though my pores were magnified under their gaze, and he wasn’t any parts thrilled about it. I was imprisoned in his exam room no fewer than 90 minutes, the longest medical appointment of my life, during which I was diagnosed with six skin conditions. (I didn’t treat any of them, yet here I stand.) Now and then he managed to set aside feelings of contempt for my face to treat me to his opinions on the Democratic Party, his ex-wife and the slipshod skincare routine of the patient before me.

I spent nights awake knowing that my phone number lived in a manila folder in his office, and resolved to be more selective in the future.

The next month I needed a renewed birth-control prescription from a gynecologist. This was a more delicate search, but I didn’t want to take chances. I talked to several coworkers, plus a few friends and my roommate. I reviewed the Internet boards for myself. After the last time, I was looking for a seasoned and no-nonsense professional.

My appointment with the Reston doctor I’d selected was for eight o’clock in the morning. I signed in with the receptionist at 8:03. Hardly a minute had passed before I was whisked back to an exam room where my physician, a terror of a woman wearing latex gloves and a glower, was already waiting. She asked me if I knew how many minutes late I was, or how many patients she had scheduled to see that day. She may as well have snapped the finger of her right glove before pointing to the curtained partition where I could undress.

I wondered if I’d been coddled by my doctors until this point in my life, if knowing them all as a young girl had led them to treat me, even into adulthood, as a young girl. I thought about other times I’d had to see doctors outside my regular team. Two visits to the emergency room stuck out as memorable, one for a gash to the head when I was 6 years old, another for appendicitis when I was 25. At 6, I was treated to my choice of Tootsie Pop, for having bravely endured stitches. At 25, I got to eat cream- and gelatin-based desserts every meal, for having bravely endured laparoscopic abdominal surgery that required a diet of soft foods.

Now, overdue for a tooth cleaning, I longed for my old dentist, the same one who’d squeezed my teeth straight every three weeks for two years, a meek man whose office had consisted of only three rooms. He had worked with a single hygienist and his wife, who sat at the front desk with a stack of Highlights magazines and knew all our pets’ names.

This time, I wasn’t going to screw up. I asked everyone for the name of their dentists, then counterchecked them against “Best of” lists in magazines and tarot-card readings of the numbers corresponding to their first and last initials. I decided on a man in Chantilly who had a sterling record by all counts, then arrived early for my appointment, filling the paperwork out with handwriting I practiced first on a receipt.

I was ushered back by a punctual and smiling hygienist, who draped a bib over my shirt and made small talk appropriate to a dentist’s, asking questions I could answer with happy or neutral grunts. I began to relax and pay less attention to the assembly of metal instruments cropping out of my mouth. My mouth was watering some but I didn’t think much of it.

After a while, my hand seemed to keep getting in the way of a plastic stick bumping into it. I tried repositioning, but wherever I went, the stick, being scooted around by the hygienist, followed. Finally I understood that I was meant to grab hold of the stick and pop it into my mouth to vacuum out my saliva. Had I never used a suction pump before? I garbled apologies and explained how my old dentist had used a spit cup. The hygienist was amazed. He had last seen a spit cup, he confessed, at a conference he attended in 1980s Hungary.

Briefly, I wondered if my loyalty had been misplaced, whether my childhood dentist had been out of touch since my fifth birthday and I’d just never known better. Then the hygienist paged my new dentist, and what little I saw of him, I liked fine. We didn’t talk much, but there wasn’t much to say. My X-rays checked out. I didn’t need drill work. He checked under my top lip and praised the bright pink of my gums.

Someone, he said, really taught you how to floss.

@CitySprawlNVMag offers free medical advice on Twitter.

(November 2014)

Wavy lines on I-66 confuse drivers; Reston kart driver, 18, in coma after crash

By Carten Cordell

Wavy lane stripping causes confusion on I-66

Reston kart driver Ayrton Climo, 18, in coma in Quebec after crash
(The Washington Post)

McDonnell judge emerges as a personality in the trial
(The Washington Post)

D.C. Area Schools Braced For Influx Of Unaccompanied Minors

Seven Boozy Milkshakes to Try This Weekend

Posted by Editorial / Friday, August 22nd, 2014

By Allison Michelli

Whether stepping out for a night on the town or enjoying with burgers and fries, adult milkshakes are the ideal way to turn up while also satisfying your sweet tooth.


  • 1. FANFARE eatery, Spiked Shakes Add a shot of Kahlua, Frangelico or Bailey's Irish Cream to any regular milkshake on their menu for $4.00 more. Coming soon to their menu will be “Specialty Adult Milkshakes” like Hot Fudge Bourbon and Salted Caramel. / Photo courtesy of FANFARE eatery.

  • 2. Joe's Amazing Burgers, Bourbon Caramel Adult Milkshake A strong blend of Jack Daniel's whiskey, caramel sauce and vanilla ice cream. $10/ Photo by Jill Laroussi.

  • 3. Ray's to the Third, Shake and Bake Vanilla ice cream blended with caramel and chocolate sauce and a shot of Jim Beam bourbon. Don't forget the bacon on top! $10. / Photo by Cristian Cguilar.

  • 4. The Counter, Salted Caramel Adult Milkshake The best of both worlds: salty and sweet. Vanilla ice cream blended with Stoli Vanil, Baileys caramel and pretzels. $9. / Photo courtesy of The Counter.

Still feeling thirsty? Three more places for adult shakes.

Alamo Drafthouse Cinema, 20575 E. Hampton Plaza, Ashburn.

Ted’s Bulletin, 11948 Market Street, Reston.

Vivefy Burger and Lounge, 314 William Street, Fredericksburg.



New on the Block: Restaurant Scouting in Northern Virginia

Posted by Editorial / Monday, August 18th, 2014

Photo by Stefanie Gans

A continuation of new and almost opened restaurants in NoVA.

By Ariel Yong

Europa Restaurant is owned by Humberto Fuentes and is expected to open in Herndon by mid-September. Fuentes currently owns El Manantial in Reston but says he will close it once construction has finished for Europa. His new Mediterranean-inspired restaurant will focus on French cuisine and have a similar menu to the one at El Manantial’s. / 790 Station St., Herndon  


Kobe House in Eden Center opened last month. This family business serves pho Kobe and will add Kobe steak to the menu in the future. / 6763 Wilson Boulevard, Store 6a, Falls Church


Natalie’s is a Vietnamese sandwich shop that is set to open in Fairfax in mid-October. In addition to the banh-mi-inspired sandwiches, it will also serve crepes and beignets. / 10407 Main St., Fairfax

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D.C. police on manhunt after detective shooting; Obama Administration plans oil exploration off Atlantic Coast

By Elke Thoms

D.C. police on manhunt after attempted carjacking and shooting of an off-duty detective
(The Washington Post)

Reston engineer fits cat with collar that maps neighbors’ Wi-Fi networks

The Obama Administration announces plan for oil and gas exploration off Atlantic Coast

Ex-Fairfax Deputy charged with shoplifting will go on trial
(Leesburg Today)

Hungry for Linkage: Shake Shack Opens in Tysons Today + Bloody Mary Meets Fried Chicken + Eat Gelato

Posted by Editorial / Monday, August 11th, 2014

Dulce de Leche from Casa Rosada / Photo by Stefanie Gans

By Allison Michelli

Shake Shack’s new location in Tysons Corner opens today.  [dcist]

Bored with burgers and hot dogs? Switch it up with this step-by-step guide to making fish tacos. [Bon Appetit]

Urban beekeeper and sea urchin diver top this list of extreme and exciting food jobs that will make you rethink your average nine-to-five. [First We Feast]

Reston’s Lake Anne Market and Deli is a hidden gem for authentic Latin American food. [restonnow]

This  bloody mary costs $50 and is topped with an entire fired chicken. [foodiggity]

Restaurant Week starts today. [RAMW]
Another reason to slick on the bug spray, a bite from the Lone Star tick can cause an onset allergy to meat. [The Daily Meal]

Pictured: Eat gelato at Casa Rosada Artisan Gelato in Old Town Alexandria. 

Dip Into Doah Fest

Posted by Editorial / Monday, August 4th, 2014

By Elke Thoms

Doah Fest

Courtesy of Olivia Pisaretz

On an evening in April of last year, four friends were sitting on the patio of a bar talking about music festivals. As they discussed what they liked and didn’t like about the festivals they’d attended, the idea of starting their own festival popped up, igniting a conversation.

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Fitness Classes to Get You Out of Your Rut

Stuck running in circles on the treadmill? Try one of these innovative classes to give your body a boost. –Anjelica Michael



Photo courtesy of SURFSET Fitness.

What’s the workout?
SURFSET is a cardio workout to gain lean muscle which is done atop an electric surfboard to simulate a real surfing experience.

What’s the equipment?
The board, known as the RipSurfer X®, uses air beneath the board to simulate the surf experience. It makes the body balance and strengthens the core. Resistance bands can be attached to the side of the board for added arm exercises.

“We try to paint the atmosphere of being the sun and the sand. We use the sensation of pushing and paddling through water during the workout,” says SURFSET Master Trainer Jen Frankel. “We take you out of Virginia and try and take you to Bali or Hawaii or the Caribbean.”

One SURFSET workout (60 minutes) can burn between 500 and 900 calories.

Crunch Tysons Corner and Crunch Reston Town Center; $38.99 per month for membership, one trial class free.


Or try some of these other workouts…

Channel the positive vibes around you with KAZAXE (Kah-Zah-Shay), a bootcamp dance-fitness class designed to boost your energy through high-intensity movements and upbeat international music. This workout, uniquely created by Azuka-Bom, is one-hour of dancing while squatting, lunging and twerking. The class is held in a large garage which is completely dark but for small skylights and a colorful lightshow.  The teacher and some backup dancers teach from a raised stage in front of the class. Annandale Sports Center, , $6 per-class or $80 monthly for unlimited per month

This is not about working out, but realizing your body’s full physical potential. This two-hour class will teach you the basics of Parkour, an urban activity that involves running, jumping and climbing. Through the intense session you will jump and move your way around obstacles. As you move on, you get the chance to tackle obstacle courses throughout the gym. Urban Evolution (Alexandria and Manassas), $40 per class or unlimited for $140 for unlimited per month

Level 1 Aerial Silks
Ever marveled at the acrobatics of Cirque Du Soleil? Tone up and gain core strength with this aerial class while suspended in the air from hanging silks. Although, gaining strength is not the only benefit, the aerial silks class will also make you more flexible. Each class is one hour in duration, where you will practice climbing, aerial poses and basic holds. These classes are in packages of six weeks to learn all the skills. Polar Fitness (Fredericksburg), $35 for drop-in or $180 for a six-week plan

(July 2014)

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