Posted by Editorial / Tuesday, October 6th, 2015
Score one for Vienna. This month the town will get gourmet sandwiches, plus a butcher and a coffee shop, from three of its residents: Michael Amouri of Caffe Amouri and the husband and wife team of chef Tim Ma and Joey Hernandez of Tim Ma Restaurant Group (formerly of Maple Ave Restaurant).
Chase the Submarine, with seating for 30 guests, will go into 132 Church St. NW. Here are five things you need to know:
1. The subs span the globe
The sandwich menu is split into classics submarines and “Chase” submarines, several of which are throwbacks to when Ma and Hernandez operated MAX, a now-retired food truck. While some star Asian ingredients like kimchi, there is also a nod to Amouri’s heritage, as the George + Georgette is named for his Lebanese parents. They’ll be priced around $8 each. The following is a sample menu:
Wagyu Pastrami – House-smoked wagyu brisket, whole grain mustard creme fraiche, carrot sauerkraut, pickled shallots
Virginia Milano – Virginia ham, Olli Berkshire prosciutto, provolone
Steak & Cheese – Thinly sliced rib-eye, peppers and onions, American cheese
Pork + Pickles – Pineapple-braised Polyface pork shoulder, Dijon mustard, rambutan, Gruyere cheese, dill pickled apples
Smoked Free-Range Turkey – Bacon, mash potato, ground cherry relish
Belly Banh Mi – Foie gras pate, pork belly, daikon, cilantro, jalapeno
The Offal – Veal sweetbreads, bread and butter relish, gochujang
Sweet Beef Cheeks – Beer -braised beef cheek, tamarind sauce, baby Asian greens
George + Georgette – Ground lamb, burnt onion, Amouri yogurt
Bulgogi Submarine – Asian pear-marinated rib-eye, kimchi puree, roasted scallion
Vegetarian Curry – Roasted butternut squash, roasted eggplant, fingerling potato, curry
2. What you’re bringing home
Chase the Submarine is at its core a sandwich shop, but there will also be butchery and pantry components. “We have this large butcher counter, and we want to put on display what we’re doing rather than it being done behind closed doors,” Ma says. They’ll sell custom cuts of meat requested by customers, plus some in-house charcuterie. There’s more. Expect to peruse assorted pickles and ferments by the pint, sauces and house-spun ice cream in flavors such as chrysanthemum tea. Sip on Caffe Amouri coffee, soft drinks, beer and wine.
3. What’s with the name?
Ma, very much a family man, named the sandwich shop after his son Chase Ma. “He’s 3 years old right now and has no idea that he has a restaurant named after him, but I’m sure one day he’ll want royalties,” Ma explains.
4. They’re sourcing from Polyface Farms
Ma and Amouri will source as much as possible from Polyface Farms in the Shenandoah Valley near Staunton. Joel Salatin’s sustainable agriculture practices have made his products the gold standard among local farm-to-table chefs and restaurants, especially after Salatin’s role in the documentary “Food, Inc.” “He [Ma] has access to some of the premier suppliers that even other chefs don’t have access to,” Amouri says of his business partner. “It speaks to what’s in the sandwich.” Ma takes his staff to the farm every two years.
5. You’ll help shape the menu
While Ma and Amouri anticipate coming hot out of the gate serving offal-stuffed subs, they’ll ultimately listen to feedback from customers and fine tune the menu from there. “We’re in the suburbs of Virginia in a quaint town that knows what it likes,” Ma says. “We’ll start with my deals, then we’ll let the neighborhood dictate change—you have to be adaptable.” So don’t be afraid to speak up.
Chase the Submarine expects to open mid-October. “I’m pretty tapped into the community, and there’s nothing like it in this town,” Amouri says. “I get people into my shop, literally five people a day, that ask about it. They want to be the first customers to walk through the door—there’s definitely a buzz.”
Laura Hayes hails from Philly (but don’t hold it against her). She’s been covering the local dining scene for three years, and her work has been published in the Washington Post, Food Network, Washington City Paper, Arlington Magazine and more. Having lived in Japan for two years, she finds herself in a constant state of craving sushi. Laura always orders her favorite savory dish again for dessert and keeps her gut in check through lots of CrossFit classes.
Posted by Editorial / Friday, October 2nd, 2015
EDITOR’S NOTE: The Capitol City Brewing Company Oktoberfest has been rescheduled to Oct. 11. The event for this weekend has been canceled due to inclement weather.
By Nelia Dashiell & Jae O’Connor
Oct. 3, 11 a.m.-7 p.m. // The Vienna Oktoberfest is an annual event filled to the brim with beer, wine, food, music, vendors and tons of family friendly activities—all with free admission. There will be a variety of live music, children’s activities (including a moon bounce and climbing wall) and plenty of German-inspired food and adult beverages. / Historic Church Street in Vienna: Between Center Street and Mill Street, including the Town Green and the Caboose Parking Lot; 703-648-3290; Free
Oct. 11, noon-7 p.m. // Celebrate Capitol City Brewing Company’s 15th annual mid-Atlantic Oktoberfest with over 60 breweries and authentic German food and music. / Capitol City Brewing Company: 4001 Campbell Ave., Shirlington; 703-578-3888; $30 to sample beer, free to attend
Oct. 10, noon-11 p.m. Oct. 11, 11 a.m.-8 p.m. // Come out to Reston to join its ninth year hosting Oktoberfest. There will be live performances and a display of traditional German music and dancers featured throughout the Reston streets. This will definitely be a fun-filled event for all ages. / 11900 Market St., Reston; Free
Oct. 17-18, 11 a.m.-7 p.m. // Northern Virginia BrewFest is one of the area’s largest beer festivals, and it is not to be missed. With over 50 local and regional breweries, you’re guaranteed to find a new brew to love. There will also be plenty of activities and music for the entire family. / Bull Run Regional Park: 7700 Bull Run Drive, Centreville; $35 for adults, $10 for designated drivers, free for children under 16
Oct. 18, 1-4 p.m. // Join Sterling for the third annual Lindsay VW Oktoberfest. The theme for this year is German engineering. Come out to see the Volkswagen car show, which asks the guests to be the judges. Also, each attendee will have a chance to enter a raffle and win a selection of prizes. There will be a wide selection of food, local breweries and music. / 22455 Lindsay Cars Court, Sterling; Free
Posted by Editorial / Thursday, September 24th, 2015
The chainlet of Thai by Thai restaurants in Northern Virginia gets another location Oct. 1 (2676-A Avenir Place, Vienna) when the doors swing open in Merrifield. It will be the first to offer breakfast, giving diners a window into what chef and co-owner Eed Banchanurat Landon may have eaten in the morning growing up in Bangkok. Dishes will include a hearty rice porridge, coconut pudding, soft bread with Thai custard, roti pancakes and beignet-style doughnuts—all accompanied by hot or iced Thai coffee and tea. It’s a smart move, given the restaurant’s proximity to morning commuters headed to the Dunn Loring Metro Station.
Posted by Editorial / Monday, August 31st, 2015
By Robyn Smith
The Walking Guys, a group of four men all in their early- to mid-20s, began their journey in Portland, Maine, on July 8. Since then, they’ve walked almost 400 miles and played 30 gigs, and that’s just from the official tour list, which doesn’t include impromptu performances. The Walking Guys’ mantra is “Live Simple, Spread Music.” The group will make its way to Northern Virginia from Sept. 1-3, playing at Jammin Java in Vienna on Sept. 1. We spoke with Chris Kessenich as the group was just beginning their 15-mile daily walk to learn a little more about their journey so far.
What’s one thing you thought you could never leave behind?
That one might be tough. I feel like I’m pretty free and open to living without things. I guess the one thing that’s been most difficult or most stressful has been not really knowing where we sleep every night. So I guess my home as a whole or my apartment as a whole. And just knowing the location where you’ll rest your head every night is a big-time luxury that I totally had taken for granted throughout my life. The stress of trying to figure that out every night has been very interesting and very eye opening.
Before you began, how did people respond when you told them about the tour?
Most people were very confused. We’d go, ‘Yeah, we’re walking the whole tour,’ and they’d go, ‘What?!’ Then [we'd say] ‘Yeah, we’re planning on just walking,’ and they’d go, ‘What do you mean? How?’ and we’d explain: ‘Well, you take your right foot, then your left foot. You go one by one and you end up in a different place by the end of the day.’
On your website you discuss depending on the kindness of others for survival. What have been some of your kindest experiences so far?
There’s just an absolute laundry list of people. … Oh, Mama Gene. In Newport, Rhode Island, we were walking into town, and this lady stopped and started talking to us for a little bit and then after that conversation invited us to stay at her house for the remainder of the weekend. So while we were in Newport for like three days, she basically provided for us and helped us out. She gave us a place to stay, allowed us to go out and explore the city, go to the folk festival and play music there, and we actually found another gig as well.
Where are some of the places you’ve stayed?
So we have all of our camping gear. Every day we start out and very rarely know where we’re sleeping, and we just hope to try to find a place by meeting people. If not, we default to camping either in a park or on the side of the road or in the woods—basically anywhere we think we can set up without getting in trouble—and then head on out the next morning. At Somerville, we stayed down in a park in a pretty sketchy area and were woken up at like 6 o’clock by a park ranger who basically explained to us that that park is generally drawn with heroin and crack addicts and that we were very lucky. So that was an interesting night. There actually were a couple people that ran into us that night that weren’t too out of the norm. [But other than that, it’s] largely people’s homes; a lot of the time we couch surf.
What do you appreciate more now that you’ve walked such a long way?
Definitely the speed at which we travel. The first day we walked, we walked for like 10 hours. It was grueling. It was really hot and it was our first day of walking, so we weren’t used to it at all. It was a long, long, exhausting day. At the end of the day, we walked into this coffee shop, sat down to get some water and started talking to one of the guys that was sitting at the bar. I asked him, ‘How far is it to Portland?’ and he was kind of laughing, turns around and goes, ‘Oh, 10, 15 minutes, tops.’
What has been the biggest reward so far?
Definitely meeting people and experiencing other people’s hospitality and just establishing these relationships that are meaningful. There are so many generous people in the world. What we’re doing, in a lot of ways, helps bring people out of their shell in some senses. I’m not saying that people have really closed-off minds, but the people that come out and help us often thank us, which is really weird. They’re helping us. But I think it brings them joy to help other people out, and I think what we’re doing really resonates with what they would like to do or would have liked to have done at some point.
The Walking Guys
Sept. 1, 7:30 p.m.
Tickets are $10 in advance, $15 at the door
Posted by Lynn Norusis / Tuesday, August 25th, 2015
‘The Voice’ contestant hits the Vienna stage Wednesday to perform tracks off his latest albums.
The Texas pop/soul singer and contestant on season seven of NBC’s “The Voice” stops at Jammin Java this Wednesday as part of his multicity tour. We spoke with the singer about his experience on the show and what audience members can expect from his performance.
You were on season seven of “The Voice” and are now in the midst of a multicity tour. Tell us about the difference in experience of the performances.
It’s completely different. If you’re on TV, they have crowd warmers. They come out and get everyone excited and show everyone how they want them to cheer and go crazy.It’s kind of fish in a barrel in that respect, whereas live, people don’t know what to expect. You don’t know who you’re going to get in front of, what they’re feeling and what they’re looking for necessarily. Also, you never know if there’s going to be five or 5,000 people in the crowd.
Have you learned anything from your time on the show that you have used for your performances?
Absolutely. I learned a lot about what I’m capable of, what my strengths are and how I deal with high-pressure situations. I learned a lot about professionalism and production and presentation—all kinds of things.
You’re on a tour, playing with your band and playing original music. What will audience members at Jammin Java get to experience? How would you describe the show you’re going to play on Aug. 26?
It’s a six-piece band. It gets soulful; it gets funky. Ultimately, I like to take people on a journey. I like to have some emotional moments and just be as connected as possible. I sing about things we all think about and don’t necessarily talk about all the time. We do songs off the first two albums, songs from the season of “The Voice” that I was on and quite a few songs from our upcoming album that hasn’t been released yet, which I’m really excited about. I’ve been known to climb on things and run through the crowd. I’m pretty rambunctious on stage.
You’ve also been chosen to perform the song and music video for Susan G. Komen’s 2015-16 fundraising campaign. How did that come about, and what was the experience like?
I do a lot of work locally with a children’s hospital called Cook Children’s. I was with them at a thing called Healthcare Heroes in 2014, and there was a women there named Ann Louden from an organization called Frogs for the Cure. They do a song and video every year for Susan G. Komen, so we started talking about me doing it. We [Mia Z and I] ended up doing an amazing version of “Ain’t No Mountain High Enough” that’s going to be coming out Sept. 1.
How does this performance and song differ from your own music?
I would say the difference is it’s very authentically Motown. It’s a classic song, and we just did our best to honor the original. We didn’t remix it or anything like that. We completely rerecorded it with a different band. My stuff is very authentically me, which is very eclectic and has a lot of different influences
Do you have any advice for aspiring artists?
Absolutely. Never wait for something to happen to be who you are. Some people think that someone’s going to come along and tell them that they’re good enough. For the most part, it’s way more likely that someone’s going to come along who doesn’t know what they’re talking about and is going to tell you you’re not good enough. Just go ahead and beat both of them to the punch and believe in yourself. Play music no matter what because you love it and because it makes you happy. If you keep doing that, you’re going to get better and better so [that] if you’re not good enough already, you will be. You just have to stay with it and believe in yourself.
By Raquel DeSouza
Vienna is listed No. 48 out of 50 best places to live in the country.
Arlington and Alexandria consider constructing a shared 50-meter pool.
A “Little Free Library” with about 30 books opened in Old Town Manassas.
Andy Murray beats Djokovic and is now focusing on the upcoming U.S. Open in New York.
The Colorado theater shooter missed the death penalty by one juror vote.
Posted by Editorial / Friday, July 10th, 2015
By Grace Ann Brew
This Sunday don’t forget to catch the last night of the preliminary round for Jammin’ Java’s biannual Battle of the Bands. Throughout July and August local bands will compete in front of judges such as music producer Jim Ebert and Stephanie Williams, managing editor of DC Music Download. Prizes include $2,500 cash, the opportunity to record a single with Jim Ebert and a spot headlining Jammin’ Java.
While the competitors hail from all over D.C., Maryland and Virginia, we spoke with NoVA band Timberbrooke about their beginnings in music, their sound and the upcoming competition. Cheer on your local artists this summer by purchasing tickets here.
Members: Devon Kraus (lead vocals), Alex Iglesias (guitar, vocals)
Who we spoke with: Alex Iglesias
Their sound: We started out, as funny and cheesy as it sounds, with the intention of being Disney-style pop rock. As time went on, there was a creative difference between Devon and me and some of our other members. Devon and I started losing that innocent pop rock sound, and we’re starting to go for a harder alternative rock sound. Now we’re even toying with the idea of pushing on post-hardcore.
Their start: Our original guitarist, Alex, was working at Wendy’s. Our old drummer, Ryan, met him there, and they started talking because Ryan was wearing a shirt with a band on it that Alex liked. So they started writing music, and then they found our lead singer, Devon, on Youtube. After that they found me, and I found our original bassist.
Their singularity: I think the thing that has always made our band stand out is the mix of Devon’s really clean-cut, pretty pop star singing voice and my more raspy, rock-oriented voice. That mixed with the fact that I really put everything that I can into the guitar work makes our music stand out from a technical standpoint.
Their shot: We played in Empire’s Battle of the Bands last year, and we took the first round by storm. In the second round the judges were saying that there was nothing wrong with our set, we were just playing with bands who were obviously older and more experienced. In terms of our placing for this battle, I think we’ll do just fine.
The Battle at Jammin’ Java
227 Maple Ave. E., Vienna
Timberbooke performs July 12 at 7:30 p.m.
Posted by Editorial / Wednesday, July 8th, 2015
By Grace Ann Brew
Tonight Jammin’ Java continues to let the good times roll with their biannual Battle of the Bands. Throughout July and August local bands will compete in front of judges such as music producer Jim Ebert and Stephanie Williams, managing editor of DC Music Download. Prizes include $2,500 cash, the opportunity to record a single with Jim Ebert and a spot headlining Jammin’ Java.
While the competitors hail from all over D.C., Maryland and Virginia, we spoke with NoVA band Moon-Scene about their beginnings in music, their sound and the upcoming competition. Cheer on your local artists this summer by purchasing tickets here.
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Posted by Editorial / Monday, July 6th, 2015
By Grace Ann Brew
Late last month South Block Juice Co. took over the abandoned Urban Pantry space, which closed in February, to open a new shop next door to its micro-juicery. Starting today, the new East Falls Church location expands hours to seven days a week.