Have you been to The Block yet?
1. This was The Block’s year. Though it technically opened in the last days of 2016, the Annandale food hall, packed with Asian eateries as wide ranging as poke, Thai food and street food mash-ups, plus a cocktail bar and an ice cream booth serving charcoal-activated ice cream cones, was the hottest place to eat.
2. The end of this year is a whirlwind of excitement for the Leesburg food and drink scene and the couple in the middle of it all. Nils and Olivia Schnibbe are on track to rule nightlife in Loudoun. SideBar opens tomorrow and Falala Christmas Pop-Up Bar plays into all the right trends (and it took over the space of Schnibbe’s short-lived Captain Catoctin’s Crab & Concoctions). There’s also a new chicken-centric food truck and a forthcoming beer garden for Round Hill. Oh, and the Schnibbes are expecting their first baby together in the beginning of 2018.
4. In the usually D.C.-dominated local restaurant awards, Lovettsville’s Tarver King, of The Restaurant at Patowmack Farm, won Chef of the Year at this year’s RAMMYs.
5. If this year belonged to The Block, then maybe next year we’ll only be talking about Isabella Eatery. Opened earlier this month from Mike Isabella, this nine-concept food hall in Tysons Galleria offers both coffee and pizza, but also fine dining. This is next-gen mall food.
Marshall is a thing, and apparently is big enough for two butcher shops in as many blocks.
Is sous vide the future of cooking? Ask the Sterling-based, but global-company Cusine Solutions.
Oh, Reston Town Center. Was charging for parking really a good idea?
Save the Earth people: compost! These towns are making it easy for you.
Never go to Starbucks again. And personally, the Coffee Issue was my favorite cover story I worked on this year, as you would know by the gooseneck kettle, scale, grinder and pour-over device now in my kitchen. (p.s. Know your cold coffee lingo?)
Have a craving for noodles and rice? This.
Where to eat all year long.