Could 2019 be the year of more Mexican restaurants?

Uncle Julio’s sues Reston Town Center over paid parking, plus more restaurant news.

Photo courtesy of Urbano 116

What is it that they say about Thomas Jefferson? You can bend any of his quotes to fit any point of view? Or as Saul Cornell, a professor at Fordham University, says, “Jefferson becomes this great political Rorschach in which people pour into him different things.”

The same can be said about food trends. Find enough instances of unicorn-colored lattes and all of a sudden we’re eating pasta strands the color of the rainbow.

And that leads us to Mexican food in 2019.

Urbano 116, from Common Plate Hospitality (Mason Social, Augie’s, Catch on the Ave) with Mexico City chef Alam Méndez Florián in the kitchen, opens on Monday, Jan. 21, with moles, tacos and ceviche in Old Town Alexandria.

Alexandria will get another Mexican concept with Chop Shop Taco, and already hosts the margarita-slinging Taco Bell Cantina. (Yes, that Taco Bell.)

Fish Taco, a Bethesda-based casual Mexican shop, expands to Virginia later this summer with a restaurant in the Boro Development in Tysons Corner. Zandra’s Taqueria recently opened a second location in Old Town Fairfax, and Taco Bamba seems like it’s always scouting, most recently finding its fifth spot in Fairfax’s University Mall.

And, the team behind Ambar takes on three Mexican-themed projects, including a beer garden, with Tacos, Tortas and Tequila, Buena Vida and Up, and is expected to open this winter.

News, events, etc. 

Bison is making a comeback in Virginia (and there’s a great bison burger at Leesburg’s Melt). [Virginia Living]

There are 25 types of citrus fruits—kumquats, satsumas, Minneola, pink lemons, Melogold grapefruit—at Balducci’s, and this Saturday (Jan. 19) there’s a tasting event (noon- 4 p.m.). [Balducci’s]

Uncle Julio’s sues Reston Town Center over its paid parking enforcement. Jackson’s Mighty Fine Food & Lucky Lounge also sued over the same matter in 2017. Nine tenants have closed since the paid-parking initiative started. [Washington Business Journal]

The rolled ice cream trend isn’t going anywhere:  I-CE-NY opens in Shirlington. [Village at Shirlington]

Il Cappero will open in Lansdowne Town Center. [The Burn]

Nick Kokonas, of fine dining mecca Alinea, trolls Trump by inviting the National Championship-winning Clemson Tigers for dinner. Because of the government shutdown, the president bought the team fast food for the White House event. Of course, there are plenty of think pieces. [Eater, The New Yorker, The Washington Post]

Craft beer hires J. Nikol Jackson-Beckham, a professor at Randolph College in Lynchburg,  as its first diversity ambassador. [New York Times]


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