Naked Lunch

For the best veggie burger, go to Naked Lunch at MOM’s Organic Market.

By Stefanie Gans, Dining Editor


8298 Glass Alley, Fairfax; 703-663-8810;

Mosaic District—in its current iteration—is a day spot. It caters to the noon hour with a tangle of blocks meant for efficiency. Lunch. Shopping. Errands. Back to work.

DelaLane Photography/

In this competitive field with quick-casual sweetgreen, CAVA Mezze Grill and Taylor Gourmet around the corner, a beet burger stuns me. It could be the best vegetable patty I’ve ever had.

Naked Lunch, a cafe operation in MOM’s Organic Market offers an impressive menu of all-vegetarian, 100 percent organic options. A blender grinds the magenta root vegetable into lentils, brown rice, onions and tahini creating that meaty softness—that carnal savoriness—of bloody beef.

A long peel of pickled rutabaga adds texture, with a slight crunch. The patty doesn’t taste like beets. It doesn’t taste like any one ingredient. But when joined together, like the cast of “How I Met Your Mother,” the differences in personality become an asset to producing a feeling of homey cohesion.

With 10 bar stools facing the parking lot, the vibe is grab-and-go. Cash registers scan groceries a few feet away. There’s no Wi-Fi, as the clerk says “We didn’t want this to end up like Starbucks.”

So people order their fake-bacon sandwiches, their ginger-kale juices and their steam bowls (vegetables warmed on-demand with choice of whole grains) and leave for their computer screen.


(August 2013)