Foodie News February 2015

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by Debby Critchley

There is a lot going on in the ‘hood! On the short list of closings is Tres Hermanas in the West End. Mike Anderson didn’t give any reasons but the doors are now closed. Word on the street is another Aldi’s Grocery is opening in the location. At the Majestic Café in Old Town, Chef Shannon Overmiller is no longer overseeing the kitchen. Eat Good Food Group sent out this message to its customers: Eat Good Food Group who ran the café sent out the following message, “As of Monday, Jan. 19, Eat Good Food Group, and Chef Shannon Overmiller will no longer be involved or represent The Majestic Cafe. Chef Overmiller will be moving to Seasons Culinary Group and the EatGood Food group is working on [its] next project slated for the city and various outposts for the gastro-market, Society Fair. We look forward to delicious new ventures and partnering up with talented people. It’s a great start to the New Year!” I hope the new chef will continue the Sunday night family style dinners.

And on a sweet note, Sugar Shack Donuts , 804 N. Henry, Alexandria celebrated its grand opening on Jan. 24. I was there on the 23rd and had a nice chat with one of the owners, Carter. He explained how the donuts may come out of the kitchen more slowly than other places because Sugar Shack donuts are produced by hand and the kitchen staff is given a lot of creative leeway to experiment and invent. Since they are shaped by hand, each donut is a little different and the selection varies from hour to hour and day to day. Toppings vary day to day and sometimes, hour by hour. My office and I found the frosted sprinkle topped donuts really sweet. Beware of the maple glazed bacon donut. It may be bad for you BUT, it is one of the best things you may ever put in your mouth. Sugar Shack was born in Richmond and brought here by Rob Krupicka. Coming soon next door, a speakeasy with a ‘secret’ entrance. Carter showed me the space and it looks like fun. www.facebook.com/sugarshackalexandria or @NOVAdonuts.
Another reason to head to North Old Town is the new Lost Dog Café. Located at 808 N. Henry, Lost Dog brings together the love of gourmet pizza and dogs. The menu features appetizers, soups, salads, sandwiches, pizza, beer, and desserts. The interior is lots of fun with colorful dog-themed murals and portraits of the rescued dogs. The deliver too, (571) 970-6511.
Bastille’s has opened its doors at its new location at 606 N. Fayette St. in the Asher development. They are serving only dinner but expect lunch brunch, and all day café service soon. The new space also features a lovely patio – can’t wait for spring to try it! Chef Dawn Burkart is Bastille’s Chef de Cuisine. The new menu displays the diverse cultures in modern-day France, featuring flavors from North Africa and the Middle East. Expect house-made baked goods such as a daily Galette de Pain flatbread, ice creams and made-to-order cakes for special occasions.
Ballston now hosts Mike Isabella’s latest eatery, Kapnos Taverna, 4000 Wilson Blvd., focusing on island-style Greek cuisine. Look for the shellfish tower, a Greek version that can include freshly shucked oysters, lobster, marinated mussels, salmon tartare, cracked crab, and more, served with dipping sauces like tomato-ouzo cocktail, lemony yogurt, and an herb-packed mignonette. You’ll find lots of menu items for the seafood, meat, and vegetarians in your group. Say hello to Taha Ismail is behind the bar. Coming soon, Saturday and Sunday brunch and a big patio.
Emma’s Espresso and Wine Bar is opening soon in Del Ray at 106 Hume Ave. The place gets its name from the 1925 Emma P. Hume subdivision. You’ll find coffee, soups, salads, sandwiches, and cold plates. Beer and wine will be available after 4 PM. Owner Connie Desrosiers says to expect, “whimsy, with a nod to Victorian.”
And here are a few more bits and pieces gleaned from Amber Gould. Thank you Amber.
• Hotel Indigo is breaking ground as the first waterfront hotel in Alexandria
• Starbucks drive-thru opened this week where Checker’s used to be, on Route 1
• Carluccio’s authentic Italian cafe and market is coming to 100 King street
• Blackwall Hitch restaurant with waterfront dining and live music is coming this spring to Old Town
• Del Ray Pizzeria II is supposed to open mid-February where Pat’s Market used to be on Belle Haven Rd
Have a wonderful February!