By Debby Critchley
ALEXANDRIA,VA- A newcomer to our West End is Sardi’s Pollo a la Brasa in the former location of Noodles & Co, 1480 N. Beauregard. Sardi’s, a well-known and well-loved restaurant in Maryland, is an eat-in and carry-out restaurant featuring delicious Peruvian rotisserie chicken with all the “fixin’s.”
Combining traditional Peruvian recipes with flavors of the South, Sardi’s is a must-stop. The menu features a variety rotisserie chicken sizes from just a few pieces to a special whole-family special with two whole chickens and sides, which include fried yucca, French fries, plantains, black beans, slaw, assorted vegetables, and a slew of other choices. Don’t feel like chicken? Try other Latin specialties like Lomo Saltado – tender steak sautéed in olive oil with onions and tomatoes and served over French fries and rice, Bistec a la Pobre – grilled steak served with plantains, French fries, rice, and topped with fried egg, or Ceviche Mixto – fresh fish and seafood marinated in fresh lime juice, mixed with “special sauces” and served with sweet potato and Peruvian corn. The char broil menu includes shrimp, salmon, wings, and pork chops. There’s a good selection of sandwiches and salads too. I love their chicken with a side of yucca and black beans. Make sure you get plenty of sauce for dipping.
Tsedey Abeba’s International Grocery & Butcher Shop at 672 S. Pickett has had a change in ownership. Located in the Pickett Street Plaza, the shop opened in 2010 and features Ethiopian baked goods and spices plus a wide variety of grocery items. There is a 45-seat dining area inside for you to enjoy some tasty dishes. Nothing will change including the five-star Yelp rated food. Lilian’s Restaurant, 3901 Mount Vernon Ave. has filed notice of a change in ownership. It is becoming Fanaticos Sports Bar and Grill. The menu will continue to feature Mexican and Tipicos Salvadorenos – Salvadoran food. Coming this fall is The Big Kahuna Café, 716 King St., featuring shaved ice from Hawaii, smoothies, and other items. Should be delicious!
As mentioned in last month’s column, Spice Kraft, 2607 Mt Vernon Ave., is definitely coming to the former site of Bombay Curry Company. The restaurant has received approval from the City and they’ve posted their menu on the window and it looks good! They will be serving both lunch and dinner. Still no word on an opening date.
Lost Boy Cider, 317 Hooffs Run Dr., is adding outdoor seating to their warehouse location. You’ll be able to enjoy your glass of cider at tables and wine barrel standing areas. The area will be tented to protect customers from bad weather.
And speaking of openings and re-openings, Augie’s Mussel House, 1106 King St., should be opening its doors again after a complete renovation of the building. The Common Plate Hospitality Group is planning to welcome guest sometime in September. Can’t wait to have a bowl of the Thai curry mussels!
Coming to West End is Taqueria Picoso, 1472 N. Beauregard St., at the Shops at Mark Center in the site of a former Thai eatery. Tom Voskuil, former restaurant director at Arlington’s Green Pig Bistro, says on his LinkedIn page, “Exciting news as we are in the process of opening a very authentic taqueria! Update, as we have approvals for our vertical al pastor roaster. Importing corn from Oaxaca for our tortilla machine, which will produce 720 tortillas/hour. $3 tacos that taste like true tacos from CDMX is only months away! Stay tuned NOVA for a true taste treat!! Update: We are in the middle/final stages of our buildout. Expect a late fall opening. And yes, we will have a liquor license, so tacos, margaritas, and micheladas are just around the corner!”
New Beer Hall Features Live Music and Good Food
It seems the latest trend in restaurants and bars in the area are German beer gardens. Bronson Bier Hall, 4100 Fairfax Dr., is now open in Ballston. The interior has been redone and is filled with picnic tables for enjoying your meal and live music on the weekends. The bar is a beautiful burnished stretch of copper. Grab a seat on a comfortable bar stool. I had the opportunity to get a preview and had a great time eating and drinking. Located in the space formerly occupied by A-Town, the German-inspired restaurant and bar features a rotating selection of 14 beers on tap and an assortment of other German beers. My beer-drinking friend really enjoyed himself and so can you. If you can’t decide which beer to try, order a beer flight. I tried the Sarsaparilla Margarita made with Hornitos reposado tequila, house made sarsaparilla syrup, lime juice, and orange bitters. The sarsaparilla lends a hint of root beer flavor to this yummy cocktail. The menu features a variety of dishes including some really good German style sausages. Try the fat bratwurst topped with grilled onions and bell peppers and served with a side of sauerkraut and warm German potato salad. The Spanish chorizo packs a spicy punch and definitely worth it. The oxtail cheddar jack cheese croquettes served with a spicy yellow pepper aioli are a must order too.
Vegetarians Have a New Burger to Try
Chef Ed McIntosh has added new items to the menu at Alexandria’s favorite little food incubator, Pendleton Carryout Co., 807 Pendleton St. Vegetarians now have the Beyond Burger. It’s made with the same toppings as the Smash Burger with house spice blend and topped with onions, smash sauce, pickles, and American cheese on a sesame seed bun. They are happy to make it vegan by omitting the cheese ad smash sauce. There are now fish options including a fish sandwich made with crispy flounder with onions, pickles, and slaw on the ubiquitous sesame seed bun from Lyon’s Bakery. The fish platter features that same crispy flounder served with fries, slaw, and a pickle. Cool off with SnoBalls made with crushed flavored water ice with a variety of refreshing flavors.
The DC metro area is getting lots of notice lately. Open Table says that London Curry House, 4906 Brenman Park Dr., is one of the top 10 restaurants in the VA/DC area. They offer many different choices from a complexly flavored butter chicken to a super kicky vindaloo. Whether you like mild or spicy, there’s a dish just waiting for you. Accompanied by freshly baked naan, you will have a delightful meal. Thrillist’s 33 best sandwiches includes SUNdeVICH. With two locations, you can get your sandwich fix with around the world flavors. Some suggestions include the Rome, a classic Italian cold-cuts loaded with mortadella, salami, ham, sharp provolone, greens, tomato, onion, and garlic mayo. The Cairo features hummus, cucumber, brined vegetables, walnuts, and fresh herbs and the Berlin features bratwurst, sauerkraut, and mustard. And Del Ray’s Stomping Ground’s chicken sandwich made the Washingtonian’s list of Top 11 DC Fied Chicken Sandwiches.
Until next time, eat well and enjoy!
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