Eamonn’s and TNT Bar Now Open on Columbia Pike

by ARLnow.com August 14, 2012 at 11:55 am 12,015 84 Comments

Eamonn’s and TNT Bar (2413 Columbia Pike) quietly opened to the public last night, serving up fish, chips and artisan cocktails to residents who happened to walk by and see signs announcing the otherwise unannounced opening.

The cocktail-bar-slash-restaurant is in its “soft opening” phase and will be open starting at 5:00 p.m. each day this week. The owners are currently anticipating a more formal opening on Friday. At some point, the owners say, Eamonn’s will open for lunch — but for now it’s only open for dinner service and cocktails.

The eatery represents a significant expansion for EatGoodFood Group, which operates Restaurant Eve, Eamonn’s, PX, The Majestic and Virtue Feed and Grain, all in Alexandria. Not only is this the first Arlington restaurant for the company, but it expands on the simple  fish and chips menu of the Old Town Alexandria Eamonn’s with new menu items like burgers, chili, wings, and shepherd’s pie.

The menu, the moderate prices and the space — with its laid-back rock ‘n’ roll motif and sound track (which isn’t too loud) — is meant for casual dining, the owners say.

TNT Bar occupies about one third of the space, in the back of the restaurant. Conceived by famed local mixologist Todd Thrasher — who named the bar after his son, Trystan Noah Thrasher — the bar offers a half dozen original Thrasher cocktail creations, and about a dozen of Thrasher’s favorite cocktails that were created by his bartender friends around the country.

Priced between $6 and $16, the cocktails are made with premium liquor and made-from-scratch mixers and infusions. Thrasher said the ingredients that go into the drinks are expensive, but he tried to keep the prices from reaching too high, even pricing one or two cocktails at a loss for the bar.

To enhance the bar-goer’s experience, Thrasher, who grew up in Arlington near Wakefield High School, went so far as to order a custom-designed “bar stage” which sits behind the bar and allows customers to see their cocktails being made.

Thrasher co-owns the establishment with Cathal and Meshelle Armstrong. Meshelle, who grew up on Seminary Road, says they’re excited to be opening a restaurant on Columbia Pike.

“I think [Columbia Pike] needs a place like this,” Armstrong said. “We ran these streets when we were kids. We love the people in this area, we think it’s up and coming, we just want to be able to provide them with something fun, new and different. I think this neighborhood… can support that.”

  • nom de guerre

    It’s not “Virtue Feed and Grail” but Virtue Feed and GRAIN


    • WeiQiang

      … and the soon-to-open Crystal Grail.

      • Brenda Webb

        Don’t it make my brown eyes blue

  • DarkHeart

    The fish and chips look tasty. I wonder if they would make a currywurst?

    • shellshock868

      We ate there last night. Eamonn the young son was even greeting everyone at the door. Cute kid. We had fish (cod) and chips with curry. YUM!!!!!!! The drink menu was unique. I have never seen so many drinks with various bitters applied to them. I will go back!

  • Id

    And of course the credit of rate opening of these establishments will go to the street car.

    • jackson

      Hmm, I know you’re being sarcastic, but you are pretty much quoting why William Jeffrey’s Tavern opened there:

      The planned Columbia Pike streetcar was also a deciding factor in launching the restaurant.

      “We’ve been waiting for it. I think it’s going to be really, really cool when it comes through,” said Lubar. “That was one of the selling points to this area, that that should be down here some day. I think connecting this area with Fairfax and making it a little more Metro accessible can only help develop this whole area.”


    • South Awwlington


      These establishments surely weren’t here 7 years ago were they?

      Maybe you would rather contribute their openings to the renovated Giant sans acres of parking lot?

      Or maybe these places are opening because the US won the most Gold Medals in London?

      Or maybe these places are opening because the Pope is German.

      Or maybe these places are opening because you still believe the Earth is flat and was created in seven days.

      Go piss up a rope.

      • Lori

        And the streetcar is what, 10 years away? So they all decided to open now, right.

        What do you want to bet at least one of Jeffrey’s, Eamonn’s and TNT are closed before the streetcar moves its first passenger, if that day ever comes at all.

        • South Awwlington

          Your quote: “And the streetcar is what, 10 years away?” proves my point that the anti-streetcar group doesn’t bother to concern themselves with facts, they merely mouth off and try to incite outrage.

          Had you bothered to educate yourself on the project, you would know it should be operational by 2016 according to the County.

          Anyone who has lived on the Pike for any time can attest to the fact, reinvestment didn’t begin to occur until the County began floating the Streetcar idea and the Form Based Code.

          • Lori

            Don’t hold your breath sunshine.

            The bet’s still open.

          • South Awwlington

            I welcome the challenge.

          • Lori

            Ok….creepy. It’s not a personal challenge.

          • South Awwlington

            You’re the one that called me “sunshine.” I thought we were personal, Sugar.

          • Josh S

            Yeah, I’m as big a streetcar supporter as the next guy, but there’s no way it’s operational by 2016…..

          • South Awwlington

            Just rolling with the facts as currently presented…more than I can say for the other side.

          • Mitt

            I just roll with facts too. We have truth on our side.

          • Mary-Austin


            You know that’s 4 years away right?
            According to the County it was only supposed to cost about $150 million as well.

            These folks are going to be waiting a long time through a lot of headaches to get their trolley. They seem to be doing pretty well without it.

            btw, it was kind of nice to have a parking lot for the Giant…the new parking garage sucks.

          • Josh S

            Those of us who actually live nearby prefer not to have massive acres of parking lot deadening the neighborhood. Waste. of. space.

          • Mary-Austin

            I doubt it was more than an acre or two. Don’t see how a poorly designed parking garage with a bunch of overpriced apartments on top is much better.

          • SamW

            What about the parking garage is poorly designed? It’s easy to get into, always has empty spots available, there are elevators for the folks who don’t want to take the stairs up, and it’s free if you’re there less than 1 hour. No complaints here.

            As for the astronomically-priced apartments up top, I cannot disagree.

          • JohnB

            If the VA Supreme Court hadn’t struck down the NVTA’s taxing authority it would already be in operation:


          • Kyle

            Yeah, what a sneaky way to make an end run around voters and give taxing authority to a group of unelected ideologues. Glad the VA constitution was upheld. How did they ever think they could get away with that????

          • JohnB

            Constitutionality issues aside, the initial streetcar plan was predicated on the NVTA as a source of revenue. When that fell through they had to go back to the drawing board and come up with a plan to apply for the Federal grant funding. The above comment I was responding too was about the delays in the process and I was trying to demonstrate how past delays are not likely to be repeated and therefore using past delays to predict future delays is a poor argument. Saying something like, “I predict future delays because I think the Federal funding will fall through” would be a better argument.

          • Tabs

            I hate it, too.

          • South Awwlington

            Planning for future growth might include some short-term growing pains…far more palatable than gridlock and a bus system that is no longer able to meet the demands of 2020.

        • Allie

          @ Lori – have you ever heard of that little neighborhood in DC called H Street? Right. ALL of the development that has moved there in the last 5 years has been a result of the city’s promise and intention to bring a streetcar.

          Public transit with fixed locations, such as light rail, streetcars, and Metro, will inevitably, 100% bring development in advance of the infrastructure. The guys who get in early win out in the end – look at Rock & Roll Hotel and H St Country Club on H St. Been around, successfully, for 3+ years now, and got to capitalize on early cheap rents before the area positively explodes thanks to the streetcar.

          Learn the basics.

          • Mary-Austin

            H Street will still be a pain to get to with or without a streetcar and many people (probably not you) are willing to acknowledge that.

            All the businesses are thriving there because people are attracted to them and it’s considered edgy. If the businesses are already successful why is a streetcar needed? Would people just stop going out to the bars because there isn’t a trolly ride?

          • Arlanon

            The streetcar has been approved by Arlington and Fairfax. Get over it. Seriously. Tired. Subject.

          • MarceyRd

            Your evidence invalidates the argument that transit is needed for development to happen. If these businesses thrive before the transit arrives, there are other factors at work.

            I know that area pretty well. People started moving there before any street car talk, and there was already metro bus. They moved there because it was cheap and in the city and everywhere else was too expensive. Businesses followed because of the need. This was a step in the progression after other areas around there were built-up. That’s kind of what has been happening on Columbia Pike. All this talk about street car investment is actually a lagging indicator of need to switch away from buses because some people hate buses.

          • JohnB

            When do you think they started talking about the streetcar on H St? Most people’s awareness of these types of plans is low compared to businesses looking to locate a new establishment. I was unaware of the Columbia Pike streetcar until 2008 even though “all this talk” started much earlier than that.

  • Richard Cranium

    Why couldn’t MY last name have been “Thrasher”??

  • B22201

    I think that Bad Brains and the Dead Kennedy’s would be ashamed to have their concert signage on the wall of a place that serves $15 blue drinks.

    • DaDa

      Yeah, but there is a dada’est quality to serving a $15 blue drink on “The Pike”……

      • Ralph

        The word you are looking for is “dadaesque”.

        • DaDa

          Nah, it is French n’est-ce pas ??

          • YTK

            Me mudder thinks it should be MamaEsque.

    • FrenchyB

      Seeing as how Bad Brains let Fox use “Re-Ignition” on their NFL broadcasts, I doubt that they care about this.

      • Josh S

        It was all over when Nike used “Revolution”.

  • Mike

    Nice Avett Reference – I’ll go just for that drink.

  • PikeMan

    went last night, and can confirm it lives up to the hype of the Alexandria location. we had the cod and the prawns with chips and for sauces got tartar, curry, and the marie rose. we didn’t get to try any of the cocktails this time, but definitely looking forward to going back!

    • Electricbill

      Thank you! I clicked on the comments to actually see if anybody had been and how the food was. I like the one in Old Town, but I figured I would wait for them to work out the opening kinks in Arlington. It sounds like they got it right the first night.

  • brown before green

    I submit there are few, if any, occupational terms more pretentious than ‘mixologist’. And yet the term still lacks vibrancy.

    • Buckwheat

      When I “mix”, there is a vibrancy at my house! My specialties are pink (aperol or red grapefruit) and green (jalapeno and basil) drinks!

      Place looks nice. I wish they did oysters. The back wall with the chalkboard makes it look like Neptune’s in Boston’s North End.

  • YTK

    Now they need to invent the “Arlington Trolley” cocktail.

    • Mary-Austin

      I think it should involve Jagermeister or Goldschlager in honor of the vibrant crowd it hopes to attract.

      • South Awwlington

        Or Maalox or Pepto for the growler bears and howler monkeys that deride it.

        • YTK

          Any cocktail will do, to grease the rails

        • Allie


      • Arlanon

        ^ Yawn

    • NoVapologist

      They are finishing up the feasibility study on said cocktail and expect to launch it 2016ish.

      • CP Neighbor

        LOL. Call it the Trolley Kool Aid. Force everyone to drink it.

  • Bob

    Based on the photographs it looks like the site could have been built out in about three seconds. Aside from Arlington’s difficult permitting, why did it take so long to open?

    • Chris Slatt

      It took them 6 months to get their building permit and 6 months to open after their permit was issued. Both of those seem quite long indeed.

  • Bad Brains poster on the wall. I’ll go in.

    • YTK

      I hear they may be serving them too

  • jlm

    Curious, do residents of the building know before they buy/lease that a greasy fried fish joint will open up beneath the. Or more likely just know that it’s zoned commercial? Serious question.

    I used to live in building in Alexandria, then a Subway moved, then I moved out.

  • novasteve

    artisan cocktails? Do they have a sign on the entrance saying “you must be at least this snobby to enter”?

    • JohnB

      I think it would be more accurate to call Mr. Thrasher an artisan and his cocktails artisanal as he practices a trade and produces cocktails in limited quantities using traditional methods. It would only be snobby if they refused to make a simple bourbon and coke but I doubt that is the case. I’ll be finding out soon though.

      1: a worker who practices a trade or handicraft : craftsperson
      2: one that produces something (as cheese or wine) in limited quantities often using traditional methods
      — ar·ti·san·al adjective
      — ar·ti·san·ship noun

      • southie

        I think he’ll be producing cocktails in limited quantities mostly due to the prices being charged for the cocktails.

        • DaDa


      • CP Neighbor

        Drink menu like the Gibson, prententious and overdone. Can we plese stop putting bitters into every drink?

        • YTK

          If they didn’t put Bitters in every drink, then you would be able to taste the distinctive bouquet of Four Mile Run water.

        • John

          Neighbor, do you know to call something a cocktail it must have a bitter in it?

    • Arlanon

      Yes they do, so don’t enter!

  • South Awwlington

    Eamonns =/= Subway
    Eamonns=/= Greasy Fish Joint

    Perhaps you will check it out for yourself?

  • Dan

    I am somewhat fascinated and saddened by the nearly insatiable anger these posts engender. Can’t the article just be about a new restaurant opening up? Does everything have to have these furious rants about Arlington politics attached to them?

    • Earth Mover

      Can’t a man just eat a fried peice of cod without being labelled a street car loving, flip flop wearing, pretentious mixologist groupie?

      • YTK

        They wrote an opera about that — the Codderdamerung.

        • WeiQiang

          Isn’t that part of the Ring Of The Nibbleung?

          • YTK

            Yes, and A Fish Named Wanda comes onstage with a horned helmet on her head and sings so sadly that she….whales……

    • YTK

      You are so right– they need an All You Can Rant Buffet for those with Insatiable Anger.

  • Earth Mover

    Great place! Went there last night and the food was excellent! A welcome addition to the neighborhood.

  • Henry Spencer

    Hmm..the chips look different from those at the Old Town location, I’m going to be disappointed if they aren’t as awesome.

  • ArlingtonNative

    I don’t need to see my drink made on a “stage”… just give me a clean glass, a few cubes and 4-fingers of Bourbon.

    (and really, the clean glass is optional, as long as it taint funky!)

  • nom de guerre

    Sam’s Food Truck is proud to offer you another fish option-it is called the “salmich” which features a seared black pepper crusted salmon petite fillet topped with apple wood smoked bacon, broccoli rabe and lemon dill caper aioli on artisan multigrain rustico bread. A PBR is complimentary for those of age.

  • Love The Pike

    What’s with all the anger and snarkiness from multiple sides? New restaurants have opened, Columbia Pike is on the rise, Arlington remains one of the best run and nicest places to live in the region, if not the country. A little unity instead of divisiveness would benefit us all. Have a drink and relax!

    • Arlanon

      Worry not. Its not actual anger, its called having way too much time on their hands…

    • herpderp

      welcome to arlnow, where nobody likes anything except pissing on eachother

  • Justin

    How do people drink at a bar on Columbia Pike without a street car to bring them back home safely?

  • Steve S.

    Eamonns serves up too many unsustainable seafood options. Instead of offering fish supplied from responsible and non-destructive fisheries, they only offer fish like “Ray” (which is actually skate). Skate is being severely overfished and caught using destructive bottom trawlers that tear up the ocean floor and destroy marine ecosystems. Offer better options like Alaskan Pollack or Alaskan Cod. The taste is the same and you’re not contributing to the destruction of our oceans and the decimation of our world’s fisheries.

    • MJF

      Um, Eammon’s serves sustainable pollack from Maine. You can read up on it in depth on their site if it’s a priority for you.

  • ArlDon

    Y’all are nuts or jealous. Place has been packed. Great service, food and pubbish atmosphere, w/o being over the top Clarendonized. A nice neighborhood addition. And the drinks kick ass.


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