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Photos: What to eat and drink at the newly reopened Crystal City Water Park

Starting today, all 11 food vendors and restaurants within Crystal City Water Park are officially open for business, following a soft opening two weeks ago.

Morning to night, the 1.6-acre outdoor food hall and park in Crystal City will serve everything from indulgent duck-fat fried chicken sandwiches to Indian-style crepes filled with lentils and chutney to gelato.

The kiosks include:

Perched atop a water wall at the back of the park, meanwhile, is the cocktail and oyster bar Water Bar.

Operated by Atlanta-based hospitality group STHRN, the restaurant offers light lunch and dinner options, ranging from salads, seafood sandwiches and oysters to ceviche and specialty cocktails.

For something more casual, STHRN operates a New York-style pizzeria that serves beer, wine and cocktails, called Crush Pizza.

The park’s owner, JBG Smith, aimed to provide a comprehensive dining experience from breakfast through dessert, Amy Rice, the company’s senior vice president of retail leasing, tells ARLnow.

“We were really deliberate in wanting to make sure we could create a bit of an 18-hour offering,” she said.

At the park’s grand opening tonight, attendees can sample from nine newly opened restaurant kiosks, a sit-down seafood restaurant and bar or a new pizza place, all while listening to music. A month-long live concert series kicks off next Friday.

The kiosks are home to several minority- and women-owned businesses that were “having a hard time making the jump from a farmers market or food truck into a traditional brick and mortar,” Rice said.

“Typically, if you were a retail-like, fast-casual restaurant, and you wanted to start a new restaurant in a new building, it would probably be upwards of a million-dollar-plus investment to actually get your business up and running in that location,” Rice said. “We removed both of those barriers by creating these turnkey kiosks for these operators.”

Those looking for recommendations can try Water Bar’s “Middle Ground” cocktail, a Mezcal-based drink with tepache, made from fermented pineapple, and grapefruit, lime and peppercorn. At Crush Pizza, the mushroom lemon cream pizza was memorable.

Live music performances from 5-7:30 p.m. will start at the venue next Friday, Oct. 13, and run through Nov. 3. A performance by Virginia native R&B artist Bryan Lee will kick the inaugural concert.

“This series is just the first of many engaging Water Park events that will celebrate our diverse and growing downtown,” Tracy Sayegh Gabriel, president and executive director of the National Landing Business Improvement District, said in a press release.

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