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Ask Eli: Our team outing to Arlington’s water park food hall

This regularly scheduled sponsored Q&A column is written by Eli Tucker, Arlington-based Realtor and Arlington resident. Please submit your questions to him via email for response in future columns. Video summaries of some articles can be found on YouTube on the Eli Residential channelEnjoy!

Happy new year everybody! I hope each of you had a restful and meaningful holiday season.

A couple weeks ago, our Eli Residential Group team got together for a holiday celebration and did a food and drink tour of Arlington’s newly opened Water Park in Crystal City/National Landing. It’s a recently opened indoor/outdoor food hall(ish) in a park setting with eleven different restaurants that’ll offer something for every taste and appetite.

Each of us picked one place from the eleven on-site options to try out and we loved each stop. The park/food hall is designed to be mostly outdoors with just a couple of restaurants offering indoor seating, but they had heaters all over to make it comfortable even with chilly weather. Once spring comes this will be a fantastic place to eat, drink, and hang out. They will also host regularly scheduled live music and community events during warmer months.

I highly recommend a visit to the Water Park for any locals or visitors, and it also makes for a great destination for somebody with a long layover at Regan National Airport.

Stop #1 (selected by Jean Ropp): Water Bar

I selected Water Bar for the location, the interior aesthetic, and the seafood!

Water Bar centrally located in the park, above the main waterfall feature, and overlooks the park. It is one of the two restaurant options with indoor seating. The vibe inside is trendy, modern and fun, and it will be even more inviting when the water feature is turned on in the warmer months.

We ordered the crab cakes, broiled oysters, prosciutto pretzel rods and the crab melt panini. I am a sucker for good seafood and our selections were delicious.

Our server/bartender was fantastic, she whipped up a delightful mocktail for me (as I am currently 8 months pregnant!) and some fun cocktails for the rest of the group.

Fun fact: the entire park permits alcohol to be consumed between restaurants, it feels like quite a treat to carry your beverage from one spot to the next!

Stop #2 (selected by Eli Tucker): Queen Mother’s

I’ve been looking forward to my next visit to Queen Mother’s for their legendary fried chicken sandwiches since I first tried one two years ago.

I was heartbroken when they announced their moved off Columbia Pike just before I moved within walking distance of their former location (although, maybe a good thing for my health).

We ordered the Classic, Spicy Buffalo, and Elijah Spicy sandwiches plus sides of duck fat fries and tenders.

Every bite is heavenly, and I urge anybody who hasn’t visited Queen Mother’s to do so ASAP.

Stop #3 (selected by Brian Wyatt): Crush Pizza + Wine

Pizza and wine — what’s not to like?

I’m always searching for good pizza, and Crush Pizza + Wine delivered, offering tempting selections of NY Style pizzas.

All the pie descriptions looked great, so we decided to order half-n-half. A classic cheese pizza on one half, and a Greek pizza (crushed tomato sauce, mozzarella, salami, feta, kalamata olives, pepperoncini, red onion) on the other. Both were excellent!

Thin, crispy crust with cheesy goodness on top. And our bottle of Italian red hit the spot too!

We ordered a large pie, but they also serve by the slice if you want to sample more of their menu.

The staff were welcoming, fun, and friendly. I can’t wait to go back!

Stop #4 (selected by Val Connolly): Tiki Thai

I picked Tiki Thai because I love the spicy and tangy thai flavors and I had my heart set on the Drunken Khao Soi (drunken noodles).

By the time we made it to Tiki Thai, we had already tried so many great dishes at the other restaurants so decided to order dessert and I’m so glad we did!

We shared the fresh mango and sticky rice and the Thai Churros. The mango and sticky rice had the perfect level of sweetness and the rice was infused with coconut so it tasted like a tropical treat.

The churros were fluffy and light, and came with two dipping sauces: nutella and condensed milk. The churros with condensed milk were my absolute favorite! Both desserts were delicious and didn’t feel too heavy so that left some room for a cold Singha beer!

Stop #5 (selected by Tonya Nelson): Brij Coffee

Initially I selected this location, because I love coffee, however, once I went to their website I learned more about how they are supporting our community, and felt they were the type of local business we love to support.

Here’s what I read:

True to our name, Brij was envisioned as a haven, connector, and support network by our founder Skyler Kelley, who reinvests a portion of earnings in the community through nonprofits that help our neighbors in need.

Drawing on her lived experience as an unhoused single mother, Skyler founded Brij with a vision to eradicate homelessness and bridge gaps among the District’s richly diverse community.

Happy new year from Brian, Tonya, Jean, Val, and Eli!

If you’d like to discuss buying, selling, investing, or renting, don’t hesitate to reach out to me at [email protected].

If you’d like a question answered in my weekly column or to discuss buying, selling, renting, or investing, please send an email to [email protected]. To read any of my older posts, visit the blog section of my website at Call me directly at (703) 539-2529.

Video summaries of some articles can be found on YouTube on the Eli Residential channel.

Eli Tucker is a licensed Realtor in Virginia, Washington DC, and Maryland with RLAH Real Estate, 4040 N Fairfax Dr #10CA

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