This content was written and sponsored by The Keri Shull Team, Arlington’s top producing residential real estate team.
In the latest Neighborhood Spotlight, Jamie FitzGerald of The Keri Shull Team gives us the details on The Local Oyster in Ballston.
Whether you are a hardcore oyster fan or completely new to the shucked shellfish, there’s something for you at The Local Oyster.
The roots of The Local Oyster are clear from the name, according to manager Will Brewster, who says that they “started about four years ago […] shucking oysters on the side of the road.” In the time since, the Local Oyster opened its first permanent location in Baltimore, before bringing their delicious fare to join the other great spots in Ballston Quarter several months ago.
The oyster experts have made sure that their featured critters are indeed local, including their house oyster, the Skinny Dipper. This Maryland catch, which Brewster describes as an “intersection of briny and sweet,” joins a wide selection of oysters from the DMV area and beyond.
For those of you who are not fans of raw oysters, don’t worry! The Local Oyster’s robust menu boasts a full complement of mouth-watering seafood, including steamed jumbo gulf shrimp, whole lobsters and a crab cake that was touted as one of the twenty best in Baltimore — high praise indeed!
The local focus extends beyond the seafood, too! The Local Oyster is quickly gaining a name as a spot for craft beer lovers, with a rotating tap of local craft brews. The hip joint also offers a robust list of spirits, making it one of the only places in the Ballston Quarter to boast a full bar.
In particular, Brewster recommends the Crush, a drink that The Local Oyster brought with them from Baltimore. This drink, which features freshly hand-squeezed juices, is a perfect refreshment as we reach the end of the hot summer.
The Local Oyster has plenty of specials to enjoy throughout the week, including Happy Hour and Dollar Oyster Days — and Brewster is hoping to add to that list in the near future.
No matter if you’re looking to shoot back some local oysters and high quality spirits, or just shoot the breeze with your pals over a craft beer, make sure to check out The Local Oyster in Ballston Quarter.
Are you interested in living in Ballston, or any of the wonderful surrounding neighborhoods? Contact The Keri Shull Team at 703-952-7653 or [email protected], and we’ll help put you in a home to meet all of your needs!
Part of my job is to constantly find new beers to stock.
I like those beers, of course, but occasionally a beer comes along that really gets me. This happened recently with the new Black Rice Ale from Anderson Valley Brewing Company. At only 3.8% ABV, it ticks the “session” box; as a year-round, it ticks the “if you make something good, make it available all the time” box; it’s tasty as hell, so it ticks the “tasty as hell” box.
There’s only so much information online about Black Rice Ale, so I asked our local AVBC rep if he had anything else to pass along. What he did was put me in touch with Fal Allen, AVBC’s brewmaster since 2000 and an industry veteran who started his pro career at Redhook in 1988. Yes, I was excited to chat.
Allen told me he had tried Chinese black rice, aka Forbidden or Emperor’s rice, in a dish. “I had no idea what it was but the rich nutty flavor was compelling. I immediately thought that it would work well in a beer.” AVBC’s site describes Black Rice as a Nut Brown, in fact.
I asked Allen if the intent actually was to make a Nut Brown or if they were searching for a style to suit the black rice. “It was really a matter of finding a style that the beer fit into,” he responded, adding “it is not really a nut brown ale but people want to know what it is like… we thought that it was closest to a nut brown ale.”
Allen noted they could also have compared it to Schwarzbier, but being neither German in style, nor a Lager ruled that out “although the beer certainly tastes like a schwartz bier.”
This hit on what, to me, is probably the most intriguing aspect of Black Rice Ale — how it melds roasty flavors of Black Ales and Lagers with the nuttier tones of American and English Browns. I wondered what the black rice actually brought to the beer besides being a cool ingredient to throw in the mash. Allen said the rice gives the beer its “delicious dark color,” and “a nice nutty flavor,” and doesn’t think it contributed anything to the beer’s aroma.
Remembering how the 2014 release of AVBC’s Gose sparked a new era for the brewery (and for Sour Ales in America in general), and noticing that Black Rice arrives at the same time as the brewery’s Barrel-Aged Stouts and Porters moving from bombers to cans and the introduction of its new Hibiscus Rozelle, I asked Allen if we were seeing another instance of Anderson Valley not quite reinventing itself, but refocusing.
“I agree it does feel a little like that, but I think it was more to do with a change in attitude,” he explained. “We are not trying to reinvent ourselves so much as we are trying to get our products out to market a little better.” The unpainted cans AVBC uses allows them to more quickly take what may be initially a draft-only offering and get it out to a wider audience if the response is good.
With bottle sales way down and cans on the rise on the East Coast, that promises more cool AVBC beers on the horizon. For now, check out Black Rice Ale if you see it around.
Upcoming Beer Events at Arrowine:
TODAY — Friday, September 13, 5-7 p.m. — Tom Blanch of Sierra Nevada
Saturday, September 21, 1-4 p.m. — Devon Callan of Reason Beer Company
Saturday, October 5, 12-3 p.m. — Patrick Cashin of Charm City Meadworks
Friday, November 8, 5-7 p.m. — Jesse Ploeg of Potter’s Craft Cider
Looking for a home? There are plenty of houses and condos open for viewing this weekend.
2815 N. Lexington Street
6 BD/ 5 BA, 2 half bath single-family home
Agent: Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage
Open: Sunday 2-4 p.m.
1511 N. Rolfe Street, A101
2 BD/2 BA, 1 half bath condo
Agent: Redfin Corporation
Open: Sunday 1-3 p.m.
2310 S. Dinwiddie Street
4 BD/3 BA single-family home
Agent: Long & Foster Real Estate, Inc
Open: Sunday 1-3 p.m.
1126 N. Randolph Street
3 BD/3 BA villa/townhouse
Agent: Redfin Corporation
Open: Saturday 1-4 p.m.
744 S. Granada Street
3 BD/2 BA, 3 half bath villa/townhouse
Agent: Keller Williams Realty
Open: Sunday 1-4 p.m.
2848 S. Abingdon Street
2 BD/2 BA condo
Agent: Kw Metro Center
Open: Sunday 2-4 p.m.
2725 S. Walter Reed Drive, B
2 BD/1 BA condo
Agent: Redfin Corporation
Open: Sunday 1-4 p.m.
Just Listed highlights Arlington properties that just came on the market within the past week. This feature is written and sponsored by Team Cathell, “Your Orange Line Specialists.”
Arlington’s real estate market picked up some steam this week as we head into a typically strong fall market.
Sellers did their part by listing 72 homes, while buyers ratified 48 contracts. That’s an improvement over last week’s 45 ratified contracts, but I would have expected much more this week.
The week started with interest rates taking some leaps. The 30-yr fixed rate mortgage went from 3.5% last week to 3.625%-3.75% early this week. Despite the uptick, the number of mortgage purchase loan applications so far this month is up 9% over last year, according to Freddie Mac.
So far, all the media talk about a possible recession around the corner hasn’t hurt our housing market locally. One of the first indicators that our local market is slowing is the number of sales in luxury homes. Higher end sales are doing well. Last summer, there were 88 homes that sold for $1.2 million or more. This summer, there were 106 sales, and the days on market dropped from 92 to 45. However the average sales price also dropped a bit from $1,639,246 last summer to $1,609,176.
Buyers should be happy to hear that Arlington’s inventory has improved. Just a few months ago, there was less than 1 months supply, meaning at that pace of sales there would be no homes left to buy if nothing else was listed. This week the inventory is now 1.4 months, a big improvement.
Click to see all the fresh new inventory in MRIS and call Team Cathell (703-975-2500) when you find a home you like.
- 772 N. Vermont Street, Arlington, VA 22203 — $765,000
- 4803 25th Street N., Arlington, VA 22207 — $799,000
- 1200 N. Nash Street #841, Arlington, VA 22209 — $849,900
- 2355 N. Quincy Street, Arlington, VA 22207 — $1,000,000
- 3615 N. Vacation Lane, Arlington, VA 22207 — $1,100,000
- 1811 N. Barton Street, Arlington, VA 22201 — $1,199,900
- 5742 15th Street N., Arlington, VA 22205 — $1,250,000
- 3199 N. Pollard Street, Arlington, VA 22207 — $1,739,000
VIDA Fitness is expanding our family and opening our doors in Virginia!
Lock in our special Ballston introductory rate by September 18, to take advantage of pricing that will never be this low again! You will receive discounted personal training, discounts off Aura spa services, access to SweatBox and much more!
Coming in early 2020, VIDA Ballston will be our sixth location and promises to offer all the exceptional and upscale amenities that members have come to expect over the years.
VIDA has been voted the Best Gym in D.C. by Washington City Paper and The Washingtonian, and offers countless services to promote a healthy and happy lifestyle. VIDA features state-of-the-art equipment, and boasts spacious weight room floors perfect for all types of strength work. We draw some of the best instructors in the D.C. area to drive results and engage members in hundreds of classes on our expansive group fitness schedule.
Between yoga, mat Pilates, barre, Zumba, Body Pump and much much more, we have something that every member is sure to enjoy. Our dedicated staff of Personal Trainers are some of the best in the industry, and will work with you to create and design individual workout plans to help you achieve your goals.
All of our facilities feature luxurious locker rooms that are fully stocked to ensure you have everything you need to start your day, and leave the gym feeling refreshed. Relax in our steam rooms and saunas after your workout, and enjoy quality Bang Salon products to leave feeling nourished and restored.
Visit www.vidaballston.com today, and become the latest member of the VIDA family! We can’t wait to share the VIDA experience with you.
Address: 2104 S. Quebec Street
Neighborhood: Douglas Park
Open: Sunday, September 15 from 1-3 p.m.
Open the door and step inside this completely renovated, craftsman-inspired, light-filled home in the Douglas Park neighborhood of Arlington!
The main floor is perfect for today’s lifestyle, with an open concept living space anchored by gleaming hardwood flooring. With autumn on the way, you’ll look forward to lounging in front of the warm and inviting brick fireplace. And the stunning, yet practical, kitchen will appeal to those wanting to hone their culinary skills as it features gas cooking, stainless and granite, and a generous amount of counter and cabinet space.
With four bedrooms and two full baths on three levels, this home provides an abundance of space for living and storage. The finished lower level can serve as either a large master bedroom suite or a wonderful retreat for games and entertainment when staying in for the evening.
The nicely-sized back yard is great for gardening or a place for the pup to romp. Stroll to Shirlington’s restaurants, shops and theaters. Enjoy the nearby bike paths and trails, the athletic fields and playground at Fort Barnard Park, and even a nearby dog park.
This home is ready for those seeking the convenience of an urban lifestyle with a love for the outdoors.
Title insurance is boring, but Allied Title & Escrow is here to decode the jargon and make it (somewhat) more interesting. This biweekly feature will explore the mundane (but very necessary!) world of title insurance while sharing interesting stories of two friends’ entrepreneurial careers.
For this week’s edition of Boring Title, we present to you the second episode of our hilarious video series: “Close with Mike, and You’ll Never be Madigan!”
We hope you enjoy it.
Have questions related to title insurance? Email Latane and Matt at [email protected]. Want to use Allied Title & Escrow when you buy a home? Tell your agent when you buy a house to write in Allied Title & Escrow as your settlement company!
This column is written and sponsored by Arlington Arts / Arlington Cultural Affairs, a division of Arlington Economic Development.
By guest blogger and Arlington artist Melanie Kehoss
Over 30 of Arlington’s visual artists are opening workspaces to the public for the second annual Arlington Visual Art Studio Tour, allowing the public a rare glimpse into the creative process.
Studios will be open in neighborhoods throughout the county on Saturday and Sunday, September 28 and 29, 11 a.m.-5 p.m. Local artists will feature their work, processes and studio spaces, many of which are rarely open to the public. Art lovers of all ages can meet and chat with the artists while enjoying paintings, ceramics, metals, photography and more.
The day before the tour, check out the Launch Party on Friday, September 27, 5-7 p.m., with a Launch Party at Cody Gallery, at Marymount University’s Ballston Center, 1000 North Glebe Road, 2nd Floor. There, art lovers and artists can meet, celebrate and plan their tour route.
This free event allows local artists to feature their work, processes and studio spaces, while showcasing the richness and diversity of visual arts to be found in Arlington County. Visitors will find paintings, ceramics, jewelry, paper art, photography and more.
The Arlington Visual Art Studio Tour is a joint effort by the Arlington Artists Alliance, Arlington Arts Center, Columbia Pike Artist Studios, Westover Artists and independent artists throughout Arlington County, with support from Arlington Cultural Affairs and the Arlington Commission for the Arts.
“Arlington has many accomplished artists creating significant bodies of work in their homes, garages or rented studio space,” says Katherine Freshley, former Executive Director of Arlington Arts Center. “This open studio tour provides a rare opportunity to see and understand the artistic process that often seems quite mysterious… You’ll walk away with new insights and appreciation for Arlington’s hidden treasures — visual artists.”
“This tour addresses a central goal of Arlington County’s Arts and Culture strategy, Enriching Lives — to promote local artists and assist them in developing new audiences,” says Michelle Isabelle-Stark, Director of the Cultural Affairs Division of Arlington Economic Development, which is a sponsor of this event highlighting the county’s diverse range of visual artists. “Moreover, the fact that this initiative emerged organically — by and of the artists — is itself a testament to the continued growth and vitality of Arlington’s creative community.”
Find more info, including an artist directory, at arlingtonartstudiotour.org. A map with studio addresses will be available online starting in September.
Each week, “Just Reduced” spotlights properties in Arlington County whose price have been cut over the previous week. The market summary is crafted by licensed broker Aaron Seekford of Arlington Realty, Inc. GET MORE out of your real estate investment with Aaron and his team by visiting www.arlingtonrealtyinc.com or calling 703-836-6116 today!
Please note: While Aaron Seekford provides this information for the community, he may not be the listing agent of these homes.
September 11 is always an incredibly reflective day.
In addition to the moments of silence throughout our nation, meaningful tributes and individual memories, we can never forget the significant impact September 11, 2001 had on Arlington County.
One-hundred and eighty-four folks lost their lives at the Pentagon that morning, between folks working at the building and aboard American Airlines Flight 77. Today we remember you.
I’ll also never forget how our community came together, solidifying that much more why Arlington is such an amazing place to call home. We may be nearly two decades removed from that day, but it will stick with me forever.
With that and unending gratitude, on to this week’s stats and facts.
As of September 9, there are 150 detached homes, 21 townhouses and 104 condos for sale throughout Arlington County. In total, 18 homes experienced a price reduction in the past week:
- 3516 N. Valley Street, 22207 — NOW: $2,750,000 (Reduced: $50,000 on 9/3)
- 4015 N. Randolph Street, 22207 — NOW: $1,899,000 (Reduced: $201,000 on 9/4)
- 4784 N. Old Dominion Drive, 22207 — NOW: $1,649,000 (Reduced: $50,000 on 9/4)
- 1609 N. Stafford Street, 22207 — NOW: $895,000 (Reduced: $4,000 on 9/5)
- 820 N. Pollard Street #204, 22203 — NOW: $689,000 (Reduced: $21,000 on 9/5)
- 2100 N. Lee Highway #146, 22201 — NOW: $460,000 (Reduced: $10,000 on 9/5)
Please note that this is solely a selection of Just Reduced properties available in Arlington County. For a complete list of properties within your target budget and specifications, contact Aaron Seekford.
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. Enjoy!
Question: Do you think Pierce condos in Rosslyn will be able to sell for the prices they’re advertising?
Answer: A few months ago, local developer Penzance released details on their upcoming Highlands development that includes three luxury residential buildings, one of which will be a 27-story condo building called Pierce. Here’s a summary of what we know:
- Large Floor Plans: 104 units ranging from a 1,270 sq. ft. 1 BR+Den to a 3 BR with over 2,400 sq. ft.
- Larger Prices: Starting at $900k and increasing to over $3M
- Luxury Finishes: Thermador appliances, hardwood throughout, Snaidero cabinets, floor-to-ceiling windows, some direct-access elevators and other luxury touches
- Top Amenities: 24hr staff, rooftop pool, two-story gym, club room, to name a few
Is There Anything Else Like It?
It seems that Penzance is modeling its approach after Turnberry Tower, the iconic all-glass blue building a block from the Rosslyn Metro. Both buildings’ smallest units are 1 BR+Den with about 1,300 sq. ft., they have similar high-end finishes, many units with direct-access elevators, and both have luxury amenities.
Demand and prices at Turnberry have increased significantly over the last 18-24 months, which is a good sign for Penzance.
Meeting New Demand
There is a significant, relatively new, demand in Arlington for large condos to satisfy Baby Boomers downsizing from big suburban homes around the D.C. area. Over the last 20 years of condo development in Arlington, most floor plans have been 1 BR-2 BR, ranging from 700-1,000 sq. ft. To find larger floor plans, buyers are mostly left with buildings constructed in the 70s and 80s, so there is currently an underserved market for newer condos with large floor plans.
For example, 2000 Clarendon, a condo building in Courthouse set to deliver next year, originally planned six 2 BR+Den units of ~1,400 and ~1,700 sq. ft. They had so much interest that they added two more. Their current waitlist for the 2 BR+Den units has over 20 people on it. However, the price of 2000 Clarendon units are about half what similar units at Pierce will cost.
Will People Pay These Prices?
- 1 BR+Den with 1,270+sq. ft. start at $900k (4 units)
- 2 BR with 1,320+sq. ft. start at $1.1M (44 units)
- 2 BR+Den with 1,953+sq. ft. start at $2M (46 units)
- 3 BR with 2,411 sq. ft. start at $2.6M (10 units)
- More than half of the units will be $2M+
- More than half of the units will be over $1,000/sq. ft. Over the last five years, seven Turnberry condos and two Waterview condos have cross the $1,000/sq. ft. mark. D.C. hits this mark in its premier buildings.
Rosslyn has only begun its transition into a luxury market and Pierce will be a great indicator of where Rosslyn is in the eyes of the market. The sales won’t come overnight, or be without challenges, but the developer can afford to be patient.
- The down-sizing Baby Boomers that Pierce is suited for can afford to pay a significant premium for the right floor plan and building
- Amazon, Nestle, consulting/law firms, Defense contractors and tech start-ups are supplying more and more highly-paid executives to the Arlington housing market
- International money will be drawn to its proximity to D.C. and Amazon
- Trophy units with direct views of D.C. and the Potomac River should be in high demand because it’s unlikely that future developments will block those views, something that has had a major impact on many Turnberry owners in the last five years (I wouldn’t be surprised to see some of them move a couple of blocks up the street to reclaim their views)
There are some challenges that will likely slow the pace of sales and maybe even cause them to bring prices down on some units.
- At these prices, buyers will also be looking at similar units in D.C.’s top addresses in neighborhoods like Georgetown, West End and The Wharf
- There will be a 7-11, fire station (quiet-exits will help, but won’t convince everybody), and a school (a negative for most, despite the beautiful design) within one block
- Being up the (steep) hill from many of the neighborhood’s top draws including Rosslyn Metro, Key Bridge, Mt Vernon Trail and new dining options
- Rosslyn still has many elements from its sleepy government office district days and probably 5-10 years from shedding that completely via redevelopment that’s in the pipeline
Pre-sales are scheduled to begin in early 2020, but the building probably won’t be finished and ready for move-in until well into 2021. I don’t think the current market, or even the 2020 market, will be ready to pay these prices for most of the 104 units, but I think by 2021 we’ll see Rosslyn far enough along and Arlington’s market driving forward enough to generate some eye-popping sales for Penzance’s Pierce condos.
If you’d like a question answered in my weekly column or to set-up an in-person meeting to discuss local real estate, please send an email to [email protected]. To read any of my older posts, visit the blog section of my website at www.EliResidential.com. Call me directly at (703) 539-2529.
Eli Tucker is a licensed Realtor in Virginia, Washington D.C., and Maryland with Real Living At Home, 2420 Wilson Blvd #101 Arlington, VA 22201, (202) 518-8781.
This is a sponsored column by attorneys John Berry and Kimberly Berry of Berry & Berry, PLLC, an employment and labor law firm located in Northern Virginia that specializes in federal employee, security clearance, retirement and private sector employee matters.
By John V. Berry, Esq.
Virginia couples seeking to marry in the Commonwealth of Virginia must still list their racial identity to obtain a marriage license.
In a recent federal lawsuit three couples were denied marriage licenses after refusing to specify their race. The lawsuit was recently filed in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia challenging the requirement. It is about time that Virginia put an end to this requirement.
The Virginia Code, Va. Code Ann. §32.1-267(A), requires that individuals seeking a license to marry must identify themselves according to race. In the lawsuit, these couples have argued that Virginians should not be required to list their race under the 13th and 14th Amendments to the U.S. Constitution. As a practical matter, this requirement is also a problem because Virginia counties have inconsistent and different definitions of race.
For example, in Arlington, where two of the couples tried to obtain their marriage license, the race options were listed as follows: American Indian/Alaskan Native; African American/Black; Asian; Caucasian; Hispanic/Latino; Pacific Islander or Other. Contrast this with Rockbridge County, where the 230 possible race categories include: “White American,” “Aryan,” “Octoroon,” “Quadroon” and “Mulatto.” These types of categories are horribly offensive to many.
The Commonwealth is not alone in this marriage requirement. There are 8 other states that require individuals to identify their race prior to obtaining a marriage license, including Connecticut, Delaware, Kentucky, Louisiana, Minnesota and New Hampshire.
Furthermore, in Virginia, not only do you have to list your racial identity in obtaining a marriage license but if you list it falsely, a person can be guilty of a felony. It is time for Virginia to rescind this archaic law.
If you need assistance with employment law issues, please contact our office at (703) 668-0070 or at www.berrylegal.com to schedule a consultation. Please also visit and like us on Facebook at www.facebook.com/BerryBerryPllc.