Oyster and beer festival Shucktoberfest is returning to Shirlington later this month.
More than 40 food vendors will be selling craft beer, oysters and food at the Village at Shirlington (2700 S. Quincy Street). The event will be held Saturday, Oct. 23 from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m.
The fourth-annual event is put on by Copperwood Tavern (4021 Campbell Ave).
For younger attendees, there will be a kids’ zone with face painters, balloon artists and family-friendly games. Dogs are welcome, too.
Tickets are $40 and include a wristband for adults age 21 and older, a 5-ounce beer-tasting mug and 10 event tickets. Each event ticket is redeemable for one 5-ounce beer sample or two oysters.
Tickets can be purchased at the event, but organizers recommended pre-purchasing them online.
After the pandemic put a fledgling outdoor beer and community event on hold last year, Valley Fest is back.
The festival, organized by New District Brewing Co., will take place from 12-5 p.m. on Sunday in the Green Valley neighborhood, near Shirlington.
Entry is free, and a pass for three beer tickets — which includes a commemorative pint glass — is $22 the day of the event. Beer will be served inside the brewery (2709 S. Oakland Street) and at a tent in the parking lot.
But forget about trying to get a space in the parking lot: The brewery is advising people to park on S. Four Mile Run Drive, and the county is encouraging people to consider other ways to travel there.
The festival will include kids activities, art, music and food as well as dessert trucks.
The Arlington County Police Department will close several roads from approximately 9 a.m. to 8 p.m. for the Sunday festival. Closures include:
- S. Oakland Street from S. Four Mile Run Drive to the Shirlington Dog Park
- The 2700 block of S. Nelson Street, though the Arlington Food Assistance Center and part of the self-storage facility will be accessible
Parking will be limited around the festival, and area street parking will be restricted with temporary “no parking” signs. Illegally parked vehicles may be ticketed or towed. Those whose vehicles get towed can call the Emergency Communications Center at (703) 558-2222.
The Shirlington dog park will remain open during the event but the parking lot between S. Nelson Street and S. Oakland Street will be unavailable. Pet owners are encouraged to use the S. Oxford Street access point if entering from S. Four Mile Run Drive or the Four Mile Run Trail footbridge when walking from Arlington Mill Drive, police say.
The National Landing Oktoberfest is making a comeback next weekend in Crystal Cit.
The event will feature German beer and food and some more unique local traditions, like dog-themed events tied in with the event’s support for the Animal Welfare League of Arlington (AWLA).
The Oktoberfest is scheduled for Saturday, Oct. 2 in the Lidl parking lot at the intersection of Crystal Drive and 33rd Street S. The event is free to attend, and drink purchases at the event will benefit AWLA. The event is scheduled to be held rain or shine, and tickets are non-refundable.
“From live bands and crisp German Lagers to a Barktoberfest dog-run for pup-friendly activities and a variety of games to entertain all ages, this event has a little something for everyone,” the National Landing Business Improvement District (BID), host of the event, said on the event’s website. “So, break out your lederhosen, and come enjoy the fall weather, as well as a variety of food trucks and vendors serving traditional (and not-so-traditional) German fare.”
The National Landing BID and the AWLA are co-hosting the event with local brewery New District Brewing.
Pre-registration is required and there is an attendance cap in place for the event. Attendees will also have to show proof of vaccination or a negative PCR test within the preceding 48 hours. Unvaccinated attendees and children under 12 will be required to wear a mask.
Photo via National Landing BID/Facebook
On Sunday, 13 pints of Miller Lite stood vigil at an empty, but reserved, table at The Celtic House Irish Pub & Restaurant on Columbia Pike.
The beers represented the 13 U.S. servicemen and women who died in suicide bombings at Hamid Karzai International Airport in Kabul that also killed 170 Afghan civilians. Terrorist group ISIS-K claimed responsibility for the attacks conducted during the evacuation.
A woman, who wishes to remain anonymous, had purchased the beers after seeing posts on Facebook of similar scenes at other bars and thinking to herself, “This is good. This is something to do.”
Similar scenes played out in Courthouse at Ireland’s Four Courts and across the country, as individuals and bars have poured out beers and placed them at reserved tables to pay tribute to the fallen troops.
For the Celtic House patron, the little tribute and the now-complete withdrawal effort, were personal.
“Just by way of background, my husband died from suicide last year,” she told ARLnow. “He had several tours in Afghanistan. This is the kind of thing, that if he were still here — well, first of all, he would’ve been super upset — but this is something he would’ve done. It was a way to honor those who were lost and honor him, in a way.”
The woman said the last few weeks have been hard on her, and she had to stop watching the news coming from Afghanistan. Going to the bar, which she said is her local watering hole, was also a way of distracting herself from the news of Hurricane Ida that devastated her hometown of New Orleans (the remnants of which are now bound for the D.C. area).
The reaction to her beer purchase was positive, she said.
“I didn’t have my phone yesterday,” she said. “I got the guys to take a picture, and send it to me. I did post it on Facebook, and got positive reactions there, and I sent the pictures to a bunch of my husband’s friends.”
The Celtic House didn’t charge her for half of the beers, she said — but she would’ve still done it if they had. The bar posted the picture on Twitter on Sunday.
Remembering those servicemen and women who lost their lives this week in Afghanistan, an extremely nice gesture by one of our regulars today. pic.twitter.com/UF8npV8qAs
— The Celtic House (@CelticOnThePike) August 30, 2021
A similar tribute could be seen at Ireland’s Four Courts. On Saturday, a group of Marines who were regulars four years ago and have since moved back to the area, ordered 13 beers, General Manager Dave Cahill said.
They were placed on a table reserved all weekend with a napkin note that read “reserved for our fallen heroes.”
Cahill connected the tribute to the “Missing Man Table” tradition of setting a table for fallen or missing soldiers with a number of symbolic pieces. People with loved ones buried in Arlington National Cemetery regularly come to the pub and place a mug on the table in memory of the deceased friend or family member, he said.
“We have a lot of Marines who come in here,” he said. “A lot of Marines would be deployed here for a number of years, and people who are visiting Arlington Cemetery come in as well.”
— Irelands Four Courts (@irelands4courts) August 29, 2021
The Celtic House patron said hers was a “trite little gesture,” but she encouraged people to reach out to the veterans in their lives, support organizations and get involved in other ways.
“The idea should be that, all the people who were with them — and not even the people wounded — they’re all going to suffer unimaginable trauma from seeing their friends blown to pieces, and trying to rescue them. One hundred seventy civilians were also killed,” she said. “Just get involved. See what you can do.”
(Updated at 6:15 p.m.) Across from the Shirlington Dog Park, locals can be found sitting at high top tables, drinking crafted beer and enjoying each other’s company again for, in some cases, the first time in over a year.
New District Brewing Co. General Manager David Warren tells ARLnow that his customers have said this brewery, which opened in 2016, is one of the only places where they felt safe coming to throughout the pandemic.
“Every day I hear someone say ‘I haven’t been to a bar in a year a half,'” Warren said. “People would say, ‘I don’t go to bars or restaurants but I come here.’ They felt safe coming to us as we adhere strictly to safety guidelines. They see us running around with isopropyl alcohol, sanitizing everything.”
Warren says traffic to the 2709 S. Oakland Street warehouse taproom has somewhat been able to return to pre-coronavirus levels without the brewery suffering too much of a financial loss. And now, the brewery is back to hosting weekly trivia and live music, and has two big events on the horizon.
He credits the establishment’s intense cleaning regimen, which predates the pandemic, as beer has to be made in highly sanitized conditions.
“If there’s one thing brewers know how to do, it’s sanitize,” said Warren. “Even one little bacteria cell can ruin a batch of beer, so sanitation has to be completely airtight because other things float around in the air.”
Since the bar reopened its taproom room in mid-June last year, Warren said “business has been gradually improving.”
After capacity restrictions lifted at the end of May, the brewery on Four Mile Run has been able to return to its original 136 person capacity, after only being able to host about 30 people at a time to maintain six feet of distance between patrons.
While the pandemic forced Warren to close the taproom and turn people away over the past year, he says the pandemic has helped strengthen loyalty to the bar among employees and the community.
“It’s been all hands on deck,” he said. “Everybody does everything. Every one of my employees here has some kind of brewing experience. Everyone will chip in around everything.”
Fans came to the rescue at the height of the pandemic to ensure their favorite spot stayed afloat.
“We have a lot of support from the community. It’s been great. A lot of people would come here out of their way and buy a four pack just to help us,” he said.
One thing that generated some extra cash is private rentals.
According to a local Facebook group, New District has become an occasional private event space for those looking to host a gathering on a budget. A poster said the brewery has an affordable minimum beer purchase for rentals and — because there’s no kitchen — they allow food trucks. Another said she brought her own food, and called this arrangement the “best option we found.”
Now, New District is back at hosting weekly public events, including local art displays on Wednesdays, trivia nights on Thursdays at 7 p.m. and live music on Fridays at 6 p.m. Warren says these events have been helping draw crowds back to the bar.
New District also has two big local appearances this month and in September.
Next Wednesday through Sunday (Aug. 18-22), New District is hosting a beer garden at the Arlington County Fair, held at the Thomas Jefferson Community Center and grounds at 3501 2nd Street S.
“We’re going to have live music, food trucks, trivia, [and] a rock carving class,” said Warren.
New District will also host its annual Valley Fest street festival — cancelled last year because of the pandemic — on Sunday, Sept. 26 from noon-5 p.m. The brewery has hosted the free community event — which highlights the hyperlocal arts scene along Four Mile Run — since 2017, excluding last year.
“We shut down the block and have a big event here,” said Warren, adding that the event will include, “art vendors, food trucks, [and] live music.”
Jan. 6 First Responders Recognized — “The Arlington County Board today gave special honors and recognition to members of Arlington County Police Department, Fire Department and Sheriff’s Office for their efforts to respond to the Capitol riot on January 6. Approximately 60 personnel were honored during the event today at the County Board Recessed meeting.” [Arlington County]
Fmr. APS Students Staying in Private School — “Ten-year-old Jonah Kaufman of Arlington is proud of his 4th grade report card from the private school he attends in northern Virginia… it was a far different story in 2020 when Jonah and his 8-year-old brother, Noah, were in a public school, trying to learn from home during COVID-19. ‘They weren’t learning,’ Jena Kotler, the boy’s mother says. ‘They were sad, they felt isolated. It was just crazy.'” [WJLA]
Man Pulls BB Gun on Beer Thief — “At approximately 11:32 p.m. on July 19, police were dispatched to the report of a robbery by force… the male victim was walking in the area when the suspect approached and engaged him in conversation. When the victim walked away, the suspect began chasing after him. The victim fell to the ground and the suspect demanded the beer he was carrying. After the suspect took the beer, the victim retrieved a BB gun from his vehicle and confronted the suspect.” [ACPD]
Sluggish Fundraising in County Board Race — “The four candidates for County Board had a total of less than $14,000 on hand at the end of June, according to new figures from the Virginia Department of Elections. That’s not an average of $14,000 per candidate. It’s $14,000 for all candidates. Takis Karantonis, the incumbent board member… reported $5,301 on hand as of June 30, according to filings made public July 15. Audrey Clement, a frequent candidate for political office, reported $3,286.” [Sun Gazette]
New Capital Improvement Plan Approved — “The Arlington County Board has approved a $1.25 billion three-year Capital Improvement Plan (CIP) that focuses on meeting Arlington’s existing commitments, addressing critical infrastructure maintenance, and beginning investments in long-term plans and programs that will ensure sustainability over the years to come.” [Arlington County]
Air Quality Alert Today — “A Code Orange Air Quality Alert means that air pollution concentrations within the region may become unhealthy for sensitive groups. Sensitive groups include children, people suffering from asthma, heart disease or other lung diseases and the elderly. The effects of air pollution can be minimized by avoiding strenuous activity or exercise outdoors.” [National Weather Service, Twitter, Capital Weather Gang]
This sponsored column is written by Todd Himes, beermonger at Arrowine (4508 Lee Highway). Sign up for the email newsletter and receive exclusive discounts and offers. Order from Arrowine’s expanding online store for curbside pickup.
Hello, readers of ARLnow.
This is your new Arrowine Beermonger, Todd. I figured, rather than the typical introduction, I’d let you get to know me a little bit more by talking about one of my favorite beers. (Three sentences in and you’ve already learned that I sometimes take the long way to get to a point.)
The concept of a desert island beer seems pretty simple, right? You’re stuck on an island, and you have only one beer to drink until someone conceivably comes to rescue you — or you live out the rest of your days in an introvert’s paradise. Are you thinking of your all-time favorite that you can enjoy over and over, never tiring of the taste? Or maybe you’re looking to pamper yourself in this hypothetical by loading up on that rare bottle you’ve never gotten your hands on.
Personally, I’m looking for something that will be versatile enough to cover all the bases and that will be continually developing so I’m always on my toes. Enter: Orval.
Brasserie d’Orval is a Trappist brewery located within the walls of the Abbaye Notre-Dame d’Orval in the Gaume region of Belgium. Gaume is about as far away from Brussels as you can get while still being in Belgium. And Orval is about as different from your typical Trappist beer while still being a Trappist beer. (Trappist beers are categorized by the monks making it rather than the style or ingredients.) You might be thinking of the beautiful simplicity of Westvleteren Blond or the rich caramelized fruits of Chimay Grande Reserve, and most Trappist beers resemble one of the archetypal styles (Singel, Dubbel, Tripel, Quadruppel).
Orval, on the other hand, at its most simple, is described as a Belgian pale ale, but even that gets a few twists and turns thrown in like dry-hopping and my favorite part: an intentional dosing of wild yeast, Brettanomyces bruxellensis, at bottling. This last addition is what makes Orval my ideal desert island beer. That “Brett,” as best known to its friends and enemies, will continue to ferment the bottled beer for years to come, which introduces differing levels of funk in every bottle, an increase in carbonation (the reason it comes in such heavy bottles) and has the added benefit of scavenging oxygen.
At a young age, the beer is dry, fruity and very refreshing, but as it ages, it becomes bone dry, introducing more spicy notes and far more complexity. To speak to the joys that the full spectrum of this beer brings me, I cite two examples. First, one of the many highlights of spending my honeymoon in Belgium was exploring the grounds of the abbey and sitting in the cafe down the road to enjoy an Orval far fresher than any I’ve ever seen in the United States. And second, I once found two bottles in a store that had been bottled on Feb. 29, 2012. I immediately bought them with the intention of opening one on each of the subsequent Leap Days in 2016 and 2020. (Best laid plans and all but that didn’t work out.)
I was inspired to make this the topic of my first column since we’ve got more Orval arriving at Arrowine today. If you’ve never tried it, I highly recommend picking up a bottle or two with your next order.
Drop a comment below and let me know what your desert island beer would be!
Pentagon Row is no more. Now, it’s “Westpost at National Landing.”
The Pentagon City shopping center has rebranded as Amazon’s new HQ2 rises a few blocks away. The goal, according to a press release, is to create a “fresh vision” for the retail strip, which first opened in 1999.
In announcing the new branding, “Westpost” owner Federal Realty Investment Trust (FRIT) also announced a new tenant: Nighthawk Pizza.
The restaurant, expected to open next fall, will feature “approachable low ABV beers, that will be reminiscent of old-world styles for the working class,” along with “Spero’s innovative approach towards pizza, sandwiches.” It will also sport a 90s vibe and a beer hall-like atmosphere.
Though Spero’s food will give Nighthawk culinary cred, we’re told it will be more of a social destination — an after-work watering hole for future HQ2 employees and others who live and work in the area.
Nighthawk will be located in the sizable former Champps space. The shuttered sports bar had been struggling for months when the pandemic dealt a final blow in March.
Leading up to the “Westpost” rebranding, Pentagon Row added a trio of other restaurants helmed by notable local chefs and restaurateurs: Scott Chung’s Bun’d Up, Chung and Kevin Tien’s Wild Tiger BBQ pop-up, and, more recently, Antonio Ferraro’s Napoli Salumeria. Nighthawk “compliments the current mix and offers a look into the future of Westpost at National Landing,” FRIT says.
More from a press release, below.
The dynamic partnership of popular local chef Johnny Spero, Aslin Beer Co., Scott Parker and The Wave Group have created a new fun brand, Nighthawk Pizza. The restaurant is scheduled to arrive to the newly named Westpost in fall 2021.
Nighthawk Pizza will focus exclusively on making approachable low ABV beers, that will be reminiscent of old-world styles for the working class, with the innovation that Aslin is known for. Paired with Johnny Spero’s innovative approach towards pizza, sandwiches, and more, and The Wave Group’s ability to build brands with and through the community, the team plans to make a lasting impact in the DMV area and beyond.
“The team behind Nighthawk are thrilled to bring something special to Westpost at National Landing. We’re excited to add our experience in the Arlington bar scene to Johnny’s incredible food, and the Aslin team’s best-in-class beer-making abilities to create a new beer hall experience that pays homage to the 90’s in its design elements. Nighthawk will be a beer brand of its own, and will brew beer on-site for consumption and to-go,” says Scott Parker.
For Federal Realty, to create a fresh vision for Westpost, formerly known as Pentagon Row, couldn’t have happened at a better time. “With the impending arrival of Amazon’s HQ2 to the newly formed National Landing, our team has set out to deliver a true destination, an outpost, if you will, for the long-time residents and the new-comers that call National Landing, and the greater Arlington area, home, work, and all things in between,” says James Milam of Federal. “Westpost is ideally located just a short walk west from Amazon’s campus, but a world away as far as amenities and offerings. It’s the perfect place to disconnect from work, while staying connected with friends, great food and unique drinks, in a comfortable, relaxed environment,” Milam continues. The neighborhood is equally convenient to Arlington and points south, via Rt. 1, and D.C. via 395/Metro/Rideshare.
New additions to the neighborhood over the past year (Scott Chung’s Bun’d Up, Antonio Ferraro’s Napoli Salumeria, led by Chef Andy Clark and Wild Tiger, a partnership with Chung, and Chef Kevin Tien, formerly of Himitsu and Emilie’s and now Moon Rabbit) have delivered great buzz met with serious culinary innovation. Nighthawk Pizza compliments the current mix and offers a look into the future of Westpost at National Landing.
Heritage Brewing Company has closed its Arlington location, citing the difficulties of making ends meet during the pandemic.
The Manassas-based, veteran-owned brewery opened its Market Common Clarendon “brewpub and roastery” at 2900 Wilson Blvd in the spring of 2017. It featured booths handmade from barrel pieces, 18 craft beers on tap, a contemporary food menu, cocktails, wine, and Veritas Coffee.
The restaurant received generally favorable reviews for its food and drinks, garnering 4.5 stars on Yelp, but suffered during the pandemic from a location with only minimal outdoor seating space.
The company announced its closure last night on Instagram, posting the following message.
It is with great sadness that we announce the closure of Heritage Brewing Market Common in Clarendon. Despite the incredible support of our wonderful patrons, we were unable to overcome the difficulties of the current environment. We greatly appreciate the exceptional support we’ve received from you all since reopening in June.
To the many member of our past staff, you will always be part of the Heritage family, and you can be proud of the amazing food, beverages and service you delivered.
Heritage will continue as a brewery at our Manassas location and we look forward to seeing you at our taproom. Our brewmaster is busy making fresh brews!
Thank you Arlington for the past 3 years.
-The Heritage team
This sponsored column is written by Jace Gonnerman, beermonger at Arrowine (4508 Lee Highway). Sign up for the email newsletter and receive exclusive discounts and offers. Order from Arrowine’s expanding online store for curbside pickup.
Certain beers just have something about them. They can evoke a personal memory or signal the changing of the season.
This week’s return of Sierra Nevada Celebration IPA is certainly one of those for me. Brewed since 1981, its piney, citrusy goodness serves as the unofficial beer kick-off to the holiday season.
And it got me thinking, what beers from around the D.C. area do the same thing? Here’s my list of 10, no order. A couple minor ground rules. I tried to include beers that have been made more than once and are seasonal or sporadic releases.
DC Brau On the Wings of Armageddon — 9.2% Imperial IPA: The original “hype beer” in the D.C. area. Coveted by beer traders and hop heads across the country. Intensely hoppy with orange citrus, grapefruit and pine. Oh, and in stock this week!
Port City Oktoberfest: Picking which Oktoberfest to use for this list was unspeakably hard. We’re blessed with dozens of worthy versions in our area. But Port City’s version is world class, as evidenced by its multiple Great American Beer Festival medals. Perfectly balanced with toasty malt and light noble hops — and the perfect transition from summer to fall.
Ocelot Talking Backwards — 11% Triple IPA: A beer that I had a hand in creating when I was at Meridian Pint — brewed once a year in late December and released around February 1. The recipe has changed slightly over the years as tastes have evolved, but it’s too drinkable for the hefty ABV and heavily charged with Citra, Mosaic and Simcoe hops.
Hellbender Dunkelweisse — 4.8% Dunkelweizen: A favorite of mine and perhaps the most unique beer on this list. Hellbender’s unique mash filter system allows them to produce beer using 100% wheat. Hugely flavorful at the minuscule ABV, with a nutty malt backbone and banana fermentation character that screams fall.
Fair Winds Hell’s Navigator — 6.5% Maibock: I’ve been drinking Charlie Buettner’s lagers since his early days at Mad Fox and this is one of his best. A strong, golden lager brewed to usher in spring. Clean with subtle citrusy hops and immense drinkability.
3 Stars Brewing Trouble in Paradise — 6.5% Mango/Guava Sour: As a rule, I tend to avoid heavily fruited sours. Too sweet, too thick. Too much smoothie and not enough beer. This is the exception to that rule. Threads the needle perfectly with balanced acidity and big, authentic, vibrant fruit. A summer cocktail in a can.
Flying Dog Barrel-Aged Gonzo — 11.3% Barrel-Aged Stout: My progression into beer sort of went backwards. I got hooked on big stouts and barrel-aged beers before making my way into lagers, IPAs, and more sessionable offerings. And as big barrel-aged beers go, this is one of the best. Full bodied with notes of dark chocolate, roast, whiskey, vanilla, oak and more. It’s not winter without some BA Gonzo on hand.
This sponsored column is written by Steve Quartell, beermonger at Arrowine (4508 Lee Highway). Sign up for the email newsletter and receive exclusive discounts and offers. Order from Arrowine’s expanding online store for curbside pickup.
Well folks. It’s been quite a ride.
I always knew (as did the fine folks that hired me) that my time at Arrowine was going to be limited, but I’d always figured I’d go out like Paxton: Hard worker, hits all his marks, trustworthy in clutch moments — replaced by a Steve Kerr.
But, well… It didn’t happen that way did it? As Pearl Jam said:
Do you see the way that tree bends?
Does it inspire?
Leaning out to catch the sun’s rays…
A lesson to be applied…
And here I am saying goodbye almost just as soon as I got to know a lot of you. I knew I’d be stepping away sooner or later, but like many things during these times — hard dates went back and forth and up and down for a while.
So. Now, here we are. One last chance to make a forced reference to — er uhhh, one last column, to say goodbye.
It’s not a binder with the words “The Last Dance” scrawled over it. It’s not Phil Jackson inviting the entire ’98 Bulls team to share their thoughts and feelings and then throw them in a burn bin, and it’s certainly not Jordan’s last season in Chicago. But it’s surely akin to the cigar sitting at Jordan’s right hand at the start of my favorite over referenced ESPN documentary.
It’s time to spark that cigar and say goodbye, but let’s have some beers to go with it — a little music would be nice too.
Mind you, if you don’t enjoy cigars or smoke, I’m not encouraging you to start now, and the opinions below reflect solely my own preferences and not those of ARLnow, Arrowine ownership, or any of the Breweries whose beers I suggest. If you’re looking for a beer that brings the smoke without the cigar — I highly suggest you pick up some Port City Rauch Marzen — in store Saturday.
But sometimes a smoke, a satisfying beer and some fantastic music are the perfect triumvirate to sit back and reflect.
Guinness Dry Irish Stout
Drew Estate Liga 9 Panatella
“If I Ruled the World (Imagine That)” — Nas featuring Lauryn Hill
If I ruled the world… Well for starters, I’d have gotten more time working with Nick Anderson and Jace Gonnerman, but I could also settle for seeing more of all this.
Sub 5 percent stouts, small gauge cigars, and much more Nas and Lauryn Hill. The only beer on this list you could finish before the song it is paired with is over — Guinness has an inverse relationship between it’s complexity and its easy drinking nature. Pairing it with a shortie like the panatella allows both of them to really shine without eclipsing the other’s talents — just like a duet between Nas and Miss Hill.
Oftentimes you don’t need a giant cigar and a huge, boozy, BA RIS — sometimes you just need to vibe.