Meridian Pint is getting closer to opening its first Arlington restaurant, with plans to open a new brewpub in Dominion Hills sometime next spring.
The D.C.-based, craft beer-focused chain announced plans to expand into the county late last year, targeting a spot at 6035 Wilson Blvd in the Dominion Hills Centre shopping plaza. Construction is set to get underway next week at the new space, and owner John Andrade told ARLnow that he’s “tentatively targeting the beginning of April to get it open.”
“It’ll just be another iteration of the expanding ‘Pint’ brand,” Andrade said. “And this is nestled into a great community.”
Andrade currently operates two “Pint” restaurants in D.C. — Meridian and Brookland Pint — as well as Rosario’s Tacos and Tequila and Smoke Barrel. But as an Arlington resident, living just a quarter mile away from the new location, he says he was anxious for the chance to expand into his home county.
“The idea that I can just walk to work, door-to-door in somewhere between 13 and 15 minutes is really great,” Andrade said. “It’s just a great opportunity… especially for those of us that live slightly more than walking distance from Ballston or Clarendon, or have multiple kids, and don’t really want to do the dance of finding a parking garage or hunting down a metered space to go explore out that way.”
Andrade is unsure of a name for the new establishment just yet — he originally planned to dub it “Dominion Pint,” but ran into some legal headaches — but he says it will generally mirror the food and beverage options at his D.C. locations.
“It’ll have an all-American menu and all-American craft beer, with a generous emphasis on wine and spirits as well,” Andrade said.
Andrade also foresees offering growler fills and six-packs for sale at the restaurant, something he’s barred from doing in D.C. but is anxious to try now that he’s operating in Virginia.
He hopes to “start swinging hammers” at the space Monday (Oct. 22) now that he’s won all the necessary permits, and expects it will take roughly six months to get things up and running.
“We’re really planning on being members of the community, so we hope it’ll be a great neighborhood establishment,” Andrade said.
Photo via Google Maps
WhyHotel Coming to Columbia Pike — “WhyHotel has just signed a deal for its second project in Arlington. WhyHotel signed on with Orr Partners to operate temporary hotel rooms in 150 of the 366 units in the Centro Arlington development… [which] is replacing the former Food Star grocery store at the intersection of Columbia Pike and S. George Mason Drive.” [Bisnow]
New Scalia Statue at GMU Law School — “As debate raged on Capitol Hill over a Supreme Court nomination that could shape the court’s future for decades, five justices gathered Thursday at a law school just across the Potomac River for the unveiling of a statue honoring an icon from its recent past — the late justice Antonin Scalia.” [Washington Post]
Arlington Living Wage Calculator — According to the Massachusetts Institute of Technology living wage calculator, the income required to raise three kids in a household with two working adults in Arlington County is $92,480. [MIT]
Arlington Flyover Today — There is a flyover scheduled around 1:15 p.m. today in support of a funeral at Arlington National Cemetery. [Twitter]
Where to Find Singing WBJ Staffers — The Continental Beer Garden in Rosslyn and Westover Beer Garden in Westover are among the 15 best beer gardens in the D.C. area, according to the Washington Business Journal. The former is “a popular happy hour spot for WBJ staffers, who are known to sing along to the tunes playing on the outdoor speakers and share an order of pretzels and beer cheese dip.” [Washington Business Journal]
Arlington Pet Adoptions Up — “In 2017, we did a record number of adoptions for [the Animal Welfare League of Arlington], with 1,366 pets adopted. So far this year, we have already beaten that number, with 1,450 pets adopted.” [Twitter]
Halloween Stores Now Open — If you’re looking for a Halloween costume, there are three Spirit Halloween stores now open in the area, although none are in Arlington. For something closer to home, Total Fright in the Crystal City Shops (known as Total Party other times of the year) is also selling costumes and decorations. Meanwhile, a Christmas store is now open in Tysons. [Tysons Reporter]
Despite temperatures still pushing 90 degrees, cooler weather, changing colors and pumpkin spice everything are on the way.
This year, Crystal City welcomes the fall season with the inaugural Crystal City Oktoberfest on Saturday, September 29.
More than 1,000 beer enthusiasts are expected to attend this event — which coincides with the middle weekend of the real Oktoberfest in Munich. Attendees will enjoy 100 craft beers and ciders from 50 regional, national and international brewing companies, as well as live music and food from a variety of local food trucks and food vendors.
“I’m super excited for the upcoming Crystal City Oktoberfest!” says Charlie Adler, Founder of TasteUSA, the company bringing Oktoberfest to Arlington, “I’ve always loved this time of year with the cooling weather, craft beer and other German “oompah” celebrations, but when I heard that the Shirlington Oktoberfest had been cancelled, I knew that I wanted to continue the tradition. After seeing all the great events and fun energy in Crystal City right now, the decision to bring the Festival there was a no-brainer!”
Adler and TasteUSA have been organizing events in the area since 1997 including the creation of the Chesapeake Oyster and Wine Fest and taking on management of the Virginia Wine Festival, now in its 43rd year. The Crystal City Business Improvement District in partnership with JBG SMITH is sponsoring the event.
“We are thrilled to host an event that celebrates the outstanding local craft beer scene in Virginia and D.C.,” says Tracy Gabriel, Executive Director and President of the Crystal City Business Improvement District. “We’ve always found creative ways to repurpose parking in Crystal City, and this time we’re converting a parking lot into a biergarten to bring great beer, live music and outdoor fun to the area!”
Participating breweries include Blue Mountain Brewery, Caboose Brewing Company, South Street Brewery and Starr Hill Brewery, with more to come. Wine and cideries, including Bold Rock Hard Cider, will also be available for those non-beer drinkers in the crowd.
In addition to drink and food, attendees will be able to enjoy live entertainment and visit unique vendors, like the Arlington Psychic.
General Admission tickets are $30 in advance and include admission to the festival and 10 tasting tickets. VIP tickets are also available for $50 in advance and include 1-hour early admission, 15 tasting tickets, and a private tent with bathrooms. The first 500 VIP guests will also receive a Crystal City tasting glass.
Event: Crystal City Oktoberfest
Date: Saturday, September 29
Time: 12-6 p.m. (VIP: 11 a.m.-6 p.m.)
Location: The Lot at 220 20th Street S. (two blocks from the Crystal City Metro Station)
Tickets: General Admission: $30 in advance, $45 at the door, VIP: $50 in advance, $65 at the door
Tickets to the event are $30 if purchased in advance, or $45 at the door. Tickets give visitors entry into the festival and live entertainment, as well as ten beer sampling tickets along with a custom mug to fill.
VIP tickets, $50 in advance or $65 at the door, includes 15 beer sampling tickets, early access, a private tent and private bathrooms.
In addition to German food, the Oktoberfest will host various food trucks serving things like New York-style pizza or tacos.
But the Crystal City Oktoberfest isn’t the only one in Arlington this fall. In the wake of the closure of Capitol City Brewing, hosts of Shirlington’s annual Oktoberfest, New District Brewing is taking up the mantle and expanding its “Arlington ValleyFest” on Sept. 30.
The festival will take place at 2709 S. Oakland Street. While the event will have plenty of beer, the focus will also be on promoting local arts.
Meanwhile, on Oct. 20, the Copperwood Tavern on 4021 Campbell Ave. will also be hosting their “Shucktoberfest”, an event co-sponsored by Northern Neck’s Waverly Point Oyster Company, highlighting beer and oysters as a major draw.
Photo via Crystal City BID
Roughly a year and a half after plans surfaced for an outdoor beer garden in Clarendon, there’s been precious little progress on the project.
Permit applications revealed last March that Social Restaurant Group, the same company that runs Clarendon establishments Bar Bao and Pamplona, was planning a beer garden at a former used car lot at 3217 10th Street N. Signs appeared for the “The Lot” this February, but the space remains empty and overgrown with weeds six months later.
SRG’s website suggests that the beer garden would open in “summer 2018.” Yet neither spokespeople for the company nor co-founder Mike Bramson replied to several requests for comment on the project’s status.
County records, however, show that the company did receive permission to start construction on the project in December. The permit application calls for 94 outdoor seats, with standing room for another 357 people.
The company has also applied for a license to serve beer and wine at the location, but that application is still pending, more than a year later.
SRG’s website also lists Rebel Taco, a food truck that serve up its wares around Arlington, as part of the The Lot. The truck’s owners also did not respond to a request for comment on the project.
Beer lovers will have not just one, but two Oktoberfest-themed events to enjoy in the Shirlington area this fall.
New District Brewing announced this week that it’s expanding its “Arlington ValleyFest” event to help pick up where Capitol City Brewing, long the hosts of an Oktoberfest celebration, left off after the brewpub closed this spring.
But restaurateur Reese Gardner tells ARLnow that he’ll also be hosting an Oktoberfest gathering along Campbell Avenue, in and around his Copperwood Tavern (4021 Campbell Avenue), ensuring that the Village at Shirlington will still have a fall beer festival even with Cap City gone.
Gardner is dubbing the event “Shucktoberfest,” as it will be co-sponsored by the Northern Neck’s Waverly Point Oyster Company, and it’s now set for Oct. 20. He says he secured an agreement from the shopping center’s landlord to host the event shortly after Cap City closed up shop in April, and recently finalized securing the necessary permits from the county.
Gardner said 19 Virginia breweries have committed to attend, many of which served up their suds at Cap City’s Oktoberfest events. Gardner says the event will feature “oyster tents” and other food options, as well as a “kids’ zone” and game area that will include cornhole.
Tickets will be available for the event on its website. Gardner is also looking for volunteers to help staff the festival.
Capitol City Brewing might’ve closed up shop in Shirlington, but some of the area’s remaining brewmasters are trying to keep the spirit of the brewery’s popular “Oktoberfest” celebration alive.
Cap City started hosting an annual Oktoberfest event back in 1999 at its former location in the Village at Shirlington. The brewpub’s sudden closure back in March marked the end of that event, but the New District Brewing Company is hoping to fill the void with a similar event just across Four Mile Run.
The brewery is planning to host “Arlington ValleyFest” around its home on 2709 S. Oakland Street on Sept. 30, the same weekend Cap City traditionally convened Oktoberfest.
New District founder Mike Katrivanos told ARLnow that he envisions that ValleyFest can “pick up the mantle” of what Cap City started.
“With every end coming, there’s a new beginning,” Katrivanos said.
Katrivanos says New District hosted ValleyFest for the first time last year, but on a substantially smaller scale. They put on the festival the first weekend of November, but he says the chilly weather made that a “not very desirable date” moving forward.
But when he saw that Capitol City would be closing up shop, he decided to call around and check with other business owners to see if anyone else would be hosting Oktoberfest instead. He discovered that no one was especially interested in doing so, and he set about seeing if he could move up ValleyFest a bit.
Katrivanos quickly secured the county’s approval for the change, and even earned permission to double the festival in size. The event will now run nearly the length of S. Oakland Street, after it intersects with S. Four Mile Run Drive, running past the Shirlington Dog Park.
“We really hope to kind of replicate Oktoberfest, though hopefully not in the drunken mob type of sense,” Katrivanos said. “We’re not trying to get that crowd coming to consume too much, but we definitely are trying to create an enjoyable vibe centered around a large event.”
While Katrivanos says the event will have plenty of beer on hand, he also wants to be focused on local art, especially given the debate around the best ways to promote the arts in the Four Mile Run Valley as part of the county’s review of its plans for the area.
Katrivanos expects to have a variety of local artists on hand, as well as the Arlington Art Truck. He’s even planning a “pop-up” art installation he hopes will be a “Burning Man-style exhibit built in one day.”
He added the event will also include some of the same vendors who staffed Cap City’s Oktoberfest will be in attendance, with food trucks and even a “Ben and Jerry’s Dessert Truck” serving up treats.
The festival will run from 12 p.m. to 5 p.m. on Sept. 30. The event will be free, but New District is offering deals for beer tickets on the event’s website.
Photo via Facebook
Crystal City’s summertime happy hour event series, Fridays at the Fountain, is coming back early this year.
The pop-up beer garden event was so well received by the community last year that organizers decided to open this year’s event series on May 4, which is a month earlier than usual, according to a press release from the Crystal City BID, which organizes the events.
Fridays at the Fountain will be held every Friday from May through October at the Crystal City Water Park (1750 Crystal Drive), and events feature live music from local musicians. Admission is free, and beer and wine will be sold for $5. Attendees can also pay $20 to join the “Mug Club” and receive a branded, reusable mug.
This year’s event features a new partnership with The Stand, a concession stand operated by The Social Restaurant Group. Visitors can purchase beverages provided by Crystal City Wine Shop as well as food options from a rotation of local vendors.
Additional performers will be announced soon, but here’s the current music lineup:
- May 4 – Revelator Hill
- May 11 – Whiskey Pull
- May 18 – Zach Cutler & Friends
- May 25 – Gordon Sterling 3
- June 1 – Big Bad Juju
- June 8 – Mary El Band
- June 15 – Revelator Hill
- June 22 – Jonathan Sloane Trio
- June 29 – Holly Montgomery
- July 6 – The Jogo Project
- July 13 – The Jon Miller Band
- July 20 – Gordon Sterling and the People
- July 27 – Big Bad Juju
Photo courtesy Crystal City BID
New Rooftop Beer Garden in Clarendon — The company behind Ambar is opening three new Mexican restaurant concepts in the former La Tasca space: “Tacos, Tortas & Tequila (TTT), Buena Vida and eventually a rooftop Mexican beer garden called Up.” [Northern Virginia Magazine]
School Board to Gather Once More at Ed Center — Past and present Arlington School Board members will gather prior to the April 19 board meeting for a final group photo at the Arlington Education Center building. School administrators are leaving the 50-year-old building for leased administrative offices along Washington Blvd, to make way for a new high school program. [InsideNova]
Deloitte Expanding in Rosslyn — “Global consulting firm Deloitte LLP plans to significantly increase its footprint in the Waterview building in Rosslyn, where it recently subleased about 120,000 square feet from Gartner Inc. The sublease boosts Deloitte’s presence at 1919 N. Lynn St. to about 450,000 square feet, including the five floors it has picked up from Gartner… The firm now has around 8,000 employees in Rosslyn, its largest of 13 offices across Greater Washington.” [Washington Business Journal]
(Updated at 1:15 p.m.) The Arlington County Board approved two of the new use permit requests from Westover Market last night (March 20).
The market and beer garden sought to expand its current 29 outdoor cafe seats to 102, which was approved unanimously, but with conditions. The requested, expanded “piped-in” music hours were also approved.
“Previously, the beer garden could not play a radio, recorded, or piped-in music in the outdoor cafe area unless it was during the same hours as the live music,” noted County Board Chair Katie Cristol. “Now, they’re free to do so any evening until 10 p.m. on weeknights or 11 p.m. on weekend nights.”
The County Manager’s staff had recommended approving the expanding seating and music hours. The business withdrew a request, not supported by county staff, to expand the permitted hours of outdoor live entertainment.
The Westover Market also asked for a code modification for outdoor fireplaces, which was denied due to “life and safety concerns.” However, other forms of outdoor heating are still permitted.
An amendment was added that Westover Market would be required to have a representative on site at all times to comply with the new regulations and handle complaints. Board members said their votes were in the interest of helping a local business serve its customers.
“We’re losing the uniqueness,” lamented Board Member John Vihstadt. He said Arlington was losing its “funky” character, citing the recent closure of Clarendon’s Iota Club and Cafe and explaining his view that the most desirable neighborhoods to live in in the county are those with more unique neighborhood amenities and going-out options.
A number of beer garden customers spoke in favor of the permit changes during the public comment period. David Calhoun, the market’s bar manager, told the Board that the beer garden is trying to be a good neighbor.
“We jumped through every hoop, every hurdle that we could,” he said. “We’re not asking for too much and we’re always willing to tone it down if there is a complaint.”
Though the new use permits were approved, some Board members acknowledged and echoed the concerns of those opposed to the market’s requests.
Board Chair Katie Cristol said any enforcement of the new use permits would be difficult and would require responding police officers to have very specific zoning law knowledge, such as knowing the difference between amplified, live, or piped in music permissions.
“All of these things somehow have to find a balance,” said Board Member Christian Dorsey, explaining the difficulty in determining how to limit what he said is the only outdoor cafe with live entertainment in the county.
The market at 5863 Washington Boulevard has become an entertainment and drinking destination, popular with local residents and families, but the county has struggled with how to regulate it given little existing precedent for a business of its kind.
Arlington Agenda is a listing of interesting events for the week ahead in Arlington County. If you’d like to see your event featured, fill out the event submission form.
Also, be sure to check out our event calendar.
Monday, March 19
Conversations with Tyler: Martina Navratilova*
George Mason University Arlington (3351 Fairfax Drive)
Time: 6-7:30 p.m.
Listen to record-setting tennis player and communist defector Martina Navratilova for an across the board conversation on her activism, professional accomplishments, and personal life.
Free Home Buyer Seminar: Get $1,500 Towards Your New Home*
Orange Line Living (1600 Wilson Boulevard)
Time: 6-7:30 p.m.
Attend the Rosslyn class with wine and cheese and receive a $1,500 credit toward a new home or lease termination. The first three registrants and attendees will receive a Google Chromecast.
WordPress: An Introduction
Central Library (1015 N. Quincy Street)
Time: 7-8:30 p.m.
Learn how to create, navigate, post on, and customize your own blog or basic website with WordPress.com (not WordPress.org). Registration required to attend.
Tuesday, March 20
Homebuyer Seminar with Fulcrum Properties Group*
Keller Williams Metro Center Arlington (2101 Wilson Boulevard)
Time: 6-7:30 p.m.
Looking to buy your first home, or at least thinking about it? Join this free event to learn how to take the first steps from on-hand experts. Registration required to attend.
Wednesday, March 21
CACI Ballston Toastmasters Club Open House
CACI (1100 N. Glebe Road)
Time: 5:30-7 p.m.
If you need to improve your public speaking, Toastmasters is the place for you. Attend the spring open house to meet members and ask questions over refreshments.
Thursday, March 22
Beer & Donuts with Vanish Farmhouse
Sugar Shack (1014 S. Glebe Road)
Time: 5:30-7 p.m.
Vanish Farmhouse Brewery of Leesburg, Va., brings a selection of craft brews to Sugar Shack. Board games, beer-glazed donut holes, and paninis will also be at the family friendly event.
ARLnow March Madness Watch Party
Latitude Apartments (3601 Fairfax Drive)
Time: 5:30-7 p.m.
Come watch the Sweet Sixteen on Latitude’s rooftop terrace with ARLnow staff with free drinks, snacks, and swag. You won’t miss any of the action — we’ll have four TVs on.
Friday, March 23
St. Agnes Fish Fry*
St. Agnes Catholic Church (1910 N. Randolph Street)
Time: 5:30-7 p.m.
The annual Lenten fish fry is upon us, and don’t miss out on the sides, beer, and other beverages as well. Registration required, and all are welcome to join in the Easter Sunday mass as well.
David Alan Grier Live
Arlington Drafthouse (2903 Columbia Pike)
Time: 7:30 and 10 p.m.
Join comedian and actor David Alan Grier, of In Living Color and Comedy Central fame, for an evening of stand up. Tickets start at $25. Additional performances on March 24.
Saturday, March 24
National Chamber Ensemble – Brahms and Mendelssohn*
Unitarian Universalist Church (4444 Arlington Boulevard)
Time: 7:30-9:30 p.m.
Enjoy masterful chamber music from Johannes Brahms and Felix Mendelssohn, performed by National Chamber Ensemble artists. Reception with the musicians to follow.
*Denotes featured (sponsored) event
ATS Parents Peeved About Overcrowding — Arlington Traditional School parents are protesting the addition of classes and relocatable classrooms to the already-overcrowded school. [Arlington Connection]
Alliterative Pothole Patching Update — Via Arlington’s Dept. of Environmental Services: “Punctilious, present pothole people have plugged 500-plus problems post-2017 but prefer a plethora for practice. Please provide. http://topics.arlingtonva.us/reportproblem or call 703-228-6570.” [Twitter]
AIM Petition Nearing 1,000 Signatures — More than 900 people have signed a petition calling on the County Board to nix the proposed 20 percent cut in funding for Arlington Independent Media. “The proposed Arlington County FY ’19 budget would be catastrophic for AIM,” the petition says. [Change.org]
Arlington Ranks No. 2 in Virginia ‘Healthiest’ List — Arlington is second only to Loudoun on a list of the healthiest counties in Virginia, compiled by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation. [WTOP]
Capitol City Files for Bankruptcy — Shortly after closing its Shirlington brewpub, Capitol City Brewing Co. has filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy. Owner David von Storch says he intends to keep Cap City’s downtown D.C. location open, serving its four core in-house beers, which will now be brewed by a contract brewery, as well as local craft brews. [Washington Business Journal]
Kaine to Talk Guns at Wakefield HS — Via press release: “On Friday, March 16, Senator Tim Kaine will hold a classroom conversation on gun violence and school safety with students at Wakefield High School in Arlington. Kaine will hear students’ perspectives on how policymakers should address this issue and which solutions they would like to see implemented to keep schools safer.”
Photo courtesy @thelastfc
Update at 5:30 p.m. — A statement was just posted on the Capitol City Brewing Shirlington Facebook page, confirming that it has closed permanently.
After 22 years of proudly serving Northern Virginia, we have had to make the difficult decision to close this location. We thank you for your tremendous support and loyalty over the years and for that we are truly grateful. Please visit us at our Downtown location (at 11th and H St NW) to enjoy our award-winning beers, great food and friendly service.
Earlier: Capitol City Brewing appears to have closed its Shirlington location,
but it’s unclear whether the closure is permanent.
Paper covered the brewpub’s windows and its doors remained closed today. Nobody answered the phone as of 3 p.m.
Several tipsters have emailed ARLnow.com to say Cap City, located at 4001 Campbell Avenue, had closed. Some were upset, saying employees were abruptly told today, without prior notice, that it had closed.
On its website and social media Friday afternoon, things seemed to be business as usual. OpenTable was still taking reservations and the business’ Facebook account wrote a cheery, generic post: “You could stay in this Friday night, but we think you’d have much more fun with us and your favorite beer in hand.”
“Unless you live in Shirlington, apparently,” said one person, in return. “You freaking lying pieces of [poop emoji],” wrote another.
An anonymous tipster contacted ARLnow.com last week, advising us to “watch for Capitol City Brewing Company closing in Shirlington in early March.” Calls and emails sent to the company since have not been returned.
A mainstay of the neighborhood, Capitol City has remained busy on most weekdays and weekends. The company also hosts the popular, annual Oktoberfest event in Shirlington.
Latitude Apartments (3601 Fairfax Drive) is hosting an event for pets and their owners tomorrow (Thursday) and ARLnow is bringing some dog-friendly freebie frisbees.
The new Virginia Square apartment building is hosting “Pups & Pints” in its lobby, with snacks, drinks and a puppy photo booth.
ARLnow.com is co-hosting the free event, which will be held from 6-8 p.m.
The Latitude is a pet-friendly apartment community, offering studio, one- and two-bedroom apartments. Features include a dog spa and a rooftop deck with an expansive view.
Latitude Apartments is an ARLnow.com sponsor.
Several signs are up at The Lot, Clarendon’s first outdoor beer garden, but not much else.
Work on The Lot was originally supposed to end last summer, but it is now expected to finish up at some point later this year.
It will replace the now-defunct Prime Auto Group car lot at 3217 10th Street N., which still had signs up earlier Wednesday.
According to a pending Virginia ABC license application, The Lot intends to sell wine and beer and have a seating capacity of over 150. An enclosed deck will be built, as well as a small kitchen.