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Ballston Shake Shack to Open This Weekend

At the 11th hour on the 11th day of the 11th month of 2018, the new Ballston Shake Shack will open its doors.

The company says it’s planning to open its new location at Ballston Exchange (4201 Wilson Blvd) at 11 a.m. on Sunday, which only coincidentally coincides with the 100th anniversary of the World War I armistice.

Shake Shack is donating proceeds from its soft opening and a portion of sales of one of its desserts to Arlington’s Lucky Dog Animal Rescue, the company said in a press release. A t-shirt giveaway will also be held on opening day.

More from the press release:

Spreading the Shack love! Shake Shack® is thrilled to announce it will open the doors to a new location in the heart of Ballston on Sunday, November 11th at 11 a.m. The Shack will be located at 4201 Wilson Blvd Suite 0180, Arlington, Virginia 22203 in the prominent Ballston Exchange development.

Shake Shack is a critically acclaimed, modern day “roadside” burger stand known for its 100% all-natural Angus beef burgers, chicken sandwiches and griddled flat-top dogs (no hormones or antibiotics – ever), fresh-made frozen custard, crispy crinkle cut fries and more. A fun and lively community gathering place with widespread appeal, Shake Shack has earned a cult-like following around the world.

In addition to the classics, the Ballston Shack will be spinning up a unique selection of frozen custard concretes:

  • Pie Oh My: Vanillas custard with a slice of Livin’ the Pie Life seasonal pie
  • Short & Sweet: Vanilla custard, salted caramel sauce, banana and shortbread cookie
  • Shack Attack: Chocolate custard, fudge sauce, chocolate truffle cookie dough, Mast Brothers Shake Shack dark chocolate chunks, topped with chocolate sprinkles

Guests can wash their burgers down with local brews from Port City Brewing Company and DC Brau, plus Shake Shack’s exclusive Brooklyn Brewery ShackMeister® Ale. Wine lovers can enjoy a glass of Shack RedTM and Shack WhiteTM wine from the Gotham Project.

As part of Shake Shack’s mission to Stand For Something Good®, The Ballston Shack will donate all proceeds from soft opening, as well 5% of sales from the Pie Oh My concrete throughout the life of the shack to Lucky Dog Animal Rescue, a volunteer-powered nonprofit dedicated to rescuing homeless, neglected, and abandoned animals from certain euthanasia and finding them loving forever homes.

The 2,803 square-foot Shack will feature an outdoor covered patio and ample seating for guests. In keeping with Shake Shack’s commitment to green architecture and eco-friendly construction, the Ballston Shack’s tabletops will be made by CounterEvolution using reclaimed bowling alley lanes; chairs will be designed by Uhuru using sustainable materials; and booths will be crafted by Staach using lumber certified by the Forest Stewardship Council.

Snag some swag! The first 100 people in line when doors open at 11AM will receive a custom T-shirt — on us!

Shake Shack is now hiring full-time and part-time team members – no previous experience required! Apply online at ShackCareers.com

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New Burger Restaurant Coming to Virginia Square

Virginia Square is getting a new spot for burgers.

The new burger eatery is “coming soon” to 3811 Fairfax Drive, according to the chain’s website. No word yet on an opening date.

The office building was previously home to Water & Wall restaurant, which closed in early 2017.

Burgerim, which describes itself as “an international fast casual franchise with a shiny new concept,” serves “gourmet burgers” in the “uno, duo, trio, or 16 pack.” Also on the menu: “chicken wings, onion rings, sandwiches, salads, and other favorites.”

On its website, the chain says it was founded in 2011 and has since expanded to 160 locations.

Photo (bottom) via Google Maps

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Shake Shack in Ballston Nears Opening Later This Year

Progress is being made at the new Shake Shack in the Ballston Exchange.

The fast food burger chain will be joining We, The Pizza, Philz Coffee and Cava as the ground floor retail of the newly renovated building at 4201 Wilson Blvd.

Meg Castranova, brand communications manager for Shake Shack, said the location in the Ballston Exchange is on schedule to open in late 2018. The exact date is currently unknown.

The renovations to Ballston Exchange by Jamestown LLP come after the departure of the National Science Foundation to a new location in Alexandria.

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‘Burger District’ Coming Soon to Courthouse

The new burger restaurant that is replacing Basic Burger in Courthouse hopes to open by the end of the month.

In a press release, Burger District says that they “have been working hard to spruce the place up a little bit, and are anxious to get our doors open and provide all of our guests with a dining experience second to none.”

Located at 2024 Wilson Blvd, the eatery will serve “burgers, wings, dogs, shakes, ice cold beers and an eclectic mix of wines,” and will be “committed to our community.”

The restaurant is currently hiring and aims to open in “late July,” according to its website.

The full press release is below.

Hello Neighbors!

We are the crew from Burger District, a new restaurant concept opening at 2024 Wilson Blvd. We have been working hard to spruce the place up a little bit, and are anxious to get our doors open and provide all of our guests with a dining experience second to none. We are going to feature Burgers, Wings, Dogs, Shakes, Ice cold beers and an eclectic mix of wines that will all match to the many different selections on our menu. We are a small, independent company, and our goal is to quickly become that neighborhood eatery that has great food and drink, and shows our appreciation to any and all guests that come through our doors. We chose our location in Arlington because of the mix of families, businesses, schools, and youth sports teams that give Arlington its unique and special charm. We are committed to our community and will cater to local businesses, hire young Arlingtonians and teach them how to develop a strong work ethic, support our local schools, charities and first responders. Before we bring a new member on to our team, we make sure that our standard is to invite and service our guests as if we were inviting them into our own homes. Our opening menu will highlight the foundation of what we are most proud of, and our plans are to expand the menu quickly once we get rolling. We prefer to menu fewer items in the beginning, and exceed expectations rather than to try to do too much and not be able to produce to your expectations. We will offer Full Half Pound Burgers that have never, ever been introduced to hormones or antibiotics. Our jumbo wings will be Buttermilk marinated and dusted in house-made dry rubs, and smothered in our own sauces. We will feature all- beef hot dogs, superior quality pork and beef sausages as well as Vegan Dogs with mouth watering toppings. Our shakes are made with High Butterfat ice cream, and we will spare no expense on our ingredients and flavorings. We will serve high-end coffee and pastries in the morning, provide catering options as well as offering “Grill packages” which will allow the Grill Master in your family to cut a few corners when time is of the essence. We will adding a few more T.V.’s which will give us the sports bar feel without the noise and chaos of those larger “sports bars.” Our pint glass will actually hold 16 fluid oz. of beer and we will never use a “cheater” 14 oz. Pint glass. We will seat approximately 12-15 at the bar, and will offer local offices to join us with smaller groups, and provide food and beverage packages all included to wind down with a few of your friends after a hard day of work. Of course we will show Professional and College Football games, but don’t be surprised if you come in and see groups cheering for their favorite Rugby, Soccer, or Cricket teams. We are even putting up a dart board just for the heck of it. Once again, we at Burger District thank you for allow us into the neighborhood and look forward to seeing you soon.

File photo

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Shirlington Burger Restaurant Opens Tonight

Damn Good Burger Co. is planning to open tonight in Shirlington, employees said.

The sister restaurant to Ballston’s Big Buns burger shop, Damn Good Burger served some of its first customers Wednesday and Thursday nights as part of a soft opening. As of midnight last night, the restaurant was closed but employees were still working on the finishing touches inside.

Located in the former Johnny Rockets space, Damn Good Burger will serve burgers, shakes and craft beer, among other offerings. The eatery is scheduled to open at 5:30 p.m. tonight (Friday).

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Ray’s Hell Burger ‘Hiatus’ in Rosslyn Appears Permanent

Months after going on an apparent and indefinite “hiatus,” Ray’s Hell Burger appears to be officially leaving Rosslyn.

The restaurant at 1650 Wilson Blvd is now available for lease, albeit with the Ray’s awnings and signs still up, including one noting the hiatus.

Earlier this year, the Washington Business Journal reported that owner Michael Landrum wanted out of his lease on the spot, across the street from the redeveloping Wilson School site. That storefront was across from the original Hell Burger, which was visited twice by then-President Barack Obama.

Customers can still visit a Ray’s Hell Burger on K Street NW in D.C., as well as Ray’s the Steaks at 2300 Wilson Blvd in Courthouse. The latter received renewed praise from Northern Virginia Magazine earlier this year as one of its 50 best restaurants of 2017.

Landrum declined to comment further.

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Big Buns Planning January Opening in Shirlington, Dudley’s Still Under Construction

A Ballston-based burger restaurant hopes to open its second location in Shirlington early next year.

According to its website, Big Buns Damn Good Burgers & Bar will open at 4251 Campbell Ave in January. In the build-up to its opening, Big Buns is offering various gift cards to its new location, including a year-long membership for $150.

For $5,000, someone can buy free burgers for life and burger naming rights on an “epic new Designer Burger for Shirlington.”

“Oh it gets better, every time you visit Big Buns Shirlington to see your name and in the bright big burger lights, you eat for free, forever,” the website reads.

Big Buns — not to be confused with existing Shirlington bakery Best Buns — serves customizable burgers, “designer” burgers with pre-chosen ingredients and burger bowls, where the meat and toppings are served without buns.

Elsewhere in Shirlington, Dudley’s Sport and Ale (2766 S. Arlington Mill Drive) continues to move steadily towards an opening.

Yesterday (Wednesday), owner Reese Gardner posted on the sports bar’s Facebook page that the steel columns and beams have been installed, and that it passed two of six county inspections.

“Once the rest of the structure is assembled and inspected we will be able to have a very clear timeline,” Gardner wrote. “Thanks for hanging with us.”

Construction Update:The steel columns & beams have been delivered and partially installed. We passed two of the six…

Posted by Dudley's Sport and Ale on Wednesday, December 13, 2017

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Basic Burger to Expand into Pentagon Row

A burger restaurant and bar is set to open a second location in Pentagon Row in the coming months.

Basic Burger hopes to open in the plaza at Pentagon Row (1101 S. Joyce Street) by the end of this year, next door to the Starbucks and facing the central square. Its first location opened in Courthouse last year.

The restaurant already pairs a relatively straightforward menu — burgers, hot dogs, chicken sandwiches, fries, salads, shakes — with a clean, modern interior and a bar offering beer, cider and wine.

And general manager Guillermo Castillo said the new location will have all those favorites as well as some new items like a new side salad, spicy chicken sandwich and between four and eight craft cocktails.

“We’re going to add to our menu, we’re not going to take away from it,” Castillo said.

Castillo said the new location will have around 1,200 square feet of outdoor seating with lighting, while two walls will be made of glass to give the whole restaurant what he called “an indoor/outdoor feel.”

“It’s thankful for us that it has been received really well, and so for our design, we want to be modern and a little bit contemporary, we wanted it to be very clean, sharp lines,” he said. “We wanted it to be welcoming. We didn’t want it to look like a franchise company. We wanted it to look like something where you’re comfortable eating there.”

Castillo said Basic Burger is “hoping and shooting for” a soft opening in December as a “bare minimum.” He said the full build-out will take around six or seven weeks once it has been prepared by the landlord.

After just a year in business, Castillo said Basic Burger’s expansion shows it is going in the right direction.

“Our first year was incredibly strong,” he said. “We’re fortunate: Arlington is really receptive to us… South Arlington, for us, is a market that we were looking to get into.”

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Ballston-Based Big Buns to Succeed Former Johnny Rockets in Shirlington

A burger restaurant in Ballston will succeed the former Johnny Rockets burger restaurant in Shirlington.

Permitting applications filed with Arlington County show that the Big Buns Damn Good Burgers & Bar will move into 4251 Campbell Ave., its second location. Its first is at 4401 Wilson Blvd.

On its website, Big Buns — not to be confused with existing Shirlington bakery Best Buns — describes itself as being “[inspired] by a backyard party with killer burgers, ice-cold drinks and good friends.” It serves customizable burgers, “designer” burgers with pre-chosen ingredients and burger bowls, where the meat and toppings are served without buns.

There is no word on an opening date yet. On its website, Big Buns lists what appears to be its new location as “coming soon.”

When an ARLnow reporter stopped by on Thursday morning, construction crews were removing various items from Johnny Rockets, which closed in 2015, including a soda machine.

The restaurant is on the first floor of the Delancey at Shirlington Village apartment building, and across the street from Harris Teeter, the Shirlington Branch Library and Signature Theatre.

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Ulta Beauty, Basic Burger Coming to Pentagon Row

A new beauty store is set to move to Pentagon Row, reportedly as early as next spring.

Ulta Beauty is opening a 10,000-square-foot store at 1101 S. Joyce Street, replacing the Vitamin Shoppe and Lime Fresh Mexican Grill. The store will be close to Harris Teeter and Bed Bath & Beyond.

Washingtonian magazine reported late last month it will open in spring 2018. As of Thursday, construction crews were hard at work on the space.

Ulta offers a wide range of beauty products, including brands like Urban Decay, Nars and MAC. It also offers services like facials, eyebrow waxing and hair styling.

Already, Ulta has stores nearby in Bailey’s Crossroads, Springfield and Northeast Washington. Its online careers portal notes several open positions at the planned Pentagon Row store.

Ulta is one of a number of businesses that have opened or are opening at Pentagon Row in the coming months. Signs nearby welcome the arrivals of the F45 Training gym, Club Pilates, Aabee Kabob, a Deli and Basic Burger.

Basic Burger, a Shake Shack-eque burger restaurant, opened its first location in Courthouse last year.

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Morning Notes

Rosslyn

Wahlburgers Coming to Ballston — Wahlburgers, the burger chain founded by the show biz Wahlbergs (Mark, Donnie, Paul), is coming to Ballston next year. The eatery will be located near the intersection of Wilson Blvd and N. Glebe Road. [Washington Post]

SER Expanding to Capitol Hill? — The team behind SER restaurant in Ballston — or, at least, part of the team — is opening a new restaurant on Capitol Hill in the former Sona Creamery and Wine Bar space. [Washington Business Journal]

Metro Releases Cause of Derailment — What caused a Metro train to derail near the East Falls Church station on Friday? The transit agency says it was a deteriorated section of track in which the rails became too wide. [Washington Post]

Dark Star Park Day — Yesterday Arlington County held its annual observance of Dark Star Park Day in Rosslyn. The public park, built in 1984, is designed to have its shadows line up once a year, on Aug. 1. [Storify]

County Touts Innovation Recognition — Three Arlington County programs have been recognized for innovation from the Virginia Association of Counties. [Arlington County]

Road Rage on a Bike Trail — Road rage isn’t something that only happens with motorists. Occasionally, it happens among cyclists as well, as this story from an incident on the Mt. Vernon Trail demonstrates. [Storify]

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Morning Notes

Under-construction parking garage rises above the busy Costco parking lot

Oracle Acquiring OpowerUpdated at 9:55 a.m. — Technology giant Oracle is acquiring Arlington-based Opower in a $548 million cash deal. Opower recently went through a round of layoffs. [Reuters, Oracle]

Clarendon Z-Burger to Get New Name — The Z-Burger location in Clarendon will be rebranded soon as part of a legal settlement between the founder and the former partners in the business. [Washington Business Journal]

Arlington Unemployment Remains Lowest in Va. — Arlington’s unemployment rate ticked up by a tenth of a percent in March, but remained the lowest in Virginia. The county’s unemployment rate is currently 2.7 percent, with just under 4,000 residents looking for work while 142,000 are employed. [InsideNova]

Foggy Morning Commute — Arlington and much of the region was under a Dense Fog Advisory this morning. [Weather Channel]

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Basic Burger Now Open in Courthouse

A slick new burger restaurant and bar has opened in Courthouse.

Basic Burger pairs a relatively straightforward menu — burgers, hot dogs, chicken sandwiches, fries, salads, shakes — with a clean, modern interior and a bar offering beer, cider and wine.

It’s a bit Shake Shack-esque, with some unique touches, including sweet potato fries, onion rings, fried pickles and fizzy beverages from “craft soda” brand Stubborn Soda.

Located at 2024 Wilson Blvd, just down from the now-closed Wendy’s and up from Ray’s Hell Burger, Basic Burger opened for business on Monday. Its hours are 11 a.m.-9 p.m. Sunday through Wednesday and 11 a.m.-11 p.m. Thursday through Saturday.

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Renovations at Columbia Pike Burger King

The Burger King on Columbia Pike is getting a makeover.

Located at 3627 Columbia Pike, Burger King’s realm was looking a bit less-than-regal as of late. Over the past few days, however, workers have spruced up the interior.

More remodeling — including exterior changes — appears to be in the works.

During the interior renovation, the restaurant’s dining room was closed but its drive-thru remained open.

Hat tip to John Fontain

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Shake Shack Opening Soon in Pentagon City

Exterior signage is up at the future Shake Shack at the Pentagon City mall.

The burger-and-shake restaurant is opening within a new, still under-construction expansion of the Fashion Centre at Pentagon City along S. Hayes Street. It’s the chain’s first restaurant in Arlington.

The mall’s website says Shake Shack “is expected to open as of 4/1/2016,” but a PR rep said that information is “inaccurate.” No updated opening date was immediately available. Initially, it was said that Shake Shack would open at some point this spring.

Other restaurants and stores coming to the expanded front entrance of the mall include:

Another new store at the mall, Garrett Popcorn, is currently said to be opening around June 1.

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