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A Columbia Pike taco spot that has gained a following on social media has closed until next year and is likely moving.

Nono’s Taqueria announced last week to its nearly Instagram 61,000 followers that it was “temporarily closing” its location at 3207-A Columbia Pike, tucked between Panda Bowl and Family Kabob House. But “better things are yet to come” continued the post.

Those better things appear to be a “mini-vacation” and a move, per chef and owner Christian Ruiz.

“We decided to close because our lease was almost up and it was time for an upgrade. Our clientele is big and we think it’s time to stand out on Columbia Pike with a facility that’s modern, offers more parking, and easier access for all our customers,” Ruiz wrote ARLnow in an email. “Our previous location served its purpose and was a great starting point for Nono’s Taqueria and we are grateful for all that it came with. All that being said, we are taking a mini vacation meanwhile so that we can come back stronger than ever.”

Ruiz also said that all of this might not happen until “close to March.”

We asked where Nono’s Taqueria plans to move but have yet to hear back. The taco shop opened in May 2021 and is known for its “Tijuana-style” birria tacos.

Birria tacos at Nono’s Taqueria (image via Instagram/Nono’s Taqueria)

The Columbia Pike corridor is gaining a bit of a reputation for being home to popular taco spots.

Up until this time last year, the La Tingeria food truck was also serving birria tacos on weekends on S. Courthouse Road right off the Pike before moving to a permanent space in Falls Church.

Last month Tortas y Tacos at 2911 Columbia Pike, next to the Arlington Cinema Drafthouse, announced that it would be extending its hours to 24/7, at least for delivery.

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Shirlington frozen dessert fans are getting the cold shoulder.

Frozen yogurt spot Yogi Castle at 4014 Campbell Ave appears to have closed a couple of months ago, with the interior now cleaned out and the awning removed. What’s left is an outline of a sign that once read “Yogiberry,” which was the business name prior to Yogi Castle.

ARLnow hasn’t been able to reach the business owners to confirm exactly when and why it closed. Property owner Federal Realty Investment Trust also was not able to provide details about the shop’s departure from the Village of Shirlington.

Yogiberry first opened in 2010, replacing Maggie Moo’s ice cream.

For a moment, it appeared that Shirlington was not going to have to wait long for a new frozen dessert spot.

Back in April, Jeni’s Splendid Ice Cream announced that it was moving into a space just down the street from Yogi Castle at 4150 Campbell Avenue. It’s replacing a Thai rolled ice cream spot, which closed late last year.

While Jeni’s stickers plaster the storefront’s windows, it remains unclear when the scoop shop might open.

There is no estimated date or timeline for the Shirlington store’s opening, a Jeni’s spokesperson tells ARLnow in an email. The location is not listed yet on the company’s main site, and interior construction appeared to still be in the early stages a couple of weeks ago.

The Ohio-based ice cream company currently has shops in Bethesda, D.C., Alexandria, and Tysons, which opened in the spring of last year.

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The Barre3 studio in Clarendon has closed after four-and-a-half years in business.

The workout spot at 2800 Clarendon Blvd in The Crossing Clarendon (formerly Market Common Clarendon) officially closed yesterday, the company confirmed to ARLnow. It blamed a conflict with the property owner and business challenges brought on by the pandemic.

“Barre3 Clarendon is closed as of yesterday 10/25/2022 due to unresolved conflict with our landlord in relation to the insurmountable losses the pandemic has brought our way,” a spokesperson wrote to ARLnow in an email.

ARLnow is awaiting a response from the shopping center owner, Florida-based Regency Centers.

Clarendon’s Barre3 first opened in March 2018 after a bit of a delay. It was a workout studio that emphasized techniques and equipment more typically used by ballet dancers. It was the only Barre3 studio in Arlington, with the next closest one now on Duke Street in Alexandria. There are more than 170 Barre3 studios across the country.

The Crossing Clarendon has seen other closings and openings recently. The fashion store Loft closed over the summer while seafood restaurant Seamore’s opened last month at the corner of Clarendon Blvd and N. Edgewood Street.

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Bread & Water has closed its standalone “cube” location in Pentagon City after four-and-a-half years in business.

The outpost of the Fairfax County-founded artisan bakery — which in addition to baked goods also offered coffee, tea, sandwiches, salads — first opened in February 2018 at what was then Pentagon Row (now Westpost). It was generally well reviewed online.

The business told customers in an email this morning, below, that it was closing in Pentagon City “effective immediately.”

Hey Bread and Water friends…we just wanted to let you know that effective immediately our CUBE – Pentagon City location will be closed.

We’re so grateful for all the support from our amazing customers here. We have loved our time at the Row, but we’ve got big things planned for our Alexandria location and sister restaurants (shout out to Bun Papa & BeeLiner Diner). We look forward to serving you at our other locations.

See you soon.

Reached by ARLnow, the business said it simply declined to renew its lease.

“Lease was just up,” said company founder Markos Panas. “Bread & Water and the team are doing better than ever and we’re focusing on bigger things… We are moving full speed ahead!”

It’s unclear what, if anything, is planned to replace Bread & Water in the small, standalone space at 1201 S. Joyce Street, near the shopping center’s plaza that hosts the ice rink during colder weather months.

Hat tip to Paul W. Matt Blitz contributed to this report. 

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The sun has set on the British-inspired Salt Pot Kitchen in Ballston Quarter Market.

The “upscale British street food” eatery closed down its Quarter Market stall back in early August, co-owner Wendy Salt confirmed to ARLnow. Salt Pot first opened there in May, making its run rather short.

“Our contract was only ever for 3 months as a trial run/pop-up. There was always going to be an option to extend, which we would have been happy to consider but it just never got busy enough,” she wrote ARLnow. “Other opportunities came our way, and we have been busy exploring those since August.”

Salt also noted that they are not completely gone from Ballston, keeping a presence at the weekly farmers market on Thursday evenings until mid-November.

“This has been very successful, and we have many repeat customers every week,” Salt said.

The restaurant also continues to sell its food online.

Salt Pot Kitchen is from the Loudoun County-based mother-son team of Wendy and Charlie Salt and the mall stall was their first brick-and-mortar location. It served traditional English fare, like sausage rolls, meat pies, soups, and Wiltshire plaits.

The stall where Salt Pot Kitchen was, near the escalator and across from Bollywood Bistro, is currently dark, as it’s been since August. There’s no word as of yet on what new tenant might move in.

Prior to the British eatery, the stall was the home of Rogi. That pierogi pop-up, which replaced Italian spot Cucina al Volo, closed early this year, making way for Salt Pot Kitchen in the spring.

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Tasteful Delight in Pentagon City now appears closed (staff photo by Jay Westcott)

It appears that Pentagon City mainstay Tasteful Delight has closed.

The signage is now gone at the long-time Chinese food restaurant on S. Joyce Street. There’s also a lock on the door, plus the interior looks like it has been cleared out. As further proof, online ordering is no longer available on the restaurant’s website and its phone line has been disconnected.

It’s unclear when exactly Tasteful Delight did serve its last meal, with the last Yelp review being from early September.

ARLnow has reached out to the email listed on the restaurant’s website but has yet to hear back as of publication.

Earlier this week, a tip came in that expressed disappointment that the restaurant had closed because “the food was really good.” On NextDoor, there was similar sentiment.

“It was by far the best American style Chinese food I’ve food in the area.” Another says that they “feared” the day it would close and “almost fell to my knees cursing the sky” when they realized they would no longer be able to order from there. Overall, Tasteful Delight garnered 3.5 stars on Yelp.

The restaurant was open at 1301 S. Joyce Street for at least a decade, outlasting until now all the turnover that’s been going on at Pentagon Row — also known as Westpost — over the last two years.

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Capriotti’s Sandwich Shop in Rosslyn appears to have made its last sub.

The Delaware-founded and currently Las Vegas-based fast-casual sandwich chain seems to have closed its eatery on the ground floor of 1500 Wilson Blvd, across from the Target. Closed signs are posted on its doors, while equipment inside has been moved out.

Additionally, the store seems to have been scrubbed from Capriotti’s website.

ARLnow has reached out to the company to confirm its closure in Rosslyn but has yet to hear back as of publication.

Capriotti’s first opened on Wilson Blvd in August 2014 to considerable fanfare, with people camped out in order to get free sandwiches for a year. It was part of a torrid expansion for the company, with a number of other locations also opening in the D.C. area around the same time.

The sandwiches were famed for being a favorite of now-President Joe Biden, who attended the opening of the first Capriotti’s in D.C. in 2013 and reportedly liked to tell people that the shop was proof that Delaware makes the best sandwiches. During the first week of November 2020 and with Biden on his way to becoming the 46th president, sales rose by about 30% at the Capriotti’s in Rosslyn.

Despite that brief uptick in sales, though, it was already clear that Capriotti’s was struggling to generate enough sandwich sales to maintain its expanded presence in area. The location in Dupont Circle closed in 2018 and the location in Arlington was the last of the shops in the region.

The closest Capriotti’s currently open is in Chester, Maryland, southeast of Baltimore. An outpost is also reportedly coming to Dulles International Airport, which brings to mind the fact that the last Virginia location of once high-flying regional chain Taylor Gourmet is still slinging sandwiches at Reagan National Airport.

The first Capriotti’s opened in Wilmington, Delaware in 1976. It now has more than 100 locations and is based in Las Vegas, Nevada.

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When one Bank of America branch closes on Columbia Pike, another one opens.

The Bank of America branch at 3401 Columbia Pike is set to close in late November, per the bank’s website. The building it is housed in at the intersection of S. Glebe Road is likely on its way to being demolished to make way for a six-story, 250-unit residential development with ground-floor retail.

The office building at 3401 Columbia Pike was last sold in December 2020 to Marcus Partners for nearly $15 million, county property records show. That’s a $10 million over what it sold for in 2015.

The bank branch occupies most of the building, with a doctor’s office and an immigration law office also at that location. It’s not immediately clear when those businesses might be moving or closing.

Those looking to make deposits won’t have to go far, though.

A new Bank of America branch is set to open soon after the other one closes just a block away at 3532 Columbia Pike. It’s moving into the former home of a Capital One Bank. That branch was in the news over the years due to it being robbed twice, including one incident that was investigated by the FBI. It closed more than three years ago.

The new Bank of America branch is planning to open by the end of the year, but that timeline is “dependent on construction completion” a company spokesperson told ARLnow.

“The new center has been designed to highlight our high-tech high-touch approach, which helps us best serve all of our clients’ financial needs,” the spokesperson said.

Customers with safe deposit boxes in the existing branch are being urged to retrieve them by October 7, according to a letter from Bank of America shared with ARLnow by a reader.

Arlington has eight Bank of America financial centers and ATM locations, according to the bank’s website. This includes the locations inside of the Pentagon and a State Department facility on Arlington Blvd, which both may require “authorization to enter.”

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A well-regarded local ramen restaurant has closed.

Gaijin Ramen Shop, at 3800 Langston Blvd in Cherrydale, closed its doors earlier this month, citing “irrecoverable business losses” from the pandemic. The shop was only open for lunch and dinner four days per week prior to its closure.

From the restaurant’s website:

Why did we close? The pandemic hit us hard. We suffered irrecoverable business losses the last few years, but we were sustained by grit and our loyal staff. Ultimately, factors such as skyrocketing food costs, supply chain instability, and other costs are too much for us to continue to handle. We could not find a path to provide high-quality food at a reasonable price. Shutting down Gaijin is an incredibly hard decision, but we are so very grateful for the support. We are so proud to have served the Arlington community since 2015.

We would like to thank our customers and staff who made Gaijin an awesome place for the past 7 years. We appreciate all the love you gave us and all the great memories we shared together! Being voted “Best Ramen” by the voters in Arlington Magazine was an accolade that we will always treasure. Our kids had their first jobs working at Gaijin, we’ve watched our servers “grow up” and go off to college and then return during summers and breaks, we’ve grieved and celebrated inside the walls of our restaurant, and we are grateful for every minute.

Thank you for your support; we’ll miss you!

Gaijin opened in July 2015 and was co-owned by two women who pooled their savings in order to follow their passion for scratch-made ramen. The name, which means “foreigner” in Japanese, was a light-hearted nod to neither being from Japan.

Its lengthy, painstaking approach to making ramen earned Gaijin some local accolades and 4.4 stars via Google reviews.

A restaurant that seemingly matched the description of Gaijin was listed for sale this year via a business brokerage website, but a co-owner took to ARLnow’s comments section last month to deny that it was for sale.

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Buffalo Wild Wings in Ballston (file photo)

It appears that the Buffalo Wild Wings in Ballston will close next month.

Earlier this month, a request was submitted to the county on behalf of the building owner JBG Smith to amend the site plan for the office building at 950 N. Glebe Road. In that request, it’s noted that the 7,318 square foot space on the ground floor of the building that currently is home to Buffalo Wild Wings is set to be vacated when the lease is up at the end of August.

“The [building] has never enjoyed strong street frontage for retail or restaurants, which led to lower sales for the existing tenant and contributed to their decision to vacate at the end of the lease in August 2022,” the statement of justification letter reads.

Upon learning of the restaurant’s intent to close, JBG Smith attempted to find a replacement tenant but was “unsuccessful.” In response, the developer is moving on and asking the county to add “retail equivalent uses” as a permitted use.

The hope is to turn the large space once home to the beer, wings and sports chain into an assortment of “lounges, conference rooms, co-working spaces, and a fitness center” as a way to “substantially upgrade the ground floor experience” for office tenants at 950 N. Glebe Road.

ARLnow has reached out to both Buffalo Wild Wings and JBG Smith to confirm the chain’s departure from Ballston. We’ve not heard back from either as of publication.

Ballston’s Buffalo Wild Wings opened a decade ago based in part on the success of the Crystal City location. It was expected to be one of the company’s top-performing restaurants in the country, per the regional manager at the time.

That does not seem to be the case, at least today. Recent reviews of the restaurant on both Google and Yelp say that it is often devoid of customers, that food items are frequently out of stock, and that the establishment is understaffed. A lack of customers has plagued many — though not necessarily all — restaurants on the western side of Glebe Road, as the Metro station entrance, plus most of Ballton’s businesses and foot traffic, are on the eastern side of the busy artery.

Overall, JBG Smith seems to be looking to spruce up 950 N. Glebe Road. The proposed updates include a 410-square-foot bump out for a fitness center, landscape changes, and an “indoor/outdoor tenant café-style area with operable windows,” along with more conference rooms and co-working spaces.

“These proposed amendments to Site Plan #331 will allow the [building] to compete in a struggling office and retail market,” the request says. “Securing new retail and office tenants during the uncertain economic environment of the last two years has proven difficult for the Applicant, especially given that it lacks tenant amenities (which are now proposed).”

Hat tip to Chris Slatt

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Athena Pallas Greek Restaurant in Crystal City is closing (staff photo by Matt Blitz)

Athena Pallas in Crystal City is set to serve its final spanakopita on Sunday, July 31.

The 25-year-old Greek restaurant at 556 22nd Street S. is closing at the end of this month, the owners confirmed to ARLnow.

The reason seems to be a disagreement with the landlord of the 23rd Street S. “restaurant row.”

The property owner told ARLnow that they wanted “adjustments” in terms of Athena’s management and operations, something that the owners Mike Kosmides and Kallia Sambrakos say is a deal breaker.

“They recommended that we get a partner or hire a manager… we are tenants, we pay the rent,” Kosmides said. “You have no say in how we operate… They don’t want us here anymore because we are old and cannot perform well.”

He also says that he’s had recent health issues as well as a family death that’s impacted the couple’s ability to run the restaurant.

The property owners acknowledged operational changes were asked for and would “absolutely” support Athena Palla staying open if they were to make the suggested changes.

“Between Covid and the terrible loss of her son there has been a lot of downtime at Athena. We did our best to work with them and asked for some adjustments in management in order to see longevity. Athena opted to shutter doors instead,” Georgia and Stratis Voutsas said in a statement to ARLnow. “We’re heartbroken, are certainly dismayed with the unkind misinterpretation, but would welcome them to continue to operate with the changes.”

The landlords also wanted to make it clear that this isn’t an “economic closure,” but rather one related to the restaurant’s lease being up. The lease has been month-to-month for some time now, both the restaurant owners and the landlord told ARLnow.

There have been several meetings over the last few weeks to rectify the issue and, perhaps, reach a compromise to keep the restaurant open, including one just over the weekend. However, there seems to be an impasse in negotiations, which both sides acknowledge.

As of Monday (July 18) afternoon, Sambrakos says they are “100%” closing at the end of the month.

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