NAACP Wants War Memorial Plaque Changed — The Arlington chapter of the NAACP wants a plaque on the war memorial in Clarendon updated. The plaque lists Arlingtonians killed in World War I, but separates two “colored” military members from the rest of the local war dead. The NAACP says it would like to get the plaque removed and replaced. “We owe it to those who fought and died,” said local NAACP president Karen Nightengale. [InsideNova]
Two Restaurant Chains Coming to Arlington — Two regional franchise operators have signed agreements that will bring two expanding restaurant chains to Arlington. A former Domino’s Pizza franchisee is planning to open an Arlington location of Wisconsin-based Toppers Pizza, in addition to locations elsewhere in Northern Virginia. Meanwhile a Five Guys franchisee says it will be opening 10 Newk’s Eatery locations in Arlington and Fairfax counties. The Mississippi-based soup, salad, sandwich and pizza chain is big in the Southeast U.S., with more than 100 locations in 13 states and an aggressive expansion plan. [WTOP, Washington Business Journal]
Arlington Hotels Hacked — Two Arlington hotels have reportedly had their payment systems compromised by hackers. HEI Hotels and Resorts says malware was found on its systems at 20 hotels, including the Le Meridien in Rosslyn and the Sheraton Pentagon City on Columbia Pike. The hack potentially exposed the credit card information of hotel guests and customers. [Associated Press]
Pokemon Go at the Pentagon — Department of Defense officials have put the kibosh on DoD employees playing Pokemon Go on government phones, citing concerns about the game tracking the movement of its employees. The DoD has also reportedly told Pentagon employees to only play the game outside of the building. A Pokemon “gym” inside the Pentagon has been removed. [The Guardian, Twitter]
Bethesda Man Bought $1 Million Lottery Ticket in Arlington — The $1 million-winning Powerball ticket that was sold at a Ballston 7-Eleven store last month was sold to a Bethesda resident. Larry Elpiner says he plans to “share his winnings with family and friends,” in addition to paying for his daughter’s college education. [WUSA 9]
Photo courtesy Noah Kaufman
Goody’s Pizza in Clarendon is a small restaurant struggling to stay afloat in an increasingly expensive neighborhood.
The owners, Nick and Vanessa Reisis, say they’ve put a lot of time and effort into their family-run business, located at 3125 Wilson Blvd, but they are having trouble competing with the wave of newer, more upscale restaurants in Clarendon.
There is “a new generation that’s coming in, they’re all young people and they all have good jobs, and… they’re not looking for a little mom and pop shop anymore,” said Vanessa, who’s known to some customers as “Momma Goody.” Business has been “a little down lately,” she acknowledged.
Goody’s is tiny compared to some of Clarendon’s cavernous restaurants and nightspots. But even larger restaurants face the threat of closing. Earlier this month long-time local fixture Hard Times Cafe closed over Independence Day weekend.
Reisis said the feeling of community that was once unique to Clarendon businesses is dissipating.
“It’s not the friendly little neighborhood places anymore,” Vanessa explained. “[At] all these upscale kind of places, it’s just cold.”
Reisis was sad to see Hard Times close — the two restaurants had enjoyed a close relationship, she said. “We recommended them, they recommended us. We were working together.”
This isn’t a new issue — Reisis was once the main subject of an article with the tagline “Can Arlington’s mom-and-pop eateries survive in an increasingly upscale restaurant landscape?” Five years later, Goody’s is still open, still serving a voracious late night bar crowd, and still offering only two types of pizza by the slice: plain and pepperoni.
Despite being an old school spot in a neighborhood full of shiny new places, Goody’s is looking to the future. Tentative plans include getting new furniture and maybe a new outdoor sign.
“We love this restaurant, it’s our passion, it’s like our little baby,” said Reisis.
“We’re thinking of upscaling,” she added, “but that costs money, which we don’t have in our budget.”
A pizza delivery driver was T-boned in a crash near Clarendon this afternoon.
The crash occurred shortly after noon at the intersection of Washington Blvd and N. Kirkwood Road.
A pickup truck slammed into the passenger side of the Paisano’s Pizza delivery car at the intersection. The circumstances leading to the crash are unclear at this point.
According to scanner traffic, one person was bleeding from the head and required medical attention following the wreck.
NKD Pizza, the pizza chain formerly known as Naked Pizza, has closed its Pentagon City location.
The pizzeria, in the Pentagon Row shopping center at 1101 S. Joyce Street, opened in July 2011, touting unique pizza recipes and all-natural ingredients. Subsequently a Ballston/Virginia Square location opened in 2012.
Today, the Pentagon City’s location was closed, with brown paper covering the windows and a sign posted on the door.
“Thank you so much for your past patronage — we’ve enjoyed serving you at this location for the past five years!” the sign read. “We would love to continue serving you as a carryout guest at our Ballston location.”
The Ballston NKD Pizza store is located at 933 N. Quincy Street.
Signs are up for a new pizza restaurant on Columbia Pike.
1000 Degrees has over 100 locations nationwide. The business is based around $7.99 personalized pizzas which are cooked in two minutes.
Customers can build their own personalized pizzas or choose from 15 neapolitan flavors including margherita and tuscan chicken. Breadsticks, wings and build your own salads are also offered.
The restaurant has yet to announce an official opening date. The Arlington location’s Facebook page was last updated on March 31.
Working with the Metropolitan Police Department, Arlington County Police say there were able to locate the vehicle in D.C. and take the suspect into custody.
From an ACPD crime report:
GRAND THEFT AUTO, 160428031, 1400 block of N. Uhle Street. At approximately 1:10 p.m. on April 28, a pizza delivery vehicle was stolen while the driver was on a delivery. Officers were able to locate the vehicle in Washington D.C. With the assistance of the Metropolitan Police Department, the suspect was taken into custody without incident. Warrants were obtained for grand larceny auto for James Lee Thomas III, 38, of Washington D.C.
“Arlington friends, we have enjoyed serving you, but have decided to close our restaurant in Clarendon,” the post reads. “We will miss you, but hope you’ll visit us in Woodbridge or Virginia Beach. Thank you for your patronage and your kindness.”
The company did not say why it closed the pizzeria and a representative for Brixx did not immediately respond to requests for comment.
Calls to the Clarendon location went unanswered earlier this afternoon.
Hat tip to a tipster for sending news of the closure our way
Fillmore Pizza is available for walk-in or delivery from 11 to 11 daily, and until 1 a.m. Friday and Saturday. Locations are at 923 S. Walter Reed Dr. (call 703-920-9110) and 5175 Lee Highway (call 703-532-9110). Fillmore Pizza is also happy to cater any occasion; call for details.
Arlington is stuffed with pizza. It’s our go-to, default, twice-to-three times a week weakness. Because it’s easy, it’s a known quantity and we kind of like it.
But not all pizza is created equally. In fact, some is created superiorly, and that would mean Fillmore Pizza. Fresh dough every day. Fresh tomato sauce. Fresh vegetables and meat toppings.
But Fillmore Pizza is not just pizza. Tuscan hummus, stuffed grape leaves, spinach dip, kalamata olives and warm pita triangles are the starters of a menu that cruises the shores of the Mediterranean Sea. An endless variation of calzone combinations dazzle the hungry diner with spinach & artichoke, chicken portabella, meatball and classic Italian cheese and meat. (And don’t forget the chicken wings, flavored to your taste.)
In the mood for something substantial? Cheese manicotti, heavenly layered lasagna, chicken alfredo, classic spaghetti and meat sauce and assorted raviolis await. Oh, and baked meatballs. Talk about substantial.
As for sandwiches, fresh and light are the keys, with the Napoli offering fresh mozzarella, basil and tomatoes in a light olive oil sauce; roasted eggplant brings together a garden full of savory flavors and the Milano adds a mixture of classic Italian meats–prosciutto, genoa salami and ham–to the concoction. Of course there are steak, chicken, turkey, meatball and gyro in the sandwich mix. There’s even a grilled cheese, but not your usual; this one is mozzarella and provolone with fresh tomatoes.
The dessert offerings continue the Mediterranean theme, with cannoli and tiramisu side by side with cheesecake and classic chocolate cake.
The preceding was a sponsored local business profile written by Buzz McClain for ARLnow.com.
Joe’s Place Pizza & Pasta
5555 Lee Highway
Arlington, VA 22207
This Valentine’s Day, surprise your special someone with a delicious, romantic heart-shaped pizza from Joe’s Place Pizza & Pasta. Dine in and pair it with our delicious Sicilian wines or with our great selection of IPAs. Or have it delivered, free of charge! $13 for a large heart-shaped cheese pizza, $1.80 per additional toppings.
At Joe’s Place, we make all our own authentic Sicilian style pasta dishes, sauces, pizza and desserts with recipes we brought from our hometown of Agrigento, Italy, and through all we’ve learned in this great country.
Since opening the first Joe’s Place in 1978, we’ve earned a reputation for the best pizza in town, along with a warm, friendly atmosphere and strong support for the community. Many of Joe’s staff have been with us for 10, 20, even 30 years. They and our many longtime regular customers truly are like family.
Say “I love you” with a fun, fresh and festive pizza from Joe’s Place!
The incident happened around 10:45 p.m. Monday, on the 2700 block of 16th Street S. Police say a pizza delivery driver — a spokeswoman declined to say from which company — was delivering an order on the street but didn’t have an exact address.
Three women in their 20s, who were wearing dark clothing, flagged the driver down and said they ordered the pizza. Then, according to a police report, they pepper sprayed the driver and ran off with two pizzas.
So far, police do not have any suspects or specific suspect descriptions.
The incident happened just before 3 a.m. Police say 26-year-old William Donovan of Vienna, Va. was sitting by himself at a table in the tiny pizzeria, snorting cocaine. A uniformed Arlington County police officer who was standing nearby witnessed the alleged drug use and went to arrest Donovan.
At that point Donovan, who police say was highly intoxicated, defiantly said something to the effect of “I’m going home tonight,” and took a “fighting stance,” according to ACPD spokesman Dustin Sternbeck.
Donovan began kicking and punching the officer, prompting a witness to jump in and help restrain him while additional officers sped to the scene, Sternbeck said.
Donovan was charged with possession of cocaine, two counts of assault on a police officer, resisting arrest and obstruction of justice, according to Sternbeck, and is being held without bond.
He “eventually apologized while being transported to jail,” Sternbeck noted.
Brixx Wood Fired Pizza recently opened a new restaurant in Clarendon, at 1119 N. Hudson Street, and the company is ready to introduce Arlington residents to a healthier type of pizza, said co-owner Jeff VanDyke.
“Our pizzas are thin crust so they tend to be healthier than other pizzas out there,” VanDyke said.
Brixx’s pizzas are made on traditional or whole wheat crust, both made from scratch every morning. Both doughs are vegan and guests can ask for vegan cheese. Gluten-free dough is also available. The restaurant, which is known for its large selection of beers on tap, offers gluten-free drinking options as well.
Brixx strives to have a casual and relaxing atmosphere, Van Dyke said. The restaurant is kid and family friendly, but looks to attract an older crowd as well with its late night offerings. The restaurant is open until 1 a.m. Monday through Saturday.
Its late openings fit in with the Clarendon bar scene, and Clarendon’s dynamic environment attracted the company to the area.
“We love the energy of the neighborhood in Clarendon,” VanDyke said. “Very vibrant. We’re excited to settle into the neighborhood. We love to work with the schools for fundraisers.”
The pizza chain offers discounts to police officers and firefighters, VanDyke said, noting that he often sees emergency personnel eat at the restaurant.
Beyond being a neighborhood-friendly restaurant, Brixx was built on the idea of being green and fresh. The chain recycles the glass from beer bottles and makes everything fresh that day.
“We do a lot of different styles of pizza,” VanDyke siad. “There’s good variety in terms of the menu.”
He recommends newcomers try the Bronx Bomber, a pizza with Italian sausage, prosciutto, mozzarella and gorgonzola; the Mexican, which has a black bean spread, chicken and jalapenos; or the Margherita, though there are so many options it is hard to choose.
In addition to pizzas, the restaurant offers a selection of salads, sandwiches and pastas.
“Even though we are called a pizza place, we have really good salads,” VanDyke said.
“We have what we call our M.B.A. program, Masters of Beer Appreciation, where you can earn rewards,” VanDyke said.
Those who enroll in the program can earn t-shirts, beer goblets and free pizza based on the amount of times they visit Brixx.
Brixx Wood Fired opened in Clarendon last month and is already seeing steady business. Call it a hidden gem: the Hudson Street location is a bit set back from Clarendon’s main drag. Look for it between the CVS and Nam-Viet restaurant.
Brixx is open from 11 a.m. to 1 a.m. Monday through Saturday and 11 a.m. to 11 p.m. on Sunday.
The preceding was a sponsored profile written by Heather Mongilio for ARLnow.com.
There’s a new pizza shop in town for those who live in the neighborhoods along Lee Highway.
Upper Crust Pizzeria has opened in the former HomeMade Pizza Company space, in the Lee Heights Shops, at 4514 Lee Highway. The restaurant quietly opened for business on Oct. 27, said Chief Financial Officer Ben Deb.
It’s the first D.C. area outpost of the small Boston-based chain since it went bankrupt and closed a former location in the District. Other new stores planned include a location on U Street NW in the District and one in Beverly Hills, California, both of which are slated to open within the next couple of months.
Upper Crust offers 25 specialty pizzas, some with D.C.-centric names, like “The GW,” “Pennsylvania Ave,” “The Nationals” and “The Dupont.” For customized pizzas, the company offers 40 toppings, nine cheeses, a gluten free dough option and three sizes: personal (10″), small (14″) and large (18″). Cheese, pepperoni and a “slice of the month” and “slice of the day” are offered by the slice.
Also on the menu are salads, baked lasagna, beer and wine. Take-out and free delivery are offered; in addition, there’s a small dine-in area and back patio.
Shawn Shenefield, Upper Crust’s Operations Director, says the opening so far has gone “really well.” He described the past two weeks as a soft opening, in which staff get on-the-job experience and training while business ramps up.
Shenefield said Upper Crust seeks to be a community-oriented business — Arlington, he noted, is comparable to Brookline, Mass., where the company has a store — and has been focusing on partnering with local schools. For instance, it has been planning fundraisers with nearby Marymount University and Glebe Elementary.
RedRocks Neapolitan Bistro, the anchor restaurant at Penrose Square on Columbia Pike, will be closing after tonight.
RedRocks first opened at 2501 Columbia Pike in early 2013, then “relaunched” last year with lower prices, more burgers and delivery service. With middling results, the owners decided to shutter RedRocks and launch an all-new restaurant.
RedRocks will close its doors after 10 p.m. tonight.
A new restaurant and bar called Marble and Rye will be opening in its place, “offering a locally-sourced, seasonal menu highlighting the wood fire stove.”
Marble and Rye will offer “20 craft beers on tap, a carefully thought out cocktail menu, and bourbons and ryes to pair with every item on the menu,” according to its website.
“Marble and Rye is moderately-priced contemporary American wood fire kitchen and whiskey bar that combines locally-inspired, seasonal, and creative food with one of the best and most extensive lists of whiskeys, and specialty seasonal cocktails,” a restaurant spokeswoman, Sarah Lakey, tells ARLnow.com.
“It will offer high quality food with a great atmosphere, ambiance, have a friendly and knowledgeable staff, and provide free and convenient parking in order to create a sense of ‘place’ and provide a great experience to our customers.”
Helming the new restaurant will be chef Kate Bennett, who has most recently been working as a private chef for a local real estate developer. Before that she worked for as an assistant kitchen manager for a large restaurant group in New York City.
“Our chef, Kate Bennett’s menus are always fresh and adapting with the seasons in order to provide farm-fresh northeast ingredients… from nearby farms and specialty purveyors,” says the website.
An early menu sent to ARLnow.com includes small plates from roasted marrow bone to mushroom gnocchi, a selection of wood-fired vegetables, salads, wood oven pizzas and grilled entrees like cedar plank salmon, caramelized diver sea scallops, baby back ribs, two types of burgers and quinoa cakes.
Entree prices range from $13 for a basic “chef’s burger” to $26 for an espresso rubbed filet.
“The restaurant will offer a lunch menu that will compliment our dinner menu, including specialty pizzas, salads and sandwiches, a daily happy hour, weekly events including Whiskey Wednesdays where customers can experience high end whiskeys from our tasting room at a reasonable price and a unique Sunday brunch with drink specials,” said Lakey.
The restaurant will also “actively promote and support local breweries and distilleries with an attractive tasting room and open floor plan for private events.”
While still majority owned by the owners of RedRocks, it will be run under the leadership of Bennett and a new management team.
Marble and Rye is expected to open in mid-to-late November.
Sugar Shack Donuts, a Richmond-based eatery serving fresh donuts and coffee, and 1000 Degrees Neapolitan Pizza, a quickly-expanding New Jersey-based pizza chain, are coming to the ground floor of the Pike 3400 apartment building, according to building permits.
Sugar Shack attracted plenty of cult-like buzz — and actor Kevin Bacon — when it opened in Alexandria earlier this year. The location is owned by former Virginia delegate Rob Krupicka and makes its donuts in-house, without the help of machines.
The new Sugar Shack on the Pike will also be owned by Krupicka. He told ARLnow.com that the store should be open in “early 2016.”
1000 Degrees has been opening hundreds of new locations nationwide, building a business based around $7.99 personalized pizzas which are cooked in two minutes — similar to existing local fast-casual eateries like Spinfire. 1000 Degrees also offers breadsticks, build-your-own salads and fire roasted wings.
So far there’s no word on when 1000 Degrees will open.
Another building permit application indicates that a Supercuts hair salon is also planning to open at 3400 Columbia Pike.
Hat tip to Joe M.