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Looking for some Must-Eats in Alexandria, VA

  • j

Going to be in Alexandria with my wife in April for a long weekend. Looking for some good places to eat in the South DC/Alexandria area, Nothing too pricy please. Also looking for some good nightclubs & bars.
Would appreciate any info.


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  1. The only place in Alexandria that I would call a must eat is Restaurant Eve. The bistro menu is about $30 per plate...and you will definitely need reservations. (the also have a $90+ tasting menu) Majestic Cafe is also good, but about $20/plate. The rest of old town is pretty blah.

    There is a good dive karaoke bar with great mozzarella sticks, The Rockit Grille.

    In North Alexandria on Mount Vernon Avenue, there is a fantastic Thai place, Po Siam, and the Birchmere Theatre, which has different live music each night is next door.

    1. Try Bombay Curry Company, 3110 Mount Vernon Avenue (Calvert Building), Alexandria, VA, 703-836-6363

      If you like subs, try Al's Steak House, 1504 Mt. Vernon Ave.

      Good Middle Eastern at Kabob Palace in Crystal City, 2315 S. Eads St., 703-486-3535

      Link: http://hobnobblog.com

      1. Eve as mentioned below is the best. Book the bistro for a superb dinner if the tasting room is over budget.

        Bars - Murphys is an enjoyable bar in Old Town on King St. Also Vermillion is sometimes pretty busy. You best bet for large and busy bars would be to Metro or drive into DC, say Dupont Circle or Adams Morgan or drie over to Arlington

        I also enjoy Evening Star restaurant in the Del Ray part of Alexandira. Prices are mch more reasonable than Eve and they have a pretty happening bar for the area.

        1. Depends on what you're looking for:

          For good baja style tacos, try Taqueria Pablano on Mt. Vernon Ave. in Del Ray

          For great chili, go to Hard Times on King St.

          For good tex mex (don't miss the dry rub grilled wings), go to Austin Grill on King St.

          For good burgers, head to Five Guys

          For good Italian, there's a place I really like, but can't think of the name, maybe someone on here will know it. It's a brick building on a corner about half way to the waterfront. I think it is owned by two brothers. The food is good and the prices are quite reasonable.

          For a good brunch, I'd suggest the Chart House on the waterfront. The menu includes a fresh salad and fruit bar with bagels and danish and then you choose and entree from the menu. Price is about $20pp.

          I agree with the bar suggestion for Murphy's. Also, if you happen to like Bluegrass Music, the Tiffany Tavern has that live on Friday and Saturday nights. It's a fun little change.

          1 Reply
          1. re: DC Gal

            The Italian place- Landini Bros.

            One of my favorites

          2. Oh - a few more ideas:

            Farther up South Washington Street going towards MT. Vernon, I'd suggest:

            Southside 815 for really good southern fare

            Faccia Luna for good thin crust pizza, pastas and good fresh salads.

            Also, ging up Duke Street towards 395, there is a pink building on your left that is home to Generous George's pizza - they serve very generous portions of pizza (thus the name) in a really unusually fun environment.

            5 Replies
            1. re: DC Gal

              I love Southside 815, also the Pita House is very good.

              1. re: ktmoomau

                Southside 815 has never let me down

                Southside 815
                815 S Washington St, Alexandria, VA 22314

                1. re: agarnett100

                  I guess I'm the only one who's had an awfull meal at Southside 815. My only time, But it was with another Chowhound, and I'm unlikely to go back.

                  Southside 815
                  815 S Washington St, Alexandria, VA 22314

                  1. re: Steve

                    I used to be a Southside proponent, but it's really stopped impressing me in the last few years. Even things like the Dixie Chicken have gone downhill; where it used to be great, now it's just a kind of generic chicken sandwich. I still stop by every so often, but only because it's 2 blocks from my office--I don't think I'd recommend anyone going out of their way to go there these days.

                    1. re: sweth

                      The last two trips to Southside have been just okay (the roast beef poboy was just a plain roast beef sandwich, and the fried chicken was nothing special). I guess I missed them during their heyday.

            2. Flying Fish is great! So is Vermillion- same owners or family as Evening Star. Murphy's always good for Irish.

              Don't go to Founders- not good

              3 Replies
              1. re: otrphilly

                I agree - Founders is bad. in fact, apparently, you and I weren't the only ones to think so - Founders has closed.

                1. re: DC Gal

                  Founder's used to be good. Then wasn't. Now closed.

                2. re: otrphilly

                  I second the Evening Star recommendation. Good solid american fare with a reasonably price wine list. Flying Fish has awful service. Don't get me started!

                3. I recommend the Del Merei Grille on Mt. Vernon Avenue. The food is terrific and the staff is very friendly! You need to make reservations or expect to wait at the bar for an open table. Definitely worth a trip!

                  Link: http://www.delmereigrille.com/

                  2 Replies
                  1. re: kristyS

                    Del Merei unfortunately closed a few months ago, and all of the other places in that strip are soon to follow suit, as the owners are re-doing that entire building. Cafe Pizzaiolo just shut down in that location.

                    Cafe Pizzaiolo
                    507 23rd St S, Arlington, VA 22202

                    1. re: theyawns

                      Does anyone have any firm info on the redevelopment of that strip mall? I spoke w/ the folks at Bombay Curry Company shortly after Del Merei closed, and they said that as far as they knew they were staying open for the forseeable future.

                      Bombay Curry Company
                      3102 Mount Vernon Ave, Alexandria, VA 22305

                  2. Overwood Grill has some tasty food, a nice bar with excellent beers on tap, and relaxed atmosphere, reasonably priced.

                    Eammon's for fish and chips and deep fried stuff, like burgers and Mars bars.

                    Second Al's for the cheesesteaks.

                    3 Replies
                    1. re: monkeyrotica

                      For something really different, try the fried chicken at the Blue and White Carryout. It's A-MAZ-ING!!!!!! Give it a splash of hot sauce and chase it with a grease-soaked piece of wonder bread and a Coke. The also do great fried
                      fish and a honkin big pork chop sandwich.

                      1024 Wythe St
                      Alexandria, VA 22314
                      (703) 548-3867

                      Washington post article


                      1. re: Missy

                        Blue and White and Table Talk are the last vestiages of old alexandria. I wonder how long they will last. BTW, both are excellent places but don't expect fine dining.

                        Table Talk Restaurant
                        1623 Duke St, Alexandria, VA 22314

                        1. re: Soup

                          The Royal is also old time Alexandria, but I can't recommend much above the soups and sandwiches.

                          Royal Restaurant & Caterers
                          734 N Saint Asaph St, Alexandria, VA 22314

                    2. I love the Majestic in Alexandria (owned by Eve group, but totally different and not overly expensive)

                      2 Replies
                      1. re: baconjen

                        Red Mei is also very good, very fresh Pan Asian food.

                        1. re: baconjen

                          And make a reservation on a Sunday and you get a big family style meal for $20. An unbelievable deal, besides being consistently awesome.

                        2. You're going to get a lot of recommendations. Here's what I would do if I were an out-of-towner.

                          You have to set aside an evening to stroll King St. in Old Town Alexandria. You can start with the waterfront, and since it's April it should be nice weather. Lots of places to have that first drink al fresco. Up and down the first few blocks of King St. are many eateries, some already recommended. You'll notice that it's also dog-friendly, and wherever there's outdoor seating there will also be dogs on leashes.

                          About 10 blocks up from the waterfront is Majestic and Layla (Lebanese) some good Thai places and Flying Fish....here's a hint -- if a restaurant can survive the cost of being in the first 10 blocks of King St. it's probably a good restaurant. I can tell you from first hand experience that those 10 blocks are loaded with good ethnic diversity in the eats category.

                          Eve is excellent but very pricey. Majestic is an Alexandria institution but when it was about to go under it was purchased and resurrected by the people who run Eve. They also own Eamonn's A Dublin Chipper which you should also try for authentic Irish fish-and-chips.

                          2 Replies
                          1. re: BigEats

                            The chips at Dublin Chipper are profound. Stay with simple sauces.

                            1. re: BigEats

                              I'd have to disagree completely. All surviving on the first 10 blocks of King St. means is that they're good at capturing the $$ of the tourists who flock to that area; there are tons of places on that strip that are mediocre at best but that thrive because of their location.

                            2. my friends and I just returned from dinner on a sunday afternoon at the majestic cafe. i had the "sunday Nanna's dinner". It is a fixed price meal. My meal was rosemary roast lamb and lots of vegies/ salad/ dessert. everything is made in house and it was fabulous! for 22 bucks especially...check the menu for nanna's sunday. and make reservations. you wont be sorry. the others at the table had to buy salad, sides and main separately and more costly too but all agreed their dishes were very good.

                              1. Grape and Bean is a nice place to check out. It's a wine and coffee bar with some food/bites.
                                O'Connell's Bar is also cool to check out.
                                Pizzeria Paradisio
                                Brabo Tasting Room
                                Hard Times
                                Restaurant Eve-of course! But can be expensive!