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Nov 9, 2007 08:46 AM

Reston Town Center: Many New Restaurants Coming...

There is a 650,000 square foot addition to Town Center opening next year which will be anchored by Google and Rolls Royce among other incoming tenants. As part of the four building complex there is quite a bit of retail and a number of new restaurants and food outlets. Additionally, there are more new restaurants opening elsewhere in Town Center.

The Chocolate Grill ( ) is a mini chain
from Phoenix opening in the old Ruby Tuesday's location.

Marvelous Market will open where Wrapworks was.

Potbelly is coming with their second Reston location.

Mon Ami Gabi moves into the new South of Market complex, owned by Lettuce Entertain
You from Chicago. They already have another local operation in Bethesda.

Jackson's from the Great American Restaurant Group, a hybrid Coastal Flats,
will open across the street from Big Bowl.

Passion Foods (i.e. DC Coast, Ten Penh, Acadia, Ceiba) is coming into South of Market
with a new seafood concept, perhaps somewhat in the spirit of DC Coast. For myself this is exactly the kind of restaurant that Town Center needs!

Additionally, there will be a new burrito outlet-but apparently it will not be a Chipotle but rather a different national chain.

And, of course, Il Fornaio, a better regional Italian chain from California, has opened.

I believe there will be two more additional restaurants opening in South of Market; apparently one will be a tapas restaurant but I have no information on which one. Note that Lettuce Entertain You does operate a tapas restaurant in Chicago.

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  1. Il Fornaio wasn't bad the one time I went. I ate light and was there more to catch up with friends. Odd that Potbelly is opening a second location so close to the first.

    I'm excited by Walters - Reston needs a GAR representation.

    In related news, the space where Reston Kebab currently is located is set to be razed. I forget the timeframe, but more office space and about 500 condos are going in. Popeye's apparently will be spared, but everything between it and the Intl. center will be replaced. No word yet on where or when RK might go, and it's way too soon to hear what restaurants may go in the new construction.

    10 Replies
    1. re: Dennis S

      that is terrible news. the reston kebab is awesome. such a great gyro.

      1. re: kneelconqueso

        Yeah, I've been meaning to stop by during a non-peak time and inquire more about time frame of the move and if they've found a different location yet.

        1. re: kneelconqueso

          Reston kabob is barely average...imo. It's a little further but the Kabob place in Herndon (K-mart shopping center) is much much better.

          1. re: lukeinva

            They're different. Depends on what I'm in the mood for as to which one. Generally over the past few years I've leaned more to RK, but Charcoal Kebab held the top spot for me the few years prior to that. The biggest drawback for RK is that they don't really have sides.

            1. re: Dennis S

              I am a real fan of Charcoal Kebab. I don't eat chicken kebabs anywhere - I find them uninteresting. CK's are OK but not great - I dislike Moby Dick's chicken kabab and haven't tried RK's version. But, what I like a lot at Charcoal Kebab is their Chapli Kebab - spicy and interesting with the whole spices. That and a doogh make me very happy. I have tried Chapli at other place (one on McLaren and Centerville Rd) - they are good, but not as wonderfully spicy as that at Charcoal Kebab!

              1. re: MarietteB

                And the sides at CK - especially the spinach!

            2. re: lukeinva

              Strongly disagree. For myself the kabobs at RK are far superior, more succulent and flavorful than the mediocre kabob place in Herndon which I just ate at two weeks ago. I am talking about only the chicken kabobs. Having said this, both are barely decent beyond their kabobs. While the chicken at RK compares favorably to Moby's, Kabob Bazaar, Amoo's and Shamshiry, there is little else that they serve that I really like. Both Amoo's and Shamshiry have far superior rice. The sides at Ravi (and the chicken kabobs) are better. Moby's nan is much better. In fact, the best chicken kabobs are at Ravi with RK perhaps second. I think the best sides overall are at the Afghan place on route 7 in Bailey's Xcrossroads with, perhaps, Ravi their equal. Shamshiry, a Persian destination, may still be my favorite of all for a variety of reasons.

              1. re: Joe H

                Joe - I'd love to have another go at Shamshiry! (there was a chow-off a few years ago to anyone not picking that up). As we concluded back then, I think Shamshiry is just in a different category than most any of the others, but esp. RK and CK (and Moby's, Kabob Bazaar, Kabob Palace, etc, etc, etc).

                In total, I'd have to lean to Kabob Palace in Crystal City as the overall best kabob joint, but this focus of this thread is on the Reston/Herndon offerings, of which, both that were named are at least above adequate.

            1. re: Dennis S

              we recently dined at Il Fornaio- headed back tonight, and had a fantastic experience start to finish., from hommade pasta to outstanding service- we were thrilled with it.

            2. I thought the new GAR was going to be called Jackson's? At least that is what I thought I read in the Post. It was a dedication.

              1 Reply
              1. re: ktmoomau

                You're right!!! Sorry. I'll make the correction. Thanks.

              2. One more: Read in WBJ that a California gourmet burger chain is opening a location in the Reston Town Center It's called the Counter. The site is Looks different and promising...

                4 Replies
                1. re: jajack

                  Whoa! Hold the phone, Mable! THE Counterburger is coming to VA? This seriously changes the local burger landscape and merits a visit to Reston.


                  And they serve BEER? I'm there, or at the Dupont or Georgetown locations.


                    1. re: MsDiPesto

                      Oh wow, it might give Cheeburger Cheeburger a run for first place in my heart of burgers. I love the list of toppings.

                      1. re: ktmoomau

                        I am not the fan of Cheeburger Cheeburger that several others on here are. Five Guys are also very inconsistent, yet are probably the fastest franchising chain in America. Counterburger is intriguing; I'll probably stop at one in CA while travelling on business before the one in Reston opens. Fatburger is also franchising nationally now with the closest outposts that I am aware of in Atlantic City and Chesapeake, VA. In CA Fatburger compares favorably to In-n-Out although I still prefer In-n-Out. In Northern CA a regional chain called Nation's is something of a local legend.

                  1. Reston Town Center is underwhelming as far as eats go. More or less, it's the trendy chains (Morton's, McCormick & Schmick) or the local chains (Clyde's, GAR, Tunks).

                    With so much "traffic" and great real estate and high incomes, this could really be a destination restaurant location -- far better than Tysons with the horrific traffic congestion there. I'm hoping that RTC kicks it up a few notches....

                    4 Replies
                    1. re: BigEats

                      Mon Ami Gabi is decent -- the French bistro equivalent of Legal Seafood. I've eaten in the original in Chicago and the branch in Vegas. It will be a good addition.

                      Cheeburger Cheeburger is not my fave for burgers either, but I do like their shakes.

                      1. re: brendastarlet

                        I actually don't like Mon Ami Gabi at all. It's variety for the Town Center but, for me, not a good addition. However, I do believe that Counter Burger, White Chocolate Grill, the GAR outpost and especially, Passion Foods' restaurant are very positive additions. Having said this, rent is so expensive at Town Center (K street prices) the likelihood of any chef owned and operated restaurant is very small.

                        1. re: Joe H

                          The new Passion Foods restaurant appears to be called Passion Fish. There will be a nice mezzanine level to the restaurant, overlooking the park area. Anxiously awaiting their arrival!

                          1. re: Joe H

                            Passion Fish will rock the Town Center's socks off. Passion LLC outta DC really runs a tight ship. Their restaurant's pay attention to detail, consistency, quality, environment, service. They do what they do very well. The Town Center needs restaurant that is consistantly good. Watch out upper Democracy Drive, you're in a run for your money!

                      2. Didn't really want to start a new thread, but I wanted to post that the location at Tall Oaks left vacant by Giant is going to be filled by Fresh World market - apparently around May 16. Hopefully this will be a nice addition for Reston. The parent company is Super Ee, which is said to have a store in Springfield.

                        2 Replies
                        1. re: Dennis S

                          Do you know anything about Fresh World? I was expecting Bloom to take over that space, but an international supermarket sounds interesting.

                          Reston Town Center has got quite a few good restaurants, with more to come, but a stand-alone non-chain place would be nice. There's a few at Lake Anne which are pretty good.

                          1. re: Reston

                            Yep, here's the article where I found the info (didn't know till now there was a site for the Observer):