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Alexandria suggestions

We're visiting Alexandria and DC this upcoming weekend. We'll be staying at the Residence Inn Alexandria Old Town. Any suggestions? We're looking for more cheap to moderate priced meals (under $20 per entree). We enjoy steaks, seafood, Mexican, Italian, burgers, and pizza. Thanks for your help!

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  1. I really like A La Lucia for Italian, just north of Old Town proper in Alexandria. I'd also search this board for "Old Town" and you'll find a slew of good suggestions. There's also a fair amount of mediocre food in Old Town, so research and advice should help you!

    1. Nicely done American fare at Overwood on Lee Street, about two blocks north of King. Majestic for American with a decided southern slant. Eammon's Chipper for great fish & chips (but a small room, so if the weather's good, might be better to carry out and sit out at the City Hall Market Square for eating & people-watching). Las Tascas on King Street just west of St. Asaph for tapas. Oh, the Pita House on Cameron (or is it Queen?) at....Royal, I think, maybe Pitt?

      1. For Tex Mex I like Austin Grill just off King Street. It gets very loud and crowded and is is a local chain, if that matters. Another large, loud place is Union Street Pub. I think the food is reasonably priced and pretty good and it is a mix of locals and tourists.

        Le Gauloise is a French place on King Street that some people love, but I haven't been there is a few years.

        For seafood, I was recently at office functions at Chart House and the Fish Market. The setting for the Chart House is nice and the food was better than I remembered, although much pricier that I would choose to spend. The crab/mango stack appetizer was $13 and in much need of zing, but the ingredients were fresh and clean-tasting. I had a mediocre meal at the Fish Market, but that may have been the large luncheon party. Tepid fish is not great but the clam chowder is nice.

        If you have a car, I would go up Route 1 above Old Town and eat at the Afghan Restaurant which has a $8-9 lunch buffet that will keep you full for the day.

        1. They are so many restaurants along King Street, a short walk from your hotel on Duke Street (there is also a free trolley along King Street). Some of my favorites are Bistrot LaFayette (French but has a Monday "steak nite" also great mussels and fries) and Hanks Oyster Bar. Austin Grill has great fish tacos. Overwood is on Lee Street a couple blocks off King street and has a very broad menu of grilled meats and fish, salads, sandwiches, etc. Five Guys is a local burger chain and there is an outlet in Old Town (on Payne Street off King?). I don't eat burgers but many people I know who do, enthuse over their burgers.

          1 Reply
          1. re: milocat

            With all the great choices in Old Town, skip Five Guys. But then I just don't get the appeal of that chain. You may want to check out what people on board have said about Le Gauloise now that has changed hands.

          2. I like Rustico, a little north of Old Town, especially for pizza (and a great beer selection).

            1. My favorite Italian place in Old Town is Landini Brothers. Besides some chewy calamari I once encountered, the food I've had there is consistently very good.

              1 Reply
              1. re: bin22

                I'm with you, bin22. Landini's is consistently one of the better restaurants in OT. Have never been disappointed. May be a bit pricey for the OP, though.

              2. the majestic has a lunch special for $12 I think.

                i enjoyed my dinner there, and think it's a nice spot (for what my opinion's worth).

                just google majestic cafe old town

                1. We enjoy Overwood, Majestic, Jackson 20 (though it may be a bit pricey?), and Rustico (and Buzz Bakery is right across the street for some dessert after dinner), as well as Eamonn's for something really casual. I'd skip Austin Grill though, the food is terrible and overpriced. Fish Market is pretty meh and kind of touristy. Oh, if you like pizza and beer I'd suggest Bugsy's on King St. (right next to Fish Market), also super casual but delicious.

                  2 Replies
                  1. re: MDoodle

                    Thanks for all your suggestions. We ate at the following:

                    Austin Grill-so-so. We loved the salsa's smoky flavor although the chips appeared to be out of the bag. I had a steak taco (good) and chorizo/egg/cheese taco which was also good. The rice was bland and the beans were ok. My wife had a Roadhouse burrito which she did not enjoy. Overall, we would eat there again if we lived in Alexandria but would avoid it on a future visit.

                    Southside 815--very good. The atmosphere in the restaurant area and outside tables was nice. The bar area was crowded and smoky--as someone who lives in tobacco haven NC where even there smoking is outlawed in bars, it was a bit of a shock to see that much smoke in the air. Southside's food was above average. We enjoyed our crab and corn drop fritters for an appetizer. My wife had a steak which was quite tasty and I had a seafood pasta that was better than you would expect. We both enjoyed our mashed potatoes. We would definitely recommend this restaurant.

                    Rustico--excellent. We enjoyed the location, the atmosphere, and the decor of the restaurant. We actually sat in the smoke-free bar area in a large booth with multiple TV's nearby (unfortunately, the Redskins looked awful in the exhibition game). We tried the watermelon and tomato salad which was a nice treat. My wife ordered the summer pie pizza (tomato, squash, ricotta, and country ham) and I ordered the roasted mushroom with spinach. Both pizzas were excellent. This restaurant is a must visit on our next trip to the area.

                    Thanks again for all your help! Next time, we hope to try out Overwood, Fish Market, and Trattoria da Franco.

                    1. re: jsb23nc

                      Thanks for the feedback! I too find Southside 815's smoke offensive. I love the place--but I have to wash my clothes after eating in the restaurant. It's not cool.
                      I would recommend that if you want Italian, try A La Lucia vs. Trattoria Franco. The canneloni I at at the latter is on par with frozen pre-made canneloni. Now A La Lucia...that's homemade!