Arlington, The Features, Where We Live

Where We Live: Court House

Photo courtesy of
courtesy of ‘rpongsaj’

After profiling 22 neighborhoods in the District, it’s time Where We Live headed out to the suburbs. This week we’re focusing on Court House, an urban neighborhood in the middle of Arlington’s Rosslyn-Ballston corridor. Sure, it’s technically a ‘suburb’, but with a movie theater, multiple grocery stores, tons of bars and restaurants, and office and government buildings, Court House has more to offer than many neighborhoods in the heart of DC.

History: In 1791, this area used to be part of DC.  But Virginia wanted Alexandria County back (mostly due to the sad fact that Alexandria was a big slave port, and talk of abolishing slavery in DC had Virginia scared), and this land was retroceded in 1846.  Fort Woodbury was a Civil War fort built in 1861 that stood where the current courthouse stands.  In 1852 the City of Alexandria split off, and in 1920 this area was renamed as Arlington County.

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The Daily Feed

Free WiFi All Over Arlington

Photo courtesy of
‘Got my netbook. Got my coffee. This is my office. I’m happy’
courtesy of ‘Ed Yourdon’

Let’s see a show of hands as to how many of you love free wifi? Now keep those hands up if you knew that Arlington provides free wifi in most of the busy, populated outdoor areas of the county! What? Nobody knew? Well now you do! While wifi coverage for Shirlington village was just added this summer, the busy outdoor areas from Court House to Clarendon on Wilson and Clarendon Blvds have been covered for a number of years now. Most large Arlington libraries, as well as the Walter Reed Community Center, also provide free service. I just can’t believe most people don’t know about this! (Which included myself until recently.)  Details from Arlington County are here. For a post on where to find free wifi all over, check here.

Arlington, Food and Drink, We Love Food

We Love Food: Minh’s

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‘Day 63: Minhs’
courtesy of ‘InspirationDC’

I discovered Minh’s pretty quickly after moving to DC. You see, I have this thing for rice paper summer rolls and peanut sauce. I love them, and I want them at least once a month. Back where I come from (cue the country song), there is this amazing Vietnamese restaurant called Lang Van’s, owned by a friend’s family. I was upset to leave Lang Van’s, so I quickly searched out a substitute. Minh’s certainly lives up.

With one of the largest menus I’ve ever seen (trumped only by Cheesecake Factory) you pretty much can’t go wrong at Minh’s. Located between Court House and Clarendon out in Virginia (where arguably all the good Asian food hides) Mihn’s is situated on Wilson Boulevard in a nondescript office building. I’ve had friends tell me that they’ve ridden past it a million times, never noticing it. I wonder how that could be, seeing as there are huge neon signs in the window, but that’s just me. (Hey, I never claimed Minh’s was trendy, or sleek, or chic!) The outward appearance isn’t the fabulous part of Minh’s, the food is. Continue reading

Arlington, Food and Drink, We Love Food

We Love Food: Yaku

Nestled along Clarendon Boulevard in the Court House area, Yaku looks to be the perfect neighborhood hot spot. Two levels of glass and glowing lights, it always looks warm and inviting from the street. I live in Arlington, and have walked past Yaku almost daily since it’s conception as just an empty office space below my dream real-estate local, The Odyssey condominiums.

When it finally looked as if something was actually going to go in the space (that had stood empty since before I moved here in fall 2007), I got pretty excited. On my walk home, I ran up to check the posted licences to see what it would be. It’s the perfect location to be our new favorite go-to spot. Yaku, the signs said. Hmm… I said. That’s an odd name. A little googling, and I find that Yaku will be another restaurant from Latin Concepts, the same people who brought us places like Chi-Cha Lounge, Mate, Ceviche, and Guarapo (which is only around the corner from Yaku).

According to the Web site, “YAKU, is a “Chifa” restaurant lounge brought to you by Fraga-Rosenfeld.  Chifa is the fusion of Chinese and Peruvian cuisine developed by Chinese immigrants to Peru in the late 19th and early 20th centuries… The name YAKU means “water” in Quechua (Incan Language) and is intended to capture Asian-influenced Andean culinary styles unique to the region.” Yaku is also, says our friend wikipedia, a town located on Yaku Island, Japan. So let’s just go with Asian-Peruvian fusion, and call it interesting… Continue reading