Arlington, Food and Drink, The Daily Feed

Iota Club & Cafe Offers More than Music

Photo courtesy of
‘Coffee and Kerouac’
courtesy of ‘Kevin H.’

Finding a place to lounge and sip coffee in this city is easier said than done. But for those of you in Clarendon, that quest just got a little easier. Iota Club & Cafe has now launched iotaday, a sandwich and coffee lounge with a new walk-up counter.

The music venue has expanded their food selection to include light breakfast, lunch and dinner options. You can grab brunch there up until 3:00 PM on weekends. Locavores, you’ll be happy to see that Iota’s coffee options come from the Annapolis-based roasting company, Caffe Pronto and the pastries are from Chef Jessica Knudson of Hawthorne’s Fine Breakfast Pastry. While I can’t speak from experience (yet), the descriptions of their “smasher” panini sandwiches are enough to make me want to metro out to Arlington for some mid-day noshing.

The newly renovated bars and seating areas will have free Wi-Fi, so you can sip and lounge and maybe even get a little work done. Iota is open from 6:30 AM on weekdays and from 8:00 AM on weekends and holidays.

Arlington, Food and Drink, The Daily Feed

Ganges Grill and Ice Cream A New Alternative To Crowded Clarendon Sub Scene

There’s no shortage of Sub shops in Clarendon/Courthouse. Between Earl’s and the chain options of Subway & Cosi, there’s more than enough options if you want lunch meats in between two slices of bread.

However, I became interested with the arrival of a new sub shop on Washington Blvd. The former Quizno’s location was now draped with banners reading, “Ganges Grill and Ice Cream.” I decided to walk across the street from the Subway (where I am currently mayor on foursquare) to find out more.

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The Features, Where We Live

Where We Live: Clarendon

Photo courtesy of
courtesy of ‘blakespot’

In this week’s Where We Live, we’re venturing back out to Arlington into the heart of the Rosslyn-Ballston Corridor. Clarendon is one of those places that always has something going on, and with a wide selection of bars, restaurants, and shopping, you’re never at a loss for something to do. But it’s also a great place to live– our very own Patrick says moving to Clarendon was the best choice he ever made! Read on to find out what’s so great about Clarendon.

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The Daily Feed

Spider Kelly’s Reopens

Photo courtesy of
‘Raspberry Mojito’
courtesy of ‘Samer Farha’

Spider Kelly’s has reopened after a multi-week closing to double the size of the location and, apparently, is now a veritable Bro-topia of epic proportions. From the Thrillist email announcement:

…the formerly sit-down, slim galley bought out the three adjacent storefronts and transformed into a sprawling bastion of athletic boozyness; its all-new massive, wrap-around diamond plate main bar’s ringed by 25 flatscreens, dart boards, pool/shuffleboard tables, and arcade rigs like Golden Tee and Big Buck Hunter…

Also present are is a new menu, thirteen beers on draft (as opposed to the previous bottle-only policy) and all sorts of kitschy cocktails such as “Bourbon Cruiser” and “Sex On Wilson”. They’ve got some specials for you to try out on Thursdays during the Tournament: $2 Miller Lite, $3 Craft beers and $3 margaritas/mojitos.

Arlington, Special Events, The Daily Feed

Clarendon Strikes up a St. Paddy’s Eve Parade

Photo courtesy of
‘Lemon #37’
courtesy of ‘Chris Rief aka Spodie Odie’

Remember how it snowed in February? I definitely don’t need to remind anyone that the city lost a lot of events in the storms. Well, among the many things that got Snowpocalypsed was the annual Fat Tuesday parade hosted by the Clarendon Alliance. Not to fear, instead of being completely swept away in a snow drift, the parade transformed into a St. Patrick’s Day eve festival – i.e., tonight! If you want to check it out, and it actually is more fun than you’d think, floats will begin rolling up Wilson Blvd. at around 8 p.m., starting from Barton Ave.

In the area or venturing out to Clarendon for the parade? Why not give a little back while you’re out preparing for St. Patrick’s Day? Relay for Life Arlington will be hosting a post-parade gathering at Mister Days at the corner of Washington blvd and N. Highland St. Present this coupon, and Mister Days will generously donate a portion of your check to Relay For Life of Arlington. You can also make a donation at the door, and there will be a small raffle for gift certificates to the bar and other exciting items.

The Daily Feed

Snowbank Blocking Pedestrian Crossing

Plowed snowbank blocking pedestrian crossing in Clarendon

Some snow plow operation in Arlington has seen fit to pile this massive snowbank right on top of a pedestrian crossing outside Clarendon Metro, forcing walkers to walk around it, on the road, dodging ice and skidding cars to get across Wilson Blvd. Hey, Arlington, I know it’s hard to figure out where to put all this snow, but if you’re trying to encourage walkability in the county, you’re doing it wrong.

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Arlington, The Daily Feed

Good People Save Animals

Mysterious Ultra-Cute Dog Sitting Up
Mysterious Ultra-Cute Dog Sitting Up in Arlington

You don’t hate cute puppies and kittens, do you? You enjoy a fine brew from time to time, right? Prove it! Come out tomorrow night, Thursday, to Mister Day’s in Clarendon for a low-dollar fundraiser for Homeward Trails Animal Rescue! The suggested donation is only $10 and you will make that up in drink specials anyway. From 6-9pm, a mere $2.50 gets you pretty much any beer, draft or bottle, AND rail drinks. For you classy types, $3 gets you wine. Top it off with $5 pizza and pasta and you’ve got a great night!

It’s for the animals. It’s a good cause. Dogs are awesome and cats are not so bad themselves. Plus, Homeward Trails has something called a “kitty city”. Have you put this in your calendar yet? I’ll make it easy for ya…click here to add it right to your Google calendar! See you there.

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The Features, We Love Food

First Look: Restaurant 3’s Bacon Week

Photo courtesy of
‘pigs in a row’
courtesy of ‘specialkrb’

Books have been written about it. Love songs. Poems. It’s salty. It’s crispy. It’s fatty. It’s bacon.

And Restaurant 3 knows about the beauty of the food, and the Clarendon neighborhood restaurant is celebrating the “Week of Bacon” from October 21-27, 2009. Each day for the duration of the week of bacon, the restaurant will offer a daily Bacon Happy Hour, where bar guests can feast on bacon bites such as bacon on a stick & bacon-wrapped shrimp and wash it all down with $3 craft beer draft specials. Not only can you stop by for bacon and beer, but Restaurant 3 is offering a Bacon Tasting Menu priced at $30 per person. I was lucky enough to preview a few of the Bacon Week specials, and let me tell you. It’s impressive. Continue reading

Arlington, Entertainment, The Daily Feed

Celebrate the Clizzledizzle

Photo courtesy of
courtesy of ‘|

Slip on your brown flip flops, because this Saturday is the 12th Annual Clarendon Day, an event celebrating Arlington’s original downtown. The festival, to be held rain or shine on September 26 from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m., will feature all kinds of Arlington loving.

There will be magic and puppet shows, a Doggy Splash Pool, skateboard demos, electric cars, art booths and of course, my favorite, food from more than 15 restaurants, including The Liberty Tavern, Willow, Whitlow’s on Wilson, Mexicali Blues, and Tallula/EatBar. You can even catch GoRemy, the Arlington Rapper, emceeing the event, which is probably pretty epic in person.

Just beware of people packing heat and boat shoes.

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, The Daily Feed

A Hard Day: The End of Murky

Murky Coffee Regulars

This morning’s letter on the Murky Coffee website is no April Fools’ Joke. Replacing Murky in the space they’ll leave behind in Clarendon will become a venture of the group that owns Liberty Tavern, with a new space, and a new concept. While details are still sketchy, from what I understand, the upstairs at the new coffee location will be a co-working space, something like Beehive Baltimore or Indy Hall in Philadelphia.

The staff of Murky, owner Nick Cho included, are coming back into the District starting in early to mid May at a new shop called Wrecking Ball Coffee, which will be over at 5th and H Sts NW in Chinatown. The changes will be taking place here in the next month, leaving me without a third place to work from, which has me very disappointed. Murky has been, since I left my desk job, my home and community since 2006. The picture above shows half my Murky family, the other roving consultants and self-employed folks who have been my “co-workers,” and I count many among my finest friends. This site was actually designed and coded in the upstairs section of Murky before the county shuttered that part of the shop.

Murky’s run wasn’t free from controversy, from the problem with DC sales taxes that shuttered the Capitol Hill location, to Dickpunchgate, but it was home to me. And so, I’ll miss my third place, and hope that the folks who run Liberty Tavern will know they have a group of regulars who’re looking for a home, and open to what they’ve got to offer.

The Daily Feed

Eventide opens tonight. Yes, really.

Eventide Restaurant

Molly from the Post has pointed out to us this post on the Going Out Gurus blog about tonight’s grand opening of Eventide in Clarendon. It’s been a long time coming – a quick googling till turn up old articles claiming a Summer 2008 opening – and the ownership glibly quips about it to the GOG.  “Nats Park took 22 months to build,” says Dave Pressley with a smile. “I think we’re at 27.”

You might take into consideration the success of those who you choose compare yourself to in the future, Dave.

It sounds like nice digs. Bar level on the bottom floor, restaurant on the second level. The roof’s not open yet but when it does you can enjoy it without environmental guilt: it was designed by local firm Capitol Greenroofs and you can see some pictures and information about Evertide’s roof on their website[pdf].

3165 Wilson Blvd
Arlington, VA 22201

Arlington, Life in the Capital, The Daily Feed

The Big (Apartment) Hunt

Photo courtesy of
‘Misc DC – Presidential Flyover – 9-1-08’
courtesy of ‘mosley.brian’

So we’re looking at making THE BIG MOVE, and I need some advice from all you Realtors and leasing agents out there.

My lovely roommate and I are going to be striking out to find a new apartment along the Wilson/Clarendon (metro accessible) stretch and are wondering – how are the prices out there? We had a HORRENDOUS time snagging our current apartment during the summer a few years ago, but are hoping with the economic downturn, and the dead of winter, things might actually play out in our favor.

I’ve noticed so many more advertising yard signs (Parc Rosslyn and Vista, I’m looking at you!) and random people on the street corner doing tricks with big arrow signs than I did last year – so I ask…is it a renter’s market out there? Can we bargain? What is your advice (or experience, if you recently made a move) for apartment shopping during these winter months in a crap economy?