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Author Topic: Great Places to EAT in Northern Virginia (DC and Fairfax Co. Area) Back to Topics
TexBob

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Oklahoma City

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Message Posted: Jul 12, 2005 1:07:17 PM

We are Coming to the Fairfax Co. Area the last of this month. We are interested in dining in Local Places that are the choice of locals. We are not interested in Chains or Franchise Places; we like locally owned and chef owned places. Thanks for your reCommendations. TexBob
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cjstuff
Champion Author Virginia

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Message Posted: Jul 15, 2008 12:11:52 AM

All the Great American Restaurants are relatively noisy, but I agree that Sweetwater is the loudest of the group. I think the 2-story ceiling, combined with the absence of any soft curtains or noise-dampening material, makes it particularly loud. If I go there, and the weather is cooperating, I ask to sit outside, which is much quieter, even with traffic noise.
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TexBob
All-Star Author Oklahoma City

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Message Posted: Jul 14, 2008 9:49:33 AM

We enjoyed Sweetwater Tavern but it was several years ago. As I remember the food was very good, but it was very noisy.

TexBob
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Meatus
Sophomore Author Virginia

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Message Posted: Jul 14, 2008 5:47:09 AM

At home - save gas :)
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cjstuff
Champion Author Virginia

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Message Posted: Jul 14, 2008 12:59:12 AM

Moving to a slightly different topic, how would people rank the various Great American restaurants? We're talking about Artie's, Carlyle, Coastal Flats (multiple locations), Mike's American, Silverado, and Sweetwater Tavern (multiple locations). Me, I've really enjoyed Artie's the most and Silverado the least--though they're all pretty good.

What are your experiences?
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ww2gas
Champion Author Virginia

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Message Posted: Jul 13, 2008 1:09:19 PM

Great burgers at Slade's in Tysons Corner, Houston's in Bethesda and surprisingly, Bob Evan's in Oakton.
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CyanSquirrel
All-Star Author Virginia

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Message Posted: Jun 20, 2008 1:29:02 PM

Sign of the Whale does have some kick butt burgers...so does Clydes Mark Center. I've never been disappointed by their monster burgers fresh off the heat.

Other restaurants that are delish and local: Tacqueria Poblano in Del Rey (Mt. Vernon Avenue)...their fish and shrimp tacos rock; Taco Laredo in Falls Church (Hillwood Ave)...OMG, they have GOOD Mexican and you can get a pupusa to boot!
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CyanSquirrel
All-Star Author Virginia

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Message Posted: Jun 20, 2008 1:10:01 PM

empressjenn, Ben's Chili Bowl is also a tourist trap. Not fun to eat there in the summer. My recommendation for some good chili: Hard Times Cafe in Old Town Alexandria. They have four kinds served up daily...terlingua, cincinnati, texas, and vegetarian.
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Scrapheap
Champion Author Virginia

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Message Posted: Jun 20, 2008 12:26:41 PM

If you're into mexican, try El Ranchero at 4617 Wilson Blvd, near Ballston.
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TexBob
All-Star Author Oklahoma City

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Message Posted: Jun 20, 2008 8:58:25 AM

Thanks, empressjenn

I've put Picante on the list. I spent lots of time in San Antonio and there is no better Tex-Mex and just Mex in the world, including Mexico City. We luv SA except in the summer when it's to hot to touch....

Tex Bob
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empressjenn
Rookie Author Virginia

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Message Posted: Jun 18, 2008 1:52:05 PM

TexBob, If you hit Ben's Chili Bowl, then you're one step ahead of most visitors. That place is a DC establishment, no...a DC monument. Next time you come back, and if you're in the mood for some good Tex-Mex, try Picante in Chantilly. It's the only thing I can get close to what I had back in ol' San Antone.
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TexBob
All-Star Author Oklahoma City

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Message Posted: Jun 14, 2008 1:04:10 PM

Hey, Stevieroy:

We just got back from NOVA and had a wonderful time. I finally got my son to take me to Ben's Chili Bowl in DC. It was wonderful. I had asked for three years to go and every time we went he didn't want to stay.. Now he's sold on it. My wife and I enjoyed Chutzpah Deli, a new one for this trip... We also went to Amphora's Diner and the 29 Diner.... M & S Grill in Reston and Clydes Willow Creek Farm... All were great, but Ben's was my favorite..... It's always a treat to come to NOVA.

The best, TexBob

[Edited by: TexBob at 6/14/2008 1:05:09 PM EST]
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cjstuff
Champion Author Virginia

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Message Posted: Jun 14, 2008 12:24:08 AM

Vienna Inn didn't burn *down* exactly, but it was heavily damaged maybe 7-8 years ago to the point where there was some discussion the place might not re-open. I haven't been there since that fire. I wonder how they re-created the authentic grunge of years of spilled beer....

Fun place to go, though. Can't wait until my kids are old enough that I can take them there for lunch.
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Mom2BriaCia
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Message Posted: Jun 13, 2008 4:15:12 PM

I got a nostalgic smile reading CyanSquirrel's post about the Vienna Inn...I haven't been there in 20 years. Didn't that place burn down...twice?
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cjstuff
Champion Author Virginia

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Message Posted: Jun 12, 2008 12:10:07 PM

5 Guys was a different animal before they started franchising. I used to live within walking distance of the old 5 Guys on Columbia Pike, next to the now-closed Brenner's Bakery. In particular, their fries were amazing, due in part to the selection of the potatoes.

Today, 5 Guys buys so many spuds that they have their own specially branded bags. Fry quality is inconsistent, and the burgers are a bit more mass produced. There are still some fabulous 5 Guys locations out there, but also quite a few..."edible grade" ones.
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PEPPERPUMP
Veteran Author Virginia

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Message Posted: Jun 12, 2008 8:59:35 AM

Ledos on columbia pike in arlington is real good.
Pepperpump
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no1spcl55
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Message Posted: Jun 10, 2008 11:38:43 AM

I hate to differ too much with the general crowd, but 5 guys, though palatable, is not nearly the best hamburger around...try Foster's in Chantilly - awesome by comparison, also, Fuddruckers beats out 5 guys big time.

For a small local pub with good food, try the Sunset Grill in Annandale. The Pub Steak and Rib Eye's are quite good, the tortilla soup is really top notch, as are most of their entre's.
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Meatus
Sophomore Author Virginia

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Message Posted: Jun 10, 2008 12:50:25 AM

I'm hungry now
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cjstuff
Champion Author Virginia

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Message Posted: Jun 10, 2008 12:26:26 AM

I haven't been back to Pistone's in several years, but their "hook" is their salad bar. The owner has always been fascinated with top-line and exotic produce, so a typical night at the salad bar might include prickly pear fruit, star fruit, caviar, and other unexpected goodies, along with the usual salad bar fare. The salad bar by itself costs only a few dollars less than getting a full entree that comes with the salad bar. The times I was at Pistone's, the entrees were pleasant but somewhat generic Italian favorites. But that salad bar....
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Scrapheap
Champion Author Virginia

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Message Posted: Jun 9, 2008 9:52:38 AM

Skorpios in Vienna on Maple Ave E and Berry St is a greek place. A small family place with excellent chicken.

Uptown Tavern on Fairfax Blvd right next to Patriot Motorcycles at the corner with Draper Dr has recently opened. They have real good sushi and the other dishes I saw looked great.

I'm looking forward to the Four Sisters moving to Merrifield. I always got excellent food when I went there and would like to have it closer. Guess I've got to check out Pistone's.
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cjstuff
Champion Author Virginia

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Message Posted: Jun 9, 2008 8:26:31 AM

Four Sisters consistently gets top reviews from just about all the local food critics. I really hope that their quality survives the move to Merrifield. I'm excited that Merrifield has the potential to get another great food destination. Sweetwater Tavern is nice and all, but it can get kind of...predictable.
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ericy
Sophomore Author Virginia

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Message Posted: Jun 9, 2008 8:12:31 AM


I have driven past Pistones, but never went in. There is an excellent Vietnamese restaurant that I had forgotten about in the Eden Center not far from that point. The place is called the "Four Sisters". They are moving to Merrifield in a few months though.
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cjstuff
Champion Author Virginia

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Message Posted: Jun 8, 2008 9:48:35 PM

The original poster may have made his trip, but I'm still interested in what others may recommend in the area. Restaurants rise and fall as cooks come and go and as they attract more and less attention. Very few places remain the same over time.

Speaking of that, when's the last time anyone went to Pistone's at Seven Corners? That place is quite the time warp.
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ericy
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Message Posted: Jun 8, 2008 6:23:22 PM


Whitlows on Wilson, in the Clarendon area of Arlington. Family owned restaurant. At night turns into more of a nightclub. Not terribly expensive. Good Sunday brunch. Corner of Wilson and N Fillmore. http://www.whitlows.com/

Woodgrill, also in Clarendon, and across the street from Whitlows. They do a good job of grilling food there (over a wood fire, of course). Also corner of Wilson and N Fillmore. http://www.boulevaRdwoodgrill.com/BoulevaRd_Woodgrill.html

Restaurant 3 in Clarendon. A bit on the pricey side, but decent food. Owned by the same family that owns Whitlows. Corner of Garfield and Clarendon. http://www.restaurantthree.com/

Pulcinella in McLean. Family style Italian restaurant. Really good food, not too expensive. On Old Dominion in McLean. www.pulcinellarestaurant.com

McLean Family Diner in McLean. Classic Greek Diner. Chain Bridge Rd in McLean (which doesn't help that much since there are about 5 different Chain Bridge Roads in that area), but you can use Google to find a map.

Amphora in Vienna. Sort of similar to McLean family, but different menu. Food is OK, but they are open 24/7, and this easily beats using the drive-through late at night. Corner of Maple and Lewis in Vienna.

Sunflower Restaurant. There is no meat on their menu, but even if you aren't into Vegetarian food, it is really quite good and worth a try. Several locations - I go to the one in Vienna - on Maple St (aka Chain Bridge Rd). About 2 blocks from Amphora. They have a 2nd location in Falls Church. http://www.crystalsunflower.com/.

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stevieroy
Sophomore Author Virginia

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Message Posted: Jun 7, 2008 5:21:29 PM

HEY FOLKS!
This posting is from TexBob "Message Posted: 7/12/2005"

I'll bet he's made his trip by now!!
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cjstuff
Champion Author Virginia

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Message Posted: May 27, 2008 12:47:50 AM

Hey, eating out remains a remarkably cost-effective way to enjoy a night out. Yes, you can spend an awful lot of money for a fancy meal around here, but you also have very tasty "budget eats" that let you savor some time away from home without emptying your bank account.

I'm always partial to Red, Hot & Blue, for example, which isn't completely native to DC but still makes consistently good (sometimes very good) BBQ for not a lot of bucks. I also enjoy the great diversity of good Korean food you can find around here--and not just in Annandale. Even cut-rate quickies like the weekday buffet at Songbird (technically Vienna, but just by Tysons Corner) is far better than "high-end" Korean food I've had elsewhere in the U.S.
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Meatus
Sophomore Author Virginia

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Message Posted: May 26, 2008 9:39:08 PM

Save fuel & eat at home
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cjstuff
Champion Author Virginia

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Message Posted: Mar 24, 2008 7:04:25 PM

Y'know, for good burgers, I'm quite fond of Sign of the Whale, in the Loemann's Plaza on Route 50. Best of all, Sunday AND Monday are half-price burger nights.
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CyanSquirrel
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Message Posted: Mar 20, 2008 10:00:36 AM

Oh, and for those looking for out of this world burgers...skip 5 guys one time and try Joe's Gourmet Burgers in McLean. It's right across Old Dominion Road from Oggi's (an Italian place) and if you've never had venison burger or ostrich burger, well you can try it there! REALLY good and fresh burgers. Their BBQ Sauce is homemade and to die for. Reasonably priced and portioned perfectly.
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CyanSquirrel
All-Star Author Virginia

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Message Posted: Mar 20, 2008 9:56:08 AM

IKEA has some pretty good dogs. But my favorite is the Vienna Inn. Smothered with cheese and chili...oh my! They're cheap too! Nice little local join near the Whole Foods on Maple Ave in Vienna. GO CHECK IT OUT.
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BluStar55
Champion Author Virginia

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Message Posted: Mar 19, 2008 6:04:04 PM

I just LUV those Costco dogs with the drink for $1.50 :) I hope they don't change as it's been this price for years. YUMMY !!!
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ronin718
All-Star Author Virginia

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Message Posted: Mar 18, 2008 1:34:01 PM

Absolutely the best deal on the menu. Throw in some fries and you're all set.
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KrispyKreme
Champion Author Richmond

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Message Posted: Mar 16, 2008 3:00:10 PM

I second that one. Costco is hard to beat there.
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ZZZoop
Champion Author Virginia

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Message Posted: Mar 16, 2008 10:59:50 AM

Try Costco: $1.50 gets you a Hebrew National hotdog plus a large soda.
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TexBob
All-Star Author Oklahoma City

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Message Posted: Mar 16, 2008 10:37:54 AM

Where is the best place for HOT DOGS????
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AlPugh
Sophomore Author Maryland

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Message Posted: Oct 30, 2007 11:13:59 AM

Holy Cow!! This thread went bonkers since I've been here last.

XYV-Try Sorentos (spelling?) beside the Spicy Pickle sometime. OUTSTANDING, in my view. I agree about Spicy Pickle, by the way. Another chain, Potbellies (or Pot Bellys, whichever), further down Waxpool toward Ashburne Village is another good sandwich place, in my view.

Answering some down through the chain of posts:

No Jack-In-The-Box left in the area. Last I knew of was at the corner of Gallows and US 29 and that was a LONG time ago.

I will be checking out the Thai restaurants mentioned here (so thanks!), as my daughter-in-law's mother was Thai, and we therefore sort of get an inside line on what the menu really holds. Hopefully, they will be in town soon so we can start checking them out.

Albyva, what's the Melting Pot got going?

Generally, I'm looking at some of the "quaint" places on the main drag in Leesburg. Gotta be a hidden jewel in there somewhere...
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xyv1027
Veteran Author Virginia

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Message Posted: Oct 29, 2007 12:40:26 PM

For some real Chinese food, try Peking Gourmet Restaurant in Falls Church. Aside from going to China, this place has some of the best, most authentic Chinese food I've found in the US. The Peking Duck prepared table side is well worth the $37 price tag.

The restraurant has been frequented by presidents (including GW Bush) and scores of other political dignitaries including Colin Powell, Condoleeza Rice, and others. Its located office Leesburg Pike not far from Baileys Crossroads and about a mile or so east of Seven Corners.



[Edited by: xyv1027 at 10/29/2007 12:39:11 PM EST]
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spugbrap
Rookie Author Virginia

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Message Posted: Oct 12, 2007 7:17:50 AM

If you like prime rib, I highly recommend Kilroy's restaurant in Springfield, VA. My family has been going there for over 20 years, and we still love it! There are lots of things on the menu that I sometimes consider trying, but I don't get to go there very often, so I always end up getting the prime rib!

Ravensworth Shopping Center
5250-A Port Royal Rd.
Springfield Virginia 22151
Phone: 703-321-7733
http://www.kilroys.com/

They also have another location, in Woodbridge, but we've never been to that one. I might try it, one of these days, because it's closer to where I live now:
Featherstone Shopping Center
14633 Jefferson Davis Highway
Woodbridge, Virginia 22191
Phone: 703-494-4800

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albyva
Rookie Author Virginia

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Message Posted: Oct 9, 2007 5:04:07 PM

The Melting Pot in Reston,VA
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xyv1027
Veteran Author Virginia

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Message Posted: Sep 17, 2007 6:01:37 PM

If you are looking for a great bite to eat and you're short on time, there is a new deli style place in Ashburn called the Spicy Pickle; the paninis are great (the bread is a real winner) and everything comes with one spicy pickle. Its off Waxpool Rd in Ashburn near the new Embassy Suites (also not far from the Ashburn Ice Rink).
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TwiceCooked
Rookie Author Virginia

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Message Posted: Sep 12, 2007 9:15:02 AM

The Green Olives I'm talking about is not the big chain. It's a little place in a strip mall (at 6681 Backlick Rd, Springfield, VA 22150).
:-)
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cjstuff
Champion Author Virginia

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Message Posted: Sep 12, 2007 12:42:20 AM

I guess it's a local chain, but we really like all the Great American restaurants, including (but not limited to) Artie's, Coastal Flats (both locations), and Sweetwater Tavern. Service is uniformly fabulous and prices are reasonable for the quality of the food that you get.

I also concur with the Green Olive Buffet in Alexandria, although the one I'm thinking of is on Route 1 near Gum Springs, not on Backlick Road. It's head and shoulders above most Asian buffets around here, especially on special occasions, where they really pull out all the stops.
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TwiceCooked
Rookie Author Virginia

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Message Posted: Sep 10, 2007 4:58:48 PM

Green Olives (Il Buon Gusto Ristorante)
Very good Sunday brunch buffet.
6681 Backlick Rd, Springfield, VA 22150
(703) 644-4044

Mike's American Grill
Very popular restaurant.
(703) 644-7100 (CALL AHEAD)
6210 Backlick Rd, Springfield, VA 22150
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PEPPERPUMP
Veteran Author Virginia

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Message Posted: Aug 13, 2007 10:47:08 PM

Cyldes in Alexandria on King St.
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Scrapheap
Champion Author Virginia

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Message Posted: Aug 1, 2007 6:54:42 AM

Myanmar Restaurant in the Merri-Falls shopping center. It is at 7810C Lee Highway near the corner with Fairview Park Drive. They serve Burmese food. I really like the Mohingar soup and Fried Bean Curd.
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xyv1027
Veteran Author Virginia

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Message Posted: Jul 31, 2007 8:55:23 AM

Scrapheap, Agreed. Tari Thai is a good find, although I think Neisha Thai is a small step above, that is if you're willing to fight Tysons Mall parking.
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Scrapheap
Champion Author Virginia

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Message Posted: Jul 30, 2007 10:40:30 AM

Pilin Thai is in a shopping center off route 7 just past Tysons Corner. As you are travelling outbound, it would be in the second shopping center on your left at the corner of Gosnell Rd or Westpark Dr. They are also opening a branch on Gallows Rd near Lee Hwy in the Dunn Loring/Merrifield area.

Sweet Rice is on Rt 7 in Falls Church across from the shopping center with the Giant. Parking can be a problem.

Personally, I like Tara Thai better than either of these.
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xyv1027
Veteran Author Virginia

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Message Posted: Jul 30, 2007 8:18:00 AM

Where are Pilin Thai and Sweet Rice? As far as Thai food goes, my favorite in the vicinity of where I live has to be Neisha Thai next to Tysons Corner Center.

I love the food and its at very reasonable prices, but I hate the drive and the search for parking that comes with dining at a restaurant in one of the area'a busiest shopping areas.
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fairhero
Rookie Author Virginia

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Message Posted: Jul 29, 2007 11:13:06 AM

We like Thai Herbs on Route 1, a few miles south of the beltway. Not much to look at, but great food at a reasonable price.
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NoJokeOak
Champion Author Virginia

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Message Posted: Jul 27, 2007 5:25:52 PM

I used to believe that Pilin Thai was one of the best...
that was before Sweet Rice moved in up the street.

Sorry Thai Pilin... but Sweet Rice is 11 out of 10 !
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DustyChalk
Rookie Author Virginia

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Message Posted: Jul 16, 2007 8:22:17 PM

Pilin Thai is probably my favourite restaurant on the planet. (No affiliation, just a happy and repeat customer.)
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xyv1027
Veteran Author Virginia

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Message Posted: Jul 11, 2007 11:54:41 AM

I'm resurrecting this old discussion topic.

Anyone ever check out the newish Red Rock Canyon Grill in Centreville? They've got some awesome tortilla soup.
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