Speakers to Share Personal Stories at Elden Street Tea Shop Event

Four storytellers will share their perspectives about life-changing events at an upcoming panel in Herndon.

After heartbreak and struggles, the authors and public speakers will gather on Saturday, Sept. 14, at Elden Street Tea Shop (714 Pine Street) to discuss their experiences.

The “Tea and Tales Storytelling” event will take place outside. People who register before Wednesday (Sept. 11) get free admission or pay a $5 admission fee at the door.

The theme of the evening will be “turning points.” Each speaker will discuss how tragedies and hardships in their past led them to their current lives. Attendees will hear from Danielle, Amy, Kristina and Jennifer throughout the night.

Danielle will speak on how her rough divorce changed the way she saw love. Amy and Kristina will discuss how medical challenges influenced them.

Jennifer will end things on a lighter note, talking about the new perspectives she got from trying improv, according to the speaker bios.

The event will run from 7-9:30 p.m.

Photo via Elden Street Tea Shop/Facebook

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Now Open: Fast Food Japanese Hibachi Restaurant in Dulles Park

It’s official: a new fast food Japanese restaurant is  now open in Dulles Park in Herndon.

Quickway Japanese Hibachi opened at 1040 Elden Street. The restaurant uses the teppanyaki grilling style in a quick-service restaurant setting. Its menu includes bento boxes, hibachi, and combos with vegetables, rice or noodles.

Here’s more about the restaurant from its website:

Here at Quickway Japanese Hibachi, you’ll find fresh, quality food, served fast, with style. It’s how we have grown from one prototype store to 7 locations, and counting, within 20 months, in the DC metro area.

We bring the Teppanyaki (teppan, Japanese for griddle: yaki, grill, broiled) cooking technique to a quick service restaurant setting. The proteins are prepared freshon the open grill in your full view, a true cooked to order signature dish.

We offer choices of salads, sides, and sushi, all prepared from All Day Fresh ingredients and homemade sauces. Plus, we really care if you have a cool place to eat. We build our space to be clean, convenient and modern. Of course, our food is healthy, with reduced salt, no trans fat, and no MSG.

The chain also plans to open new location in Silver Spring, Md. and Spotsylvania, Va.

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California-Based BurgerIM Chain Coming to Herndon

A new burger joint is coming to Herndon’s Junction Square.

Headquartered in California, BurgerIM is a national chain spanning 15 states, with plans to operate about 500 spots by the end of the year, according to its website.

Renaud Consulting announced that it recently helped BurgerIM sign a lease for a 1,500 square foot space at 1700 Lynn Street, Suite A. No word yet on when it’s opening.

Local news blog The Burn reported in April that Burgerim is also planning to open in Reston.

Photo via BurgerIM/Facebook

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South Lakes HS Food Pantry Offers Healthy Eating Workshops

The food pantry at South Lakes High School, which was established by the school’s PTSA in 2017, is now offering healthy eating workshops.

The workshops are funded by a $7,000 Delta Dream Grant from the Washington Nationals Dream Foundation and aim to educate students about healthy eating.

Recently, nutritionist Kristen McGill of Giant Food gave a cooking demonstration and answered students’ question about how to eat healthy on a budget. Students learned about differing cutting techniques, how to make vegetarian chili, and the best and fastest way to cook rice. She also walked students through sources of healthy fats.

Students were given goodie bags with coupons, avocados, a wooden spoon, and informational material on healthy eating on a budget.

The pantry was created to help students who are eligible for free and reduced-price meals — nearly 30 percent of the student population. The pantry is also open to South Lakes Pyramid students and their families.

Currently, the pantry needs the items below. Drop-offs are accepted at the school’s main office.

  • Toiletries
  • Canned goods
  • Boxed or dry goods
  • Cooking oil
  • Laundry detergent, dish soap

Photo via YouTube/FCPS

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Hibiscus Thai Cuisine Closes After Six Years of Business

Hibiscus Thai Cuisine, a sit-down restaurant located at 11790-A Baron Cameron Avenue, has closed after six years of business.

The owners did not return requests for comment from Reston Now. A closed sign was taped to the door of the business today (Thursday).

The closure was announced on Facebook last night:

We regret to inform you that Hibiscus Thai Cuisine is permanently closed. We thank you for your patronage for the past 6 years of operation. It would not have been possible without you. Our family is so grateful to have served you our recipes of the most delicious Thai food. We hope you’ll always remember your experience here at Hibiscus Thai Cuisine.

County permits do not indicate what will occupy the space once it is vacated.

Photos by Fatimah Waseem

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Afghan Restaurant Sets Sights on Opening Next Month in Herndon

Kabobi by the Helmand, a restaurant featuring Afghan cuisine, plans to start serving diners in May.

Owner Khaleeq Ahmad told Reston Now that the permitting process has led to delays. The restaurant’s next inspection is this Friday (April 12). If all goes well, Ahmad said he expects the restaurant to open next month.

Ahmad previously told Reston Now that Kabobi by the Helmand will offer Zeke’s Coffee in the morning for commuters and locals before switching to Afghan cuisine for lunch and dinner. The menu in Herndon will resemble the one from the restaurant’s partner, Kabobi from The Helmand, in Baltimore, he said.

The restaurant’s spot at 2321 Dulles Station Blvd, Suite A is a short walk from the Innovation Center Metro station.

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New Business ‘Coming Soon’ to Singh Thai’s Lake Anne Plaza Spot

(Updated at 10:45 a.m.) A new business is gearing up to take its formerLake Anne Plaza spot of Singh Thai, which closed five days ago.

Lake Anne Plaza posted on Facebook that a business called “Local VA” has a “coming soon” sign up on the door at 1633 N. Washington Plaza.

“Oooh! Looks like we’re getting a new neighbor!” the post says. “Welcome to the neighborhood!”

Local VA describes itself on Instagram as “the next go-to spot for local food, drinks and positive vibes.”

After nine years at Lake Anne Plaza, the locally owned Thai restaurant closed on Sunday (March 31).

File photo

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Matchbox Planning to Move In Near the Wiehle-Reston East Metro Station

The regional wood-fired pizza franchise Matchbox just announced plans to move into Reston early next year.

The franchise just signed a lease for 1900 Reston Metro Plaza Drive in Suite 100, according to a statement from a public relations agency representing Matchbox.

“The space is 5,500 square feet and offers expansive patio dining,” the agency said in an email. “The veteran D.C. restaurant group is currently focused on regional expansion within the DMV, targeting smaller, neighborhood-focused properties.”

The email says the restaurant is planning on opening in Reston Station in early 2020.

Other upcoming Matchbox locations include one in Silver Spring opening tomorrow (Friday) and ones in Penn Quarter and Bethesda opening this summer.

If you can’t wait that long, your best bet is the Matchbox locations in Ashburn (44720 Thorndike Street) or the Mosaic District (2911 District Ave).

Photo via Facebook

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Famous Toastery to Bring Brunch to RTC West This Month

A new brunch and breakfast spot is set to open in RTC West in less than two weeks.

Famous Toastery announced on Facebook yesterday that the sit-down restaurant will open on Monday, April 15.

The restaurant is currently hiring. Its next job fairs at 12100 Sunset Hills Road, R6 are scheduled for:

  • Today (April 2): 10 a.m.-2 p.m.
  • Thursday (April 4): 4-8 p.m.
  • Saturday (April 6): noon-4 p.m.

The restaurant will join RTC West’s growing food scene, which includes HoneygrowMezeh Mediterranean Grill and BGR The Burger Joint. Fine-dining, Indian restaurant Bombay Velvet is also set to open soon at RTC West.

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‘Teapot and Cake’ Set to Bring Sweets to Lake Anne Plaza Spot

Purcellville-based bakery Teapot and Cake is coming to Lake Anne Plaza.

Building permits indicate that the bakery will move into 11404A W. Washington Plaza — the former spot of Havana Boutique, a high-end consignment shop.

The menu for the Purcellville spot includes a range of sweets, including cakes, pastries, cookies, cupcakes and tea.

A Facebook post from Lake Anne and Washington Plaza says that the opening date is “TBD” — “to be determined.”

Photo via Facebook

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Grilled Cheese Bar Coming to Great Falls Center

Great Falls Center will soon have a restaurant that focuses on pairing grilled cheese and wine.

Renaud Consulting, a commercial real estate company, recently unveiled that Bites Wine and Grilled Cheese Bar recently signed a lease for a 2,064-square-foot spot at the recently redeveloped shopping center.

The Leesburg-based restaurant, which opened in late 2017, makes its sandwiches on bread from The French Bread Factory in Sterling, according to its website.

Great Falls will be the restaurant’s second location, John Marigliano, a senior vice president at Renaud Consulting, told Reston Now.

Marigliano said that the restaurant is currently going through the permitting process for the spot at 9908 Georgetown Pike. He expects the restaurant to open sometime in June or July.

Photo via Facebook

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Domino’s, Herndon Laundry Sign Leases for Pines Shopping Center

The Pines Shopping Center in Herndon has welcomed two tenants to help fill its empty storefronts.

Established in 1959, Pines Center was the first of the shopping centers to pop up along Elden Street.

For roughly the last decade, the shopping center at 690 Elden Street has faced continuing vacancies, which prompted talk in 2012 about revitalizing the center.

News outlets reported the shopping center obtained a new leasing manager — Vienna-based Renaud Consulting — in July 2015. Recently, the commercial real estate company announced that Herndon Laundry and Domino’s signed leases.

Domino’s has 1,600 square foot at the shopping center, while Herndon Laundry occupies a 2,270-square-foot space.

Domino’s lists a location offering both carry-out and delivery at 698 Elden Street on its website.

While Renaud Consulting did not provide the address for Herndon Laundry, its announcement features an image of the closed Coin Laundry at 692 Elden Street.

In its brochure, Renaud Consulting notes that seven out of 19 spaces at the shopping center are vacant, totaling 15,460 square feet of empty retail space.

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Singh Thai to Say Goodbye to Lake Anne Plaza Spot on Sunday

After nine years at Lake Anne Plaza, Singh Thai plans to close on Sunday (March 31).

The locally owned Thai restaurant has been in its current spot at 1633 N. Washington Plaza — the former spot of Jasmine Cafe — since 2015. Singh Thai was located at 11424 Washington Plaza for about five years prior to its move to the larger and more visible spot on Lake Anne Plaza, Reston Now previously reported.

The Thai restaurant shared its closing plans in a Facebook post earlier this month.

“We have enjoyed our time here on the lake and have come to cherish the special people who live and dine with us,” the post says. “Unfortunately it is time for our chefs, the owner’s parents, to retire and move back to Thailand, and for the owner, Chai, to spend a little time back in the homeland as well.”

The post urges customers to keep following the restaurant on Facebook for “updates on the next location and reopening dates.”

The Thai restaurant is offering half off of all of its wine, beer and liquor until Sunday — while supplies last.

Photo via Facebook

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Jinya Puts Reston Town Center Spot Back on Website

Jinya Ramen Bar looks like it’s back on with its plans to fill an empty Reston Town Center spot.

Back in December, the Japanese ramen restaurant chain posted on its website that it was “coming soon” to 11964 Market Street. Then in early January, a reader pointed out that the Reston location disappeared from the website.

An employee at the parent company of the Jinya brand told Reston Now that nothing had been finalized yet on the Reston Town Center location and that she wasn’t sure why the Reston address was posted on the website.

Fast forward two months later, and Jinya has the same address back up on its website and listed as “coming soon.”

“Reston Town Center is rooted in authentic, home-grown experiences that create special moments for all who visit and dine here,” Stephanie Friedman, the vice president of leasing for Boston Properties, the owners of Reston Town Center, told Reston Now through a spokeswoman. “JINYA Ramen Bar is our ideal partner, bringing their local success and unique menu offering to the Reston community.”

The spot has been empty since Busara Thai Restaurant left last spring after 13 years of business there.

Jinya has nearby locations in D.C. and the Mosaic District in Merrifield.

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Wooboi Chicken’s Chef Talks Secret Menu, Spiciest Nashville Hot Chicken Waiver

One month after Wooboi Chicken’s opening, Chef Minwoo says that the Herndon eatery still has lines out of the door in the late morning and even one diner who came down from New Jersey for a taste of the Nashville Hot Chicken.

After pop-up locations around Maryland and Virginia last summer, Wooboi Chicken officially opened a brick-and-mortar spot in early February at 139 Spring Street, Suite 1.

The chicken is free-range, does not contain antibiotics and is fried in peanut oil, according to its website. For customers with peanut allergies, Wooboi Chicken has a separate fryer that uses canola oil instead.

The concept is based on Nashville Hot Chicken, which has its roots in a woman’s attempt to get back at her cheating man by serving him a super spicy chicken.

Minwoo told Reston Now that he has thrown in his own twists, including D.C. mumbo sauce made from pineapples, distilled wine, vinegar, tomato paste; Japanese-influenced brine; and a unique breading that Minoo calls a “fusion of fine dining and generic KFC and Popeyes.”

The chicken eatery offers six different levels of heat depending on how hot customers like their chicken — the code red and code blue options are the hottest and require an extra warning: a “waiver” on a chalkboard-painted wall where diners have signed their names.

Minwoo estimates that about 10 percent of the customers try either the red or the blue option, and about 5 percent of those “brave people” successfully finish their food. (If you’re not a spice person, don’t go above a level two, Minwoo says.)

This Reston Now reporter chickened out and tried one of the milder items from the secret menu instead — the Merkaroni Salad. (Town of Herndon Mayor Lisa Merkel took to Twitter to share her excitement about having a secret menu item named after herself.)

Other secret menu items to ask for include The Kracken, which is a double chicken sandwich inspired by Paul from Weird Brothers Coffee, and the Choi Fries, which are fries with D.C. mumbo sauce, chicken, cheddar cheese and mustard.

The secret menu isn’t the only surprise. The recipes change a little bit every day, Minwoo adds.

“I’m just going to try to make the best chicken sandwich I can.”

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