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by RestonNow.com May 23, 2018 at 3:30 pm 5 Comments

Attention, food lovers: Taste of Reston, the area’s largest outdoor food festival, is coming to Reston Town Center on June 15 and 16.

The event features samplings from the region’s eateries, live music, beer and wine gardens and a family fun zone. Admission is free, but tickets for tastings can be purchased online or on the day of the event.

Garage parking will remain free throughout the event, which runs from Friday, June 15 from 3-11 p.m. and on Saturday, June 16 from noon to 11 p.m.

The event is produced by the Greater Reston Chamber of Commerce and was voted as the best food festival of Northern Virginia by Virginia Living last year.

Participating restaurants include Agora Restaurant, Choolah Indian BBQ, Founding Farmers Reston, McCormick & Schmick’s Seafood Restaurant and Trader Joe’s.

Live entertainment will take place in several areas: the main pavilion, which will include regional bands; Library Street stage, which offers interactive entertainment for kids; and the Explorer Street Local & Live Lounge, which will feature acoustic artists.

Volunteers can sign-up online.

Photo by Greater Reston Chamber of Commerce

by Fatimah Waseem May 23, 2018 at 12:00 pm 45 Comments

Busara Thai Restaurant (11964 Market Street) has permanently closed its Reston Town Center location.

The restaurant, which served up authentic Thai cuisine, closed on Saturday, May 19, ending 13 years of business in Reston’s urban core. 

An employee with the restaurant told Reston Now the decision was driven by the shift from free to paid parking in Reston Town Center.

“Revenue just went down the drain,” the employee said. The owner was not immediately available for comment.

A representative for Boston Properties said a new tenant has not yet been identified. The restaurant has one other location at 8142 Watson Street in McLean.

Photos by Fatimah Waseem

by RestonNow.com April 25, 2018 at 2:30 pm 0

Honeygrow, a Philadelphia-based, fast-casual restaurant, is opening in JBG Smith’s new Reston Town Center West development at 12100 Sunset Hills Road in May.

The restaurant sells made-to-order stir-fry, salads, cold-pressed juices. The store has no freezers in order to ensure ingredients are sourced locally and made from scratch on a daily basis.

Justin Rosenberg, the restaurant’s CEO, founded honeygrow in 2012. Since then, the restaurant has opened in Philadelphia, Boston, Chicago, the District, Pentagon City and other areas.

Photo via honeygrow

by Fatimah Waseem April 5, 2018 at 2:00 pm 0

Mezeh Mediterranean Grill is expected to open this spring in JBG Smith’s RTC West development (12130 Sunset Hills Road). 

A specific date has not been announced. Permits for the installation of the electric system were issued late last year.

The grill will join other establishments like Starbucks, Nando’s Peri-Peri and Cooper’s Hawk Winery as work continues on adjacent office buildings and ground-floor retail spaces. Other future businesses, as advertised on signage at the front of the new office building, include Punjabi by Nature, The Black Squirrel, The Burger Joint, and Honeygrow.

The first phase of development converts 15,000 square feet of office space into street-level retail and adds 25,000 square feet of new retail on the southwest corner of the nearly 14-acre campus. The buildings have structured surface parking for visitors and a four-level parking garage with a total of 1,619 parking spaces.

Photos by Fatimah Waseem

by RestonNow.com April 5, 2018 at 10:15 am 10 Comments

After a windy campout that began at 6 a.m. on Wednesday, Chick-fil-A at 1494 North Point Village Center is now open.

The 2,800-square-foot restaurant is open from 6 a.m. to 10:30 p.m. Monday through Saturday. It is closed on Sunday.

Customers participating in Chick-fil-A’s promotional “First 100” event camped overnight at the location and received 52 chicken sandwich meals.

They were then ceremoniously welcomed down a red carpet to the sound of “When The Saints Go Marching In” and the banging of pots, pans and cowbells, according to a restaurant representative.

The store is run by Larry Everett, a retired firefighter who worked for the fire departments in Fairfax County and Montgomery County, Md. for more than 30 years.

Here’s more about Everett from the company:

Chick-fil-A is a family business for the Everett family. In addition to his son, Philip, a franchise owner in Rockford, his son, Joshua, will serve as facilities director at the new restaurant where Everett’s daughter-in-law, Stevie, will work as assistant human [resources] director and granddaughter, Evangeline, will be director of playground safety and designated Cow handler at North Point Center. 

During his 30-year firefighting career, Everett was a first responder to the Pentagon during 9/11 and spent most of his career serving the local community in Fairfax County. He and his wife, Andrea, and their family are looking forward to continuing that spirit of service among their friends and family in the Reston community. 

Photos via CP Communications

by Fatimah Waseem March 26, 2018 at 12:00 pm 8 Comments

Locally owned café chain Sweet Leaf will hold its official grand opening on Wednesday (March 28) at Reston Station from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m.

The restaurant will open at 1908 Reston Metro Plaza as part of Comstock’s BLVD development. Founding Farmers, Sweet Leaf’s neighbor, is set to open on April 11.

Sweet Leaf was originally set to open late last year, but co-owner Andre Matini said they delayed the opening to match the timing of Founding Farmers’ launch day.

“We’re basically trying to open up when the entire plaza is ready. It’s a better time to open as the weather turns warmer, as more people are out, and the plaza is activated,” Matini told Reston Now.

A soft opening will be held tomorrow from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Around 300 people are registered for the booked event, which will include free lunch.

Sweet Leaf was founded in McLean in 1991 and has other locations in Tysons, Vienna, McLean and three in Arlington.

The menu includes sandwiches, salads, grain bowls and breakfast options. Vegan, vegetarian and gluten-free options are also available.

Customers can park in Reston Station’s garage. Two-hour parking will be validated at the store’s register. Two garage spaces will also be designated for customers who place online orders, Matini said.

Photos courtesy of Andre Matini 

by Fatimah Waseem March 21, 2018 at 9:00 am 4 Comments

Herndon man arrested in connection with double homicide in Loudoun County — “The sheriff’s office said Brian K. Welsh, 38, of Herndon, was charged with two counts of first degree murder in the shootings in the Aldie area of the county. Officials said the killings appeared to be drug-related.” [The Washington Post]

Chef on Wheels seeks beer and wine permit — The restaurant, which was formerly a food truck, on 1810 Michael Faraday Drive is seeking the license to sell alcoholic beverages. [Reston Patch]

Preparing for the March on Washington — A former teacher who is running for Congress in Virginia’s 11th district is prepping for the march this weekend. [Jonathan Park via Eventbrite]

An argument between a bus driver and parent — A Herndon parent was served summonses for making threats to a school employee, assault and disorderly conduct last Tuesday after the parent boarded a local bus. [Herndon Police Department]

Photo by Ruth Sievers

by Fatimah Waseem March 15, 2018 at 6:45 am 3 Comments

Total Wine & More will open its doors at 9 a.m. today at 11620 Plaza America Drive.

The grand opening event, which runs through Sunday, features more than 20 wine tastings.

Customers will receive a free reusable wine tote with gifts, store information and savings worth more than $40, according to promotional information.

A portion of all grand opening sales will be donated to Cornerstones, a nonprofit organization that aims to promoted self-sufficiency.

The schedule for featured producers and tastings starts at 4 p.m. and includes the following:

by RestonNow.com March 8, 2018 at 1:30 pm 0

The Northern Virginia Restaurant Week is back this year. The annual event, which runs from March 19-26, offers reduced price at more than 50 restaurants in Northern Virginia.

Customers are strongly encouraged to make reservations.

Several eateries in Reston and Herndon are participating in the event, including:

For a complete list of all eateries taking part, visit the event’s website.

Photo via Northern Virginia Restaurant Week

by Fatimah Waseem March 6, 2018 at 10:15 am 18 Comments

Mason’s Famous Lobster Rolls, an Annapolis-based restaurant, will replace Red Velvet Cupcakery (11939 Democracy Drive).

Buildout for the 800-square-foot restaurant will begin in late summer, according Dan Beck, lobster maven and the company’s founder.

The news comes as Aaron Gordon, owner of Red Velvet Cupcakery, announces plans to shutter his business at Reston Town Center on May 27 — a move he hinted at last year.

Gordon has vehemently and visibly opposed Boston Properties’ paid parking structure — a program that drove his decision to close his store.

“I have no interest in staying with our current landlord, which in my opinion, completely disregards it’s retail partners,” Gordon said. He may reconsider finding another location in Reston in the future.

Late last year, Mason’s opened its first franchise locations in Baltimore, Md. and National Harbor. Masons’ serves lobster rolls, lobster bisque, clam chowder, salads, and more.

Beck said his company selected Reston Town Center because the franchisee lives in Reston and because the community’s urban core has “strong foot traffic and strong demographics,” especially customers from nearby offices.

The store will be similar to other locations, but will also include a “very strong Monday through Friday lunch business.” Customers will be able to place online orders through an app.

Plans for build-out are still on the drawing board as the company works through the permitting process. The restaurant’s sign should be up in the coming weeks.

by Fatimah Waseem January 23, 2018 at 11:40 am 3 Comments

Foodies can enjoy discounted prix fixe meals through Sunday, Jan. 28 during this year’s Metropolitan Washington Winter Restaurant Week.

More than 250 restaurants in the District, Maryland and Virginia are participating in the event, which kicked off on Monday.

In Reston, four eateries are also taking part. Restaurants will offer three-course lunch and brunch menus for $22 and a three-course dinner for $35. The annual event is sponsored by the Restaurant Association of Metropolitan Washington.

Participating Reston restaurants include:

  • McCormick & Schmick’s (11920 Democracy Drive)
  • Morton’s The Steakhouse (11956 Market Street)
  • The Melting Pot (11730 Plaza America Drive)
  • Passion Fish (11960 Democracy Drive)

by Fatimah Waseem January 11, 2018 at 9:00 am 5 Comments

by Fatimah Waseem November 29, 2017 at 2:45 pm 33 Comments

Plaza America, will welcome Grill Kabob, an Afghan restaurant with other locations in Virginia, Maryland and Washington, soon. A sign announcing the arrival of the chain, which serves made-to-order kabobs and other authentic specialities, was posted in the vacant storefront yesterday.

Grill Kabob will replace Primo Italiano at 11888 Plaza America Drive. The pizza and sub restaurant, which had called the shopping center home since it opened in the 1990s, left in May 2015.

Since then, the location has remained vacant. Staples, which was located in the same shopping center at 11620 Plaza America Drive, also closed on Oct. 7. Total Wine & More, a beer, wine and spirit purveyor, plans to open by the end of the year.

A restaurant representative said it was unclear when Grill Kabob will open. The owner was unavailable for comment. The restaurant launched in 1998 with its first location in the food court at Springfield Mall and has since opened in 14 locations, including stand-alone restaurants.

Mahmoud Mahdjoub, a journalist in Afghanistan, immigrated to the United States, joining his two cousins who fled Afghanistan during the Soviet-Afghan war in 1980. The chain’s website describes Grill Kabob as one of the largest kabob chains in the country.

The restaurant in Reston is just under 4 miles away from another location in Herndon. Other nearby restaurants are located in Dulles Town Center,  Tysons Corner Mall and Manassas Mall. Its menu includes an assortment of kabobs, sandwiches, gyros, salads, falafel platters and more.

by Fatimah Waseem November 20, 2017 at 9:00 am 9 Comments

Creditors Take Over Reston Contractor’s Subsidiary — The company, STC Group Inc., received formal notice earlier this month of the default, which cited the company’s failure to comply with financial covenants of an $81.2 million credit agreement from two years ago, according to the report. Top executives resigned as a result. [Washington Business Journal]

Stolen Garage Door Openers Lead to Local Burglaries — According to WTOP, police in Fairfax County are investigating a series of burglaries that happened this week involving stolen garage door openers. The incidents occurred at four homes, two of which are in Reston. In three cases, homeowners said they spotted the suspect, whom they described as a black man in his late teens to early 20s. [WTOP]

Comstock Holding Companies Inc Reports Third Quarter Results — The Reston-based company reported a net los of around $1.5 million as compared to the third quarter of last year, during with a net loss of $1.1 million was reported. [NB Herard]

Farmer-owned Restaurant Coming to Reston Soon — The North Dakota Farmers Union, Agraria LLC and the Farmers Restaurant Group are considering a plan to open their seventh farmer-owned restaurant on the East Coast in Reston. [Bismarck Tribune]

by Fatimah Waseem November 13, 2017 at 11:15 am 11 Comments

Nando’s PERi-PERi restaurant opened today at 11 a.m. on 12120 Sunset Hills Road in Reston Town Center. The Portuguese restaurant will host a grand opening on Saturday to support music programs at South Lakes High School and Herndon High School.

All sales on Saturday will be donated to the schools, according to a press release. The funds will be directed to help fund Herndon High School’s marching band as the team goes to Normandy, France to represent the United States at the 75th commemoration of D-Day in 2019. South Lakes High School will use the donations to send their band to Hawaii to perform at the Pearl Harbor Memorial Parade this year and other program needs.

According to the SLHS Parent Teacher Association, raffle prizes will be up for grabs at noon, 2 p.m., 5 p.m. and 8 p.m.

“This is all about being good neighbors, and Nando’s looks forward to becoming an integral part of the Reston community,” said Sepanta Bagherpour, the restaurant’s vice president of marketing. “We are proud to support musical programs at two of the most impressive public high schools in Virginia.”

Nando’s has 40 locations in the country and nine in Virginia. The chain made its U.S. debut in 2008 with its first location in the Chinatown neighborhood of Washington, D.C.  According to promotional information, the chain has about 1,200 restaurants in 23 countries on five continents. It was founded in 1987 in South Africa. Other area restaurants include at One Loudoun and in the Mosaic District.

Photos courtesy of Seven Oaks Media. For more photos, visit the online album

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