by Sherrie Bakshi

When people think about Washington DC, the following images come to mind–the U.S. Capital, the memorials and let’s not forget, Georgetown. But, just across the Potomac River sits darling Arlington.

For many Washington locals Arlington is where we live and work. It’s also where many of us like to hang out on the weekends. And why not? There are so many fabulous restaurants, lounges and bars–you wouldn‘t have discovered unless you lived here. Many of these are just footsteps away from my home and others slightly beyond.

Whether you are visiting for the week or recently moved to the area definitely add these to your to do list:

Cheesetique reminds you of one of those small French cheese shops that you may find while meandering the streets of Paris. The owners recently opened their second restaurant in Shirlington Village, and the response has been huge. The restaurant/store offers a selection of cheeses, wines and a fabulous menu perfect for any mood or time of day. And, if you are waiting for a table, you can always check out a wine tasting or taste some cheese.
Must haves–Grown Up Grilled cheese with a glass of Brut Rosé

An abundance of restaurants is located in the heart of Arlington is what many locals call “Clarendon”.

Eventide Restaurant is among the top favorites. The restaurant is located in a building constructed in 1925 by The Odd Fellows, a fraternal order dating back to the 18th century. While a fire in 1949 caused some damage to the original structure, the owners took great care to salvage the building during the restaurant‘s construction. You can see some of the smoke stain wood in the restaurant’s lounge area also known as the Odd Bar, which adds so much to the ambience. Chef Adam Barnett recently introduced a new menu that incorporates classic American foods with his own spin.
Must haves–Carolina Pork Sliders and Truffle Fries with the Thomas Jefferson Tavern Ale (an original recipe created by our founding father).

Lyon Hall–There is something about casual brassieres. May be it’s my French obsession. Also located in Clarendon, Lyon Hall is a great place for everyone in the family. Executive Chef Andy Bennett and his team offer a unique menu, which includes cheeses and sausages made in-house, an assortment of mussels and entrees. And, make sure you leave room for dessert. Chef Rob Valencia’s dessert spread is simply divine.
Must haves: Steak Frites with Fries and Crème Bruleé for dessert with a glass of Pinot Noir!

The next time you are in the Washington DC area check out the scene across the bridge. It’s definitely one of the region’s many hidden gems and a culinary hotspot. Relax a bit. Feel like a local for an afternoon or evening.

Check these places out:

Eventide Restaurant

Lyon Hall

For wine tasting in Virginia check out Sherrie’s article!

Sherrie Bakshi loves talking about wining and dining. Check out her blog SherintheCity