A big and beautiful part about living in DC is that it’s easy to escape the thrill of downtown for a new feel in a new neighborhood in Virginia or Maryland, and when I can, that’s exactly what I like to do.
My first visit to this little gem was for a wedding consultation for work, and it’s been on my mind ever since. A relaxed, local place serving breakfast, lunch and dinner, Northside Social in Arlington just gets me. It’s one of those places where I always want to be and I know everyone else that frequents there feels the same way, because every time I go, no matter what time of the day, it is busy. That many people can’t be wrong about a a place.
All breads and pastries are freshly baked in house, and there is a vast selection of house-cured meats and fish are paired with fresh produce and dairy products. With an expansive wine and beer selection, they truly do it all here, and they do it extremely well no matter when you arrive.
The ambiance here is casual and perfect for families and friends, young and old alike. You’ll find toddlers and their parents on lunch dates, and busy graduate students typing away. And you’ll find art from local artists sprawled on the walls for show and for sale.
This time, I met up with Karel for a brunchy lunch on Saturday. To start things off, Karel ordered the feta and roasted butternut squash muffin. I thrive off of savory muffins, and this one was nicely moistened by the butternut squash that gave it a hint of sweetness, I could have easily devoured two as a brunch entree, which I just might do next time I return.
Feeling a little conflicted between breakfast and brunch, I decided on the grilled cheese. Mozzarella, cheddar and gruyere melt together on Pullman, bread known to create perfectly shaped sandwich – a grown-up, hearty version of the childhood sandwich. As a tomato+grilled cheese aficionado, I added the tomato marmalade for giggles, which as expected, was an excellent call for my taste buds.
Karel ordered the BLT. Also on Pullman bread, this guy featured crunchy North Country applewood smoked bacon, bibb lettuce, tomato marmalade and Duke’s mayonnaise. By Karel’s standards, thick, hearty and flavorful bacon made for a solid BLT – the type of bacon you always hope for in a BLT but rarely get.
With a casual, comforting, local ambiance, there are so many things I want to do at Northside Social, from to sipping on the delicious coffee while reading newspapers crazy early in the morning, to lounging upstairs late night with a hefty flight of wine. Most of all, I can hardly wait for the spring and summertime, when I can sit outside on the patio at any time of the day. While it’s not the fanciest of places or the rarest of meals, it’s somewhere you know will never, ever disappoint. At only one of three $, you’ve gotta have it.
3211 Wilson Boulevard