Anytime my best friend Brooke is in town, she and I like to hit up differnent spots in Old Town, Virginia. Yesterday, we casually strolled through Alexandria. Our first stop was a rustic Italian restaurant called Landini Brothers. Old Town is beautiful during the holidays as are the restaurants. Landini Brothers' decor was very festive: lights, garland, and wreaths were strategically placed around the stair hand rail and above the chandeliers. The low lighting and Christmas carols, created a nice ambiance for dining guests. I appreciated the authenticity of the dishes that the chefs created and used, fresh, homemade pasta, fresh herbs, and fresh bread (yum!) After lunch we boutique hopped and picked up a few trinkets along the way from one of our favorites, 3 Sisters. The store is so adorable! It's along a tree-lined brick sidewalk; you can't miss it because their bright fuchsia sign swings high above the boutique. 3 Sisters is two levels of girly goodness! The store associates are very kind and attentive and the accessories and clothing are unique, quality items. You know that you're going to come away with something special.
It has become a tradition for us to end our outings with a good cup of coffee. In light of that, we stopped at a corner gelato and coffee shop called, Dolci Gelati. Normally, I'm a black coffee (sugar, no cream) or caramel macchiato kind of girl, and Brooke is more of the Vanilla Latte or White Chocolate Mocha type, but we decided to venture out and try the coffeehouse's specialty blend called a "Salty & Dirty Caramel Chai Latte." It starts off with salted caramel gelato and is mixed with espresso, steamed milk and chai. It is a perfect blend of sweet and spice and the caffeine kick is really nice. This is not the type of drink that you want to guzzle. It is one that should be gently nursed and enjoyed. Drink it slowly. I promise you, it will be an experience. Dolci Gelati is a true artisanal Italian treasure in Alexandria.
213 King St
Alexandria, VA 22314
Dolci Gelati Gelato Shop
107 N Fairfax St
Alexandria, VA 22314
Today was perfect. I love when I get a chance to catch up with my bestie, Jasmine one-on-one. It was a good old fashioned girls day out. It was our time to check in with one another and hear what's going on in each of our lives (things that we had not already shared) over a meal. Our motto has become, "A get together, is not a get together, unless we break bread." This time around our restaurant of choice was a fairly new spot down at the National Harbor called Succotash. The ambiance was warm and inviting. From top to bottom the space is filled with mahogany wood accents, giving it a nice rustic feel. The furniture upholstery, wood chairs and leather booths added a level of sophistication to the already beautiful space. The seating was strategically placed under black iron chandeliers, and the restaurant's clientel ranged from mid twenties to seasoned seniors. The restaurant was decked out in colorful red, green and gold decor, perfect for the Christmas season! Due to the highly anticipated opening of the MGM National Harbor, the wait was understandably longer, but Jasmine and I were assured by the restaurant's pleasant hostesses at the front, that we would be text when seats in the dining area became available (I loved that idea). After about 15 minutes or so, we were escorted to a cozy private dining area, and immediately greeted by our waiter, David; who was very kind and attentive. We had some time to look over the menu prior to being seated, so we were prepared to order when he came to our table. We started with Pecan Sticky Buns to kick our brunch off right and put in our orders for Chicken and Waffles (Jasmine) and Biscuits and Gravy (me), two downhome Southern classics.
In between our appetizer and our entrees, Jasmine sipped on her lemonade which she said tasted "like the homemade lemonade that Grandma gives you on the porch on a hot summer's day." While I enjoyed refreshing and frequently replenished glasses of water. The pecan sticky buns were golden and flaky on the outside while the inside was soft, gooey. They certainly lived up to the menu's description of them "Deliciousness". We then moved on to our main courses, which came shortly thereafter, and were presented beautifully. My biscuits and gravy came out piping hot in a small cast-iron pan. The black-peppered pork sausage gravy covered the two buttermilk biscuits and the dish was garnished with fresh, vibrant green scallions. Jasmine's Chicken and Waffels were presented on an oriental-designed plate. The belgian waffel was cut into quarters and crispy golden brown chicken thighs and legs graced the top of it. Freshly shaved Manchego cheese melted neatly on top of the chicken parts and the meal was finished with a fresh bourbon dark maple syrup.
My meal was a harmonious blend of rich, creamy, flavorful and savory. While Jasmine described her entree as "succlent seduction; the perfect balance of sweet and savory." Succotash's menu is far more than just Southern cuisine, it's an experience, a wonderful experience!
We will not be strangers to this fine establishement, it is truly a gem; and has been deemed our "local brunch spot." #SimplyAriApproved
Succotash186 Waterfront Street
When Ari isn't out covering events, she's working on bettering herself as a journalist, attending writer-related events, or enjoying spontaneous excursions in and around the Washington DC Metropolitan area.
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