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Tap And Vine - Lee Highway in Arlington - Closed


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#1 Josh Radigan

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Posted 15 August 2008 - 09:08 AM

Wow, there's a surprise at the Location of Death. A mediocre restaurant quickly fails. Since the site clearly doesn't work as a restaurant, why don't they just blow the building up and put a bank there. We need more banks around here, right? :lol:

Rocks, how about a pool on the lifespan of Tap and Vine?

Tap and Vine rumor has it will be owned by the ladies who own Restaurant Vero. They are going to do...tada..a wine bar. Go figure.

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#2 Andelman

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Posted 15 August 2008 - 10:31 AM

Tap and Vine rumor has it will be owned by the ladies who own Restaurant Vero. They are going to do...tada..a wine bar. Go figure.

I don't think the ladies are doing a wine bar. I think it is going to be a more kid-friendly venue.

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#3 SeanMike

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Posted 15 August 2008 - 01:14 PM

I don't think the ladies are doing a wine bar. I think it is going to be a more kid-friendly venue.

From the name maybe a beer-and-wine bar? :lol:

That's the first thing I thought when I heard the name, and honestly - it's not that far from my house, so if it can convince me to go that way rather than down to Dogwood or 4 Ps I'd be happy to give it my money. I've never been disappointed by Vero so if they owned it that might be A Good Thing (as long as it didn't drag Vero down...).

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#4 SeanMike

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Posted 19 August 2008 - 04:05 PM

I think we can help authenticate the rumor - my brother drove by there yesterday and the women who own Vero (whose name he knows but I'm blanking on) were outside of the old Milan place with power tools working on it.
:lol:

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#5 JohnBallentine

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Posted 23 August 2008 - 06:26 PM

I live in the neighborhood, and I'm pretty thrilled to hear that the owners of Vero's are taking up the challenge of the "Restaurant of Doom".

Vero's has been a fantastic addition to the neighborhood. A neighborhood restaurant with excellent food, knowledgeable staff, and a welcoming atmosphere.
The owners of Restaurant Vero have an excellent working formula for a successful establishment. I'm hoping that they can translate it into a new venue.

It seems that some folks are simply looking for the new restaurant to fail. I'm not sure what the history of the new location is, but it seems a little premature to judge a restaurant that hasn't even opened yet, especially when it is being operated by a group that already has a successful business.

#6 Joy Reinhardt

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Posted 25 August 2008 - 08:58 AM

I live in the neighborhood, and I'm pretty thrilled to hear that the owners of Vero's are taking up the challenge of the "Restaurant of Doom".

Vero's has been a fantastic addition to the neighborhood. A neighborhood restaurant with excellent food, knowledgeable staff, and a welcoming atmosphere.
The owners of Restaurant Vero have an excellent working formula for a successful establishment. I'm hoping that they can translate it into a new venue.

It seems that some folks are simply looking for the new restaurant to fail. I'm not sure what the history of the new location is, but it seems a little premature to judge a restaurant that hasn't even opened yet, especially when it is being operated by a group that already has a successful business.

Thanks for your positive feedback! Our goal is to open Tap & Vine by the middle of September. It will be family friendly with a dedicated childrens menu along with seasonal fare for the adults to enjoy. We will also feature a variety of craft beer on tap and food friendly wines.

#7 stick jackson

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Posted 22 September 2008 - 09:08 AM

I circled through the parking lot Saturday to check on the progress.

There was a stop work order on the window from the county. Guess they hit a snag.

#8 Joy Reinhardt

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Posted 24 September 2008 - 04:41 PM

I circled through the parking lot Saturday to check on the progress.

There was a stop work order on the window from the county. Guess they hit a snag.

The snag has been taken care of...We are on target to open next week. If you circle again, you should see the permit signs posted.

#9 cannonballer82

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Posted 29 September 2008 - 04:22 PM

The snag has been taken care of...We are on target to open next week. If you circle again, you should see the permit signs posted.

Even before the Charley Horse Grill bit the dust as only one of a long succession of restaurant failures at the same location, I started calling the site the Bermuda Triangle of eating establishments. It was clear from the start that Cafe Milan was likewise doomed. I was beginning to abandon hope that any good restaurant would ever survive at that spot. Then, I learned that you are opening Tap & Vine.

My wife and I, who live just down the street, have dined at Vero many times and always enjoyed the food, service, and ambiance. We even had carryout dishes from Vero for my birthday dinner (a long story, but I didn't have time to dine in). So, we're excited about the prospect of proven-competent restaurateurs opening a new restaurant on the site of the late, unlamented Cafe Milan. We're looking forward to dining and imbibing at your new restaurant in its early days, and we are rooting for you to exorcize the curse of the restaurants' Bermuda Triangle by making the Tap & Vine another successful, valuable culinary and viniferous addition to the neighborhood.

#10 stick jackson

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Posted 01 October 2008 - 11:18 AM

Glad to hear it. Looking forward to the opening.

#11 goodeats

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Posted 03 October 2008 - 08:21 AM

Appeared to be open last night with a nice looking crowd, but this is based on a drive-by en route to somewhere else.
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#12 DonRocks

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Posted 23 October 2008 - 09:02 AM

Tap & Vine is a vus-navinim fusion of serious brau haus and Romper Room. The decor is a night-and-day improvement over the old Milan, and each table is covered by brown paper and a set of Crayons for doodling.

Beer lovers: No longer will you need to relieve the rigors of daily life by expensive massages, binge eating, or the lonely world of internet porn; as of last week, Tap & Vine had seven beers on tap and seventeen in bottle, the worst of which were Eggenberg and Grolsch, respectively. And things get a lot better from there very quickly - this may be the best beer list in Arlington.

However, I took advantage of Virginia's "Wine Doggy Bag" law (now available in Washington, DC!) and got a perky little bottle of Musaragno Pinot Grigio ($24).

There's a Latino influence behind the stoves, and you shouldn't hesitate to get the Green Chili Pork Stew ($9.00), a homey ladle of slow-cooked, mild stringy pork, potatoes, and vegetables that could have come straight from a Salvadoran or Bolivian kitchen.

On the downside, the Fish Tacos ($12.00) are too expensive for what they are, with fried tilapia that isn't brought to life by anything else on the plate. Likewise, my young dining companion pronounced the Kids' Mac And Cheese ($6.00) "undercheesed," mainly because it's just a bowl of bland elbows with nothing gooey, baked, or particularly flavorful to distinguish it (the adult serving may well be different).

Tap & Vine, Restaurant Vero, and the little wine-store gem Grape Juice sit atop an ugly section of Lee Highway (are there any other sections of Lee Highway?). Like three green plastic houses built on Virginia Ave, they show that "development" can come from within, and doesn't always mean in-your-face architecture such as Joe's Pizza and Pasta, Tarbouch Mediterranean Grill, or Bear Rock Cafe - all three eyesores being just down the street.

Cheers,
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#13 SeanMike

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Posted 23 October 2008 - 09:54 AM

We went there Saturday night with my parents. Service was still getting a bit cranked up, but they've not been open long - and our server was very enthusiastic.

Like DonRocks said, I was impressed with the beer selection. I had a draft beer I'd never heard of before (a winter ale, if I remember correctly), a farm beer (pictured in the WaPo the other day), and an Old Rasputin which I haven't had in ages.

We got an appetizer and for the life of me I can't remember which one - just that it was smaller than expected but quite good.

My mom and I got the flank steak with chimichurri (I know I misspelled that) sauce and both of us enjoyed it quite a bit. No, it's not Ray's, but it was still a good steak and felt like a good deal.

My brother got the chicken breast and absolutely demolished it. His fiancee got the pasta and really enjoyed hers.

My dad got the mac and cheese with chicken, bacon, and roasted red peppers. It was really good - though one of the things that we all liked about it was that it wasn't overly cheesy. It had just enough.

There were desserts, they were raved about, I drank a stout. :lol:

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#14 Joy Reinhardt

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Posted 23 October 2008 - 12:31 PM

I appreciate your feedback about Tap & Vine. We definitely have a few menu kinks to work our but the one thing I must absolutely correct you on is that we do not use frozen tilapia for our fish tacos. We have the ability to receive fresh seafood on a daily basis and we do. We are definitely revising our menu based upon guest feedback, so your input is important to us. Thank you!

As of today, we have 12 beers on tap and 21 by the bottle. I am very excited to see people in Arlington enjoying such great beer!

#15 Sthitch

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Posted 23 October 2008 - 01:55 PM

but the one thing I must absolutely correct you on is that we do not use frozen tilapia for our fish tacos. We have the ability to receive fresh seafood on a daily basis and we do.

Isn't Tilapia, whether fresh or frozen, just Tswana for bland fish?

#16 DonRocks

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Posted 23 October 2008 - 02:14 PM

We definitely have a few menu kinks to work our but the one thing I must absolutely correct you on is that we do not use frozen tilapia for our fish tacos. We have the ability to receive fresh seafood on a daily basis and we do.

Joy, I stand corrected, and my post is now edited. I also apologize for the brain-dead adjective.

Isn't Tilapia, whether fresh or frozen, just Tswana for bland fish?

Tilapia is the norm for fish tacos in this area. Joy wasn't defending the species of fish; merely correcting a factual error that I made.

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#17 MelGold

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Posted 23 October 2008 - 11:24 PM

Congrats, Joy & Veronica! Best of luck with the new venture!!!

#18 Walrus

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Posted 25 October 2008 - 05:16 PM

I had a different experience with the fish tacos -- I thought the flavor was good -- however, the cold and not-so-soft shell did the dish no favors. We enjoyed our first meal here, though, and will definitely try it again after the hard opening!

#19 dcs

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Posted 26 October 2008 - 05:44 AM

As of today, we have 12 beers on tap and 21 by the bottle. I am very excited to see people in Arlington enjoying such great beer!

The beer selection on tap is very, very good. I love Stone IPA. I think I'll have two! :lol:

The food is a little uneven, imho. The short rib sliders were a little pricey at $13 for two sliders and crispy fries. The crispy fries were good, but the meat appeared to be completely unseasoned which was a bit of a curiosity and disappointment. The pulled pork sandwich worked well, with the pork tossed in a slightly sweet sauce, and is a better deal at $9. The bread for the grilled cheese on the kid's menu is excellent. If I may be so bold, I suggest offering a cheddar cheese option in addition to the traditional american cheese version. In fact, the adults may enjoy pairing that with the tangy tomato soup on a cold winter's day.

The place is very kid-friendly. Paper on every table with crayons. It was pretty much filled early on a Saturday afternoon (some families, but mostly adults), so it looks like business is good. The service was fine; cheery, even. I wish them luck.

#20 emorgan90

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Posted 27 October 2008 - 12:43 PM

My husband and I went on Friday night, and the place was full by 6:30, including the bar. That's a testament to the need for decent, affordable meals on our end of Arlington and enthusiasm for Restaurant Vero, I think.

We shared the risotto balls (tasty on the inside, delicious tomato sauce, crust could have been a little thicker or perhaps used a bit longer in the fryer? ), and the wine-by-the-glass is more interesting than most places in this price range.

My husband had the lamb chops, which were tasty, and I had the fish tacos. They were OK, although I think I'd try something else next time. It might help folks to point out on the menu that the fish is fried, since that's not the standard California preparation. We'd love to see a healthier fish option on the menu, although I realize that might be above Tap & Vine's price point.

Servers were mostly friendly and hard-working. We'll definitely be back. We're so glad to see another nice local option.

#21 DanielK

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Posted 27 October 2008 - 01:27 PM

...I had the fish tacos. They were OK, although I think I'd try something else next time. It might help folks to point out on the menu that the fish is fried, since that's not the standard California preparation.

Did it say "California fish tacos" on the menu? The fish taco originated in Baja (Mexico), and in Mexico they are traditionally fried, not grilled.

#22 sunsen456

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Posted 29 October 2008 - 03:21 PM

The kids and I ate there last week. I so wanted to love this place, but I have mixed feelings. It was really nice to see the decor so open and bright. It hits the mark for a good neighborhood and kid friendly place. Paper tablecloths and crayons, little bowls of Goldfish -- great start! However, everything I tasted was bland. The kids mac-n-cheese looked like elbow pasta with cheddar cheese put on top and then maybe microwaved or steamed... I can't say it was creamy at all. Perfect for the 6 year old, though. The Risotto balls had a cheese (maybe mozarella) that oozed out, but it wasn't until I added the tomato sauce that I thought it had any flavor. This worked perfect for the 11 month old. I had the pulled pork sliders. The meat was tender and tasted of pork, but there was no zing. I asked for relish to try to add some tang, but it wasn't available. The cole slaw was tasteless, limp, and looked like it had been plopped in the serving dish during morning prep, or even the night before. The bright side were the french fries, which were shoestring-style and hot and crispy. I took the flank steak home to my husband, and he said it was quite good. I have to admit it smelled very flavorful in the car, but I didn't taste it. The beer was great. I had a New Holland draft, which I hadn't tasted before and liked a lot.

I probably will go back because it's in the neighborhood, very kid-friendly, and good beers. I will just choose more carefully next time what I order.

#23 DPop

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Posted 30 October 2008 - 07:54 AM

Allagash Curieux on tap (and for the excellent price of $6 for a 12 oz glass)!

#24 plinkwired

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Posted 03 November 2008 - 02:30 PM

We had an impromptu group of nine get together last night, and we headed for Tap and Vine. We gave them a heads up that we were coming, and we were greeted warmly. Fortunately, they weren't too busy - so our large group was not a problem. The Green Chili Pork Stew was a big hit. My chicken was perfectly cooked - the fries delicious. I wasn't able to survey everybody at the table, but everyone seemed pleased with their meals and the beer selection. We spent time talking to the co-owner, and it is really great to have a place in the neighborhood that is friendly, the food good, reasonably priced and no need to dress up. I can see more impromptu Sunday night get-togethers here!

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#25 DannyNoonan

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Posted 04 November 2008 - 04:56 PM

I live in the neighborhood and have now visited T&V twice. I want very badly to love the place given it's proximity to my house and kid-friendly nature but so far I am only in love with the beer list. The food is fine, which is ok given the affordable prices, but I really want it go be great. I haven't yet been wowed though everything is at least solid. I will keep trying, low prices and close proximity are a great sell for me, and keep hoping that the food comes up the curve a bit. This is the kind of place that we hope succeed - locally owned, non-chain, neighborhood location, and pretty unique concept.
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#26 bmcdonal6674

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Posted 05 November 2008 - 07:59 PM

Took the family and the environment is perfect for two kids 4 and 6. They loved being able to color on the paper table cloth.

I had the Charcuterie and the wedge salad. My wife had the pasta bolognese. Our food was good but not great. I have probably been spoiled by the butcher board at Bernie's. I hope that the menu evolves.

The BISHOP'S SÉLECTION 2006 CÖTES DU RHÔNE VILLAGES was a great value for $26.

Overall the price was right and it is a nice addition to the neighborhood and my kids felt welcome.

#27 steepfrig

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Posted 08 November 2008 - 01:18 AM

Had a chance to eat here tonight, and I probably will not be back for dinner. To say the least, I was disappointed.

First off: the good stuff:

The pulled pork was tasty. The dark, smoky flavor was a treat, but the dish had other problems.
The Orecchiette Pasta was very good.

The Bad stuff:
Service was atrocious. We were seated quickly, but our server was nowhere to be found for at least 10 minutes. When he finally arrived, he took our drink, appetizer, and entree order at once.

The beers came out quickly and were a highlight. I definitely recommend the Bells Two-Hearted Ale.

For our appetizer, we ordered the truffle fries -- wanting to compare them to the ones at Poste in DC. They never arrived. About 30 minutes after putting our our order in, our server arrived with plates in hand. Just before setting the plates down, he said "Didn't you order an appetizer?" "Yes, we ordered the truffle fries," was my reply. He sat the plates down and apologized but acted dumbfounded as to why they hadn't arrived at our table. I was thinking to myself - "Perhaps it was because you didn't bring them to us." At this point, we had two entrees in front of us. Thinking that he completely goofed in not bringing our appetizer, I hoped he would offer to bring it out, comped -- as a gesture of goodwill for the mistake. While we were hesitant to get the fries, we went ahead and asked for them because we wanted to at least taste them. Amazingly, we had an appetizer of truffle fries in 60 seconds. "Wow - it's amazing what you can do when you pay attention to customer service."

We sampled the truffle fries. Though they were decent, I wouldn't put them in the category of the truffle fries at Poste (Hotel Monaco). The ones at Poste are much better and come out on time.

Now for the dinner. The pasta dish was a delight. It had loads of flavor and was a great value for $10.00. The pulled pork sandwich was good, in that the pork was good. However, the coleslaw was bland and the bottom of the bun was a soggy mess. Either they dip the buns in water before putting the pulled pork on, or the pulled pork sits in a vat of juices and other liquid and soaked the bottom of my bun completely. The bun was useless. If the kitchen had spent five seconds to let some of the juices drain off before putting the pork on the bun, perhaps I would have had a complete sandwich.

Ultimately, we will not return for dinner. While most of the food was good, the service was awful. Our server took our order, dropped off the food, brought the appetizer out after the entrees, and then brought the check. He never once checked back with us to ask if things were OK. Perhaps it was because he was preoccupied with his friends who were dining at the restaurant tonight. We clearly heard him follow his friends to the front of the restaurant and ask about meeting up to head to a party after work. No big deal - unless it is to the detriment of the rest of your customers. Oh, and the final bill: included the $6.00 for Truffle Fries. Nice touch, Mr. Server.

Anyhow - I still give the place major points for its beer and wine menu. Though a future dinner at Tap&Vine is unlikely, we will probably return for drinks at the bar in the future. Who knows, we might even order an appetizer and eat it as the appetizer. :lol:

#28 JohnBallentine

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Posted 09 November 2008 - 07:44 PM

I got to stop by again two nights ago, and the place was rockin'.
The staff was keeping up pretty well, but it looked a little hectic. No problems with my order (truffle fries and a couple of beers), and despite the busy time, our waiter was exceptionally pleasant.

The truffle fries are going to keep me coming back. I can imagine the flavor being overpowered by another spicy appetizer, but these were just fantastic. I was raving about them so much that the couple sitting next to me got a basket. They enjoyed them as well, but I noticed that their portion was only about 1/2-2/3rds the size of mine (Again, keep in mind that the place was packed). They weren't complaining either.

I'm so happy to see this local business doing well. Thanks again ladies for another nice night out!

#29 SeanMike

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Posted 10 November 2008 - 11:47 AM

He sat the plates down and apologized but acted dumbfounded as to why they hadn't arrived at our table. I was thinking to myself - "Perhaps it was because you didn't bring them to us."

As a counter-point, when I've been there, our appetizers were brought out by a different waiter/server. Our "main" waiter brought us our entrees, however.

So it *might* not have been *completely* his fault. :lol:

(Admittedly, our server was clearly still getting the hang of things when we were there, too, but it wasn't as bad as your experience.)

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#30 Black Bear

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Posted 13 January 2009 - 07:17 PM

Nice addition to the neighborhood. Had the Mac and Cheese with bacon and mushrooms (wonderful), with ham and mushrooms (alright, but who'd have thunk there'd be much difference), and the BBQ sandwich (barely edible). The rest of the stuff. Parking is pretty decent, interior same, beer selection as noted above outstanding, Calamari (should be better for that price). Couple final notes, like many of similarly situated restaurants in North Arlington (Pie Tanza, Joes Pizza, Lost dog to a certain extent) its can be overrun with kids. If so, the noise level can be deafening, the demands on the wait staff excessive, and the floor resembles that in a Frathouse. Just a heads, so you know what to expect.
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#31 danfishe

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Posted 13 January 2009 - 09:00 PM

Nice addition to the neighborhood. Had the Mac and Cheese with bacon and mushrooms (wonderful), with ham and mushrooms (alright, but who'd have thunk there'd be much difference), and the BBQ sandwich (barely edible). The rest of the stuff. Parking is pretty decent, interior same, beer selection as noted above outstanding, Calamari (should be better for that price). Couple final notes, like many of similarly situated restaurants in North Arlington (Pie Tanza, Joes Pizza, Lost dog to a certain extent) its can be overrun with kids. If so, the noise level can be deafening, the demands on the wait staff excessive, and the floor resembles that in a Frathouse. Just a heads, so you know what to expect.

You missed Taquiera, in my opinion the biggest star in that category!!

#32 Black Bear

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Posted 14 January 2009 - 09:53 AM

You missed Taquiera, in my opinion the biggest star in that category!!

True. I just hit a few of the obvious ones. As you note, there are many others. Some restaurants targets kids (Chucky Cheese?)and others are traditionally kid friendly (Diners, Fast food with playgrounds, the mall food court). Not sure if its the demographics, or a cultural change, but the current generation of parents seem to have no qualms about taking the brood to pretty much any restaurant (or bar). There's some good and bad in that, but IMHO its certainly important information to post in reviewing a restaurant that as my last trip to Tap and Vine indicates, 10 of the 12 tables had sub teenage kids. If your dining requirements include relative quiet, prompt service, and a general lack of bedlam, maybe this isn't the place for you - or you need to time your visit to minimize it. FWIW.
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#33 sunsen456

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Posted 16 January 2009 - 09:37 AM

There's some good and bad in that, but IMHO its certainly important information to post in reviewing a restaurant that as my last trip to Tap and Vine indicates, 10 of the 12 tables had sub teenage kids. If your dining requirements include relative quiet, prompt service, and a general lack of bedlam, maybe this isn't the place for you - or you need to time your visit to minimize it. FWIW.

Then, IMHO, it's also important to post that the restaurant has brown paper tableclothes, crayons and little bowls of goldfish right on the table, plus plenty of highchairs in the entry area. I think that alone attracts parents with young kids... big red flag that says "your little ones are welcome here".

#34 Black Bear

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Posted 16 January 2009 - 02:02 PM

Then, IMHO, it's also important to post that the restaurant has brown paper tableclothes, crayons and little bowls of goldfish right on the table, plus plenty of highchairs in the entry area. I think that alone attracts parents with young kids... big red flag that says "your little ones are welcome here".

Many restaurants that serve steamed crabs have brown paper on the table, doesn't mean its done to encourage kids. As for gold fish, don't remember seeing them on the table (bar yes), but lots of bars have goldfish (or pretzels, or peanuts) sitting out. Crayons? Certainly saw some, but they weren't on my table, they were available if you asked for them. High chairs? Never seen a restaurant without high chairs, a few bars maybe - not sure that means anything.

I guess my take is that in this economy, most restaurants are happy to have any paying customer come thru the door, especially new restaurants. So, I guess I'd divide the dining world into those restaurants targeting kids (Chucky Cheese), those that are "kid friendly" (have a playground for instance, or Sponge Bob Squarepants on the TV rather than the Football game or the news), and those that either just allow or actively discourage kids (proper attire, high cost, ect).

In summary, its called the Tap and Vine, not the Tap and Whine. There are no Disney characters painted on the walls, no Sponge Bob Square Pants or Miley Cyrus on the TV. At least last time I was in there, I wasn't offered my beer in a sippy cup. Does it discourage kids, no. Is it targeting kids, IMNSHO no. Does it encourage kids, maybe. 10 out of 12 tables with kids starts to look like (and sound like) Chucky Cheese. Not hatin', just sayin'.
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#35 DonRocks

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Posted 16 January 2009 - 02:03 PM

Not hatin', just sayin'.

Not hatin', just triple-spacin'. :P

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#36 lggl

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Posted 16 January 2009 - 05:19 PM

Kids or no kids, the beer list is worth the trip. Not Rustico great, but certainly Lee Highway good.

As to the debate - It was explained to me that they would not turn the volume on during an afternoon football game because of the family atmosphere. Those may not have been the exact words, but that was the idea conveyed. Whatever. Point is - sit at the bar with a good friend or a good book and after one or a few of the great draft or bottle selections, who cares what is going on behind you. You may even want to color some yourself at that point. And for all the haters, sayers, or whatevers, I am not sold on the food alone quite yet - so if the beer list wasn't there I would probably opt for someplace else.

And maybe the next person who goes could suggest a dimmer on the lights! Dare I say it was chuck-e-cheese-bright in there.

#37 terranova

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Posted 31 March 2009 - 01:37 PM

We went last saturday for lunch, third time jinx I guess, restaurant was empty but service was slow and forgetful, portions small and overpriced, two thin slices of baguette with a 8 dollar cup of white bean chili (too much white pepper, need heartier meat, white turkey meat just evaporates in weak broth, where were those fresh herbs?), and chopped up veggies on a pita for $9 , hmmm I think I have had bigger samples at trader joes. The lee highway location of death may have another victim. Beer list is the high point but the food and service seem to be sliding.

#38 ziv

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Posted 27 July 2009 - 08:51 PM

I hit Tap & Vine the other day, sat at the bar with a book and a series (just 3!) of increasingly tasty beers/ales. Unfortunately my fish tacos were just odd, the menu states...
three soft corn tortillas with lightly fried tilapia filet, jicama-carrot slaw, and chipotle cream served with black beans on the side.
But I tasted little chipotle and the jicama-carrot was a kind of discordant note. I really love TECC's taco's and they have radish and cilantro, so it isn't that I want an americanized taco, it just didn't taste like any kind of taco: Mexican, tex-mex, or American. Beans were bland. Service was crisp and friendly, talkative at first then just a glance at me whenever I looked up from my book, and a smile and questioning look when I drained the beer. Good bar tending. Think I will work my way into the menu a little deeper but being limited to low cholesterol items really cuts the best chunk of the menu out...

#39 DPop

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Posted 28 July 2009 - 08:51 AM

I've been to Tap & Vine many times in the last year, ziv, and your review is consistent with what I have seen. Real misses on all food items except the Green Chili Pork Stew, but the best priced beer list in the DC area. Incredible varying selection and nothing typically over $6, which is where the cheapest beers typically start (and go up to $9-10) at most of the other good beer joints.

#40 DannyNoonan

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Posted 23 February 2010 - 05:19 PM

From a Tap & Vine newsletter dated today:

Seventeen months ago we took an empty and unpopular space and successfully turned it into tap&vine. We are so thankful for the support of our friends and the neighborhood.

But we have now decided to concentrate solely on our first love, Restaurant Vero, and sell tap&vine.

We hope you will continue your support and look for some of your tap&vine favorites on the newly expanded menu at Restaurant Vero.

Not much more detail than that, other than numerous T&V menu items to make their way onto the Vero menu and the beer menu expanded. The owners recently incorporated their retail wine store into the Vero location as well. In times like these, downsizing makes sense I suppose.

I have never been a huge lover of T&V's food, despite really wanting to be. I live right around the corner and really wanted a neighborhood place that I loved but the food never got there. I really did enjoy the beer list though. And it has always been super kid-friendly which is a major plus for my family and I. I did like the changes the owners made in the recent past to source more ingredients locally and focus on more seasonal dishes.

I hope this latest venture is the right combination to elevate the combined T&V/Vero place to the desired neighborhood destination status I wish for it. I wish the ladies the best in their efforts.
Sean Flanagan
Arlington, VA
"I am affiliated with District Taco."
"His dinner is getting all cold & eaten"

#41 dcs

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Posted 23 February 2010 - 09:41 PM

This location really is the site of doom. It seems more suited to a real estate agency than a restaurant. That said, I feel bad for these folks. They tried.

#42 Dark Wing

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Posted 23 February 2010 - 09:46 PM

That said, I feel bad for these folks. They tried.

Are you sure?

#43 Bob Wells

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Posted 24 February 2010 - 10:24 AM

This location really is the site of doom. It seems more suited to a real estate agency than a restaurant. That said, I feel bad for these folks. They tried.

It doesn't take a genius to see the problems with this location: 1. No left turns from Lee Hwy. 2. Building aligned sideways instead of facing the street. These are serious problems in such a restaurant dense area.

Still, i would say the jury is STILL out on whether a restaurant can succeed here. The previous failures could possibly be blamed on either (1) mediocre to poor quality or (2) in this latest case, owners with other irons in the fire. The only real test case will be a quality restaurant run by owners 100 percent focused on this location only. if such a place fails, my suggestion to blow the place up should be taken seriously.

Another former Pizza Hut on Route 50 in Greenbriar was demolished and the site is now a bank. This place was always empty, and you'd think a pizza joint in a family-heavy area could not fail. Some sites just don't work for restaurants.

"Consider the source" -- Jim Bouton, Ball Four.

 

Bob Wells as of September 23, 2014; Twinsdaddy forever.


#44 jiveturk21

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Posted 24 February 2010 - 10:44 AM

Another former Pizza Hut on Route 50 in Greenbriar was demolished and the site is now a bank. This place was always empty, and you'd think a pizza joint in a family-heavy area could not fail. Some sites just don't work for restaurants.

I went to many baseball/football/basketball end of the year parties at that Pizza Hut while growing up, many of their video games were of the flat-top variety. I find it funny that, even back in the 80's, they knew that kids would be so lazy that they wanted to sit down while playing video games.

#45 DPop

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Posted 24 February 2010 - 03:43 PM

You can't just blame the location for this one. The first few months it was open the place was absolutely packed, no matter the night. I'm more of the opinion that you can't serve consistently awful food to people and expect them to keep coming back. I had some really bad food on my many visits to this restaurant, and all were the results of poor ingredients and cutting corners in preparation (serving "Truffle Fries" with cheap truffle oil as opposed to shaved truffles). This was my favorite bang-for-the-buck beer place in the DC area, so I'll miss it for that reason, but I'm not shocked at all to see it closing up shop.

#46 DonRocks

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Posted 25 February 2010 - 04:48 AM

Wow, there's a surprise at the Location of Death. A mediocre restaurant quickly fails. Since the site clearly doesn't work as a restaurant, why don't they just blow the building up and put a bank there. We need more banks around here, right? ;)

Rocks, how about a pool on the lifespan of Tap and Vine?

18 months?

One of the things I love about this website is that it chronicles the life cycles of restaurants. That may be a silly way of looking at things, but I honestly believe this a historical document.

Moving forward, Restaurant Vero (Grape Legs and Tap & Vine's absorbing mothership) is selling the 2006 Domaine de Montpertuis Vin de Pays du Gard "Cuvée Counoise" for $15 at their retail store, and it's a wine worth buying (I also picked this up at the Cork wine store for $15 downtown two nights ago).

Cheers,
Rocks.

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#47 dcs

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Posted 25 February 2010 - 10:31 PM

Are you sure?

I must confess that I did not understand your point when you first posted this vaguely ominous reference back in December. As I am much too tired to attempt any research at this point, can you please save me some time and connect the dots for me. TIA.

#48 Black Bear

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Posted 14 March 2010 - 03:38 PM

I must confess that I did not understand your point when you first posted this vaguely ominous reference back in December. As I am much too tired to attempt any research at this point, can you please save me some time and connect the dots for me. TIA.

The link is to a document listing current meals tax delinquencies in Arlington, Va for 2009. T & V is 12th on the list allegedly owing Arlington County almost $28K. I believe the inference is that they were willing to cut corners and in this case, may be in a legal jam with the County. Restaurant business can be brutal in the best of times, worst in a difficult economy. That all said, it was an odd concept to me - name suggests it's all about beer and wine (Tap & Vine), but the food and ambiance was pretty much geared to kids. It always appeared to me that Vero owners being somewhat successful there and having zero parking, decided to take a chance figuring they could maybe make a go of it and get extra Vero parking in the bargain. Think it turned out to be some pretty expensive parking......

Edited to Add one of my favorite posts at DRs:

http://www.donrockwe...ndpost&p=102246
I eat to live, not live to eat.

#49 Pat

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Posted 14 March 2010 - 03:44 PM

The link is to a document listing current meals tax delinquencies in Arlington, Va for 2009. T & V is 12th on the list allegedly owing Arlington County almost $28K. I believe the inference is that they were willing to cut corners and in this case, may be in a legal jam with the County. Restaurant business can be brutal in the best of times, worst in a difficult economy. That all said, it was an odd concept to me - name suggests it's all about beer and wine (Tap & Vine), but the food and ambiance was pretty much geared to kids. It always appeared to me that Vero owners being somewhat successful there and having zero parking, decided to take a chance figuring they could maybe make a go of it and get extra Vero parking in the bargain. Think it turned out to be some pretty expensive parking......

As I recall, the same owners appeared on that list multiple times for different establishments they own. (When I clicked back on the old link, I didn't see the list there anymore, so I can't be sure.)

#50 DonRocks

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Posted 08 April 2010 - 03:32 PM

Ernie's windows are now decorated by a bunch of Chinese food advertisements, along with a neon SUSHI sign.

I'm skeptical, but then again it's two minutes from my house. Ernie's really has sushi? Is it any good?

On a similar note, (the former) Tap and Vine now has a "Coming Soon" banner in their window which mentions an Asian restaurant with sushi.

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