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Isabella Eatery, Mike Isabella Lends his Name to a 41,000-Square-Foot Eatery at Tysons Galleria

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 "FAIR.   Fairs are where pigs shit.  This is business".

Love it. I worked in real estate leasing for a few years along time ago (developer-side attorney). Let's just say you run into a lot of gaping sphincters in that industry. :)

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On ‎2‎/‎11‎/‎2016 at 11:17 AM, monkeyrotica said:

So his grilled meats & Mediterranean place will be "very woman-centric, sexy and fun." So smaller portions, lots of salads, and purse hangars under the bar?

Does anyone else find it odd that they plan to call this place Trim?

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1 hour ago, dcs said:

Does anyone else find it odd that they plan to call this place Trim?

Nothing more than an odd coincidence, since you "trim" the meats they grill, but the way you frame it, it's absolutely hilarious. :lol:

 

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Must be getting close. Isabella is walking around the 3rd level at the Galleria giving instructions to the small group trailing after him. 

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35 minutes ago, dcs said:

Must be getting close. Isabella is walking around the 3rd level at the Galleria giving instructions to the small group trailing after him. 

Are you shopping or are you stalking him?

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9 minutes ago, Ericandblueboy said:

Are you shopping or are you stalking him?

Yes.

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We drove by and went to Nordstrom Cafe since we had some Christmas shopping at Tysons 1. My wife wasn't interested in trying it out today but asked if there was chatter on DR. May have to give it a go for breakfast later in the week. 

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9 minutes ago, lion said:

We drove by and went to Nordstrom Cafe since we had some Christmas shopping at Tysons 1. My wife wasn't interested in trying it out today but asked if there was chatter on DR. May have to give it a go for breakfast later in the week. 

A few reviews and pics already up on Yelp.

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I walked by today. It's quite sprawling, which for Tysons Galleria strikes me as being quite expensive from a lease standpoint. Everything looked too new and too clean to have experienced any real use, but the place appears to be well-designed. I'll have opportunities to try the food in the coming weeks and months.

Washingtonian just weighed in.

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I don't know, it seems like multiple restaurants with their own ordering systems and seating?

Patrons can hop from one place to another with a drink in hand.

True food courts should allow you to grab something from each of multiple restaurants.  Or for example six people get their preferred food and sit down at the same table.  

I guess I expect something more like Time Out Market Lisboa where you could sit at a bar at one of the stands to eat and drink something from just that vendor, or you could order what you want and take it to tables in the middle to combine it with something else such as a charcutaria plate, then add a suckling-pig sandwich, and then finish with coffee, all from different vendors.

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47 minutes ago, iolaire said:

I don't know, it seems like multiple restaurants with their own ordering systems and seating?

Patrons can hop from one place to another with a drink in hand.

True food courts should allow you to grab something from each of multiple restaurants.  Or for example six people get their preferred food and sit down at the same table.  

I guess I expect something more like Time Out Market Lisboa where you could sit at a bar at one of the stands to eat and drink something from just that vendor, or you could order what you want and take it to tables in the middle to combine it with something else such as a charcutaria plate, then add a suckling-pig sandwich, and then finish with coffee, all from different vendors.

Yeah that's what I was expecting. Poke for me, pasta for my son, etc.

But wait, according to the Washingtonian article, there's going to be a mini-food court inside the Eatery: 

The Dining Hall 

Can’t decide where to eat? This 120-seat sit-down restaurant pulls from five Isabella Eatery spots, serving a menu that mixes Pepita tacos with Requin raw bar, Arroz tapas, and Yona sushi.

Sounds to me like the old joke about the Starbucks inside the Starbucks.

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I just wish it was like 59,000 square feet and there were more choices and perhaps a Shaw Bijou too. There aren’t enough choices for me...

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We stopped by for lunch today after a great puppet show of "The Nutcracker" at Glen Echo with our son. Taking the escalator up from the parking lot does create a sense of not going to mall food court, but unfortunately the eateries are separated by being on both sides of the mall and the regular food traffic makes it feel awkward. Walking around we ended up getting food from Pepita and Kapnos Marketa. 

 At Pepita our order was chips & guacamole ($12), crazy corn ($6), crispy Baja fish tacos ($4.5) and cheese quesdilla ($10). To my surprise, my wife liked the flavors of our order where for myself the food was cold and that diminished my enjoyment. At Kapnos Marketa, our order was a marinated lamb gyro (~$14). Ingredients were good and combination flavorful but again it was cold. 

Our lunch bill was around $60 with tip which for a seat down restaurant for 3 people wouldn't be extremely outrageous however since effectively you order and pick it up yourself does seem a little much. 

To keep things in perspective, normally going to lunch we may spend at Sweet Green ($30) for good level of organic quality food, at Nordstorm Cafe which is similar quasi restaurant and food hall but our gold standard for decent quality of food that is very kid friendly, our bill is usually ($40) with a tip, and at HKP ($50) with tip. 

The operation does seem to still be finding their operational way as several times saw managers and waiters congregating to keep things moving smoothly. In the future would try the Arroz as well as Retro Creamery.  People seemed confuse where it was sit down restaurant or take out sit-down which is all over their area. 

Overall, right now it just seems like a mixed bag. 

 

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I took the kids to Kapnos Marketa last Tuesday.  The only other place open was the round bar of Graffiato, which was packed.  We had a chicken and a lamb gyro.  The wraps came with warm meat but cold veggies and sauce - so the meat became cold quickly. 

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2 hours ago, Ericandblueboy said:

I took the kids to Kapnos Marketa last Tuesday.  The only other place open was the round bar of Graffiato, which was packed.  We had a chicken and a lamb gyro.  The wraps came with warm meat but cold veggies and sauce - so the meat became cold quickly. 

My association with gyros are that they are like a pocket of warm tasty bread and meat on a chilly outing since I spent a year in Chicago near Greek town and would frequently eat there.  The Parthenon use to give out shots of ouzo to people waiting in line on the cold windy nights! 

Tastes and memories form expectations I guess. 

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2 hours ago, Ericandblueboy said:

I just went to Athens for Thanksgiving so the Kapnos gyros are a huge disappointment to me too.

I've never been to Greece, and the Kapnos gyros are a huge disappointment to me too.

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Affluent areas such as DC/NoVa do not need more food courts or restaurants or concepts peddling recycled iterations of commodity crap.  They need better outlets to promote the concept of consumers that care enough to buy quality ingredients they can take home and cook for themselves and their families at a more rewarding $$/time ratio.  

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My wife works at a store in the Galleria, and i finally managed a visit today. While the Eatery is still a work in progress, I was impressed by the appearance of the place. The furnishings and fixtures appear to be very expensive, they appear to be a good match for the Galleria clientele. There were many more customers than I expected, so the place seems to be off to a sold start. 

More importantly, I thoroughly enjoyed my lamb gyro from Kapnos. $14 was not out of line for this area, and the gyro was delicious. The freshly baked flatbread was light, and a bit crispy, and it was well-suited for the perfectly roasted lamb. The vegetables were nicely seasoned, as well. Excellent.

My dining companions had tacos and a slice of pizza. I didn't get to taste the other offerings, but they looked quite good. 

I'm no Isabella homer, and I'll tell you some of his places are much better than others, but the Eatery is off to a promising start.

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The blue line I rode today had a single car wrapped with advertising for this place.  I don't recall seeing branding inside the train.

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2 hours ago, iolaire said:

The blue line I rode today had a single car wrapped with advertising for this place.  I don't recall seeing branding inside the train.

I’ve seen ads inside the trains, but not the exterior. 

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