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Kibbee Nayee

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About Kibbee Nayee

  • Rank
    Mayor of Springfield Dining
  • Birthday 05/29/1954

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  • Interests
    Eating, cooking, eating, drinking, watching Anthony Bourdain and eating.
  • Location
    Springfield, VA

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  1. It's been awhile since Lady KN and I checked in with George and Lily, and Lily reminded me of such with a nice voice mail last week wondering if I was OK. This being the holiday season, Lady KN and I packed a bottle of El Massaya arak in a gift bag and headed to see George and Lily for lunch today. After the greetings and hugs and family catch-up chit-chat, we sat down to a pleasant, if gut-busting, feast. We shared a combination platter of kabobs, along with small orders of hummus special (with meat topping), labne drizzled with olive oil, lubee (broad beans with tomato sauce), sauteed spinach, and a plate of pickles, pickled turnips, and olives. All of this was accompanied by bread from their oven, so hot it had to cool off for a minute or two before we could rip off pieces to serve as our dipping scoops. The food was outstanding. A true mom-and-pop serving up some of the fare of its kind in northern Virginia -- still on top of its game after nearly 17 years. Count me a very enthusiastic fan. Don't expect luxury here -- you're eating off styrofoam plates with plastic utensils in a small grocery store. But do expect some of the best Lebanese food in this area. Before we left, I picked up some shankleesh and olive oil, the latter because it makes for ideal holiday gifts, and the former because eggs and shankleesh are a pairing sent to us from Heaven.
  2. Kibbee Nayee

    Dining at The Wharf

    Does that mean the Wharf has no parking?
  3. Kibbee Nayee

    Dining at The Wharf

    I was going to ask a similar question, but I'm more interested in the Maine Avenue Seafood Market -- where does someone park who's lugging 5-10lbs of fresh seafood?
  4. Aracosia is coming soon to McLean! It's nice that the Afghan Bistro owners are spreading out. If they do it like the one downtown, they'll actually close the Springfield location for a few days to get the McLean location up and running with family members and quality staff. Afghan Bistro is in Springfield, Bistro Aracosia is in Palisades, and now Aracosia will be in McLean. It's opening at the end of March, and it's going to be at 1381 Beverly Road, where Il Borgo Italian Restaurant once stood. From Northern Virginia Magazine: As the owner of two critically acclaimed restaurants—the first, Afghan Bistro in Springfield, and the second, Bistro Aracosia in D.C.'s Palisades neighborhood—Omar Masroor often gets approached by leasing agents and developers to open a third spot. It's finally worked. Masroor plans for a spin-off with Aracosia to open in McLean in March. Where Bistro Aracosia expanded the menu and upped the formality of Afghan Bistro, Aracosia will be another step in that direction with white tablecloths, servers in ties and classical Afghan paintings. "We don’t do modern industrial looks," says Masroor of the minimal-and-metal trend long dominating restaurant interior designs. Instead, there will be rich colors like lapis lazuli, burgundy reds, mustard yellows and olive greens. Aracosia's menu will overlap with the offerings of its sister restaurants, with a few new dishes, including large hunks of meat: a tomahawk chopan, a 36-ounce cut from the ribs meant to feed two or three people; goat shank; goat ribs; and lamb neck. Vegetable-forward dishes showcase okra lawaan (yogurt sauce), okra Mughlai in a spicy tomato-masala sauce with eggplant and Thai chili peppers and a bouranee platter (roasted vegetables with a yogurt drizzle) with the likes of turnips, zucchini, carrots, quince, cauliflower and okra. Opening in the usually cold month of March, there will be warming dishes of tosh payra dumpling stew, oxtail soup, lentil soup and homach soup, a thinner porridge-like dish made from oatmeal and barley. The cuisine is a departure from Masroor's first visit to the restaurant at that very address more than 20 years ago. Masroor tells the story of taking his wife to Il Borgo Italian Restaurant and remembers admiring the upscale decor and the air of formality and said, "If I ever do a restaurant, it will be something like this.” // 1381 Beverly Road, McLean
  5. With a name like "Stable" they should have horse on the menu....
  6. Does anyone know Roberto Donna's ethnic heritage? I ask because my signature picture is a birthday dish of kibbeh nayyeh to Roberto Donna from the Abi-Najm family of the Lebanese Taverna Abi-Najms....
  7. We may be veering off track, but I understand the Big 4 demographic quite well. They may be employed by the firm that occupies that building, but these millennials are onsite at clients earning their keep, and might get called to a random meeting in Tysons on rare occasions. Of the hundreds or thousands of millennials employed by these firms, less than 10% are anywhere near the Tysons offices at the lunch hour. Which brings me back to my original confusion.....I don't understand the business model for this concept in Tysons 2.
  8. I'm not an expert on food halls by any means, but I know this Tysons space from working in the area for decades. The mostly millennials that work in the tech industry will stand in line at Sweetgreen for a salad, or will splurge on bad coffee at Starbucks, but I can't see them understanding and flocking to Thip Kao or Donburi at the lunch hour. For happy hour, they'll pack the bar at Wildfire or Maggiano's, but mostly because cheap (or free) snacks are passing around. What am I missing about a food hall concept succeeding in a low-traffic upper crust setting?
  9. Lunch with companions yesterday was nice. We started with the spicy cauliflower and the fried pickles. Whatever batter they use on the pickles is just right -- thin enough to offer some crunch and avoid being greasy. The cauliflower was a treat. My main was a southern Cobb salad with fried chicken topping, and it was so-so. The greens were a bit tired, with the telltale signs of the ribs going brownish-white, as if they came from a bag instead of being freshly chopped. Toppings included lazy cherry tomatoes -- you can still get pretty good tomatoes at this time of year -- and a bit too much bits of bacon. The chicken was fading, as if not entirely fresh out of the fryer. I might not order this dish again. My guess is that the salad mise is prepared ahead, rather than a la minute. One companion's Appalachian pork chop was devoured and declared quite good. Sweet potato and collard greens sides on a few of the plates were highly complimented. I would definitely return to sample some of the other items on the menu.
  10. Kibbee Nayee

    Lobster Rolls

    I've been more than mildly impressed by the lobster roll at PassionFish.
  11. Kibbee Nayee

    Servers Who Won't Write Down Orders

    And then you're kind of stuck in a situation where you can send it back, in which case they might do something unmentionable to your order, or suck it up and eat what arrived in front of you....
  12. I had lunch at the Eleanor, in the NoMa area under Elevation apartments. I'm nor recommending it, by any means, but it isn't terrible. It's just unremarkable, unless you want to go bowling for some reason. Let me say up front that I hate any waitstaff that doesn't write down an order. I have NEVER received my exact order from someone who just listens to your order and thinks they can remember it well enough to convey to the back of the house. Thus my burger, ordered medium rare with an egg on top and a side of salad, came out medium well with bacon on top and a side of fries. (Note -- the fries were very good.) Two of my companions ordered the rib eye, which at $26 should have been thicker than the 1/2" slices that came out. One companion ordered what looked like a reasonable lobster roll, but he wasn't raving about it. The menu has no rhyme or reason, and certainly no central theme. It's a hodge-podge of dishes that don't fit well on the same menu, like Greek salad, General Tso's wings, the aforementioned lobster roll, and "mussels and fries" (better known as moules et frites). Let's see -- Greece, China, Boston, and Belgium...?
  13. And local (and visiting) VIPs. I remember a few years ago, I was walking in the front door, and walking out the same door at the same time was Mark Warner. We brushed each other slightly and I said an automatic "excuse me...." and then realized who it was, and immediately added "....Senator." He gave me a big smile and a nod.