Jump to content

Myron Mixon's Pitmaster Barbecue (Formerly Overwood), Potentially Absentee Pit Master's Wood-Fired Kitchen on N. Lee Street in The Former Ecco Cafe Space - Old Town Alexandria


Recommended Posts

Any update on the opening up of Overwood in Old Town? It's taking the place of Ecco and the opening has been pushed back a number of times so far in 2006, or that's what a City of Alexandria site has had listed.

Thanks.

First, welcome to DR.com, dancancount. And if the place is in Alexandria, I know the likely source of the delay in opening. It's initials are "City Hall."
Link to comment
Share on other sites

First, welcome to DR.com, dancancount. And if the place is in Alexandria, I know the likely source of the delay in opening. It's initials are "City Hall."

Thanks on both accounts.

So a question for any new restaurant that gets delayed, like Overwood: Since the owners are having to shell out a lot more money for rent, especially expensive rents like Old Town, than what they were expecting before recouping any income, wouldn't it have some sort of affect on the prices since they would almost be forced to bring in more profit to make up for the unexpected losses?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Thanks on both accounts.

So a question for any new restaurant that gets delayed, like Overwood: Since the owners are having to shell out a lot more money for rent, especially expensive rents like Old Town, than what they were expecting before recouping any income, wouldn't it have some sort of affect on the prices since they would almost be forced to bring in more profit to make up for the unexpected losses?

You seem to be getting economic priciples and terminology confused. If they have loses they cannot have profits at the same time. They can try a number of different things to raise the net gain or reduce the net loss on each cover, but that does not automatically relate to increasing the price. They could lower the quality of the ingredients used, they could cut back on staff, they could offer few selections, or a combination of all of these and include a price increase. But if they do this, and gain a reputation for offering low quality food for high prices they will not draw enough customers to even think about profit.
Link to comment
Share on other sites

OVERWOOD is finally approaching its birthday.

The Wood-Fired American Kitchen will be opening in March and is currently staffing up.

Located at 220 N. Lee Street (between Queen St. and Cameron St.) in the heart of Old Town, OVERWOOD will be a 174-seat Modern-American Kitchen.

As the name implies, the menu will be foucused on wood-fired cooking (grill, oven, smoker) and aims to be a true neighborhood gathering spot.

OVERWOOD will offer lunch and dinner everyday and a unique buffet brunch until 3:00pm on both Sat. & Sun.

If you are looking for an new watering hole... OVERWOOD's custom sandstone bar will offer an ecclectic lineup of cocktails, beers (12 taps) and off-the-beaten-path wines all in a 100% smokefree environment.

If you or someone you know is looking for employment in this new owner-operated restaurant we encourage you to stop by and pick up an application and attend of our Job Fairs

OVERWOOD will be holding two "All-Position" Job Fairs:

1) Sunday - Feb. 18 from 11:00am - 2:00pm

2) Monday - Feb. 19 from 6:00pm - 9:00pm

Cheers!

Rami / Joe / Ryan

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Grover and I went to the soft opening last night. Our impressions:

1. The makeover is amazing. The only remaining traces of Ecco are in the small dining room where the restrooms are located. Everything else is new and shiny and clean.

2. There are a lot of hard surfaces. This makes the room very loud. We were told that there are plans to fix that. While it was loud, it was possible to carry on a conversation, albeit at a higher level than normal.

3. The service reflected the newness of the restaurant and the staff. There was some confusion about replacing used silverware and getting water to the tables. However, the wait staff was eager to be helpful and we had a number of servers stop by our table to see if everything was all right and if we needed something. The service issues will disappear as the staff becomes more in tune with management expectations.

4. The food (didn't think I'd ever get to that, did you?).

We started with a crab and cheese 'fondue'. A oval ramekin filled with baked crab and cheese and cream (I'm guessing here), accompanied by grilled toast. Like a crab dip you would find elsewhere. Quite flavorful but could have used a bit more crab (it's hard to get too much crab). The toast was over-grilled in that it was quite hard but edible.

For mains, I had French style pork chops and Grover had the Baby-back ribs. The two pork chops were served on a bed of mashed potatoes with a sprinkling of corn and sauced with a black bean sauce. Surprisingly, the black bean sauce was a nice touch. The pork chops were smoky, large and were grilled to a perfect medium-(a slight bit of pink, mostly white). I ate every bit.

The ribs are probably the best bargain on the menu. Not one (about 6 rib) rack but two, covered in a slightly sweet, slightly tart barbecue sauce. They were meaty and very tender. Grover grudgingly gave me one. It also had great smoke-infused taste. The ribs were served with what appeared to be hand-cut fries that had just the right amount of crunch to the outside and the proper amount of creamy potato goodness on the inside. There was too much food for her to finish but it didn't prevent us from ordering dessert.

Dessert was a selection of two large scoops of sorbet (a raspberry and a coconut). These were good but nothing outstanding. The dessert highlight was the "Elvis pie". This is a LARGE piece of pie made with chocolate, peanut butter and bananas. This is one dessert you order for the table. It was rich, good and way too much for us to finish. There's something about chocolate and peanut butter that is addictive (ask Reese's, they know).

A good initial start. As we were leaving, the couple just ahead of us said, "It's just what the neighborhood has been lacking, a good place to go to eat". I agree but I think it will be more than just a good neighborhood eatery.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Sounds good. What sort of prices are we looking at here? Also, is this sort of a neighborhoody, casual type place?
From what I remember, the most expensive thing on the menu was around $19. Definitely a neighborhood, casual place. Last night the attire was everything from blue jeans to suits and nobody seemed to feel out of place.
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Three of us went to Overwood on Saturday to test out the 3rd night of the soft opening. Since the restaurant officially opens this week, I am going to go ahead and post about my very good experience. There were a few glitches but the staff could not have been nicer. Also, the restaurant had decided to offer a limited menu during the soft opening (and, I believe, for the first few weeks after their opening). I think Overwood will be a great addition to the lower Old Town area. There's a bar, with flat screen televisions, and a few dining rooms, so you could have some quiet-- or not -- as the mood strikes. My take: a very good neighborhood restaurant where you could go to watch a game, for happy hour or for a nice dinner. This is not haute cuisine but a really good take on the classics.

To start with, we shared the calamari appetizer. Very tasty. A nice portion that would be perfectly shared by two people. It came with some fried peppers and a corn salad. The calamari was perfectly fried. The menu says that it also comes with fried lemons, but my dining companions ate all of them and I wish that the kitchen could add some more. I would absolutely order this again. The table next to us ordered the mussels that looked and smelled fantastic; these were a large portion and were gobbled up by the patrons before we could beg for a taste.

For mains, we had: (1) grilled rockfish; (2) 12 oz strip steak: and (3) 12 oz rib eye. The rockfish was a nice sized portion, served on jasmine rice with three very large grilled asparagus. The fish was very well cooked but oversalted (on one-half of the portion). The rice was delicious (mainly from a butter sauce) and the asparagus tasty. I should have taken a photo of the asparagus and emailed it to Oceannaire, which charges far too much for asparagus as a side dish. The strip was very juicy (although we had ordered it medium rare and it came rare). It was a generous portion served on mashed potatoes and with three asparagus, (I do not have the menu with me so I am not sure if the dishes will be served with other sides once the menu is fully available). The rib eye looked great and while I did not taste it, there was not much left of it by the end of the night. The fish, potatoes, and strip were completely gone as well. We did not try the burger but we saw a number of people eating the burger and I have to say, the fries looked excellent. We forgot the fit for summer challenge and didn't order any of the main course salads, but we saw a few tables get the grilled chicken salad, which was a huge portion of chicken on some greens. D'oh!

We had the Elvis Pie for dessert. It was very rich and tasty. Not overly sweet but very decadent. We didn't finish it, though.

The space is very nicely laid out with a few separate rooms and a decent amount of space between the bar and the tables (which I think is key in places like Overwood, with TVs in the bar area). The wine list had a nice variety. Price-wise, most wines were $6 to $7/glass and around $24-30/bottle. I cannot recall the name of the sparkling wine I drank but it was very nice.

Overall, I would say, very good food, a nice space, a good addition to Old Town, and it is so nice to see some of the folks from Majestic back in Old Town.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

They officially opened at 11:30am today for lunch.
Had dinner at Overwood Saturday. I can't say a lot about the food, mostly overcooked, bland, and lukewarm to cold. But if we could only get the kind of service at Bebo that we had at Overwood Saturday, Bebo would earn a lot more respect. The service was not only good, it was excellent. If for no orther reason we will go back. The bar was packed and everyone seemed to be enjoying. A burger we saw being served at the bar while saying hello to some friends looked very good so maybe that is the way.
Link to comment
Share on other sites

After 2 recent visits, I am happy to welcome Overwood to the Old Town dining scene. Mr. MV and I went mid-week for our initial visit. The decor is simple with neutral colors, uncluttered lines and local art on the walls. The kitchen and fire is visible in from part of the main room and back room, which also has a side room with booths and tables. One private room, and another space off to the right seats more. Overall, the layout is similar to Ecco, with the exception of the bar area which is angled and holds more people.
On our first visit, we shared 2 apps: fried green tomatoes and PEI mussels. The tomatoes are sliced on the thinner side and stacked about 6 high and topped with a large shrimp wrapped in phyllo. Splashed over the stack and the plate is a jalapeí±o aioli and balsamic. This was very enjoyable, with a nice crust which had just a bit of a kick.
PEI mussels were fresh and plump sitting over crostini in a white wine sauce. We didn't realize that there was bread at the bottom until we'd eaten all the mussels. By that time the crostini were quite soaked with broth and I wished I had gotten them on the side. More later on that.
The meatloaf is beef, pork and veal, and is as good as homemade, which I never say. Real and creamy smashed red potatoes were generous and holy smokes (pun)the grilled asparagus is perfect and worth getting as a side if it doesn't come with your entrée.
Mr. MV had the burger on a brioche bun. The generous and I *think* freshly made fries were unfortunately lacking crispness perhaps from not being fried at a high enough temp, allowing some grease to weigh them down. More later...
Our second visit was last Friday just before 6pm, and we were able to get a table for 3 right away.
The special app. that night was 3 fried risotto balls which were stuffed with Stilton cheese, and came on a beautiful pomadoro sauce. I hope they offer this routinely, because it was generous; crisp on the outside and creamy on the inside. We again ordered the mussels, with a request to have the bread on the side. The toasted bread was then too crispy to sop up the broth, and actually needed to be soaked in the broth to soften. On the balance, I wish they'd just serve bread on the side, which is crusty on the outside and soft in the middle in order to sop up all those good juices at will. Sopping is integral when enjoying the butter, wine, herbs, spices and liquor.
I ordered the braised lamb shank, which was fork tender and sat in a pool of nicely reduced sauce which was quite rich.
Mr. MV had the ribs, which were almost falling off the bone tender and had a nice smokey flavor. The fries, this time, were crisp. Nice recovery there! The coleslaw was fresh and crunchy and is made how *I* like it; with a light thin dressing, not heavy and weighed down. This is a big ol' meal and a tremendous value.
The dessert special on Friday night was delicious; chocolate bread pudding with banana ice cream (Elvis has definitely not left Overwood!). Oh, and the Elvis pie was eaten happily on our prior visit. And, we got a piece to go on Friday. blink.gif
Our guest, my mom, had the meatloaf and it got the endorsement of a very picky individual. Thumbs up.
Service both times was nice, professional and polite. The owner (one of them?) seemed to be working the room, chatting a bit and helping the kitchen run items to tables.
Our tab for 2 drinks, 3 glasses of wine, 3 apps, 3 entrées and 2 deserts was $122 with tax, before tip.
By the time we left around 7:15 or so, the place was packed with folks waiting outside. At this point weekends call for reservations.

http://www.theoverwood.com

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I was there last night for dinner.

My ribs were also falling off the bone. Correction - had already fallen off the bone. I prefer to have a bit of a tug to get to the bone. I liked the sauce, but the underlying meat I found to be bland and dry.

Service was pleasant but inexperienced. I had asked the waitress whether I could sub the vegetable of the day for the french fries. She said sure, and the plate came with a nice pile of young green beans. When the check arrived there was a $2 surcharge. No big deal, but I suggested that she should tell people up front. She said it was on the menu. It is most definitely not on the menu. An amusing glitch occured when my dining companion ordered a Hop Devil ale. She brought out a glass of red wine and placed it in on the table. When asked (with amusement) whether this was the Red Devil ale, she assured us it was! :blink: I chalk this up to plain inexperience. Overall it was a pleasant meal, but I can't say I'd be in a hurry to return.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Had lunch here on Saturday and I really enjoyed the new look as the last time I was there was a HH at Ecco many years ago when I worked in Old Town. I really enjoyed the B&W photos of the area that they have displayed around the restaurant.

We started with the PEI mussels that had way too much Parmesan cheese grated over the top and way too much garlic. My other complaint with this dish is that they put the bread in the broth and under the mussels resulting in a soggy mess. I guess they do that to make the bowl look full. $7.95 for 12 small mussels seems a bit high to me, but I have to look at what other places are charging. I wont even mention the dirtying of the rim of the bowl with chopped parsley, didn't that thankfully go out of style years ago?!

We both had the cheddar burger and both were cooked to the temperature ordered. IMO they had way too much char on them as that was the only discernible flavor. It might help them to make the burger a bit thicker and smaller in diameter or better manage the fire. The fries were not bad.

Dessert was the Elvis pie, which contains peanut butter mousse, with sliced bananas, on an Oreo cookie crust and covered with whipped cream.

I agree with Crackers in that I am in no hurry to rush back.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

The mussels do look a bit lonely while not sitting on the bread. Other than volume, I just don' see the rationale for serving the dish this way. Either a.) the bread gets drowned and soggy or b.) on the side it is too crisp to absorb and broth. Lose/lose. There's a better solution: serve with the bread from Eve :blink:

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Overwood did right by our (birthday) party of 8 last night. While they don't take reservations for parties smaller than 10, a call about 45 minutes in advance ensured that a table was ready when we arrived. Given the somewhat boisterous nature of a few members of the party, it was thankfully in the (north) side room with no other guests. Our server was efficient and pleasant and had no problem responding to the seemingly endless drink orders and questions.

Worth noting, Overwood has an "Every Monday" $9.95 steak special. I'm not sure if it changes weekly, but last night it included an 8 oz. hanger steak served with mashed potatoes, a small green salad, and a side of merlot sauce. As noted in posts above, there is a lot of char on things coming off the grill. If that's not your thing, you might want to order something that isn't grilled. The steak was a perfect medium-rare, tender but slightly chewy, and a very generous 8 oz. Mashed spuds were chunky and garlicky and quite tasty. My +1 and I shared the steak and a woodgrilled chicken salad. The salad is basic, with thinly sliced grilled chicken in a chopped salad. The salad included cashews, a few grape tomatoes, etc, and was (a bit too) lightly dressed. Steaks and salads were the norm with the exception of the birthday girl's salmon. It looked to be cooked to the medium ordered and was served with asparagus and mashed potatoes. It got rave reviews from her.

We had to order a few slices of Elvis Pie for the table for dessert, just to see what all the hype was about. It was as described above - rich but not too sweet. An odd flavor combination for my tastes and I probably won't order it again. A banana split (from the specials menu) was also shared and was a classic interpretation - huge, but fun to share. A very reasonable $233 (pre-tip) for 8 people with a few shared appetizers and desserts, a few beers or glasses of wine per person, and most of our entrees in the $10-12 range, as we stuck to the steak special and entree salads.

I've been in a few times before and eaten at the bar. I've enjoyed the steak salad and the burger. The portions are large and one entree or 'big' salad can easily be shared by two, maybe with a shared appetizer to start. The service is friendly, food comes out quickly, and it's a pleasant space. It's certainly not a dining destination, but it is a nice addition to Old Town and a good place for an easy meal.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

We wandered in a few weeks ago on a beautiful Tuesday evening and found that they were having 1/2 price bottle of wine night. It I particularly appreciate the non-smoking environment. They tried to put us in the little side room, but we insisted on the main dining room since it was early and not crowded. (One of us was a tad overly casual, as we weren't planning on stopping for dinner during our walk) They had a very noisy family in the side room, and it would not have worked for me. The side room doesn't have much ambience, so if they start leading you down that path, request seating in the main dining area. Agree that it isn't a destination, but I'm glad to have it in my extended neighborhood.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Overwood is an improvement on Ecco, but a TGI McFridays would have accomplished that. My first sign of my impending meal was when I noticed that the soup of the day was Butternut Apple. Yes, when I think of a soup to make in late April, screw asparagus, peas, ramps or anything else that might actually be in season, my brain calls out for autumnal food. So we passed on the soup, and ordered our drinks and the Stacked Bruschetta. The drinks arrived and we decided to order our entrees, and as we were ordering a runner showed-up with our appetizer.

The bruschetta had to be the laziest dish I have ever encountered. Whoever designed this should be fired simply because they are too lazy to actually come-up with a dish that shows a little respect to the eater. It was a plate of cheese toast, with a layered blob of blue cheese, flavorless black tapanade, some green layer they claimed to be tapanade, and sundried tomatoes. By the shape of the blob, it was obvious that they have these sitting in little tubs waiting for someone to order them.

As for the drinks, I had ordered a delightful Alagash White, and my wife ordered a painfully bland Houchart Rose, what year was the wine? Not sure, there are no vintage dates on the rather weak wine list. I would recommend sticking with the beer list at this restaurant.

About half way through fighting with our appetizer a runner appeared with our entrées. I am not sure if this poor timing was due to a lack of communication between the runner and the waiter, or just plain ineptitude. This sort of poor timing generally leaves me with a feeling that I am being cheated by the restaurant, and to no one's advantage. I have to make the choice, do I finish the appetizer and let the entrée get cold, or throw away the rest of the appetizer. Well, the runner at Overwood made it easy for us, by deciding to move our appetizer dishes out of the way and placed our entrées before us.

What arrived as entrees were not horrible, and there were some positives that could be taken away from it. The ribs that my wife had were not one of these positives. They were as advertised falling off the bone, which means they were overcooked. How were they cooked? Well they had smoke flavor, they had some spice, and they had sweet tang of the BBQ sauce. What was wrong with them? Well they were moist, not gelatinous like a well cooked rack of ribs should be, but moist. They lacked any caramelization of the meat and most importantly they lacked any and all pork flavor. These were not slow smoked ribs, they may have been finished on the grill (which I doubt because they would have fallen apart) they tasted to me like they had been slowly cooked in liquid (they did not have the boiled taste, so I am thinking it was a slow poach). The fries were the highlight of this dish, as they were crisp and had a nice potato flavor. A previous poster raved about the slaw, and their description was correct, except the poster forgot to mention that the small vessel of coleslaw contained as much sugar as a bowl of Captain Crunch.

I had ordered the NY Strip. I wish that I could tell you what the meat tasted like, but they bury it under a glaze of flavorless sauce they claim is roasted tomato and garlic. But the sauce was a) not a jus, cool.gif had no flavor of either tomato or garlic, and c) an over-sweeten glaze of utter nastiness on what otherwise would have been a good steak. The buttermilk mashed potatoes did not have the tang that I would expect from buttermilk, and the asparagus was fine but rather uninspired.

I arrived wanting to like Overwood, I left thoroughly unimpressed. Will I go back? Only if I get reports that things have gotten better.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Overwood's previously solid Sunday Brunch has gone way downhill...the house smoked salmon was actually unsmoked salmon soup! It was watery glop and perhaps unsafe to boot. Their "Mediterrean" salad is currently all mixed together into one large pile of slop...no more rich egg strata, just watery scrambled eggs...french toast is now very dry...and the previously great service is now fairly glum. This is a drastic, not creeping, drop in quality that is very disconcerting for a place that did not have that far to drop in the first place!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Had lunch at Overwood with my co-workers the other day. Everyone was very impressed with the food and the size of the portions. We started with fried risotto balls with cream tomato sauce and a dinner version of shrimp and grits. I enjoyed both of the dishes, but shrimp and grits was defiantly a winner. Large shrimp on top of the cheesy grits cake, with lobster sauce and chunks of crawfish. We also orders mussels, which were cooked perfectly, because the restaurant gets them fresh, not frozen, which makes a huge difference in the texture and just the overall presentation. My co-workers had salads, shrimp and mango and a chicken salad. I liked the toasted pine-nuts addition in the chicken salad, gave it a nice little after taste...the chicken was roasted and sliced very thin, which made it extra juice. Can't go wrong with mango and shrimp also. Other salads, as they were coming out of the kitchen, looked amazing also. The focus is really the small things, like the pine-nuts, dates, shaved feta, and so forth. The salad portions were huge and filling. The dressing on both was very light, a perfect lunch meal. I tried the lunch version of shrimp and grits, a screwer of 5 large, grilled shrimps. I, particularly, preferred the dinner version, as it had more texture and ingredients to "play" with. We asked to speak to the chef, as my co-worker wanted to find out what culinary school he attended. Romy (sp) could not be any nicer and you could tell that he was really passionate about his food. Service was great and the place really picked up at lunch time. I usually never post on the board (as all of you foodies are so intimidating with your words for food), but it's been a while since I've had a meal where I enjoyed everything and stuffed myself beyond believe. I'm going back for dinner and brunch soon, so will report the latest on the brunch.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Just wanted to say I met a few girlfriends here a week or so ago now. Enjoyed the 1/2 price bottle of wine night, it made everything incredibly reasonable. We all had entree salads as we are watching what we are eating for various reasons, and they were all really good. I know you may smirk that they had a good salad, but sometimes when you are watching what you are eating it is hard to find places with good interesting entree salads that are more than iceberg or romaine, that are still reasonably healthy. I had the arugula salad with chicken instead of duck and it was really nice made and not overdressed. Just thought since the last review was some time ago, even though mine isn't too in depth that it might help.

The passing fish and steak smelled really good so I will be back, hopefully they are as good as they smelled.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I eat here from time to time because it is really close to my office and for the money I think it has some pretty solid things. Especially entree salads. Not the epicenter of foodiesm by any means, but a nice place to meat up with girlfriends that you know you can get into without a res.

I ended up at the bar there the other night to eat something before happy hour at a place that I didn't think would have good food, and had a really nice steak salad. The steak had a slightly spicy seasoning on it and wasn't overcooked and was very tasty. The salad with it was fresh, not any outlandish ingredients, but the ingredients used were good and I didn't even use much dressing because the flavors just pulled together well. The wine I had I didn't really care for, but that isn't really their fault.

They can make a variety of gluten free things too when requested as I have for work lunches. It is one of my favorite spots other than lickety split for lunches at work.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Visited for the first time last night.  It was pretty busy when we arrived around 6:30 but we were seated right away.

Mr. lovehockey ordered the starter Ceasar salad but a runner presented him with the Chopped Mixed Green Salad instead; he was perfectly OK with it although I thought it looked like salad from a bag with some dried cranberries and dressing thrown in.  We shared the St. Louis Toasted Ravioli, which I've had before in STL but he'd never heard of.  They had good flavor (and they were better than some I've had in St. Louis) but I had a feeling they'd been cooked earlier since the dish was room temperature and the sauce was cold.  Mr. lovehockey, though, discovered something new that he liked.

Entrees were the Woodoven Atlantic Salmon and Classic Black Angus NY Strip, both of which came with garlic mashed potatoes and asparagus.  We both enjoyed the entrees, and since Mr. lovehockey's preferred level of doneness on a steak is medium in some places and medium-well in others (firm, pink center) he did well taking the waiter's advice to order it medium (the waiter was also honest on the beer question when Mr. lovehockey asked about it, describing it in such a way that Mr. lovehockey knew he'd probably like it even if the waiter wasn't overly fond of it).

Beverages were the New Fashioned (Crown Royal, Amaretto, simple syrup, bitters, orange peel) and a draft beer whose name I can't remember because it was on a list of specials separate from the menu and I didn't order it, although for $5 it was a good deal and Mr. lovehockey liked it.

Overall, we thought it was a good experience and we'll add it to the Old Town rotation.

Addendum, many hours later:  I'll add that it's loud when it's busy.

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

We eat there probably once a month, Agnes is our favorite waitress, Thursday night is Prime Rib night.  It is our go to place when meeting folks in oldtown as there is something for everyone on the menu, good beer selection, and able to have a good conversation.  

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

We met relatives from out of town for an early dinner last night. I agree with Star, that there is something for everyone on the menu. Also they were able to accommodate my need for gluten-free food, which is always a plus.

The fried green tomato tower and the Caesar salad (with an abundance of anchovies, as requested) were enjoyed by those who ordered them. Wianno oysters on the half-shell were fresh, good tasting, with a nice (not overbearing) cocktail sauce, for what we thought was a good price.

Three of us had the NY strip steak, cooked to three different temperatures as ordered, and the special order replacing the asparagus with mac & cheese was easily accommodated. A plus was that the runner knew who was supposed to receive which steak.  One of us enjoyed the Beef Burgundy, which was a special. The steaks were well-seasoned and had a nice char on them corresponding to the level of doneness (less char on the rare, more on the medium-rare and medium steaks).

The plating, however, was peculiar. The steaks were draped over the peppery garlic mashed potatoes and the asparagus in the center of the plate. I didn't find that attractive, I had to move the steak off to the side to cut and eat it, and the asparagus sandwiched as it was between the potatoes and the steak became overcooked.

Service was somewhere between distracted and negligent, which was odd as only a couple of other tables were occupied when we were there. We had to flag down our server several times to place orders and to get the check at the end of the meal, and even when we did, he had to finish lighting candles on tables before he could attend to us.

It's a nice, neighborhood restaurant, and was a great place to meet family staying in the area. I might eat there again if I find myself in that area on a Sunday night when many other places are closed.

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

We used to go to Overwood pretty regularly when it first opened, but the last two meals involved an overcooked gristly bistro steak (like when the cook at the Tastee Diner hates your guts) and an overflowing mensroom toilet. The service was also more misses than hits. When we have relatives visiting from out of town, they usually stay in Old Town and we meet at Chadwicks; something for everyone, nothing exciting, but always consistent and the service is like clockwork. Same goes for Southside 815.

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Once upon a time when Kent was the general manager at Overwood and they had done the soft opening and were open to the general public, the menu was a lot more adventurous and two of our favorite servers from the "old" Majestic had come to work there and the service was amazing, we went quite frequently.  When the three of them left for other places, we did too.

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

I go for business lunches about once a month.  But we are regulars so I think they have service for us down.  I think their lunch is a bit stronger than their dinner in terms of food, I really like their entree salads, that is probably what I get most often.  We have some really picky eaters in our group, so it serves us well.  They have some nice lunch specials from time to time, as well.  But I think salads and sandwiches are probably their strong suit.

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

This is by far my most visited restaurant in Alexandria.  My favorites are the steak salad with no potato straws and balsamic dressing.  The shrimp salad without crispy noddles, the philly cheesesteak- a very chopped version of the sandwich, but has good flavor, although I add hot sauce sometimes when I bring it back to the office (and the sandwich is HUUUGGE (saying this is a bad Trump voice)).  They have a lot of good specials for lunch that I get- they have a mediterranean salad with pita I like, ruben sandwich from time to time, etc.  

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Received the following e-mail today.

FAREWELL TO THE ERA OF OVERWOOD!

Dear Neighbors, Friends & Family,

After nearly 10 wonderful years of business in Old Town,
Alexandria Overwood will close our doors on August 14th. We have thoroughly
enjoyed serving you over the years, and will be forever grateful both for your
support as well as the amazing efforts of our employees, both current and past.
We hope you will stop in and see us another time or two before we say goodbye. Come enjoy your favorite Overwood dish and our greatly discounted wine list!  

We will re-open around September 5th, as MYRON MIXON'S PITMASTER BARBEQUE. Myron is the star of the TV
series, BBQ Pitmasters, Smoked, and BBQ Rules.  He is a NY Times Best
Selling author as well as a champion BBQ competitor in the United States.
His two books are titled, "BBQ Rules" and "Smoking With
Myron Mixon".  We will alert you when we will re-open.

With Heartfelt Gratitude,
The Overwood

Link to comment
Share on other sites

We were there for the soft-opening, knew all the servers and front of the house people and enjoyed dining there ... for about a year.  And then the usual...the food changed, the people changed, and for some reason, we just never seemed to return.  We were in the neighborhood many times, Momo Sushi, La Bergerie (also closed but to reopen on N. Washington St as a restaurant/boutique B&B), even a few short lived restaurants on the docks, but never Overwood.  Best of luck to the new restaurant.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I can't speak to the business plan here or how often MM plans to be onsite, but...

I can speak to the Chicago location mentioned in Shahin's article above. He is there in name only - it's a Todd English situation. Early reviews were harsh and my one visit gave me no reason to feel contrarian.

Maybe it will be different in Old Town but be wary folks.

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Despite the above warning, went over there to check it out last night. 

We all liked it a lot. The appetizers that we started with were excellent - cornbread (best I've had in a long time), burnt ends (I don't eat beef, but everyone liked them), dry rubbed wings with Alabama white sauce. Those were fantastic. 

We got the Family Dinner for $60, and that included brisket, pulled pork, ribs, smoked sausage, and 1/2 a smoked chicken, with 3 sides. We chose mac and cheese, collard greens (butter and bacon!), and Brunswick stew. It was more than enough for 3 people. We had another 3 show up and they ordered more food. We had 2 bourbon pecan pie-lets for dessert, as well. We had 2-4 beers per person and with tax and tip and fairly stuffed, came out to $50 a head.

I'm not a barbecue connoisseur, however having recently been to Franklin's in Austin and Texas Jack, I'd say this was pretty darn good. I didn't try the brisket. The consensus favorite of the meats was the ribs. I could use them a little more tender, but delicious. I really enjoyed the dry rubbed wings, and if that becomes a happy hour special (they have none but will soon), all my hard work at the gym recently will be for naught. 

The sauces were good - they have two at the table (hog sauce and sweety and tangy) and they brought out a few others (mustard based and a vinegar based), but I don't really like saucing up the meat, it's like putting a trench coat on a swimsuit model. It's really a nice spot - a man's bar, I like the way the bar is set up and I could see myself coming here with the bros a lot, great space for high fiving and talking about broads. He's not going to be there often, I imagine, so hopefully whoever is cooking continues to do so. Anyway, it's way better than Pork Barrel (which I adore, but not for the food) or Rocklands, in my opinion, so that's a good start. 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

3 hours ago, Simul Parikh said:

It's really a nice spot - a man's bar, I like the way the bar is set up and I could see myself coming here with the bros a lot, great space for high fiving and talking about broads. 

He's not even sworn-in yet and he's already taking over the brains of sweet young Indian (perhaps Gujju) doctors!!!  -- jk

  • Like 2
Link to comment
Share on other sites

3 hours ago, Simul Parikh said:

Despite the above warning, went over there to check it out last night. 

We all liked it a lot. The appetizers that we started with were excellent - cornbread (best I've had in a long time), burnt ends (I don't eat beef, but everyone liked them), dry rubbed wings with Alabama white sauce. Those were fantastic. 

Was Myron Mixon there for the opening? If so, I would get to this place soon, perhaps in the next week, so you can have Mixon's product.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
 Share

×
×
  • Create New...