Sunday, September 11, 2016

Dogfish Head AleHouse, Chantilly VA

Sunday September 11, Ann and I were going to reprise our hike of Whiteoak Canyon, but her plantar fasciitis acted up again. We had been saving a trip in to REI Fairfax to try out some new gear for a rainy day and her lame foot provided that proverbial rainy day, so after a leisurely pot of coffee, we headed in to Fairfax.

As we drove to REI, I found it very eerily coincident that we drove directly by the building where I was hunkered down with dozens of others in the first floor gym, glued to the television, fifteen years earlier as we watched in absolute horror the second airliner plowing into the Twin Towers. I hadn't been by this building in 15 years, yet the memories are still intensely vivid.

Although we got a new backpack for Ann, the trip in to REI for my part was a bust. I wanted to look into some clothing, but they had nothing in my size. We were done shopping right around 12:30 and neither of us having eaten breakfast, were pretty famished. I had picked out a promising Chinese restaurant nearby for lunch, but that was going over not at all with my lovely spouse who kept saying the word "margarita" over and over.

Consulting the Garmin and going through the list of nearby restaurants, Ann chose the Greenbrier Dogfish Head AleHouse and so off we headed up to route 50 and west towards Chantilly. It was such a gorgeous day that we sat outside on the patio which quickly filled up with football fans looking to watch the games on the huge flatscreens and drink a beer or two.

Photobombing the Dogfish Head Sign
Ann started with a Namaste, a Belgian-style Wit that she had liked previously on tap at PaveMint. She didn't like this one as much and subsequently switched a big-girl mug of Festina, a Berliner-style Weiss flavored with peaches. I started with a big mug of 60-Minute IPA, a very known quantity to me. None of the other beers on tap seem to do it for me. Dogfish can be a little nutty when it comes to beer.

60-Minute IPA
I let Ann pick the food and soon arrived at the table a plate of fried calamari, andouille Cajun egg rolls, pork belly tacos, and some chicken wings. All the food was better than I expected. The calamari was well fried but really needed some salt. The egg rolls were kind of blah, seasoning-wise, with no apparent andouille. It's a really good bar food idea that just didn't approach in execution what it could have been. The pork belly tacos, by contrast, were fabulous. The server told Ann that the wings were indeed meaty in response to her query, but clearly we have different ideas about meaty. They were scrawny, grilled, and mostly left uneaten.

Calamari, Andouille Cajun Egg Rolls, Pork Belly Tacos

"Meaty" Wings
We enjoyed a nice leisurely drive back out route 50 to home past Dulles. It's a road I haven't taken in 15 years and I was shocked at the development and all the changes. I was kind of dumbfounded at the three roundabouts at Gilbert's Corner replacing the single traffic light. It seems pretty damned stupid to me, but then what do I know?

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