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Stir fried marinated beef and onions on top of watercross with tomato slices surrounding it.
Shaking beef from Four Sisters.
Four Sisters/Facebook

Where to Eat and Drink Around Merrifield

Homey Vietnamese, exciting Thai, and plenty of beer are all on the table

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Shaking beef from Four Sisters.
| Four Sisters/Facebook

Nestled between the city of Fairfax and Falls Church, this pocket of Fairfax County has been steadily attracting more restaurants, particularly after the Mosaic District complex opened in 2012.

This map highlights the most essential choices in the neighborhood (which stretches into the area known as Dunn Loring), ranging from family-friendly Vietnamese and bistro-style French to gourmet pizza and local beer.

The Mosaic District development continues to evolve: Recent additions to the offerings there also include Cuban cafe Colada Shop, Mexican restaurant Urbano 116, Poffy for fried pancake creations, and Gyu Shige for Japanese barbecue (a branch of Pupatella pizza is on the way). Head to the farmers market on Sundays (Thursdays in warmer months as well) for even more delicious vendors.

Health experts consider dining out to be a high-risk activity for the unvaccinated; the latest data about the delta variant indicates that it may pose a low-to-moderate risk for the vaccinated, especially in areas with substantial transmission. The latest CDC guidance is here; find a COVID-19 vaccination site here.

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Note: Restaurants on this map are listed geographically.
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Inca Social

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This Peruvian restaurant is a Dunn Loring hit, with fun specials (margaritas are $2 on Thursdays), festive cocktails (some even feature art of llamas in the foam) and an excellent selection of Peruvian apps and entrees, from sharp ceviche to artfully executed lomo saltado. There’s a full brunch menu, too, and some outdoor seating. Takeout available here; delivery on GrubHub and DoorDash.

A bowl of ceviche with garnishes of fried plantain and corn nuts, with a large piece of lettuce shooting out of the bowl and an orange pepper in there.
Ceviche from Inca Social.
Inca Social/Facebook

Lost Dog Cafe (Multiple locations)

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This outpost of the Northern Virginia family of restaurants has everything residents have come to expect from the quirky brand: goofy dog murals on the walls, pun-tastic dish names (many of them dog-themed), a respectable selection of specialty brews and sandwiches, and plenty of pizza. The Italian Pie, topped with onions and multiple meats, is a fine choice among the pizzas. For sandwiches, the pesto and chicken-stuffed Phoenix is a good bet. Smart diners always order the seasoned waffle fries on the side.

A slice of pizza on a yellow plate (taken from a pie in the background) with jalapenos on it
Pizza and beer at Lost Dog Cafe.
Lost Dog Cafe/Facebook

Open Road Grill

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This neighborhood bar always has a festive atmosphere when sports fans show up to cheer on their team of choice. There is spacious seating both indoors and throughout the enclosed patio section outside. Wings are smoky, the beer selection rotates frequently, and even salads can be a nice surprise here.

Two burgers with different toppings (bacon visible on the right) with beers behind them
Burgers and beer at Open Road.
Open Road Grill/Facebook

Parc de Ville

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This French bistro offers traditional staples with tweaks, whether it be duck confit or steak frites — keep an eye out for seasonal preparations of fish dishes. There’s also a nice French wine bar on the second floor rooftop with a menu of wines by the glass, an aperitif or two, and some snacks.

Crispy duck confit on a bed of greens drowning in sauce.
Duck confit from Parc de Ville.
Parc de Ville/Facebook

B Side is one of the best destinations for drinking in this corner of Virginia, a place where beer lovers, wine drinkers, and cocktail aficionados can all find something to love. It’s fine to order a drink off-menu from one of the engaging bartenders, but B Side’s narrow cocktail menu always lists a few interesting options. The bar is tiny, so expect to wait for a seat during peak hours (there are a few patio seats). Drinkers can snack on options like pimento cheese or charcuterie, but hungrier diners can go for something more substantial on the meat-focused dinner menu. B Side shares the space with sandwich and butcher shop, Red Apron. Carryout info here.

Sliced steak with a sauce on the side next to it.
A steak dish at B Side.
B Side/Facebook

Caboose Commons

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This second location of the Vienna-based brewery always seems to draw a crowd (particularly on account of their expansive outdoor seating). The gathering place features their beers, as well as coffeeshop items like pastries and breakfast sandwiches. Dinner brings wings, fried pickles, and other bar snacks.

An indoor brewery with a balcony above a coffee counter and lots of tables and chairs.
Caboose Commons’ new location.
Caboose Commons/Facebook

Pastry Xpo Cafe

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This underrated gem is the neighborhood’s go-to option for ornate desserts. The cafe sells beautiful pastries including macarons, eclairs, croissants, cakes, cupcakes, and original creations like their apple classic tart. Palmiers are gigantic; ham and cheese croissants are a good savory breakfast option. There’s cafe seating, Illy coffee, and some Mediterranean lunch specials as well. Catering orders through the website; delivery here.

Four bar-shaped desserts with fruit toppings.
Assorted desserts at Pastry Xpo.
Pastry Xpo/Facebook

True Food Kitchen (Multiple locations)

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This burgeoning chain focuses on anti-inflammatory foods, and menu items can read a little eye-roll trendy (think poke bowls, quinoa burgers, and plenty of kale). The end result, though, is a mix of appealing, colorful dishes that won’t put diners into a food coma. Among the standouts: seasonal salads — there’s butternut squash and sprouts tossed with a sharp horseradish vinaigrette for the winter —cocktails spiked with refreshing juices, and charred cauliflower with tahini dressing. A good option for those with dietary restrictions. Pickup and delivery through the website.

Squash, brussels sprouts, cauliflower and other roasted vegetables in a bowl.
A seasonal salad at True Food Kitchen.
True Food Kitchen/Facebook

Four Sisters

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Originally an occupant of Vietnamese district the Eden Center, Four Sisters arrived in Merrifield in 2008, long before there was a Mosaic District. This family-friendly destination boasts an extensive menu of Vietnamese dishes, though they have streamlined their offerings since COVID-19. Crispy spring rolls have been beloved for years, and it’s usually a good idea to order anything that’s been prepared in a clay pot. Order online here.

Two spring rolls with lots of herbs on the plate and nuoc cham dipping sauce to the right.
Crispy spring roll from Four Sisters.
Four Sisters/Facebook

Alta Strada (Multiple locations)

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Rich pastas are a great way to go at this outpost of restaurateur Michael Schlow’s Italian eatery, including cacio e pepe and penne a la vodka, but there are hearty portions of chicken parm and milanese as well. Online ordering here.

A big plate of penne topped with shredded parm and basil garnish.
Penne a la vodka from Alta Strada.
Alta Strada/Facebook

MacMillan Whisky Room

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Enjoy a flight of Scotch from this bar’s wide selection (or a whiskey-based cocktail like a Penicillin). The food menu here is pretty standard pub fare — a French dip, a grilled cheese — plus a few U.K. touches like Scotch eggs and fish and chips. Takeout available here.

A piece of lamb covered in fried onions atop mashed potatoes with a bottle of Whistle Pig in the background.
Grilled lamb from MacMillan Whisky Room.
MacMillan Whisky Room/Facebook

Urban Hot Pot (Multiple Locations)

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This new addition to Mosaic District offers all-you-can-eat hot pot for $19.99 at lunch and $29.99 at dinner. There’s a 90 min time limit per table, but customers can order as many broths as they want and as many refills of a variety of meat, seafood, and vegetable components. There’s a fun sauce bar with tons of options and suggested combinations to visit, too. Make sure that lamb, lotus root, rice cakes, marinated shrimp, and enoki mushrooms are among the picks.

Our Mom Eugenia - Mosaic

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This newish Greek arrival has a breezy menu of salads, Greek small plates, and heartier fare like moussaka. There’s a tiny, cute patio outside as well as some additional outdoor seating across the street. Greek wines are among the beverage options. Order online here.

Grilled fish filets covered with grape tomatoes.
Branzino from Our Mom Eugenia.
Our Mom Eugenia/Facebook

Elephant Jumps

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Nestled in a deep corner of an unassuming shopping center off Gallows Road, Elephant Jumps can be tricky to find, but it’s worth the effort. The Thai restaurant doesn’t hold back on spiciness. Some of the more interesting dishes on the menu include a funky tuna curry, a Thai play on spaghetti, and the sen yai ladd na moo mug, a well-balanced mixture of marinated pork, rice noodles, pickled pepper, and Chinese broccoli. Lunch specials are reasonably priced. Order online through the website.

Noodles being pulled upwards by a pair of chopticks with greens and cashews below them.
A noodle dish at Elephant Jumps.
Elephant Jumps/Facebook

Inca Social

A bowl of ceviche with garnishes of fried plantain and corn nuts, with a large piece of lettuce shooting out of the bowl and an orange pepper in there.
Ceviche from Inca Social.
Inca Social/Facebook

This Peruvian restaurant is a Dunn Loring hit, with fun specials (margaritas are $2 on Thursdays), festive cocktails (some even feature art of llamas in the foam) and an excellent selection of Peruvian apps and entrees, from sharp ceviche to artfully executed lomo saltado. There’s a full brunch menu, too, and some outdoor seating. Takeout available here; delivery on GrubHub and DoorDash.

A bowl of ceviche with garnishes of fried plantain and corn nuts, with a large piece of lettuce shooting out of the bowl and an orange pepper in there.
Ceviche from Inca Social.
Inca Social/Facebook

Lost Dog Cafe (Multiple locations)

A slice of pizza on a yellow plate (taken from a pie in the background) with jalapenos on it
Pizza and beer at Lost Dog Cafe.
Lost Dog Cafe/Facebook

This outpost of the Northern Virginia family of restaurants has everything residents have come to expect from the quirky brand: goofy dog murals on the walls, pun-tastic dish names (many of them dog-themed), a respectable selection of specialty brews and sandwiches, and plenty of pizza. The Italian Pie, topped with onions and multiple meats, is a fine choice among the pizzas. For sandwiches, the pesto and chicken-stuffed Phoenix is a good bet. Smart diners always order the seasoned waffle fries on the side.

A slice of pizza on a yellow plate (taken from a pie in the background) with jalapenos on it
Pizza and beer at Lost Dog Cafe.
Lost Dog Cafe/Facebook

Open Road Grill

Two burgers with different toppings (bacon visible on the right) with beers behind them
Burgers and beer at Open Road.
Open Road Grill/Facebook

This neighborhood bar always has a festive atmosphere when sports fans show up to cheer on their team of choice. There is spacious seating both indoors and throughout the enclosed patio section outside. Wings are smoky, the beer selection rotates frequently, and even salads can be a nice surprise here.

Two burgers with different toppings (bacon visible on the right) with beers behind them
Burgers and beer at Open Road.
Open Road Grill/Facebook

Parc de Ville

Crispy duck confit on a bed of greens drowning in sauce.
Duck confit from Parc de Ville.
Parc de Ville/Facebook

This French bistro offers traditional staples with tweaks, whether it be duck confit or steak frites — keep an eye out for seasonal preparations of fish dishes. There’s also a nice French wine bar on the second floor rooftop with a menu of wines by the glass, an aperitif or two, and some snacks.

Crispy duck confit on a bed of greens drowning in sauce.
Duck confit from Parc de Ville.
Parc de Ville/Facebook

B Side

Sliced steak with a sauce on the side next to it.
A steak dish at B Side.
B Side/Facebook

B Side is one of the best destinations for drinking in this corner of Virginia, a place where beer lovers, wine drinkers, and cocktail aficionados can all find something to love. It’s fine to order a drink off-menu from one of the engaging bartenders, but B Side’s narrow cocktail menu always lists a few interesting options. The bar is tiny, so expect to wait for a seat during peak hours (there are a few patio seats). Drinkers can snack on options like pimento cheese or charcuterie, but hungrier diners can go for something more substantial on the meat-focused dinner menu. B Side shares the space with sandwich and butcher shop, Red Apron. Carryout info here.

Sliced steak with a sauce on the side next to it.
A steak dish at B Side.
B Side/Facebook

Caboose Commons

An indoor brewery with a balcony above a coffee counter and lots of tables and chairs.
Caboose Commons’ new location.
Caboose Commons/Facebook

This second location of the Vienna-based brewery always seems to draw a crowd (particularly on account of their expansive outdoor seating). The gathering place features their beers, as well as coffeeshop items like pastries and breakfast sandwiches. Dinner brings wings, fried pickles, and other bar snacks.

An indoor brewery with a balcony above a coffee counter and lots of tables and chairs.
Caboose Commons’ new location.
Caboose Commons/Facebook

Pastry Xpo Cafe

Four bar-shaped desserts with fruit toppings.
Assorted desserts at Pastry Xpo.
Pastry Xpo/Facebook

This underrated gem is the neighborhood’s go-to option for ornate desserts. The cafe sells beautiful pastries including macarons, eclairs, croissants, cakes, cupcakes, and original creations like their apple classic tart. Palmiers are gigantic; ham and cheese croissants are a good savory breakfast option. There’s cafe seating, Illy coffee, and some Mediterranean lunch specials as well. Catering orders through the website; delivery here.

Four bar-shaped desserts with fruit toppings.
Assorted desserts at Pastry Xpo.
Pastry Xpo/Facebook

True Food Kitchen (Multiple locations)

Squash, brussels sprouts, cauliflower and other roasted vegetables in a bowl.
A seasonal salad at True Food Kitchen.
True Food Kitchen/Facebook

This burgeoning chain focuses on anti-inflammatory foods, and menu items can read a little eye-roll trendy (think poke bowls, quinoa burgers, and plenty of kale). The end result, though, is a mix of appealing, colorful dishes that won’t put diners into a food coma. Among the standouts: seasonal salads — there’s butternut squash and sprouts tossed with a sharp horseradish vinaigrette for the winter —cocktails spiked with refreshing juices, and charred cauliflower with tahini dressing. A good option for those with dietary restrictions. Pickup and delivery through the website.

Squash, brussels sprouts, cauliflower and other roasted vegetables in a bowl.
A seasonal salad at True Food Kitchen.
True Food Kitchen/Facebook

Four Sisters

Two spring rolls with lots of herbs on the plate and nuoc cham dipping sauce to the right.
Crispy spring roll from Four Sisters.
Four Sisters/Facebook

Originally an occupant of Vietnamese district the Eden Center, Four Sisters arrived in Merrifield in 2008, long before there was a Mosaic District. This family-friendly destination boasts an extensive menu of Vietnamese dishes, though they have streamlined their offerings since COVID-19. Crispy spring rolls have been beloved for years, and it’s usually a good idea to order anything that’s been prepared in a clay pot. Order online here.

Two spring rolls with lots of herbs on the plate and nuoc cham dipping sauce to the right.
Crispy spring roll from Four Sisters.
Four Sisters/Facebook

Alta Strada (Multiple locations)

A big plate of penne topped with shredded parm and basil garnish.
Penne a la vodka from Alta Strada.
Alta Strada/Facebook

Rich pastas are a great way to go at this outpost of restaurateur Michael Schlow’s Italian eatery, including cacio e pepe and penne a la vodka, but there are hearty portions of chicken parm and milanese as well. Online ordering here.

A big plate of penne topped with shredded parm and basil garnish.
Penne a la vodka from Alta Strada.
Alta Strada/Facebook

MacMillan Whisky Room

A piece of lamb covered in fried onions atop mashed potatoes with a bottle of Whistle Pig in the background.
Grilled lamb from MacMillan Whisky Room.
MacMillan Whisky Room/Facebook

Enjoy a flight of Scotch from this bar’s wide selection (or a whiskey-based cocktail like a Penicillin). The food menu here is pretty standard pub fare — a French dip, a grilled cheese — plus a few U.K. touches like Scotch eggs and fish and chips. Takeout available here.

A piece of lamb covered in fried onions atop mashed potatoes with a bottle of Whistle Pig in the background.
Grilled lamb from MacMillan Whisky Room.
MacMillan Whisky Room/Facebook

Urban Hot Pot (Multiple Locations)

This new addition to Mosaic District offers all-you-can-eat hot pot for $19.99 at lunch and $29.99 at dinner. There’s a 90 min time limit per table, but customers can order as many broths as they want and as many refills of a variety of meat, seafood, and vegetable components. There’s a fun sauce bar with tons of options and suggested combinations to visit, too. Make sure that lamb, lotus root, rice cakes, marinated shrimp, and enoki mushrooms are among the picks.

Our Mom Eugenia - Mosaic

Grilled fish filets covered with grape tomatoes.
Branzino from Our Mom Eugenia.
Our Mom Eugenia/Facebook

This newish Greek arrival has a breezy menu of salads, Greek small plates, and heartier fare like moussaka. There’s a tiny, cute patio outside as well as some additional outdoor seating across the street. Greek wines are among the beverage options. Order online here.

Grilled fish filets covered with grape tomatoes.
Branzino from Our Mom Eugenia.
Our Mom Eugenia/Facebook

Elephant Jumps

Noodles being pulled upwards by a pair of chopticks with greens and cashews below them.
A noodle dish at Elephant Jumps.
Elephant Jumps/Facebook

Nestled in a deep corner of an unassuming shopping center off Gallows Road, Elephant Jumps can be tricky to find, but it’s worth the effort. The Thai restaurant doesn’t hold back on spiciness. Some of the more interesting dishes on the menu include a funky tuna curry, a Thai play on spaghetti, and the sen yai ladd na moo mug, a well-balanced mixture of marinated pork, rice noodles, pickled pepper, and Chinese broccoli. Lunch specials are reasonably priced. Order online through the website.

Noodles being pulled upwards by a pair of chopticks with greens and cashews below them.
A noodle dish at Elephant Jumps.
Elephant Jumps/Facebook

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