“Smells good,” said Margie Johnston of Reston, speaking to no one in particular as she walked into Seafoodie, a new gourmet takeout seafood store at South Lakes Shopping Center.
Last Thursday, Sept. 15, the store had its grand opening.
“I know there are customers out there that will always be looking for good, fresh seafood,” said the store’s owner, Kevin Mesiah.
Featuring dishes like jumbo lump crab cake, spicy barbecue shrimp and stuffed flounder, Seafoodie is hoping to take advantage of not just seafood lovers in the area, but also people who don’t have time to prepare a gourmet dinner.
“This is your classic ‘we make it, you bake it’ shop,” said Mesiah. The store is not a restaurant. Instead, customers can choose from a large selection of seafood entrees, as well as pre-made side dishes, which they can take home, bake and eat. All the seafood is prepared daily.
Mesiah — who sold his company, Guident Technologies, two years ago to his partner — wanted to return to his love of cooking. “I started out as an assistant chef many years ago,” said Mesiah, who has been living in Reston for eight years.
After spending a year planning and finding a location, Mesiah’s creation is now open to the public.
Many people have waited patiently for the store to open. “This is something I’ve been waiting for,” said Patie Wilcox, who lives nearby. “I come here a lot and I’ve seen the signs.”
Wilcox said that she and her husband often have a hard time finding something quick for dinner that appeals to both of them. “Now we can find something we both like,” she said.
“You’ll probably see me a lot because my house is on the market and I’m not going to be doing much cooking,” she said to Mesiah as received her order.
Mesiah’s wife, Kerri Gilmore-Mesiah, grew up in Reston. Gilmore-Mesiah, an attorney, took the week off to help open the store. “I couldn’t have done it without her,” said Mesiah. “She grew up here, and it’s important to her.”
SEAFOODIE IS one of many changes coming to the shopping center.
For the last six months, renovations have been underway at Safeway. The 22-year-old grocery store is adding about 10,000 square feet. “It will be more roomy and shopper friendly,” said Rodger Holman, store manager.
The store is adopting the “lifestyle” décor like the one at Hunters Woods Shopping Center. “It will essentially be just like the Hunters Woods Safeway, except Hunters Woods has a bank,” said Holman.
The store is adding more than just space. A Starbucks Coffee shop and a dry cleaning store will be included inside the store. “The deli will be triple the size of the old one,” said Holman.
The renovations, which also include 35 additional parking spaces, are scheduled to be finished in November.
Lakeside Asia Café will also be opening at the shopping center in November.
“We will serve Chinese, Thai, Vietnamese and some Japanese food,” said James Wei, who lives just beyond the Reston border in Vienna. “This is my local shopping center,” said Wei.
The restaurant, which is taking the location of KSB bagels, will include seating for about 50 to 60 people. Wei said that the restaurant also plans to offer carry out service. The restaurant will feature Asian artwork and painting, some of which will be available for sale.
“I’m looking forward to serving this community,” said Wei.
Cafesano, another restaurant, is coming soon just a few stores down from Lakeside Asia Café. Taking the old location of Marie’s Restaurant, which closed down last year, Cafesano is self-described as a “new, quick-casual restaurant serving flavorful Mediterranean cuisine.” The restaurant, which still has several renovations to complete, is now hiring wait staff. The restaurant will also feature an outside patio.