Alexandria Appetite: 3 Gold-Medal Spots to Watch the Olympics

Alexandria Appetite: 3 Gold-Medal Spots to Watch the Olympics

Looking for a restaurant to whet your appetite while you cheer on the USA? Here are three at the top of the list.

What better time to try Bugsy’s Olympic pizza than during the Summer Games?

What better time to try Bugsy’s Olympic pizza than during the Summer Games? Photo by Hope Nelson.

After the usual four-year absence, Summer Olympics mania is ready for liftoff again. Looking for a change of scenery to watch your favorite sports? Here are three restaurants that are sure to be gold-medal bets. (A word of warning, though: If you’re interested in a particular matchup at a particular time – U.S. water polo, say – you’d do well to call before you venture out, just to make sure the game is on.)

Mason Social, 728 N. Henry St.

Anyone who’s sat in Mason Social’s bar during football season knows it’s a great spot to catch a game. The same extends to the Olympics. Situated in the Parker-Gray neighborhood of Old Town, Mason Social offers a dining room and bar for your food and drink needs. But when it comes to the Games, the bar is your best bet.

Order up some roasted celery root hummus or some wings and avail yourself of the Mason punch to wet your whistle. The bar also offers plenty of craft beers from around the regional neighborhood – the offerings from Richmond’s Hardywood are always winners – so you can toast your favorite team.

Ramparts, 1700 Fern St.

A longtime staple of Fairlington, Ramparts Tavern and Grill is an excellent choice for catching an Olympics event or two (or more). Much more casual than its restaurant counterpart, the bar is decidedly a sports pub in both ambience and clientele, so you’ll be right at home.

Choose some chili nachos or a signature burger (topped with gouda, mushrooms, and fried onion strings) to watch the proceedings and wash it down with a Port City seasonal selection or perhaps a Dogfish 60-Minute IPA. Vegetarians won’t be left out, either – the Portobello sandwich is hearty and meaty, and the veg wrap will keep you fortified from event to event.

Bugsy’s Pizza, 111 King St.

No list of recommendations worth its salt would be complete without a mention of Bugsy’s, the venerable sports bar and pizzeria located on lower King Street, just a block from the river. From hockey to football, baseball to soccer, there’s always room on the television at Bugsy’s, and the Olympics are no exception.

When you come to a pizzeria, it’s probably best to order a pie. And honestly, in this season of medals and podiums, ordering the Olympic pizza – topped with artichokes, mushrooms, onions, garlic herb sauce, feta, and mozzarella – is a no-brainer. Too exotic? The margherita pizza is always a crowd-pleaser. Wash it down with a frosty beverage – happy hour deals from 4 to 7 p.m. on weekdays can’t be beat – and toast to the national team!

Hope Nelson owns and operates the Kitchen Recessionista blog, located at Email her any time at