Appetite: Off the Menu: What’s New in Alexandria Dining

Appetite: Off the Menu: What’s New in Alexandria Dining

A new year means new restaurants in Alexandria. From French fare to Mexican cuisine to a bar full of interesting beers, the city’s flavors are vibrant amid the cold temperatures outside.

Bistro Sancerre Opens Near Carlyle

Old Town’s new French bistro and steakhouse opened its doors over the weekend, tucked away in the King Street Station complex facing Duke Street. Sporting both an indoor main dining room and a patio for more seasonally appropriate socializing, the restaurant has plenty of space for both casual and business dining. Its dinner menu touts the likes of New York strip steak, braised lamb shank, pan-roasted rack of venison — and risotto for the non-carnivores at the table. 1725 Duke St.

Hops n Shine Taps, Food Ready for Business

Del Ray’s newest addition switched over from “Coming Soon” to “Here Now” earlier this month, and it’s jumping into the city’s dining scene with both feet. With an extensive beer list and fun food offerings, Hops n Shine is aiming to become the neighborhood’s go-to spot for a brew or two and a bite (and then some) to eat. The local region is well-represented on the restaurant’s beer list — Port City, 3 Stars and Crooked Run are all in attendance — but the eatery also ventures past the Mid-Atlantic to Bell’s, Sierra Nevada and more. Pair your brew of choice up with a loaded grilled cheese sandwich, chili cheese dog or loaded tater tots and let the fun begin. 3410 Mount Vernon Ave.

Urbano 116 Opens This Week

The new Mexican restaurant on lower King Street opened on Monday, infusing Old Town with a bit of Oaxacan flair. Chef Alam Mendez leads the kitchen, concocting the likes of almond mole and lamb tamal for hearty entrees and ceviche amarillo and guacamole to start things off. Looking for a taco or two? You’ll be in good shape here; from lengua to carnitas to cauliflower, nearly every palate will be at home on the menu. Wash it all down with a specialty cocktail — the Mezcamule, featuring mezcal, muddled cucumber, candied ginger and ginger beer sounds enticing — and plot a calorie-burning walk along the waterfront after the fact. 116 King St.

Bombay Curry Company Closes

Bombay Curry Company, a Mount Vernon Avenue mainstay for decades, has closed its doors. In a statement posted on social media on Jan. 3, Nicky and Balraj Bhasin wrote in part, “This was not an easy decision to make and numerous factors led to this choice: staffing challenges, a need for Balraj to focus on his health, as well as some family matters that have been put on the back burner for quite some time. We were hoping to continue to provide you with your favorite Indian foods by passing over the torch to our Chef, but unfortunately that did not pan out.” Though the restaurant has ceased to turn out food, the Bhasins say they’re aiming to provide cooking classes and other activities throughout their newfound retirement.

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