Appetite: 3 Restaurants and Cafes Opening in the New Year

Appetite: 3 Restaurants and Cafes Opening in the New Year

A new year naturally leads to new restaurants on the horizon, and Alexandria has new arrivals coming in droves. From a beloved regional Thai eatery to a new take on a former familiar restaurant to the city’s first cat café, the first few months of 2020 look to be exciting indeed. Here are three openings to look forward to in the months to come.

Sisters Thai, 530 First St.

The newest outpost of Sisters Thai, which currently calls two locations in the Mosaic District and Fairfax home, is taking shape at 530 First Street in North Old Town. Originally slated to open by the end of January, Sisters is now eyeing a March opening. Sisters Thai is known for its cozy “living room” feel, making customers right at home among cute tables and enticing décor. Its food, too, is at once traditional and innovative Thai cuisine, complete with rich curries and plenty of takes on Thai street food as well.

Mount Purrnon Cat Café and Wine Bar, 109 S. Alfred St.

Alexandria’s first cat café continues its march toward a grand opening. The café, which will call 109 S. Alfred Street home, is awaiting its permit hearing; the hearing that was scheduled for January was canceled due to snow, so owners Kristin Cowan and Adam Patterson must wait until February to have their day in the spotlight. This delay pushes Mount Purrnon’s scheduled opening back to late March or early April, Patterson said. Once it’s up and running, the café will serve food and drink – including wine – and will, as the concept implies, have adoptable cats in residence waiting for permanent homes.

Hank & Mitzi’s, 600 Montgomery St.

The former Hank’s Pasta Bar is promising a new look and attitude when Hank & Mitzi’s opens in the space at 600 Montgomery Street. Restaurateur Jamie Leeds will remain at the helm of the operation, while executive chef Will Artley will take control of the kitchen. At first blush, the menu will remain solidly in the “regional Italian” camp, offering up pizzas, Italian cocktails and “rustic entrees,” per the restaurant’s social media. But the rooftop bar? That will be a new feature of the redesigned space, and by the looks of the construction hustle and bustle taking place around the restaurant as of late, the renovations throughout will be relatively extensive too. Currently, Hank & Mitzi’s is pinpointing an “early 2020” reopening.

Hope Nelson is the author of “Classic Restaurants of Alexandria” and owns the Kitchen Recessionista blog, located at Email her any time at