Tina H E.

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Recent reviews by Tina H E.
Restaurant Name City
House of Emperor Ashburn, VA
This standard run-of-the-mill Americanized Chinese food restaurant is gone and closed. Back when Ashburn had only 2 or 3 restaurants, it was the go-to for carry-out or a listless meal. Combined with the mediocre food and the increased competition, then the mortgage economy mess, it finally closed. Unfortunately although we have a couple of sushi and Thai restaurants, there's no Chinese sit-down restaurant around here now. Guess I'll hafta go to DC for the dim sum and chicken feet. LOL. okay... well this place never offered that anyway.
Johnson's Charcoal Beef House Leesburg, VA
This landmark restaurant is gone, the building razed and a stupid bank is there now. Years ago, this family bought the annual prize winning 4H fair cow or heifer when it came time to be butchered. That was back in the day when Leesburg was small and Loudoun was agrarian and full of grain and cattle farms. It used to be a busy, busy restaurant that served regular American food like steaks and meatloaf with mashed potatoes and green beans. Eventually the family lost interest and the restaurant faltered over the years, then got pounded as Leesburg exploded with more restaurants. The property was sold and the heirs got their money. I don't know where to go to get the old-timey country meals in Loudoun anymore. Even tho its closed, and in later years the restaurant ruined itself, I'm giving its memory 3 1/2 stars for all the breakfasts and lunches and dinners I enjoyed there in my youth.
Cafe Panache Ashburn, VA
Long gone and closed - it was a really nice restaurant, pricey and a bit dressy. good food. Another victim of the economic slide after the mortgage mess.
Domani Ristorante Ashburn, VA
Closed and gone for a few years. There is another restaurant in that same spot, but I haven't eaten there yet, don't even know the name of the new place.
Big Apple Bagels Cafe Ashburn, VA
Closed and long gone - had great bagels too. In a strip shopping center it was easy to get in and out.
Laurel Brigade Inn Leesburg, VA
This restaurant is long gone and closed. The old stone building is now an office. A shame - the building had been a restaurant for at least 50 or 60 years, with a nice garden in the back. A place for bridge club meetings, ladies' luncheons, and nice dinners. It was almost the only place to eat in Loudoun for a very long time. The food was so-so but very genteel and lovely ambiance.
Red Fox Inn Catering Middleburg, VA
I'm a local here, whose mother remembers the this place from the 40s. The 'nice' people in old Loudoun County have always liked the Red Fox Tavern, but everybody knew it was for tourists. LOL Its a darling old stone building with low heavy-beamed ceilings, and dark aged wood. People love the atmosphere and the comfort of sturdy thick stone walls. In the winter the table near the fireplace becomes 'hot' property. Over the years the food has improved and now is quite good - now Nouveau American with a bit of fresh, maybe local, produce thrown in. I have enjoyed the meals there. And because I'm a local with old roots here, I will tell you: do not believe the sign on the building that says 'est. 1728' or whatever the year. Back in the day, the owner put that up to make fun of the historical hysteria of Loudoun wannabes and all the locals knew it was a joke. Back then Loudoun had the likes of the DuPonts, the Melons, Symington/Harris, [the Kennedys in the 60s], and other family names you might not recognize. Extraordinarily wealthy folks, the kind that never flaunted wealth because that is gauche and unkind - in other words the really rich and powerful. Well 60 years later, everyone is dead and no one remembers the silly joke about that sign. Now that IS funny!
Old Dominion Brewery Ashburn, VA
Closed. Gone. The food was good, and the place frequented by AOL folks, which is now also nearly disappeared. The business was bought by Budweiser and they have cheapened and ruined the beer recipes that still appear on the grocery store shelves. A couple of the guys started Lost Rhino, now in Ashburn somewhere near Red Rum Drive - they are working on a pub to for that brewery.
Coach Stop Restaurant Middleburg, VA
The Coach Stop closed and now a retail shop sits in its place. A crushing blow to see such an old, memory-filled establishment disappear. Regular good-ole sandwiches and diner meals. The family wanted to retire and nobody bought the business. What a loss.
The Beautiful South Hamilton, VA
I've been only for brunch or a Sunday meal. i get the impression these guys are from New York/New Jersey area. They are characters! The food is really well-prepared and delicious. They don't scrimp on ingredient quality and careful cooking technique. Apparently, the first time I went there, the regular waitress had left and a new girl waited on us. Okay, she is very friendly and nice, but she just doesn't 'get' it when it comes to service. I wish these guys luck - the food is good, but the service needs improvement.
Pacific Sterling, VA
Pacific-Rim closed awhile ago. We loved this place so much, we had our wedding reception here. They also hosted several New Year's Eves with music and great, great food. Eventually though, something happened and the place got kinda filthy and the food quality sank. I think this coincided with Tommy the very excellent manager's illness, and his absence for day-to-day management. On top of that the proliferation of restaurants increased the competition, then the economy sank. And the owner suffered through a costly divorce. By the time they closed, we had stopped going - but we had many many happy memories of the good times and fantastic food.
Nagoya Japanese Steak-Seafood Ashburn, VA
We almost always go to Nagoya for sushi, which is adequate. The sushi is fresh and reliable. If you have ever been to a restaurant serving bad fishy-tasting sushi, you come to appreciate reliably fresh sushi. We have been going since Nagoya first opened so we are greeted warmly. Jin, the owners' son is a bright guy and often sits with us at the sushi bar to discuss finances, technology and yes, even politics. The salad dressing is soooo good that I have purchased it to take home. The steakhouse-style dinners I don't like as much as sushi, but we will sit around the grill for a grandson's birthday or special occasion - we've seen all the tricks with the eggs, smoking-onion-volcanoes, and fiery flashes, but its a nice evening as a treat for others. The meals are reasonably priced and the chefs are always good-natured. Beware, there will always be a birthday or two that will be announced, and you will be expected to sing along. No, singing is NOT their forte LOL. The place is popular because the food and service is adequate.
Rio Grande Cafe Reston, VA
Ceviche appetizer is good, a little spicy. I enjoy the food very much here. Unfortunately, due to cement floors and walls and un-softened ceilings, the noise is absolutely deafening. The wait for a table or even a place at the bar is long at the popular hours, and its popular at happy hour. All of Reston Town Center has a parking problem unless you want to walk 2 blocks to the furthest garages. However, because of the food and friendly bartenders I'll still eat here!
Lonestar Herndon, VA
Good steaks and beer in a Texan-type atmosphere. Perfectly good alternative to the Outback Steakhouse, with many similar offerings but less crowded and a shorter wait. I've eaten there for both work-lunches and dinner. If you are in a hurry you can sit at the bar, watch the harried bartender for entertainment, and get your meal with your fave beverage.
Blue Ridge Grill Leesburg, VA
I love this place! A slightly eclectic assortment of food - the rare tuna appetizer or dinner is awesome. The steaks are generous and high-quality. The seafood is cooked to perfection (not dried up or overdone). The vegetable side dishes are typically fresh, crisp (like the garlicky broccoli, yum). We usually sit at the bar for dinner as the wait for a booth can be atrociously long as the place is packed after the Friday or Saturday dinner-hour starts. The bar has a ceiling filter for smoke, under which smokers must sit. I hate smokey places so this is totally great. Yea, you can go other places further in and get a better experience, but this is Leesburg and it means its nearby and still great food. Leesburg has a tough time keeping good restaurants open - this is an anomaly. Its a casual place but don't be fooled, the clientele wears high-quality old clothes, and these are folks that appreciate the quality of food and service.