Food

5 Great Dishes in Fairfax’s Mosaic District

Step right up for peanut butter/bacon burgers, fried chicken skins, and more.
Fresh out of the oven: turkey lasagna at True Food Kitchen. Photograph by Andrew Propp.

This slick suburban hub is packed with dining options—here’s where to start.

1. Oysters on the half shell at Brine

The folks behind the Rappahannock Oyster Company are behind this supersized seafood house. We could kick back for hours with a tray of their well-shucked Olde Salts and Stingrays and some chilled white wine.

What else to get: Rotisserie fish; lambs and clams.

2. Beef-and-cheddar sandwich at Red Apron Butchery

The key to this sandwich’s greatness is the beef, which is not presented in chilled grey slivers but in warm, red slices. It’s set on an airy kaiser roll with two creamy sauces: ranch-seasoned mayo and housemade whiz that tastes like real-deal cheddar.

What else to get: Burger with shredded lettuce and thousand island dressing; beef jerky.

3. Drew’s Peanut Butter Bacon Burger at Ted’s Bulletin

PB&J, meet burger. The slathering of creamy Skippy sounds like it’d take over, but it merely plays a supporting role here, lending the juicy patty a bit of earthy richness. Crispy bacon and sweet tomato jam finish the whole thing off.

What else to get: The Rachel, a turkey-and-slaw sandwich; grilled cheese and tomato soup.

4. Turkey lasagna at True Food Kitchen

Dr. Andrew Weil’s cafe specializes in health food that doesn’t taste like, well, health food. Case in point: this layering of spinach, turkey, rustic tomato sauce, and ricotta.

What else to get: Roasted vegetable salad with horseradish vinaigrette; grilled salmon with smoked onion and quinoa.

5. Shaky beef at Four Sisters

OK, so this Vietnamese grande dame isn’t technically in the Mosaic District proper, but it’s right across the street. And these tender cubes of steak, dipped in a mix of lime juice and pepper, are reason number one to make the quick trek.

What else to get: Shrimp toast; spring rolls.

Honorable mention. Tandoori-yogurt popcorn at the Angelika.

Probably the most addictive movie theater popcorn I’ve ever tasted.

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Ann Limpert
Executive Food Editor/Critic

Ann Limpert joined Washingtonian in late 2003. She was previously an editorial assistant at Entertainment Weekly and a cook in New York restaurant kitchens, and she is a graduate of the Institute of Culinary Education. She lives in Logan Circle.