Lena’s Wood-Fired Pizza is Open and Serving Giant Meatballs

A new Neapolitan pie spot for Alexandria.

Lena's Wood Fired Pizza & Tap specializes in Neapolitan-style pies, giant meatballs, and plenty of beer. Photography by Jeff Elkins

Alexandrians have a new place for pastas and pies with the opening of Lena’s Wood-Fired Pizza & Tap. The 100-seat restaurant near the Braddock Road Metro is helmed by Italian chef Mauro Molino and Graham Duncan of Alexandria Restaurant Partners, who’re behind Virtue Feed & Grain, the Majestic, and others.

A patio set with space heaters and a fire pit can seat guests into the fall.

A 900 degree wood-fired oven turns out thin-crust, Neapolitan-style pizzas for lunch and dinner. In addition to classics like Margherita and pepperoni you’ll find more unusual combinations—think spicy sopressata with fried kale and ghost pepper honey, or a Korean-style barbecue pie with short ribs, spicy gochujang sauce, and pickled vegetables. Another house specialty is “the great meatball,” which clocks in at over half-a-pound and is stuffed with molten mozzarella. Guests can order the beefy ball as an appetizer with roasted marinara, or atop spaghetti for a meal.

Grab a panini at lunch, or head in for breakfast pizza at weekend brunch.

Weekend brunch begins this Sunday, where you’ll find dishes like an egg and bacon-topped breakfast pizza, and house-made cinnamon-apple doughnuts. A staple at all meals: Nutella-topped breakfast pies.

A landscaped garden patio seats an additional 68 guests, and is equipped with a fire pit for cooler weather dining. Guests can warm up with 16 craft drafts, or an Amaretto-spiked Italian margarita.

A wood-fired oven produces traditional Neapolitan-style pizzas as well as creative versions topped with Korean barbecue.

Lena’s Wood Fired Pizza & Tap. 401 E. Braddock Rd., Alexandria; 703-683-5330. Open daily for lunch, 11:30 to 5. Dinner: Monday through Thursday, 5 to 11; Friday and Saturday, 5 to midnight; Sunday 4 to 11. Sunday brunch 11 to 4.

Food Editor

Anna Spiegel covers the dining and drinking scene in her native DC. Prior to joining Washingtonian in 2010, she attended the French Culinary Institute and Columbia University’s MFA program in New York, and held various cooking and writing positions in NYC and in St. John, US Virgin Islands.