Korean specialties such as barbecue short ribs, kimchi, and—of course—tofu soup fill the menu at this casual restaurant with outposts in Annandale and Centreville. Among the chefs' crowning offerings are steaming bowls of bi bim bap that cradle bulgogi (Korean-style marinated beef) as well as heaps of bean sprouts, corn, and fried egg. Depending on personal tastes, the spice levels of each dish can be custom calibrated from ultra-mild “white” to three-alarm “spicy spicy.” But not all dishes served here come to the table piping hot, including the cool naegn myun soup, a refreshing summer dish loaded with buckwheat noodles, slices of beef, and hints of Noreaster.
Chicken wings are the favored snack of the sports fan, narrowly beating out harder-to-procure parrot wings and more heartbreaking butterfly wings. Feast on the wings of champions with today's Groupon to WOW Cafe & Wingery in Manassas: for $10, you get $25 worth of wings, beer, burgers, and Cajun fare.
Counter Intelligence’s expert countertop agents have installed alluring, high-end kitchen surfaces since 1986. Skilled counter connoisseurs can visit homes during free in-home consultations, wielding digital templating equipment to ensure that new countertops fit perfectly into every nook and cranny. Once the complimentary kitchen template is ready, clients may select materials from a factory showroom, deciding on new counters, sinks, faucets, and edging. Grade-A, first-cut granite travels from quarries all over the world, bringing unique colors, patterns, and souvenir postcards, and arrives coated in IntelliGuard to ward off invading spills and stains ($1,995+ for 2 cm. thick slabs & installation in a 10’x10’ kitchen). Homeowners can also opt for nonporous, color-consistent Silestone quartz or more than 60 shades of robust Cambria quartz. After clients finish perusing a variety of undermount sinks, Moen faucets, and complimentary countertop edging, Counter Intelligence will begin its two-day kitchen overhaul.
Owned by deft de-stainers boasting more than four decades of combined experience, Merrifield Tailor & Dry Cleaning and Ann's Tailor have been serving the garb-gussying and thread-mending needs of Virginia residents for generations. Extract sloppy stains from a man's dress shirt ($1) or suit ($9), or get suit pants shortened ($12 without lining) in anticipation of this spring’s loafers and lederhosen craze. Adjust the hem of a summer skirt ($16–$25) or bring in the waist on a pair of women's pants ($16–$20) to show off a newly fit frame. Both tailoring shops guarantee all cleaning and sewing work, and unsatisfied customers are invited to drag their duds back to the store within five days for an apologetic re-cleaning or re-fusing.
Each of Merrifield Garden Center’s three locations overflows with thousands of plants throughout the year, encompassing such variety that a reporter for CNN’s Eatocracy claimed “I might as well endorse my paychecks straight to them…because I always want to grow what they've got.” Knowledgeable garden experts, 25 of whom have been with Merrifield for 25 years or more, guide customers through row upon row of flowers, trees, shrubs, and other plants, or help them sort through an extensive selection of bulbs and seeds. Visitors may also bump into the founders themselves, or their children and other family members, 38 of whom still work at the thriving business that started 40 years ago. Merrifield doesn’t just proliferate plants, however; amenities such as cafes in Gainesville and Merrifield and a dog park in Gainesville make each garden center into a leisure destination as well. Three of its garden gurus run an hourlong TV show that's been going for more than two decades, and other staff publish gardening advice on the website and Facebook. The staff also work to protect the environment with a variety of eco-friendly initiatives. Besides stocking native plants and water-saving devices for their customers, they also compost more than 20,000 tons of soil and 25,000 cubic yards of brush left over from their comprehensive landscaping services every year. The Gainesville location also gathers old concrete, metal appliances, and rusted Optimus Primes for recycling free of charge.
Founder-director Isabel Benemelis grew up in Cuba, surrounded by the mambo tunes and Afro-Cuban rhythms that earned the country its reputation as a musical hot spot. At age 4 she took up the piano, and by 7 she found herself "mesmerized by the music of Beethoven, Chopin, and Bach" whenever it hit her ears. This immersion in multiple genres influenced Benemelis when she built her school from oboe reeds in 1995: faculty members specialize in classical music, but ably veer into jazz and Latin scores if students have an interest. During one-on-one, 30-minute lessons, they teach adults and children older than age 4 to play piano, guitar, saxophone, bongos, and a host of other instruments. In keeping with the school’s multidisciplinary roots, many instructors are also fluent in English and Spanish.
Outfitted with a slew of fixtures from American Standard, Porcher, and Jado, Bath & Idea Center's spacious show room boasts a variety of full-size displays to help homeowners envision the kitchen or bathroom of their dreams. The American Standard Standard Collection kitchen faucet comes equipped with durable ceramic disc valves, porcelain lever handles, and a limited lifetime warranty on function and finish ($199), and the heavy-duty liquid-soap dispenser ($100) can dole out soap, detergent, or hand lotion in one swift pump. An American Standard three-function showerhead ($120) shoots a variable spray of water, ranging from a conventional or aerated flow to a gentle massage action similar to taking a bath in your hot tub. Meanwhile, the American Standard EverClean toilet seat ($55) guards against the growth of stain- and odor-causing bacteria, and can be used as a flotation device in the event of unexpected bathroom floods. Groupon holders can also schedule an appointment with one of the show room's knowledgeable consultants to discuss plans for a kitchen or bath remodel or pick out the appropriate finish and style for fixtures.