11 Bar Snacks to Order Now
From sushi rolls and fried artichokes to oysters on the half shell, these local watering holes are serving up more than beer nuts.
Sure, Arlington and Falls Church are known for their bars. But though our area excels at cocktails and craft brews, you’ll also find an ample array of savory snacks to pair with the beverage of your choice. Here are some worth checking out when those bar nuts just won’t do.
One of Arlington’s newest live music venues is also a restaurant, dishing out discounted small plates during happy hour and on its late-night menu. A noteworthy highlight are these croquettes, stuffed with everyone’s favorite creamy pasta and accompanied by a spicy tomato aioli. // 2854 Wilson Blvd., Arlington (Clarendon)
It’s a given that everything is better with Old Bay, and poutine is no exception. If you haven’t tried this variety of the Quebecois specialty—topped with blue crab, bechamel, parsley and that uber popular, Baltimore-bred spice—grab a fork and get ready. And while you’re there, kick back with some local bands; this neighborhood restaurant also hosts live music. // 900 N. Glebe Road, Arlington (Ballston)
Pop into this newly revamped Mexican eatery in Clarendon for $5 happy hour steals and beverage deals. Pair your favorite marg with a plate of these flavorful corn curls, served with Mexican sour cream, queso fresco and Tajín. // 2900 Wilson Blvd. #103, Arlington (Clarendon)
Falls Church newcomer Harvey’s may be putting the beer in beer cheese, but it’s also got some healthier, protein-based fare on the menu. The tuna poke tostadas pile up ahi tuna, lemongrass, ginger, tamari and avocado salsa on a crunchy flour tortilla. // 513 W. Broad St., Falls Church
You’ll find the briny bivalves on the half-shell for only $1.50 a pop during happy hour at this Belgian eatery in Clarendon. (If you’re feeling fancy, order a dozen with a bottle of Nicolas Feuillatte Champagne for $90.) // 3100 Washington Blvd., Arlington (Clarendon)
This Peruvian hot spot in Rosslyn has a sizeable bar (pisco sours, anyone?), a photogenic swing and scores of snackable items, from skewers to ceviche. Try the poached octopus causa (a whipped potato terrine topped with seafood and black-olive aioli), which our dining critic called “flavorful and dramatic.” // 1776 Wilson Blvd., Arlington (Rosslyn)
Come for the live music, stay for an order of Vietnamese lemongrass beef, or a plate of fried yucca, served with jalapeno aioli and a spicy slaw. Other tempting nibbles on Patrick Crump’s global menu include cinnamon-black pepper lamb “lollipops,” Filipino lumpia and pad Thai bowls with the protein of your choice. // 3100 Clarendon Blvd., Arlington (Clarendon)
Saltines have never had it so good. The coddie, a popular app at this year-old Ballston seafood outpost (a spin-off of the original next to Nats Park), serves up salt cod, Yukon gold potatoes and yellow mustard on the classic cracker for a melt-in-your mouth munchie. // 4040 Wilson Blvd., Arlington (Ballston)
Why have a plate of nachos when you can have totchos? At Spacebar, you can load up a plate of potato nuggets with as many toppings as you like, from smoked gouda and house chorizo to vegan cheese and pickled onions. Be sure to order a few sauces on the side for dipping (looking at you, aji amarillo aioli). P.S. You can also find the same customizable taters at sister bar Galaxy Hut in Clarendon. // 709 W. Broad St., Falls Church
Did you hear? This Clarendon tavern just got a refresh, including an expanded rooftop and a menu makeover (including bottomless shareable plates for $29 a person). The crispy artichokes, an elegant stunner accompanied by anchovy mayo and lemon, isn’t the only plant-forward dish on the happy hour menu. Other creative veggie options include roasted Brussels sprouts, rainbow cauliflower with romesco sauce, and charred eggplant with pistachios and labne. // 2915 Wilson Blvd., Arlington (Clarendon)
If raw fish is your jam, you may find yourself on a roll at this East Falls Church sushi bar, where happy hour brings $4 classic maki (think yellowtail-scallion or tuna-avocado rolls) plus $2 off specialty rolls such as the Crazy Monkey (smoked salmon, cream cheese, avocado, tempura bits, mango, tobiko and eel sauce) and the arguably not-naked Naked Roll, a rice-less number that finds lump crab, fish roe, avocado, cream cheese and scallion wrapped in cucumber and topped with garlic ponzu sauce. // 2121 N. Westmoreland St., A-2, Arlington