How to Refresh Your Apartment Closet for Fall

Posted on September 20, 2020 by Warren Duffie

Getting ready for a new season is always a process, one that should include cleaning out your closet. In order to prepare for the impending cooler weather, spend some time organizing your wardrobe. Follow these steps to make the process simple.

  1. Gather your materials. Before you get started, take stock of what you need. Maybe bins for your sweaters would be helpful, or perhaps a shoe organizer to hang over the back of the closet door would cut down on the chaos. Make sure you have everything on hand before the organization begins.

  2. Trim the excess. Next, sort through your clothing. Pack away anything you won’t need until spring, and donate items you don’t wear on a regular basis. A good trick to discern what is and isn’t essential in your wardrobe: turn all of your hangers in the same direction, and then when you wear something, place it back in the closet with the hanger pointing the opposite way. Then you’ll easily be able to suss out the obsolete pieces.

  3. Put together grab-and-go outfits. Now that you’ve either donated or packed away anything that won’t be an autumn essential, it should be easy to put together a few cool-weather outfits. Aim for a mix of styles so you always have something easy to throw on, regardless of the occasion—from a stroll in the park to a day at the home office. Having these outfits ready to go eliminates stress when you’re in a hurry.

  4. Organize everything else by category. Whatever doesn’t fit into your collection of fall ensembles should be stored in an organized fashion. For example, fold all sweatshirts and put them in bins next to each other. Do the same for jeans. Hang blouses or buttondowns together, corral skirts or suits in the same spot, and shuffle dresses to one side of the closet.

How to Get Your Closet Ready for Summer [Pottery Barn]
7 Simple Steps: How to Get Your Closet Ready for Summer [California Closets]
4 Tips to Get Your Closet Spring and Summer Ready [Creative Homekeeper]

Nordic Knot Is a Must-Try for Local Pretzel Lovers

Posted on September 15, 2020 by Warren Duffie

There’s no doubt that pretzels and beer are a near-perfect match. And, at Nordic Knot, that’s all the more true, thanks to their specialty malted and brewers grain doughs and their partnership with Lake Anne Brew House.  Nordic Knot’s handmade pretzels are made with a traditional Nordic dough or their specialty Brewers Grain dough. Malted barley, rye, or wheat combine to create a unique taste and, if you can’t decide between their dough options, they even offer a combined twist.

Through their partnership with Lake Anne Brew House, you can have Nordic Knot pretzels delivered to your door directly. Know a brewery with a particularly special blend? Nordic Knot will even create a custom pretzel to “match your malt.” If you’re looking to their pre-created pretzels to make your pint complete, Nordic Knot has no shortage of toppings and styles to choose from, including cinnamon sugar, everything, and salted pretzels in braids, croissants, and standard pretzel twists. Several varieties are even vegan-friendly, so you can share with friends and family who have dietary restrictions, too.

Speaking of sharing, be sure to check out their variety pack or party box if you’ve got an event in need of pretzels. If your idea of heaven is your favorite beer coupled with dozens of flavorful knots and twists, you need look no further.

Bring a Hearty Appetite to Royal Palm Restaurant in Sterling

Posted on September 8, 2020 by Warren Duffie

Royal Palm Restaurant in Sterling has newly opened, and according to the folks on Yelp, the buffet is the highlight of this Indian/Middle Eastern restaurant. Royal Palm Restaurant stocks the buffet (offered daily) with butter chicken, goat kahari, and fresh samosas, plus brings out hot naan to each hungry guest. Also, the team is taking extra precautions, including plenty of gloves, hand sanitizer, and extra cleaning between guests.

But if you’re still not ready for a buffet, or in person dining for that matter, Royal Palm Restaurant is still a great choice for authentic Middle Eastern cuisine like chicken tikka, seekh kabob, and more. Those types of dishes, along with kheer rice pudding, are perfect refrigerator staples if you want to make one big order for tasty leftovers all week.

Royal Palm Restaurant is located on Town Center Plaza in Sterling, and offers delivery from Uber Eats, Grubhub, and more.

What to Stream When You Need a Break From the Everyday

Posted on August 11, 2020 by Warren Duffie

The world is changing rapidly right now, and the constant onslaught of news might be making it hard for you to unwind—especially if your home has suddenly become your workspace, too. One surefire way to recharge is to watch some good, old-fashioned mindless TV. Here are a few solid options to stream.

Arrested Development
An oldie but a goodie, Arrested Development was one of the first TV shows to pioneer the faux-documentary style. It put the approach to good use with a cast of offbeat, reliably selfish characters and an all-knowing narrator who’s mastered the tongue-in-cheek commentary. Although the show only has three original seasons, Netflix recently revived it so you can keep the streaming going for a full five seasons.

Nailed It
You’ve never seen a baking show quite like this one. Instead of sourcing its talent from a pool of top pastry chefs, Nailed It invites amateur bakers to come and show off their skills. They’re tasked with impossibly complicated baking projects, which they need to recreate in absurdly short amounts of time, and the results are hilarious. The commentary from the panel—which includes professional comedian Nicole Byers, a famed French chef, and a rotating celeb guest—only makes the baking competition that much more enjoyable.

Always Be My Maybe
This Netflix original comedy was released last year to acclaim from critics and audiences alike, so if you haven’t seen the movie yet, now’s the time to tune it. It follows the story of a pair of childhood friends—one now a celebrity chef, the other content to live with his parents and pursue a floundering music career. Spoiler alert: they fall (back) in love, and Keanu Reeves also shows up.

17 Best Lighthearted Shows & Movies On Netflix When You’re Looking to Chill [Bustle]
The 25 Best Feelgood Movies on Netflix [Time Out]
The Funniest TV Shows to Watch on Netflix Right Now [Thrillist]

Savor the Flavors of Spain at Barcelona Wine Bar

Posted on by Warren Duffie

This summer, consider making time to enjoy the flavors of Spain at Reston’s own Barcelona Wine Bar. This popular restaurant specializes in shareable tapas dishes, like eggplant caponata, spiced beef empanadas, and chorizo with sweet and sour figs. Choose several for everyone to share, as well as a larger main dish (chicken pimientos with lemon and hot cherry peppers is a popular option, as is the spicy seafood paella mariscos).

Want to keep it simple? Go for the chef’s choice charcuterie platter with a whole roasted branzino. Looking to feed the whole family? Keep in mind that Barcelona Wine Bar also has a kids’ menu, so the little ones can enjoy an order of crispy chicken fingers while you savor a bowl of mussels in white wine sauce. And, of course, be sure that you chose a bottle of one of the Spanish wines this place is best known for (see the full list online). Take-out and delivery are both available.


We All Scream For…Gelato

Posted on by Warren Duffie

‘Tis the season for all the cold treats, and that means it’s time for gelato! This creamy, Italian version of ice cream is served up fresh and close to home at Pitango Gelato in Reston Town Center. Locally owned and family-operated, this spot was inspired by the owner’s childhood in Italy, where his days were spent sampling all the gelato in the town of Trieste.

The real highlight and difference between Pitango Gelato and any other shop is the freshness. The shop doesn’t use any artificial ingredients or preservatives, and you can taste the difference in every bite. Serving up both gelato and sorbet, they use a partnership with a farm in Pennsylvania to get fresh grass-fed milk, eggs, and fruit that are used to craft each batch.

Another unique feature? The creative flavors! They don’t stop at the standard chocolate or vanilla. Gelato flavor features that are loved by all the regulars include cardamom, black tea, and black sesame. Sorbet favorites are minty mojito and sur del lago, which is made from cacao beans. Each batch they make is uniquely crafted with the customer experience (and taste buds) in mind. It’s a delightful way to ring in the summer season. Head to the shop for your contactless pickup this weekend!

How to Make Your Apartment Feel Like a Summer Oasis

Posted on July 16, 2020 by Warren Duffie

Summer has arrived! That means fresh, local food at the farmers’ market, warm walks in the park, and maybe even a picnic or two. It also means you should start thinking about freshening up the decor in your apartment. Here are a few simple decorating ideas to help you welcome summer into your abode.

Fresh citrus fruits and herbs galore
Love the fresh produce that pops up locally every summer? You can actually incorporate it into your decor. For instance, a cute planter full of fresh basil or mint would make the perfect centerpiece for your dining room table. A bowl filled with lemons and limes would also make a colorful statement!

Printed pillows
One of the easiest things to change up at home are your throw pillows. For summer, consider going with bright, bold patterns in the shades you associate with summer. Yellow chevron; orange checks; bright green gingham. You can also play around with nature prints—maybe lemons to match the bowl on your table!

Nature-inspired materials
Take summer as an opportunity to bring different textures into your space. Maybe a jute rug, a few pieces of wicker furniture, or even just some new houseplants.

A framed map
Dreaming of all the places you’ll be traveling to next summer? For now, satisfy your wanderlust with a physical representation of your travel plans. Frame a map of your favorite vacation destination and hang it in the living room or dining room as a reminder of the fun times to come!

Nautical or beachy accents
In place of your seaside vacation this year, spruce up your space with natural objects and nautical-themed decor like seashells, coral, or throw pillows in lobster or anchor motifs.

Enjoy Alfresco Dining at Kalypso’s Sports Tavern

Posted on by Warren Duffie

Few outdoor dining options in Reston can rival the expansive space that Kalypso’s Sports Tavern offers. The lakefront patio seats about 75 people, and offers gorgeous views of the water while you take advantage of a safer, distanced dining experience. Plus, there is just something special about enjoying the restaurant’s Mediterranean fare while you’re sitting right on Lake Anne. Mixed grill platters, gyros, and kebabs taste so authentic that you could imagine you’re at a seaside resort for a mini getaway. Kalypso’s Sports Tavern is also known for a busy events calendar, with practically every day of the week booked with a karaoke session, trivia game night, or free dance lessons.

When you want to eat well and be thoroughly entertained, Kalypso’s Sports Tavern is the place to go. Carryout and curbside pick-up are also available if you’re not ready to dine in. Visit the website to preview the menu, make a reservation, or check the live music calendar.

Tee Off This Summer at The Reston National Golf Course

Posted on by Warren Duffie

Reston National Golf Course sure has everything you want in a championship course: expert design and hole placement courtesy of famed course architect Ed Ault. Quiet trails, challenging traps, and well-kept greens. An on-site driving range and practice facility, plus the grill to grab a quick bite to eat. Reston National Golf Course is practically the only course you need to golf this summer. It’s a favorite for all types of golfers, with its convenient location off the DC Beltway on the Dulles Loop, and a full 18 holes from the back tees.

If you like to treat a day of golfing like a mini escape from daily life, the Reston National Golf Course is for you. Book a tee time directly from the website, or learn more about how you can become a member of this prestigious facility. Or consider Reston National Golf Course for your next group or corporate outing this summer. The course has the expert staff and impressive greens to make your event a success.

Must-Haves for Your First Warm-Weather Run

Posted on May 23, 2020 by Warren Duffie

With the weather getting warmer and warmer every day, you might be starting to take your workout routine outside on a regular basis. Here’s what you need to stay safe and comfortable while you’re exercising outdoors.

  1. Lightweight, sweat-wicking layers. Since spring bridges the gap between winter and summer, its weather can be somewhat unpredictable in terms of temperature. Make sure you’re ready for whatever awaits you outside by dressing in breathable layers, including a lightweight spring jacket. That way you can simply shed layers if it ends up being a warmer run, but you won’t be left shivering if it’s a little chilly on any given morning. Make sure your layers are sweat-wicking to avoid skin irritation.

  2. A hat or sunglasses. You’ll probably want to enjoy as much of that spring sunshine as possible! But maybe not when it starts to make you squint. Keep the sun off your face by donning a sweat-wicking hat or tossing on a pair of athletic sunglasses. Make sure the glasses fit well so they don’t slide down your nose as you run.

  3. Waterproof sunscreen. Before you put on those glasses, make sure you apply a layer of sunscreen! Even when it’s not particularly hot, your skin can still be damaged by the sun—and who wants to deal with a sunburn before summer even hits? Find a waterproof sunscreen that can withstand sweating, and stick with SPF 30 or higher.

  4. A handheld water bottle or water belt. Staying hydrated is super important any time you exercise, but even more so as the temperatures begin to rise. Make sure you take along plenty of water for your journey! Opt for a handheld water bottle, a CamelBak you carry on your back, or a water belt outfitted with several smaller water flasks.

5 Hot Weather Running Gear Tips [Active]
Outdoor Products to Promote Safety While Exercising [Very Well Fit]
The 7 Best Handheld Running Bottles of 2020 [Very Well Fit]