Fairfax City is undergoing a rapid change in its craft beer bars. The turn over has been fast and furious. That is why when we saw the latest announcement of a bar coming to town, there was a collective sigh among the established store fronts. But this one is different and it represents a new look and feel to having a drink after work.
High Side is the name of this new pub, moving into the area occupied by Villa Mozart, at 4009 Chain Bridge Road, (Voice: 703-304-0674; www.highsideva.com) and it specializes in high end craft beers. The soft opening is closing this Wednesday and the grand opening is Friday, 9 February 2018. Expect that this cozy little corner lot will be full for the opening, but it should relax a bit on the days that following. The brewers will be known to those who follow craft beer: Epic Brewing, Hardywood Park Brewing, Aslin Brewing, Solace Brewing, Ocelot Brewing, Crooked Run Brewing, Port City Brewing. A host of other breweries that will be making appearances over the coming months.
The co-owner and general manager is Jinson Chan (firstname.lastname@example.org), who is Malaysian Chinese and his wife is Taiwanese, got the idea for High Side when they could not wrap their heads around why there was so little Taiwanese street food. So rather than lament, they did something about it, and now there is a place to feed your inner Asian! They also brought in a local expert on the beer by hiring one of the young go-getters from Craft Works who knows a thing or two about serving beer. (Hey there, Chevy!)
I had an Master of Karate by Aslin Brewery (Herndon, VA). An 8.4% ABV IPA – Imperial, this brew brings three dry hop heavily (Mosaic, Galaxy and Amarillo) together and produce a gentle blend of what could be best described as a mango flavor. It was intense and mixed beautifully with the food.
I also ordered a small plate of six pot stickers, which were freshly made by hand and put out with an excellent sauce. The food is freshly made Taiwanese inspired street food and it has a decidedly nice taste when compared to the usual bar food. It was light and inviting and it held up while I was engaged in conversation The only thing I noticed is that on the small plates, they had only one vegetarian option, the house salad. If they had a constant vegetarian option, they would match their competition.
So on your way home or when you are out, swing by High Side and indulge yourself. You will be glad that you did.