I'll be the first to admit that I rarely venture into that mystical land known as Northern Virginia even though it's basically right across the river and only a few Metro stops away. However, once in a blue moon (read: a couple times a month), I venture across to meet my partner in crime (and food) Graham for lunch, who works over in Rosslyn.
Instead of hitting up one of the millions of chain restaurants available in business-heavy area around the Metro station, we decided to try Kanpai, a small Japanese restaurant tucked away - like everything else around there - on the bottom level of a business building.
Today's NSOL features:
1401 Wilson Blvd, Arlington VA
While I'm pretty wary of Japanese restaurants which pander to the suit and tie lunch crowd - usually this means soggy seaweed and overly sweet teriyaki - I was actually pleasantly by Kanpai. More than anything, their extensive lunch specials cost around or the same as what your average desk lunch would cost - $10 or thereabouts.
As expected, none of this was particularly mind blowing but I was compelled to write about this place simply because most of the lunch menu items are tasty, filling and literally cost less your average Panera or Chipotle* meal.
So, to summarize:
What's the deal: Decent Japanese food at an extremely competitive price, caters to the business crowd in the Rosslyn area
Wallet damage: Most lunch special items are under $10; they come with miso soup and salad as starters
What to get: The various donburi rice bowls, definitely the tempura. Skip the raw items.
*At least it does with me. My Chipotle order is a sofritas/carnitas bowl on a bed of lettuce. It costs almost $10 or more, especially with the extra guac (DAMN YOU CHIPOTLE).
One woman's journey to eat all the food. Or at least, most of it.