After months of anticipation, Continental Beer Garden will open soon, says Curt Large, owner of the new establishment that will be just a stone's throw away from the popular Continental Pool Lounge, which he also operates.
Continental Beer Garden will be a new restaurant with indoor and outdoor seating located on the corner of 19th and North Moore Streets. It promises to be a great spot to grab a drink with friends or colleagues after work.
Large has been attempting to open a permanent beer garden at this corner since the fall of 2013, when the site was a vacant parking lot filled with dumpsters.
In 2014 property owner The JBG Companies and the Rosslyn Business Improvement District (BID) converted the parking lot into a pop-up urban park, with tables and chairs, potted plants, and a mural by artist Jason Woodside.
Over the past few years Continental has co-hosted several successful pop-up beer gardens at the Plaza on 19th in partnership with the Rosslyn BID. Celebrating such special occasions as Oktoberfest, Cinco de Mayo and Saint Patrick's Day, these community events drew hundreds of Rosslyn workers and residents to the Plaza to enjoy live music, craft beer from Continental, and food from some of the area's most popular food trucks. The beer gardens helped make the Plaza on 19th a favorite neighborhood gathering spot.
Large has worked closely with Arlington County to gain permission to build a permanent beer garden on the site. He hopes the new Continental Beer Garden will cultivate the same good feelings and sense of community that the occasional beer gardens did.
In the style of Continental Pool Lounge, Continental Beer Garden will have a casual, informal feel. The menu will feature communal dishes and individual entrées. The bar will offer an extensive craft beer selection, wine and cocktails.
"We'll have something for everyone," says Julia Gerlach, director of operations.
Many years ago, long before it was the Plaza on 19th, Continental Beer Garden was the site of a service station. Large says the restaurant's design will pay homage to these humble roots.
He and his team have redone the interior of the structure that was once the service station's garage. They have transformed it into a fully equipped restaurant with a kitchen, beer taps, a central high-top table, a few indoor tables that seat about 20 people, and a bar that opens onto a much larger outdoor seating area. The outdoor portion of the beer garden will feature two bocce courts, string lights, trees, picnic tables and umbrellas. Continental Beer Garden will operate separately from Continental Pool Lounge.
As of this writing, Large said they expect to open in May. Their exact hours are not yet set.
"We'll open and see what the demand is," he says.
"Rosslyn needs a place like this," adds Gerlach. "It will be casual . . . different . . . just fun."