Tysons, VA

Nightlife is zilch in Tysons at the moment due to the pandemic. After a brief hiatus, the “Tysons After Dark” series is back to highlight different online activities from local organizations and offerings from eateries that keep people busy once the sun goes down. 

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, restaurants, bars and eateries in the Tysons area are shifting their business models to offer patrons to-go cocktails and mixed alcoholic drinks.

Tysons Reporter compiled a list of spots where adults can pick up drinks to enjoy at home. Though this is not an exhaustive list, people can feel free to add other spots in the comments as well.

Falls Church

Thompson Italian offers six take-home drink kits, according to its website. Each kit ranges in price from $25-$40 and can serve up to five people.

Glory Days Grill announced the location is selling to-go bloody marys, mojitos, margaritas, various flavored crushes and sangria. Each option can be purchased in various serving sizes up to four drinks. Prices range from $4-$16 depending on the size.

Taco Bamba now delivers cocktails and cocktail mix. Single serving cocktails sell for $7 each, while non-alcoholic mixes start at $10 and serve up to five people.

Mosaic

Open Road Merrifield sells four different options for premixed cocktails and three different flavored fruity sangrias, according to its website. For example, its 16-ounce Blackberry Sangria contains Cabernet Sauvignon, blackberry, grapefruit, Aperol, and orange liqueur for $15.

Vienna

Caboose Commons now offers bagged cocktails options including rum punch and “Lady in Red,” which contains Grand Marnier, cranberry juice and champagne. The brewery also offers various drink mixes and, of course, beer, its website said.

“Our Tropical Rum Punch is just the thing to get you through the rest of…whatever day it is. Stick it in the freezer to make it slushy,” Caboose’s Facebook page said.

Pazzo Pomodoro is also selling cocktail pouches, some of which include unconventional flavors. For example, the Jameson Green Tea is one of the five options and contains Jameson Irish Whiskey, peach schnapps and sour mix. The bags contain two drinks for $12.

El Sol Virginia offers a variety of margaritas, mojitos and other drinks for delivery and pickup, according to its website. They range in price from $11-$14.

Bear Branch Tavern sells brunch cocktails, traditional classic cocktails and other types of booze to-go. Each batch of the traditional cocktails costs $40 and includes four servings, ice and garnishes for the drinks, according to the website. Brunch cocktails vary in price depending on serving size.

Bazins On Church is yet another local spot where people can take advantage of house-crafted drinks. They offer people to-go margaritas, mojitos and sangria for $7-$10.

Clarity offers different takes on Manhattans and “signature” cocktails, according to its website. Prices range from $20-$35.

Tysons

Earls, beyond wine and beer from its new grocery section, now offers cocktails including mojitos and margaritas, according to its website.

Barrel and Bushel is not only offering packaged cocktails but rail drinks and happy hour specials as well. A prepackaged cocktail costs $20 and contains two servings. The location also offers mixers to-go, according to the website.

Finally, Founding Farmers offers over nine different premixed cocktails for $25. Each batch includes six to eight servings.

People are encouraged to check with their favorite local restaurants not mentioned above to see if they are offering cocktails to go or drink kits.

The Virginia ABC issued the following guidance on restaurants selling mixed drinks to go:

In order to maintain public safety, there will be restrictions placed on the service of mixed beverages in this fashion. Below are the highlights of the temporary regulation adjustment.

  • Distillery licensees are limited to a maximum of two mixed drinks per delivery or takeout order that contain 1½ ounces or less of spirits per drink.
  • Mixed beverage restaurants and limited mixed beverage restaurants are limited to four cocktails for each delivery or take out sale. Each order for delivery or takeout of cocktails must include a meal for every two cocktails purchased.
  • Cocktails shall be packaged in a glass, paper or plastic container (or similar disposable container) or in a single original metal can with a secure lid or cap designed to prevent consumption without removal of the lid or cap (lids with sipping holes or openings for straws are prohibited).
  • All recipients of delivery orders must be at least 21 years of age.

Photo via Caboose Brewing Company/Facebook

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One month into Fairfax County’s new regulations on short-term lodging, a group of local citizens are suing to have the regulations voided.

On July 31, the Board of Supervisors adopted the Short-Term Lodging (STL) Zoning Ordinance Amendment aimed at regulating home-sharing inside Fairfax, most commonly carried out through the websites Airbnb and VRBO.

Short-term lodging operators must apply for a $200 two-year zoning permit, and homeowners or community associations can still prohibit lodgings within their subdivision or development.

The new requirements went into effect on Oct. 1, along with a series of new regulations on short-term lodging:

  • Homes cannot be used for STL more than 60 nights per year.
  • The maximum number of lodgers per night is six adults.
  • The maximum number of rental contracts per might is one, so all lodgers must be associated with the same contract.
  • Any events or activities like parties, meetings, or luncheons where there may be direct or indirect compensation is prohibited.
  • All advertisements must include the STL permit number and identify the location of parking.
  • STLs cannot be set up in detached structures
  • A new Transient Occupancy Tax must be collected for each rental contract by the end of each month following the reporting month. A monthly return must also filed even if no taxes are due. If receipts exceed $10,000, a Business Professional and Occupational License is required.
  • STL operators must be permanent residents of the property and obtain written consent from property owner (when applicable).
  • Maintain a guest log including name, address and telephone number of all lodgers to be made available to any County employee upon request.
  • All STLs are required to be open for inspection during reasonable hours.

The 36 Fairfax residents collectively suing the County say the Board of Supervisors overreached and the move is the latest in a two-year trend of the county targeting STL.

In 2017, the General Assembly enacted a code allowing localities to establish a short term rental registry and require operators to register annually. Localities are also allowed to charge a fee for registration.

According to the Fairfax County website, the code prompted the Board of Supervisors to analyze short-term lodging in Fairfax and make zoning changes to allow STLs while maintaining the overall character of residential neighborhoods.

But the lawsuit says the requirements that nearly all of the other regulations, like the requirement that operators be permanent residents and the requirement of a guest log book, all exceed the authorities explicitly granted by the state.

As Virginia is a Dillon Rule state, one where the localities can only engage in activities explicitly sanctioned by the state government, the lawsuit alleges that Fairfax’s actions constitute an overreach.

Among the allegations are claims that the STL ordinance constitutes unlawful piecemeal downzoning, a violation of due process, and that the requirement that homes be open for inspection constitutes authorization of unlawful search and seizure.

According to the Fairfax Circuit Court clerk’s office, a hearing for the case is scheduled for Nov. 1 at 8:30 a.m.

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