Bailey’s Sports Grille

Written by on September 3, 2011 in I Eat America, I Eat...Out with 0 Comments

( – Ballston neighborhood, Arlington, Virginia

How I heard of this place: Our friend Bryan, one of two good friends helping Chris and I move into our first, new apartment together as husband and wife, suggested it as a near-by, convenient and good enough place to grab a bite to eat after an entire morning of loading, unloading and moving furniture and stuff.

Type of cuisine: Pub grub. Lots of high-sodium, greasy foods, ranging from burgers and sandwiches, to wraps, salads and wings, nachos, quesadillas, spinach artichoke dip, cheese fries, Bavarian pretzels with dips, and entrees ranging from blackened mahi mahi, to jerk chicken, fish & chips, campfire pot roast, and pizza.

Ambiance:Fox and Hound Restaurant Group currently owns and operates entertainment restaurants under the Fox and Hound® and Bailey’s brand names that each provide a social gathering place offering high quality food, drinks and entertainment.  Our restaurants offer a broad menu of mid-priced appetizers, entrees and desserts served in generous portions.  In addition, each location features a full-service bar and offers a wide selection of major domestic, imported and specialty beers.  Each restaurant emphasizes a high energy environment with multiple billiard tables, satellite and cable coverage of a variety of sporting events, and music videos. Simply put, we offer the Best Party in Town – 7 nights a week.” The large establishment is somewhat unassuming when one enters through the quiet Ballston Common mall corridor, where few people linger, no chairs/benches to be seen and just a large, empty, tan-colored hallway loom ahead. Once in the dim-lit space, however, the dark greens and browns of an old man’s den await, brass railings and all, with seating in the enclosed smoking section to your left and the remainder of the bar on the right. Tall bar seating is available at dark brown, wooden chairs and tables throughout the establishment, as is regular seating. Large-screen television sets, at least five of which I counted on the non-smoking side, are displayed high and accessible to all. Hokies, the mascot and fans of Virginia Tech crowd the space in maroon and burnt orange jerseys, cheering for their team in the first game of the college football season. Waitresses clad in tight, black clothing slowly and un-deliberately make their way between the tables to assist waiting patrons. Music from the 1980s plays on the stereo system overhead prior to the start of the game. Few windows, fewer lights and the lingering stench of old smoke make Bailey’s the old-time bar one may have frequented for the past forty years.

What I ordered: In our party of four, we started with two Root Beers, which had to be changed to Cranberry Juice ($2.49 each), due to lack of Root Beer in the bar, one iced tea ($2.49) and one Sprite ($2.49). For our meals, our dining companion who had been here before, went for the more simple Buffalo chicken Ranch Wrap ($8.99), a sun-dried tomato tortilla stuffed with grilled chicken breast tossed in buffalo sauce, pepper jack cheese, lettuce, tomato, and ranch dressing, served with a side of fries. He recommended that I go with the Black Forest ($8.49), when given the option between that and The Turkey Melt ($7.99), which sounded more novel: a giant Bavarian pretzel roll topped with grilled turkey, bacon, Monterey Jack cheese, lettuce, tomato and a special honey mustard dressing served with a side of seasoned fries. My husband ordered The Black & Bleu Steak Burger ($8.99), medium, with peppercorn-seasoned steak, topped with melted bleu cheese and applewood bacon. He requested a side order of cheese fries (additional $2.99), upgrading from the seasoned fries that typically come with the meal. Our fourth dining companion requested my suggestion, and omitted the need for anything with bacon; we went with The Alpine Burger ($8.99), with sauteed mushrooms and topped with melted Swiss cheese.

What I loved: The cheesy cheese fries were my favorite on the menu! The seasoned fries could only be enjoyed drenched in ranch, due to the over-the-top levels of salt. The bacon on my sandwich could have been crispier, and was enjoyed, instead, by my husband. The pretzel roll was quite novel, soft, warm and delicious!

Why I loved it: Convenient location, great for a meal on your own, with two hundred drunken sports fans to rid yourself of the lonely blues.

Cost: Low to average ($8-$18 per lunch entree)

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