Along North Washington Street in downtown Falls Church City is Argia’s Italian Restaurant. Many times I’ve rode by Argia’s and due to my vision, I couldn’t quite figure out the name, nor the type of fare offered. Then came Restaurant Week. Out of coincidence, Argia’s name came up and the address reminded me of the place I couldn’t figure out that was next to the State Theater. So with a craving for Italian (and a quick google search which lead to yelp reviews), there was no need to look further.
For the 16th Annual DC Restaurant Week, Argia’s features 22 items in their dinner menu. From a quick glance prior to departing the office, I wasn’t set on an appetizer. But entree and dessert wise, I wanted the Duck Ravioli and Tropical Fruit Bomba. With a 5:45 pm OpenTable reservation, I thought the place wasn’t going to be popping. But early dining must popular in Falls Church City. Upon arrival and checking in with the host, I noticed quite a bit of patrons already.
As seen in the above picture, you can sort of see Argia’s features split level floors. Each level is adorned with a rustic ensemble and art work by local artists. I was escorted to the middle level and sat close by to the window. Upon being greeted and handed the menus, the waiter, Sean, had announced their other evening specials. Sadly, the two items I wanted on the Restaurant Week menu weren’t even available. The Bomba was omitted while the ravioli was substituted for pappardelle. Still set on duck, I was convinced the Pappardelle with Black Truffle Demi Glace would be pretty amazing. Appetizer wise, I went with the Insalata di Anguria which features watermelon, Kalamata olives, fresh basil, goat cheese, red onions and tossed with champagne vinaigrette.
Consistent followers of DC Socialite know your author only has one beverage of choice, iced tea. While, its usually never amazing, its almost like a smoker’s need for a drag. I absolutely must have a glass of iced tea with any meal. With that said, the first thing to arrive were my drink and bread. The verdict: nothing amazing on both items, and given I’m in for a 3 course meal, half a slice of bread was enough.
The appetizer I chose sounded great in name and surpassed all expectations upon arrival. The goat cheese paired well with the fresh watermelon triangles. The saltiness of the kalamata olives along with fragrance of the mint and vinaigrette really added depth. Given a situation where I only had this salad and dessert, my bus ride home would’ve been a joyous one. But with a delectable appetizer, must come an equally delectable entree (even at the cost of substitution).
The Pappardelle with Black Truffle Demi Glace and Duck Ragu is a heavy meal. Having seen it several minutes after finishing the salad, I was questioning if I could even finish it. From a quick glance, the duck ragu appears similar to the Cuban entree, Ropa Vieja (minus the difference in proteins and accompanying sides). The demi glace has the right bit of saltiness with bits of black truffles sporadically layered throughout the dish. If you’re a fan of fresh pasta, the pappardelle will not disappoint. Sadly, I did not finish the entree. But whats left was not enough to complete a next day meal.
For dessert, I really wanted to skip out. But events like Restaurant Week gives creatures of habit like myself a chance to test the waters. With a full stomach, I aimed for the lightest of all nine available dessert selections. Given the criteria, carrot cake and bread pudding were out of the question. With the Bomba not available, I opted for Fresh berries and Zabaglione. Fresh berries and cream seems appropriate for the weather. The Zabaglione here is slightly different from its French counterpart, Sabayon. I tasted a splash of champagne in it which paired well with the fresh berries. The almond biscotti provided another level of texture and flavor, but wasn’t necessary.
Overall, my dining experience at Argia’s was pleasant and above par. I actually forgot to add the waiter, Sean, persuaded me towards the Pappardelle over my other choice, Fussilli with Smoked Salmon, Leeks and Vodka Cream Sauce. Falls Church City is not my ideal location for a night of entertaining or being entertained, but Argia’s proves to be a gem. Should you want to know what daily specials Argia’s offers, follow their Twitter, like their Facebook fan page or just frequent the website.
Argia’s Italian Restaurant
124 North Washington Street
Falls Church, VA 22046-4514