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Friday, December 16, 2016

The Block almost ready to open

Snowcream Company is already open.
The eateries in The Block are getting to ready to open, although one of them, the Snowcream Company, has had a “soft opening.”

The Block, the new food court-like establishment next to Kmart on John Marr Drive in Annandale, features six food vendors, including a few that originated as food trucks. Vendors are arranged along the walls, with tables in the center.

Finishing touches under way at the Block Bar.
Huy Nguyen, the owner of the PhoWheels food truck, hopes to open Balo Kitchen between Christmas and New Year’s.

It will be a completely different restaurant, specializing in comfort food, with such items as crispy pork belly, rice bowls, Taiwanese popcorn chicken with chicken skin crackling, grilled street bread, and roe pasta.

“I'm a self-taught chef that grew from my love for food and want people to enjoy my creativity and passion,”says Nguyen.

Regarding The Block, he says: “As a new establishment with new concepts, there are obstacles and challenges to every beginning, but nothing we couldn’t face. We are excited to welcome our future customers to share the love and passion we’ve put into The Block.”

Roots has a unique take on Thai food. 
Also opening after Christmas is Roots, offering Thai street food, such as boat noodle soup, chicken on rice, braised pork, and various noodle and rice dishes. The owner, Paul Sittichai, originally from Bangkok, learned a bit about the restaurant business from friends of his family who own the Pasara Thai Restaurants.

The Snocream Company offers “shaved snow,” a softer version of ice cream (honeydew, mango, green tea, and other flavors) with various toppings (sprinkles, jellies, lychee, Fruity Pebbles, etc.), and drizzles (condensed milk, chocolate, caramel).

This will be the first Pokeworks outlet in the region.
The owner, Arturo Mei, has been operating Snowcream Company in a remodeled, vintage school bus usually parked near Kmart. He is creating new desserts for The Block.

Pokéworks, the only franchisee in The Block, has already had a soft opening, and Munch, offering ice cream and donuts, will be opening soon. The Block Bar, a full-service bar with beer, specialty cocktails, and food, is expected to open Jan. 9.

Pokéworks specializes in Hawaiian poké, fresh seafood like sushi, that can be served in a bowl with rice or greens or in a burrito. According to manager Edward Chung, it will be the first Pokéworks in Northern Virginia, although more are on the way.

NOTE: This post was revised Dec. 22 at the request of the sources.


  1. Awesome! Can't wait to try.

  2. What a fantastic addition to the Annandale food scene AND addition to the "village" business scene. Very cool interior. Hat's off to the young entrepreneurs!

  3. YUMMY! Can't wait!

  4. Woohoo Annandale blowing up! I hope this concept does so well that when KMART goes out of business, the block will extend into this entire plaza.

  5. I am excited to see a asian food hall open up in the heart of annandale that brings something to the table, pun intended. Annandale really had a opportunity to shine to turn annandale into little Korea or embrace the culture diversity but opted for old town Annandale with the old cannons, old lamp post on the square, historical markers. Who we kidding annandale was nothing but a crossroads roads where horse can refill and drop a deuce near the troughs. The article is condescending and author clearly doesn't grasp the idea of what's coming to the block and should stick to reporting on health violations at burger King down the street.

    1. How is this article condescending? And if Annandale isn't little korea, what is it. And the cannon was here for a very long time and doesn't preclude cultural diversity, in fact enhances it. I am also happy to see an asian food hall open.

    2. This article is condescending? How?

  6. Thanks Ellie - can't wait to visit. Go Annandale!