The son of one of Reston’s first 500 residents is paying homage to his family and hometown with the launch of a new Belgian-inspired gastropub at Lake Anne Plaza.
Owner Jan Carlos Byl plans to open Common Ground in the next six months at the space formerly filled by Local VA, another local restaurant that abruptly closed up shop earlier this year at the plaza.
“This is a way for me to honor my father, my father’s legacy at Lake Anne and fulfill my childhood dream of one day owning a restaurant,” Byl told FFXnow.
Byl returned to Reston after his father, Adhemar Byl, became ill in 2021. After his death, Byl launched the business, which has the motto “good vibes, great food.”
“This is to honor my father and our very special Lake Anne community,” he said. “The Lake needs more watering holes and gathering places where you can break bread and drink with your neighbors and loves ones from just a short walk away.”
The son of a Belgian father and a Nicaraguan mother, Byl hopes to marry different culinary cultures from remote regions and bring together his exposure to different culinary traditions in one place.
Byl moved to Europe at age 21 and remained in Amsterdam for 10 years before returning to the U.S., where he became an investor and creative partner in some D.C.-based transitional bars and restaurants, he says.
In Europe, he spent nearly a decade managing platinum recording artists from around the world, he says.
For now, Byl returns to his roots. The name of the new restaurant fittingly pays homage to a daycare that occupied space above what is now Reston Community Center’s Lake Anne facility years ago: Common Ground Daycare.
It’s also where he and his brother went for daycare. An exact opening date is still pending as work continues on the site.
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