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Ten Fairfax County restaurants are among the region’s 100 best, Washingtonian says

The Persian restaurant Joon opened at Fairfax Square in Tysons in June 2023 (courtesy Joon)

Ten of the D.C. region’s best restaurants can be found in Fairfax County, according to a newly unveiled round-up by Washingtonian.

Acknowledging that “some of the year’s coolest spots…debuted in the Virginia suburbs,” Washingtonian ranked Joon at no. 23 on its 2024 list of the “100 Very Best Restaurants” in the region. Opened on June 13, 2023, the Tysons-based Persian restaurant was the only Fairfax County spot to be ranked.

Located in Fairfax Square (8045 Leesburg Pike), Joon is led by chefs Najmieh Batmanglij and Christopher Morgan, who blend traditional Iranian cuisine with contemporary western elements. It also contains the pop-up, The Kitchen Collective, which serves food from other concepts by Joon co-founder Reza Farahani.

Farahani says it’s “an honor” for Joon to be recognized less than a year after its launch in an area that boasts “a vibrant and innovative restaurant scene.”

“Our vision has been to showcase a modern approach to the ancient cuisine of Iran and the Middle East, while using local and seasonal ingredients and innovative techniques to create a one-of-a-kind experience,” Farahani told FFXnow. “Our wine list and craft cocktails have been developed with distinct Persian flavors such as saffron, rose and pomegranate and are an homage to Persia’s contribution to the earliest spirits and wines known in history.”

Washingtonian praised Joon for food “that’s both homey and beautifully presented,” singling out the “warm pita” offered to patrons when they arrive, dips and sour-cherry rice as highlights.

“Whole platters sized for two and up are stunners, whether a whole rotisserie chicken with apples, apricots, and honey or a strapping feast of kebabs,” the magazine’s staff said in a capsule review.

Joon’s inclusion on Washingtonian’s annual list continued a good day for Batmanglij and Morgan, who were also named semifinalists yesterday (Wednesday) for a James Beard award.

Other Fairfax County establishments that made the list, which is unranked after the top 25, include:

Several restaurants — A&J, Aracosia, L’Auberge Chez Francois, Mama Chang and Marib — also appeared on Washingtonian’s “100 Very Best” list for 2023.

In the case of A&J, the family-owned dim sum eatery has been recognized every year that the list has come out since 2019, though the magazine paused the yearly round-up in 2021 and 2022 in response to the Covid pandemic. A&J originated in Rockville, Maryland, in 1996 before adding the Annandale location in 2000.

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